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Mount a network share as local harddrive

DanTheBanjoman

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#1
I've been Googling and messing around for the past two hours or so. And looked some time ago as well, without any succes in both cases.

The issue is simple, I wish to mount a UNC path as a local harddrive. It could be by mounting it as network disk first, that's not a problem.

The following things can already be scrapped:
-net use
-subst
-masterdisk (uses subst in the code)
-MountVD (same issue)
-DFS
-NTFS junctions
-starwind/starport
-Winbolic
-Moving around things from my network places

I did find one, though not very useful, workaround. I can use tools like Truecrypt/pgp to create a virtual drive on a network share. So basically some tool that acts in a similar way in between would be nice. So far it doesn't seem to exist though.
However, considering there are good working virtual optical drives including burning support, virtual floppies, virtual tapedrives and virtual everythings and of course the virtual harddrive programs like Truecrypt/pgp create I'm pretty sure it's not a technical impossibility.
 
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DanTheBanjoman

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#3
Like I said, net use is no option. As certain applications won't work with mapped network disks.
 
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#4
Do you know why it isnt working, rather than just the fact that is doesnt? Do you see any errors? Is the problem related to %20 in your UNC path? Or login/user credentials? Or a "path too long"? Or access rights? (Local not network).

http://www.pcreview.co.uk/forums/thread-2357620.php post #4
http://www.greyware.com/kb/kb2002.329.asp

If that doesnt work, then sounds like you need to avoid any "mapping" and get down to a service level driver that does this for you, completely hidden/transparent to any app or service.
 

DanTheBanjoman

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#5
Do you know why it isnt working, rather than just the fact that is doesnt? Do you see any errors? Is the problem related to %20 in your UNC path? Or login/user credentials? Or a "path too long"? Or access rights? (Local not network).

http://www.pcreview.co.uk/forums/thread-2357620.php post #4
http://www.greyware.com/kb/kb2002.329.asp

If that doesnt work, then sounds like you need to avoid any "mapping" and get down to a service level driver that does this for you, completely hidden/transparent to any app or service.
Because the programs simply don't allow network drives. Like I said, making a network mapping works fine, it simply won't use it. There are various programs that refuse this, it's documented in most cases.

Avoiding mapping is exactly what the question is. It has to be detected as a local harddrive. ie some virtual drive. For this very reason workarounds like Truecrypt do work. In my situation this isn't a solution though.

It simply is a limitation of programs to use network drives (as UNC path or mapped), in this case it's backup software. Funny detail here is that it can use UNC paths. However due to the situations this isn't an option. MS RIS server has it too, as do various media centers.
 

DanTheBanjoman

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#6
Hmmm, when writing that last part I was rethinking the situation. It's basically due to swapping network storage devices and not letting the backup software notice they're swapped. since that would require manual intervention or far complex scripting. I already wrote a tool to detect the connected NAS and mount it as a predefined drive, which can't be used. I can't change the devicenames to match since they're connected at the same time now and then.

My new idea however is instead of mounting them, adding an entry to the hostsfile. ie make a backup entry and point it at either NAS when connected. I could then just use the UNC to the NAS via this new name. Of course, I just got home so I can't try this. I'll try it Thursday when I'm at work.

However, I'm still interested in the initial solution, as I've run into the limitation more often. Having a solution ready for my next encounter is always handy. Or of course if the hosts solution fails :D
 
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#7

DanTheBanjoman

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#8
What a PITA.

This might work: http://software.techrepublic.com.com/abstract.aspx?docid=224992 (API)

Otherwise, for complete overkill http://www.eterlogic.com/Products.VirtualDriveSDK.html but if this is a commercial problem you are trying to solve... the SDK might be in your budget.
Strikedrive does sound like the thing I need, doesn't work here under 2k8/64 though. The browse to folder thing is broken and I can't manually type something.

If I could spend $400 on this, I wouldn't bother with the current config :D

Anyway, now I have two options to fix the damn issue. Yay :)
 
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#9
Did you try just hitting it with a hammer? Has worked for me more times than I can imagine.
 
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#10
interesting topic. marked.
 

DaMulta

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#11
Can you go tools mount drive then \\computer\c$
 

DanTheBanjoman

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#12
Can you go tools mount drive then \\computer\c$
Read my posts.



Anyway, I've created a simple application (ie a few lines of code) that checks for the presence of either NAS device, resolves the IP and then edits the hosts file to create a new hosts. I put this in the task scheduler, so it checks every hour now. Seems to work great so far. Tonight the process will run and if it works as expected we test with the other NAS on Monday. I'm pretty sure it works though.
If/when it turns out to work some backup has to be redirected to use my new hostname. Then we can blindly switch NAS devices and take them home. The software won't notice a thing :)

Effectively we could let the cleaning lady handle this task now.
 

DaMulta

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#13
Yea, I seen that after I posted it. But I wanted to know if you got it fixed, and you did:)