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Prefdc vs. autodiscovery of domain controller

We have all 7mode boxes serving CIFS. Historically our configuration left prefdc blank and relied on autodiscovery.  This was because apparently folks had had bad experience when dns was down. Sometimes autosdiscovery causes them to connect to DCs that are far away rather than ones that are closeby.  We're getting ready to try adding them in to see if it does anything and wanted to see if anyone had any opinions or experiences with this.

Thanks for any info.