Building Site Link Bridges - Page 2

 By Brien M. Posey | Posted Oct 30, 2000
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Now that you know a little bit about the purpose and functionality of site link bridges, let's look at an example of how to create one. To do so, follow these steps:

  1. Click the Start button and select Programs|Administrative Tools|Active Directory Sites and Services from the Start menu.

  2. When the Active Directory Sites and Services console loads, navigate to Active Directory Sites and Services|Sites|Inter-Site Transports.

  3. Right-click on either the IP folder or the SMTP folder and select the New Site Link Bridge command from the context menu. For the purposes of this article, I'll be using the IP transport in my examples.

  4. You'll see the New Object-Site Link Bridge dialog box. To create a site link bridge, type a name for the new site link bridge in the Name field, as shown in Figure 2.

  5. Select the site links that you want to bridge and click Add. A bridge requires a minimum of two site links.

Figure 2
Figure 2: A site link bridge can be made between a minimum of two site links.

This example creates a simple site link.


You'll generally use the Windows default option to bridge all the site links for each type of site link transport. However, sometimes this option isn't appropriate. By default, Windows 2000 assumes that your network is fully routed--that node A can communicate with node B regardless of where the two nodes physically exist on the network. If no direct route exists (over normal IP ports) between your main network and some isolated segment of the network, you must tell Windows that the site present on that part of the network is isolated. By doing so, you'll make Windows understand that it can't communicate with that site transitively. The downside of doing this is that when you tell Windows that your network has isolated sites, you in effect destroy any automatically created site link bridges. Basically, you're telling Windows 2000 to disable transitive routing for the entire network. After doing so, you'll be totally dependent on site link bridges that you've manually created.

You should also keep in mind that when you create a new site link bridge, all the sites serviced by the bridge can transitively communicate with each other, but they can't communicate with sites outside the bridge.

Disabling Transitive Site Bridging

If you decide that you need to disable transitive site bridging, you can do so in the AD Sites and Services console. Once in the console, navigate to Active Directory Sites and Services|Sites|Inter-Site Transports. Now, right-click on the transport of choice (in this case, IP) and select Properties from the context menu. On the General tab of the resulting properties sheet is a check box labeled Bridge All Site Links. This option is checked by default, but you can uncheck it to disable transitive site routing.

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