Unable to access DFS redirection shares

We had a problem today on our Windows 2008 Server installation where most shares under a DFS namespace were accessible correctly, but all shares which were hosted on a physically different server, using DFS redirection, were unaccessible.

The message the client received was the typical message about being unable to access the share, please check with your system admin, etc., and then at the end said:
“The file cannot be accessed by the system.”

It turned out the solution was simply a case of restarting the DFS Namespace service on the server hosting the namespace. I don’t know why this happened but we had restarted the Windows server hosting DFS a few times recently due to hardware problems so I presume it somehow lost contact with the other server.

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