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Work Folders

This video will look at a new feature in Windows called Work Folders. Work Folders allows users to share files and folders from the work network on their own device, for example a tablet or smart phone.

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Work Folders
The idea behind work folders is that a sync folder can be created on a file server. Files stored in this sync folder are automatically synced between different computers and devices. For example, the user could have a computer at home and work and files would be automatically synced between them. This would work the same way as software like Dropbox. Devices like Microsoft Surface are also supported; however, devices like android are not supported as yet, but may be in the future.

Work Folders is a new feature in Windows Server 2012 R2. It is available in Windows 8.1 and also available in Windows 7 (Professional, Enterprise, Ultimate) as an optional download due to a lot of requests. No support is currently available for iOS (Apple iPhone) or Android. Work Folders is also compatible with Active Directory Federation Services Workplace Join. This allows devices to access Work Folders without being members of the domain.

Work Folders supports two features which can be switched on or off by the administrator. The first is Encrypting File System (EFS) which allows files to be encrypted on the device. The second is the ability to lock the screen of the device when the device is left idle for a certain amount of time. Both features require the device to support these features. In the case of Work Folders on Windows 7, group policy will need to be configured in order to use the ability to lock the screen.

References
“Installing and Configuring Windows Server 2012 Exam Ref 70-410” pg 89
“Deploying and Managing Work Folders” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SxwuH9iMRIc
“Step-By-Step: Creating a Work Folders Test Lab Deployment in Windows Server 2012 R2” http://blogs.technet.com/b/canitpro/archive/2013/11/13/step-by-step-creating-a-work-folders-test-lab-deployment-in-windows-server-2012-r2.aspx

Microsoft Surface image used in this video was used under Fair use.

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