Network storage can be accessed a number of ways. For Windows users, it is a common practice to associate a network storage volume with a drive lettertemporarily or on a semi-permanent basis. This process is often referred to as mapping a drive. Some of these associations have been predefined by OIT and take place automatically when a Windows client initially connects to the network.
Associating network storage volumes to a drive letter is a holdover from the CP/M and DOS operating systems, but there are still many Windows applications that will not operate in any other way. Most operating systems now access network storage by name.
The following instructions only apply to on-campus users using workstations that have the NetWare client installed. Remote users can access network storage through SFTP or other methods.
Quick access to storage
The quickest way for a Windows user to arbitrarily access a network storage volume or directory is by entering the UNC path in the Run command dialog box:
Click on the Start menu and select Run:
Type the UNC path of the volume or directory you want to access in the Open field and click OK to continue. The root of the SYS volume on the server named OIT is used in this example.
This will bring up the volume in a new Windows Explorer window.
You can also type the UNC path directly into the Address field of any visible Windows Explorer window and hit Return:
How do I map a volume or directory to a drive letter?
Mapping a drive letter to a volume or directory allows you to access the volume in the same fashion that you access your local hard drive as drive letter C. You also have the option of making the mapping permanently available whenever you connect to the network.
Note that the screen images below may appear slightly different depending on the version of Windows you are using.
- Right-click on the Network Neighborhood icon on the desktop and select Novell Map Network Drive...
- When the Map Drive window appears, select a drive letter from the pop-down menu directly to the left of the Map button.
The following drive letters are already assigned and should be avoided:
H - Most campus application software
J - Personal user directory
Q - Temporarily used by some NAL applications that need a drive letter mapping
S - Workgroup directories or other shared storage
Z - Public directory search drive
- Enter the UNC path of the volume you wish to map to in the Enter the network path to the resource field. You can also select Browse, and navigate to the location of the volume.
Check to make this folder appear as the top most level
If the UNC path you've entered is a subdirectory of a volume, you can have it appear to be the top or [root] of the drive by using this option. For example, by mapping drive letter "M" to the directory \\Shared1_svr\Shared1\WGroups\Network, drive M: will now only display items starting from that point in the volume and below.
Check to always map this drive letter when you start Windows
This option will make this drive mapping occur every time Windows starts and connects to the network.
Map Search Drive
This option will add this drive to the system search path for locating applications. This is typically not used anymore.
- Once you have selected a drive letter, entered a UNC path, and have clicked on the appropriate options, you can click on the Map button in the upper right of the Map Drive window to complete the drive mapping.
To remove a drive mapping:
- Right-click on the Network Neighborhood icon on the desktop
- Select Disconnect Network Drive...
- Highlight the drive mapping you want to remove.
- Click OK.