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In this week’s edition I’ll try to describe how we work around some performance issues we experienced in the lab when accessing IBM i file systems as Windows 7 mapped drives.

Windows 7 and mapped drives to IBM i

In recent times I repeatedly heard developers of our team shout over the floor and complain that their file access to IBM i hosts has dramatically slowed down after they upgraded their PCs to Windows 7, in particular when it comes to opening Office documents. The first question by their predecessors is always: “Have you disabled this service?”. And then discussions start what service this is and what else can be done. Nobody seems to be really sure if he/she did all the steps that are known to us to recover from this and if we reached same performance as before.

However, we found out that we are not the first ones to run into this kind of issue and that others published what they found out so far. The most comprehensive description we currently know of is the Windows 7 and IBM i NetServer support document published by IBM. You can find it by following the above URL (if this is still valid ๐Ÿ˜‰ or by entering IBM’s Support Portal http://www.ibm.com/support/entry/portal/ and searching for document reference ID 539958206. The latter might in general be a good source of information, btw.

Two of the actions described there, I want to explicitly point to as we think they are most relevant:

  1. In Administrative Tools -> Services disable service Web Client. This seems to have especially helped when accessing Office documents.
  2. In Administrative Tools -> Local Security Policy change the  Network security: LAN Manager authentication level to Send LM & NTLM – use NTLMv2 session security if negotiated. This should improve security compared to the undefined default and help out of performance issues depending on your password level.

Stay tuned…

As the development team intends to maintain a consistent format, editions of the series will continue to be published on my name. Set feeds accordingly if you are interested in following the series.

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