DFS File Locking

By: Peer Software  11-11-2011
Keywords: File Server, File Servers



GOAL: Facilitate collaboration among the branch office DFS users, by providing true real-time file locking.

Though DFS R2 is a more reliable and "network friendly" replication tool in comparison to its FRS predecessor, it is still incomplete and inadequate for today's more collaborative environments where data needs to be shared in real-time, among the branch offices and project teams operating in multiple locations. Business Challenges
DFS lacks a central feature important for a collaborative environment where inter-office file servers are mirrored and data is shared: File Locking. Without integrated file locking, using DFS to mirror file servers exposes live documents to version conflicts. That is, a colleague in Office A can open and edit a document at the same time a colleague in Office B is working on the same document. In such a scenario, DFS will only save the changes made by the person closing the file last. Moreover, another version conflict potential arises even if these two colleagues are not editing the file simultaneously. DFS Replication works on a single threaded, "pull" process. As a result, synchronization tasks can easily "queue" up and create a backlog whereby changes made from one location are not replicated to the other side in an immediate manner. This time delay creates another opportunity for file version conflicts Solution

The surest and simplest way of eliminating version conflicts when using DFS is to add a true file locking solution - one that offers, at a minimum, real-time detection of file use and immediate remote locking, such as PeerLock. This assures that when a file is open at location A, all other versions - say local copies at various branch offices - are locked down, preventing anyone from opening and revising it. When the file closes, the file lock is immediately released and ready for synchronization.

While many customers enjoy the benefits of adding file locking to DFS, please bear in mind the potential synchronization backlogs while using DFS. For a true solution that offers both real-time file locking AND real-time replication, thus eliminating version conflict and providing a fail-safe collaborative framework, evaluate our complete PEER Collaboration Package.


  • Transparent file locking among N number of geographical office branches/Servers
  • Cross Domain File Locking
  • Real-Time File Locking among Servers
  • Multi-Threaded File Locking and Release


  • PeerLock should be installed on each file server participating in the collaboration group.
  • The servers must be able to see each other via UNC Path.
  • Please do not try to test using Wordpad/ Notepad. These file types cannot be locked due to the nature of the application.
  • PeerLock by default is set to be optimized for file servers. As such, files should be opened from desktops connecting to the file server; not locally on the file server through the Windows Explorer.

Keywords: File Server, File Servers

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