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File Server Disk Quotas

The Quota Management snap-in enables you to create quotas that limit the space allowed for a volume or folder. These quotas can be also be applied to subfolders on a particular volume (or a particular folder).

Windows Server 2008 enables you to control and track shared volume usage on a per-volume and per-user basis. Notifications can also be built into the quota settings, alerting you or folder owners when a particular threshold has been reached.

Did you Know?

Windows Server 2008 also provides a command-line tool, fsutil, for working with disk volumes. Its capabilities include manipulating disk quotas. For example, fsutil quota is used to create and edit user disk quotas.

You definitely will want to spend some planning time to determine an appropriate disk space for your users before enabling disk quotas. Quotas can be created that are specific to a volume or folder, and you can also create auto-apply quotas that also apply to any subfolders in a volume or folder to which you assign the auto-apply quota.

Two types of quotas are available to you: hard quotas and soft quotas. Hard quotas dictate a size limit that users cannot exceed. A soft quota allows users to exceed the limit and is used to monitor volume (or folder) use by your users.

By the Way

Soft quotas can send alert emails, generate reports, or log an event in the Event Viewer (hard quotas can also be created that log events and send alerts). Using the Event Viewer and viewing events in the log files such as the system log are discussed in Hour 24, “Monitoring Server Performance and Network Connections.”

Disk quotas can be created with the Quota Management snap-in (in the Server Manager or the MMC, it is a subnode of the File Server Resource Manager). Templates are provided (using various threshold settings) that can be used to create both your “regular” quotas and you auto-apply quotas.

To create a quota for a volume or folder, follow these steps:

1. Expand the File Server Resource Manager node in the Server Manager (first, expand the Roles, File Services, and Share and Storage Management nodes) or in the File Server Resource Manager snap-in in the MMC (Start, Administrative Tools, and then File Server Resource Manager).

2. Expand the Quota Management node and then select the Quotas node. Any existing quotas appear in the Quotas detail pane (see Figure 12.5).

Figure 12.5. The Quotas node contains any quotas created for the server.

[View full size image]

3. To create a new quota, click the Create Quota link in the Actions pane. The Create Quota dialog box opens (see Figure 12.6).

Figure 12.6. The Create Quota dialog box is used to create a quota for a volume or folder.

4. Click the Browse button in the Create Quota dialog box and use the Browse for Folder dialog box to select the volume or folder. Then click OK.

5. Select either the Create Quota on Path option (the default) or the Auto Apply Template and Create Quotas on Existing and New Subfolders option. The latter applies the quota to any existing or new folders that are in the volume or folder for which you are configuring the quota.

6. Click the Derive Properties from This Quota template (Recommended) drop-down list to select a limit or a monitor property for a particular limit. Choices include 100MB limit (the default), 200MB Limit Reports to User, and 250MB Extended Limit.

You can also set custom limits if you do not want to use one of the quota templates. Click the Define Custom Quota Properties option button and then select the Custom Properties button. The Quota Properties dialog box opens (see Figure 12.7).

Figure 12.7. Use the Quota Properties dialog box to create a custom quota.

7. Set a space limit for the quota (you can copy the limit from a template or set it in the Limit box). You can also enter an optional label for the quota.

8. Select either the Hard Quota or Soft Quota option button and then click the Add button if you want to create notification thresholds for the quota. The Add Threshold dialog box opens (see Figure 12.8).

Figure 12.8. Configure the threshold notifications for the quota.

9. Set the usage percentage for the threshold and then select the Email Message, Event Log, Command, or Report tab. Each tab enables you to configure the type of notification that takes place when the quota threshold is reached. For example, you can configure the notification as an email sent to an administrator or directly to the user. Or you can configure the Event Log option to send an event to the Event Log when the threshold is reached. Reports can be configured in the Report tab.

After configuring the threshold properties, click OK. You are returned to the Quota Properties dialog box. Click OK. You will be returned to the Create Quota dialog box.

By the Way

A quota can be configured to generate a number of different types of reports. Multiple reports can be configured for a single quota and can include Duplicate Files, Files By Owner, and Most Recently Accessed Files.

10. Click Create to create the new quota. If you selected custom properties for the quota, the Save Custom Properties as a Template dialog box opens. To save the quota properties as a template, enter a template name and then click OK. If you do not want to save the custom properties as a template, click the Save the Custom Quota Without Creating a Template option button and then click OK.

The new quota appears in the Details pane of the Quotas node. When a quota is selected, you can view the quota’s details in the bottom pane of the Details area of the snap-in.

You can edit quotas; right-click on a quota and select Edit Quota Properties from the shortcut menu. The Quota Properties dialog box opens.

Did you Know?

To view all the quotas that affect a single volume or folder, right-click any quota related to that volume and select View Quotas Affecting Folder. The quotas are filtered for that folder (or volume).

You can also delete quotas. Right-click a selected quota (or quotas) and select Delete Quotas from the shortcut menu. You will be asked to confirm the deletion. Click OK to delete the quota or quotas.

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