How Do I Access a Network Drive?

By Lysis

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When you have a network set up in your home or office, you can access a network drive by mapping it to your desktop. Mapping a drive places a link on your Windows desktop. Double-clicking the link displays the contents of the drive so you can add, delete or edit files located on the network drive. To access the network drive, Windows has a wizard that guides you through the process of linking to the remote machine.

Step 1

Double-click the \"My Network Places\" icon. If you have Windows Vista or 7 this icon is labeled \"Network\" on the desktop. This opens a new window with a list of computers on your network.

Step 2

Double-click the computer that contains the network drive you want to access. You are shown a list of shared network drives on the computer. The root of each drive (C, D or any other physical drive) is hidden. You can still access these hidden drives if you have administrator rights on the machine.

Step 3

Right-click the drive shown and select \"Map Network Drive.\" Enter a new drive location or keep the default text. If you want to map to the root of a hard drive, enter \"\\\c$\" into the drive location. The \"$\" sign is used for hidden network drives.

Step 4

Select a drive letter. This letter is the representation for the network drive, and it's shown on your desktop computer with the list of physical drives. Press the \"OK\" button.

Step 5

Enter a user name and password if you are prompted and press the \"OK\" button. Double-click the \"My Computer\" icon on the desktop. You see the newly mapped network drive in your list of available drives.