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Reasons for being unable to map a network drive

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What prevents you from mapping a network drive?

Computer networks are used by a majority of users who have more than one computer because once the network is set-up, you can share data and other resources. All the shared folders and drives can be accessed through ‘My network place’ or ‘Network’ depending on the operating system. You can map a particular network drive or folder and the mapped drive will work as a local drive on your computer, you can access it from My Computer the same way you access a local hard drive partition. You can right click on ‘My Network Place’ or ‘Network’ and select ‘Map network drive’, select the drive letter, you want to set for the mapped drive and specify the location of the shared drive. Some databases and applications do not work from network drives, in such cases you can map the network drive and use those databases and applications.

Following are some issues or problems due to which you get the message “Windows is unable to map a network drive” and ways to fix such an issue:

  • Failed to connect to the network location
  • Drive letter in use
  • Access denial

Failed to connect to the network location

Sometimes, the process of mapping the network drive fails because the network is down or access to the computer where the drive originally exists fails. To fix this issue, make sure that the other computer is turned on, path of the network drive is specified correctly and check if the network cable is connected properly to that computer and ensure that the computer is a part of the network.

Drive letter in use

Many drive letters are used by local hard drive partitions and other local drives, and if you try to assign the drive letter that is already in use, you will not be able to map the network drive. So, select the drive letter that is not in use. You can open ‘My Computer’ to check which drives are in use.

Access denial

Sharing the entire drive or folder with all network users is not secure. So, user rights for each user are set. So, if the user account that you have logged in with has no permission to access the network drive, you will not be able to map the particular drive. To avoid such an issue, you need to modify the user rights.

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