Welcome!

Microsoft Cloud Authors: Dana Gardner, David Bermingham, Jayaram Krishnaswamy, Pat Romanski, Adine Deford

Related Topics: Microsoft Cloud, Containers Expo Blog, Silverlight, Agile Computing, @CloudExpo

Microsoft Cloud: Blog Post

12 Steps to NTFS Shared Folders in Windows Server 2012

Server Manager provides improved local and remote management of Shared Folders

In the past, managing and sharing NTFS folders could be a real ordeal – there were different tools for managing NTFS permissions vs shared folders and most IT Pros generally used these tools on a server-by-server basis from each server’s console.

Server Manager to the rescue!
In Windows Server 2012, Server Manager provides a management facelift on top of the disconnected process that we’ve used in the past for sharing folders and setting NTFS permissions.  In addition, Server Manager can easily manage these folders on a local server or any remote servers that you’ve previously added to the Server Manager dashboard.

NOTE: For details on using and customizing Server Manager for your servers and network environment, check out this post on that topic.

Along with the new SMB 3.0 performance and availability features for shared folders, Server Manager provides a powerful management tool for taking advantages of these features in your network environment.

How can I share new folders with Server Manager?
You can start the process of sharing NTFS folders in Server Manager by launching the New Share Wizard from the File and Storage Services details page.  This new wizard integrates the steps involved with creating a new folder, sharing the folder and setting NTFS permissions into a single continuous workstream for local and remote servers.

  1. On the File and Storage Services page, select Shares and then click Tasks –> New Share … to begin the New Share Wizard.

    NTFSShare01
  2. On the Select the profile for this share page, select SMB Share – Quick and click the Next button.  Note that in addition to creating new SMB shares for NTFS folders that are sharing documents, we also have options for creating shared folders for applications, such as SQL databases or Hyper-V virtual machines, as well as creating new NFS shares for non-Windows client devices.

    NTFSShare02
  3. On the Select the server and path for this share page, select the server on which to create the new share ( local or remote server ) and the volume on which to create the new shared folder.  Click the Next button to continue.

    NTFSShare03
  4. On the Specify share name page, type the name of your new Share name and click the Next button to continue.

    NTFSShare04
  5. On the Configure share settings page, you will find advanced options for configuring Access-Based Enumeration (ABE), Offline folder caching, and Encryption of end-to-end SMB network traffic.  Let’s select all three options and then click the Next button.

    NOTE: If BranchCache is enabled on your server to optimize shared folder access over a WAN, you can also enable BranchCache for this new folder on this page.  To learn more about the new simplified BranchCache features in Windows Server 2012 … check out Brian Lewis’ My Thoughts on IT blog.

    NTFSShare05
  6. On the Specify permissions to control access page, review the default permissions for the new NTFS folder and click the Customize permissions… button to further customize these permissions as necessary.  When finished, click the Next button to continue.

    NTFSShare06
  7. On the Confirm selections page, review the currently selected settings for sharing the new folder and click the Create button to begin the process of creating the new folder, applying NTFS permissions, and sharing the folder with the selected share settings.

    NTFSShare10

How can I automate the process of sharing new folders?
You can automate the process of sharing new folders using PowerShell 3.0 and the new SMB Share Cmdlets.  For example, to create and share the same folder as demonstrated above, we could use the following commands in PowerShell:

MD D:\Shares\Documents

New-SMBShare -Name Documents -Path D:\Shares\Documents -FolderEnumerationMode AccessBased  
-CachingMode Documents -EncryptData $True -FullAccess Everyone

In addition to the new SMB Share Cmdlets, you can also use the Set-Acl and Get-Acl PowerShell cmdlets for automating NTFS folder permissions.

Has anything changed with NTFS permissions in Windows Server 2012?
NTFS access list permissions work the same in Windows Server 2012, but there is an improved user interface for setting and viewing NTFS permissions that can make implementing advanced security scenarios much easier.

What is an NTFS “advanced security scenario”?
For example, a common NTFS folder requirement in many organizations is to set permissions such that users can create, update, delete and rename files, but not delete or rename folders or sub-folders.  Many organizations implement this approach to provide a consistent network folder structure for users to store their files, without being concerned about users inadvertently moving or renaming (ie., pruning and grafting) whole sections of that folder structure.  In the past, this custom combination of file and folder permissions was confusing and difficult to implement.

To implement this scenario in Windows Server 2012, we can click on the Customize permissions… button referenced above in Step 6 and walk through the following process:

  1. In the Advanced Security Settings dialog box, click the Disable Inheritance button to disable inherited permissions from the parent folder in preparation of setting an explicit set of folder permissions.

    NTFSShare09
  2. When prompted, click the option to Convert inherited permissions into explicit permissions on this object. This will create a copy of each inherited permission access list entry into an explicit entry for this folder that we’ll be able to edit or remove.

    NTFS08
  3. In this case, we want to modify the default permissions granted to the Users group for this folder.  Use the Remove button to remove each of the existing access list entries granted to the Users group.

