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How do Dynamic Home Directories improve performance?

Last Updated:

Applies to

  • ONTAP 9
  • Clustered Data ONTAP
  • Data ONTAP operating in 7-mode
  • CIFS Home Directories
  • User profiles can be in used in VDI (Hyper-V) or Citrix Home Profiles using folder redirection.


  1. Take as an example "\\filer\home\user18456". With a regular FlexVol or FlexGroup setup, the sequence goes as follows for all Windows clients:
    1. Negotiate Protocol Request and Response.
    2. Session Setup Request and Response.
    3. Tree Connect \\filer\home and response.
    4. Create requests and closes.
    5. A Find of \\filer\home for user18456 with pattern of *.
    6. Finally a Close and then a create call of user 18456:
  2. Notice, the Find Request above with "Pattern: *", means this will return all 18456 entries. ONTAP has to process each single entry and transmit all that associate data to the Windows client.
  3. Dynamic Home Directories simplify this and ONTAP only returns the single user's folder. ONTAP still has to search all 18,456 folders, but it is only doing a simple find, not reading the entire contents of the folder to transmit to Windows. This is less CPU computationally intensive compared to a typical home directory, and this is how performance is improved with Dynamic Home Directories.


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