Before starting : I am not spealing about My Documents 's redirection.
Redirection folder may seems a great solution to US. Logon/logoff is fast, but data remains on the server, which means protected.
As we have been using redirection of both Application data, desktop and start menu, i would like to explain the downside which made us going back to standard roaming profile.
We encountered 4 main troubles:
1/When the file server is not available, users feel it immediately:
consequence:all files on the desktop disappear
consequence:softwares using it don't work anymore. Quick Launch icons disappear
consequence:all shortcuts disappear
2/A lot of software use relative path, which doesn't work with application data
With redirection folder, the local profile doesn't have an application folder. Many software, once in the user profile, issue a nice "cd ..\Application data", which fails.
3/Even clustered, when doing a failover, users feel it
Same consequences as 1/. They have to issue a refresh to get the desktop back
4/ redirection & Internet Explorer maintenance issue
Having both IE maintenance (proxy settings) and redirection was an issue. Even if splitted into 2 GPO. We had to apply an hotfix for Windows XP SP1 and SP2.
For now, we just have roaming profile and My documents redirection + offline.
Hope it helps,