    NTFS09
  4. Then use the Add button to grant a new set of file permissions to the Users group.  In this scenario, we want users to have read, write and delete permissions to files ( and only files ) inside this folder, so we’ll select the following permission options for files:

    NTFS13
  5. Once we’re done adding file permissions, we’ll use the Add button again to grant a new set of folder permissions to the Users group.  In this scenario, we want users to have the ability to see folders and create new files, so we’ll select the following permission options for folders:

    NTFS12

That’s it! Now we’ve got our shared folder all set for this advanced security scenario in just a few clicks!  Of course, if we wanted to automate this process, we could’ve used the Set-Acl and Get-Acl PowerShell Cmdlets to set NTFS permissions via a script as well.

Are there any other changes related to NTFS permissions?
As we were working through the last set of steps, you may have noticed a few new tabs in the new NTFS Advanced Security Settings dialog.

NTFSShare08

The tabs that are new or improved for the NTFS Security Dialog in Windows Server 2012 include:

  • Share – integrates Share permissions into a separate tab on the NTFS security dialog, so that NTFS and Share permissions can be compared side-by-side
  • Effective Access – improved to provide an easier user interface to work with for evaluating the effective permissions for a user, group, device or claim.
  • Central Policy – used with the new Dynamic Access Control (DAC) feature of Windows Server 2012 to centralize folder permissions into security policies that can be dynamically applied to files and folders based on Active Directory claims.

Dynamic Access Control (DAC), in particular, is a powerful feature in Windows Server 2012 to reduce the administrative load of managing standard permission access lists across lots of file servers. I’ll be writing a separate article in the near future that steps through the process of using DAC.

Do It: Implementing Shared Folders and NTFS Permissions
Your turn! Build your own Windows Server 2012 server lab and use the steps outlined above to create and share your own shared folder with the following properties:

  • Shared folder path: C:\Shares\Documents
  • Shared folder name: Documents
  • Shared folder settings: Access-based Enumeration
  • NTFS Permissions: Use the permissions shown in the example above.

What's Next?

In this article, we've walked through the benefits of the improvements offered by Windows Server 2012 for sharing and configuring NTFS folders using  Server Manager and PowerShell 3.0

Learn more! To gain more experience with Windows Server 2012 in your lab, feel free to join our FREE Windows Server 2012 "Early Experts" Challenge online study group and become one of the 1,000+ IT Pros that are now studying as "Early Experts" on Windows Server 2012.

What do you think of Server Manager in Windows Server 2012?
Are you excited about using Server Manager in your environment for shared folder scenarios?  Feel free to share your feedback and stories in the comments below!

Hope this helps,

Keith

Build Your Lab! Build Your Lab! Download Windows Server 2012
Build Your Lab in the Cloud! Don’t Have a Lab? Build Your Lab in the Cloud with Windows Azure Virtual Machines
Join our "Early Experts" study group! Want to Get Certified? Join our Windows Server 2012 "Early Experts" Study Group

More Stories By Keith Mayer

Keith Mayer is a Technical Evangelist at Microsoft focused on Windows Infrastructure, Data Center Virtualization, Systems Management and Private Cloud. Keith has over 17 years of experience as a technical leader of complex IT projects, in diverse roles, such as Network Engineer, IT Manager, Technical Instructor and Consultant. He has consulted and trained thousands of IT professionals worldwide on the design and implementation of enterprise technology solutions.

Keith is currently certified on several Microsoft technologies, including System Center, Hyper-V, Windows, Windows Server, SharePoint and Exchange. He also holds other industry certifications from IBM, Cisco, Citrix, HP, CheckPoint, CompTIA and Interwoven.

Keith is the author of the IT Pros ROCK! Blog on Microsoft TechNet, voted as one of the Top 50 "Must Read" IT Blogs.

Keith also manages the Windows Server 2012 "Early Experts" Challenge - a FREE online study group for IT Pros interested in studying and preparing for certification on Windows Server 2012. Join us and become the next "Early Expert"!

