What does map network drive do?

By vhawk ยท 13 replies
Oct 6, 2010
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  1. i find there is something called 'map network drive' when i right click on my computer, what does it mean and do and do i want/need to do it or should i just ignore it?
  2. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

  3. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,845   +897

    Mapping is assigning a unique drive letter { d: e: f: ... z:} to a shared folder on some other system attached to your lan.
  4. vhawk

    vhawk TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 177

    thank you very much for taking the time and trouble to help me.

    i just have the one computer with a c: drive an 2 1terrabyte usb drives(F and G) attached, why would i want to change the letters that they have been assigned,? i suppose it's something a non computer savvy chap should leave well alone, yes? it was just idle curiosity, but if i don't as i'll never learn.
  5. JMMD

    JMMD TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 854

    Unless you're connecting to a shared folder or drive on a network, just ignore it. Your drives are all local so it wouldn't be something you'd use.

    Now, lets say you have another computer on your network and they share a music folder on the network. Map drive would allow you to assign a local drive letter to that network share.

    So on your PC you would have a new drive called J: (or whatever you choose) and when you click on it, you're accessing the music share across the network.

    Make sense?
  6. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    You use it to connect to other computers on your LAN.
    Super useful IMO.
  7. vhawk

    vhawk TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 177

    thanks, i'd best leave it i don't even know what a network is
  8. hughva

    hughva TS Rookie Posts: 58

    Just think of it as a shortcut.
    I have a network drive I use for backups (You may well have one someday).
    The address is 2/
    It's much easier for me to tell the backup program to look for drive Z:. (The mapped drive letter).
  9. vhawk

    vhawk TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 177

    it's very kind of you to reply, thank you, but i fear it is too complicated for a bear of very little brain -me
  10. matrix86

    matrix86 TS Guru Posts: 838   +32

    This is one of those things where it sounds more complicated than it actually is. Let's see if I can try this, lol.

    ~You have 2 computers in the house. They are both connected to the router either via an ethernet cord or wirelessly.

    ~If you have a folder on computer 1 that you want computer 2 to have access to, you would go to computer 1 and set that folder to share with anyone connected you your router (trying to avoid the word "network" for you, lol).

    ~You then go to computer 2 and type in the info of that folder (it's location and name), which puts it on computer 2 with whatever drive letter you assign it.

    ~Computer 2 can now access the folder located on computer 1.

    The steps to do it are very easy. Like I said, it's just one of those things where explaining it is harder than actually doing it. Just think of it as you're on your laptop and want to access a file in a folder on your desktop without having to get up and go to your desktop. Mapping allows you to do this as long as you are connected to your...erm...network......your home internet connection, basically. There...I think I dumbed that down good enough, lol. Just watch some youtube vids and you'll get the idea. It's very simple and can save you a lot of time.

    My wife and I use it all the time. We keep our movies stored on the 1tb drive downstairs. We can sit up in the bedroom upstairs and watch those movies stored on that drive from the laptop hooked up to the TV in the bedroom. Or if i'm lazy and don't want to go downstairs, I can access critical work files without the need of a USB stick or having to go downstairs to do the work.....yeah, i'm that lazy sometimes, lol.
  11. vhawk

    vhawk TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 177

    thanks very much indeed, i do have my laptop in the bedroom, which gets onto the internet by connecting wirelessly to the same thing that that gets the big computer onto the internet and it would be a boon not to have to keep getting in to my wheelchair and move from room to room.

    what is this 'Z:' thing? where does it live?

    and under that it says folder and browse(another mystery). i'd like to access the big computer from the bedroom laptop, could i really do that?or vice versa, i had no idea at all that i could.

    the only maps i know fold up. why doesn't it just say would you like to access all and any of the computers that appear to be connected one way or another? to do that click "here"? i suppose that would be asking Microsoft to use common sense; they are clearly blissfully unaware even of the concept.
    i have visions of Microsoft people being completely stumped by/ at making a pot of tea and needing an old duffer like me to explain it to them and saying , patiently, 'no sunshine there are no FAQ's on either the teapot or the kettle, you use your common sense, yes, i 'know' it's difficult', and i know Microsoft don't use it or have a patent on it.' :)

    they should get dolts like me in to say 'no normal person will ever understand that, make it simpler and clearer'/

    It really is jolly decent of you to be so kind and helpful and patient and thoughtful with a foolish old duffer as me, i really wish i could do something for you in return, but sadly my only field of expertise is English law and some philosophy(and i make a reasonable cup of tea)

    a sincere blessing on you, you improve this miserable world with your kindly and unselfish presence; your help has made an old cripple happy
  12. hughva

    hughva TS Rookie Posts: 58

    Thanks vhawk. Easily the most entertaining post I've read in a long time;sort of "Monty Python meets Bill Gates in the Old Baliey."
  13. vhawk

    vhawk TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 177

    you are far too kind, but ta(pronounced 'tah') =thanks for that
  14. vhawk

    vhawk TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 177

    quick additional question please if i do not overstep the mark by asking it.
    proposition 1. i do wish to be able to access either the big pc from the laptop.

    question. what do i 'actually do'?
    if i select 'map network drive' it seems to propose that i call something or other, lord knows what, Z:

    to the right of that it says browse, but i do not have a clue for what 'exactly' i am browsing; this on the big computer and the same on the laptop. the things on the browsing network might as well be written in Chinese for all the meaning the have to me,i'm not exactly famous for my fluency in Chinese.
    so, imagining that you were a mindless dolt, what would you advise such a one to do, if you would be so kind,if he wanted to operate one of 2 computers which my , or may not, be wirelessly connected, one from the other

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