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  1. #1
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    Cannot access files through mapped drive W2K3 SP1

    The network is made up of three XP clients each attempting to access an application based on a 2003 server via a mapped network drive. Each client uses the same user name and password for local access as well as to get access to the server, that is, all three clients use the same user name and password.

    This has been working almost faultlessly until just last week. Nothing has changed on the network other than Windows Updates, AVG updates, etc.

    When I try to connect using My Computer, the client just sits there with an hourglass pointer. No error messages, no timeouts, nothing. The only thing I can do is click on the Close button of the My Computer window and 'End Now'. Strangely, I can see all the files in this folder when I select 'Open' in Word and browse files that way. This also occurs with any other mapped drive. Again, I can access these files through e.g. Word or Excel.

    I have tried remapping each of the clients and I have also recreated the shares on the server. Still nothing. The application works perfectly when run directly on the server.

    I tried System Restore on a client the first time this happened, as it seemed to be particular to one machine, but this doesn't make any difference.

    I get the feeling I'm just around the corner from a solution, but I've run out of ideas. Can anybody help me with this?

    Many thanks.

  2. #2
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    Re: Cannot access files through mapped drive W2K3 SP1

    Can you access via UNC (serverfolder)? Do you push any firewall settings from the server? Have you checked your firewall settings?

    Joe

  3. #3
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    Re: Cannot access files through mapped drive W2K3 SP1

    Hi Joe,

    When I open My Computer on a client machine and type serverpractice (this is mapped as M in the address bar, the status bar tells me there are two objects, but no files or folders are displayed. All I get is ''Not Responding' when I click in the window background. If I drop to a command prompt and type 'dir m:', all the files are shown. I have tried starting the program (connect.exe) from the command prompt and the loading screen flashes up for a second, but then nothing. Task Manager doesn't show any instance of connect.exe running either as an application or as a service.

    I have Windows Defender running on each client. On the server I attempted to run the Windows Firewall shown in Control Panel, but all I get is a message saying "Windows Firewall cannot run because another program or service is running that might use the network address translation component (ipnat.sys)". I use a router as the primary firewall. I have now disabled Defender on the client.

    Why is it that I can see files that reside on the network when in Word or Excel, but not in Explorer/My Computer?

    P.S., I can access the Internet on each client and have VNC running with no problems throughout the network.

  4. #4
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    Re: Cannot access files through mapped drive W2K3 SP1

    Did you change any router settings? Have you checked the server and client to see what updates were applied? Have you changed any service settings on client or server?

    Joe

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    Re: Cannot access files through mapped drive W2K3 SP1

    No, none of the router settings have been changed. I've had a look at the server updates and System Restored the client a couple of times, but can't see anything obvious. I Googled the symptoms, followed around 50 links and in my desperation even browsed the MS Support pages, just in case there was a known issue surrounding loss of network browsing after a specific update, but again nothing obvious.

    The only service settings I have changed was to add Hamachi as a service using 'srvany', but this I did after the problems started.

    Also, everything has been restarted from cold - router, switch, server, clients.

  6. #6
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    Re: Cannot access files through mapped drive W2K3 SP1

    You ought to check Troubleshooting file shares on a home network. Even though it says home network there are still good general debugging hints. BTW, is this a domain or workgroup?

    Joe

  7. #7
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    Re: Cannot access files through mapped drive W2K3 SP1

    Oh for heaven's sake...

    The clients had different DNS settings to the server. The kind of stuff you learn on day one of Networking 101, right after the tutor says "Good Morning". Bah.

    I think this was due to system restores being carried out which took the machines back to a time when I had a temporary router installed with a different configuration. I'd completely forgotten.

    Joe, thanks for holding the flashlight for me. Much appreciated. Great link BTW.

  8. #8
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    Re: Cannot access files through mapped drive W2K3 SP1

    Amazing what is often right under our noses when we are able to slow down and take a systematic approach. Glad you found it. <img src=/S/clapping.gif border=0 alt=clapping width=19 height=23>

    Yes, those Star Posts do have good information.

    Joe

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