@ThingsExpo Stories
With an estimated 50 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020, several industries will begin to expand their capabilities for retaining end point data at the edge to better utilize the range of data types and sheer volume of M2M data generated by the Internet of Things. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Don DeLoach, CEO and President of Infobright, will discuss the infrastructures businesses will need to implement to handle this explosion of data by providing specific use cases for filte...
Fortunately, meaningful and tangible business cases for IoT are plentiful in a broad array of industries and vertical markets. These range from simple warranty cost reduction for capital intensive assets, to minimizing downtime for vital business tools, to creating feedback loops improving product design, to improving and enhancing enterprise customer experiences. All of these business cases, which will be briefly explored in this session, hinge on cost effectively extracting relevant data from ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that VAI, a leading ERP software provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. VAI (Vormittag Associates, Inc.) is a leading independent mid-market ERP software developer renowned for its flexible solutions and ability to automate critical business functions for the distribution, manufacturing, specialty retail and service sectors. An IBM Premier Business Part...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Alert Logic, Inc., the leading provider of Security-as-a-Service solutions for the cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Alert Logic, Inc., provides Security-as-a-Service for on-premises, cloud, and hybrid infrastructures, delivering deep security insight and continuous protection for customers at a lower cost than traditional security solutions. Ful...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 ad...
As enterprises work to take advantage of Big Data technologies, they frequently become distracted by product-level decisions. In most new Big Data builds this approach is completely counter-productive: it presupposes tools that may not be a fit for development teams, forces IT to take on the burden of evaluating and maintaining unfamiliar technology, and represents a major up-front expense. In his session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Andrew Warfield, CTO and Co-Founder of Coho Data, will dis...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Commvault, a global leader in enterprise data protection and information management, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Commvault is a leading provider of data protection and information management...
The cloud promises new levels of agility and cost-savings for Big Data, data warehousing and analytics. But it’s challenging to understand all the options – from IaaS and PaaS to newer services like HaaS (Hadoop as a Service) and BDaaS (Big Data as a Service). In her session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Hannah Smalltree, a director at Cazena, will provide an educational overview of emerging “as-a-service” options for Big Data in the cloud. This is critical background for IT and data profes...
With the Apple Watch making its way onto wrists all over the world, it’s only a matter of time before it becomes a staple in the workplace. In fact, Forrester reported that 68 percent of technology and business decision-makers characterize wearables as a top priority for 2015. Recognizing their business value early on, FinancialForce.com was the first to bring ERP to wearables, helping streamline communication across front and back office functions. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Kevin Roberts...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Fusion, a leading provider of cloud services, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Fusion, a leading provider of integrated cloud solutions to small, medium and large businesses, is the industry's single source for the cloud. Fusion's advanced, proprietary cloud service platform enables the integration of leading edge solutions in the cloud, including clou...
Most people haven’t heard the word, “gamification,” even though they probably, and perhaps unwittingly, participate in it every day. Gamification is “the process of adding games or game-like elements to something (as a task) so as to encourage participation.” Further, gamification is about bringing game mechanics – rules, constructs, processes, and methods – into the real world in an effort to engage people. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Robert Endo, owner and engagement manager of Intrepid D...
Eighty percent of a data scientist’s time is spent gathering and cleaning up data, and 80% of all data is unstructured and almost never analyzed. Cognitive computing, in combination with Big Data, is changing the equation by creating data reservoirs and using natural language processing to enable analysis of unstructured data sources. This is impacting every aspect of the analytics profession from how data is mined (and by whom) to how it is delivered. This is not some futuristic vision: it's ha...
WebRTC has had a real tough three or four years, and so have those working with it. Only a few short years ago, the development world were excited about WebRTC and proclaiming how awesome it was. You might have played with the technology a couple of years ago, only to find the extra infrastructure requirements were painful to implement and poorly documented. This probably left a bitter taste in your mouth, especially when things went wrong.
Learn how IoT, cloud, social networks and last but not least, humans, can be integrated into a seamless integration of cooperative organisms both cybernetic and biological. This has been enabled by recent advances in IoT device capabilities, messaging frameworks, presence and collaboration services, where devices can share information and make independent and human assisted decisions based upon social status from other entities. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Michael Heydt, founder of Seamless...
The IoT's basic concept of collecting data from as many sources possible to drive better decision making, create process innovation and realize additional revenue has been in use at large enterprises with deep pockets for decades. So what has changed? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Prasanna Sivaramakrishnan, Solutions Architect at Red Hat, discussed the impact commodity hardware, ubiquitous connectivity, and innovations in open source software are having on the connected universe of people, thi...
WebRTC: together these advances have created a perfect storm of technologies that are disrupting and transforming classic communications models and ecosystems. In his session at WebRTC Summit, Cary Bran, VP of Innovation and New Ventures at Plantronics and PLT Labs, provided an overview of this technological shift, including associated business and consumer communications impacts, and opportunities it may enable, complement or entirely transform.
There are so many tools and techniques for data analytics that even for a data scientist the choices, possible systems, and even the types of data can be daunting. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Harrold, Global CTO for Big Data Solutions for EMC Corporation, showed how to perform a simple, but meaningful analysis of social sentiment data using freely available tools that take only minutes to download and install. Participants received the download information, scripts, and complete end-t...
For manufacturers, the Internet of Things (IoT) represents a jumping-off point for innovation, jobs, and revenue creation. But to adequately seize the opportunity, manufacturers must design devices that are interconnected, can continually sense their environment and process huge amounts of data. As a first step, manufacturers must embrace a new product development ecosystem in order to support these products.
Manufacturing connected IoT versions of traditional products requires more than multiple deep technology skills. It also requires a shift in mindset, to realize that connected, sensor-enabled “things” act more like services than what we usually think of as products. In his session at @ThingsExpo, David Friedman, CEO and co-founder of Ayla Networks, discussed how when sensors start generating detailed real-world data about products and how they’re being used, smart manufacturers can use the dat...
When it comes to IoT in the enterprise, namely the commercial building and hospitality markets, a benefit not getting the attention it deserves is energy efficiency, and IoT’s direct impact on a cleaner, greener environment when installed in smart buildings. Until now clean technology was offered piecemeal and led with point solutions that require significant systems integration to orchestrate and deploy. There didn't exist a 'top down' approach that can manage and monitor the way a Smart Buildi...