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Windows 7: Network drives are mapping themselves

02 Jul 2013   #1

Windows 7 Profession 64bit SP1
 
 
Network drives are mapping themselves

I currently have one drive (N) mapped from my company's network: "Main Server\\Work Data\Document\Pictures"

Starting last week, at least a few times per day, I see that there are new drives mapped to "Mainserver\\Work Data" - this folder used to be mapped to my computer, but it was disconnected over a month ago.

The drives are somehow mapping themselves. It start with the Z-drive, then Y, X, W, etc. and keeps on going until I stop it and disconnect all of them (except for N).

After reading the forums, I thought it might occur when a media drive (SD card or phone) was plugged into my computer. So I unplugged everything and it stopped for a few days, but then it started up again yesterday.

Any thoughts?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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02 Jul 2013   #2

Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
 
 

Hey gogrizz,

This very issue came up with a machine on our network a few years back. There was definitely a fix - what it was I can't quite recall right now (I'm at home).

I've made a mental note to check my support logs when I get in tomorrow morning and will be sure to check back in here and if unresolved at that time will definitely run through the fix.

As a starter, does your organisation use any startup scripts that would map the drives? Is it possible someone has configured one wrong?

Also, you presumably do have MS Office software running - how about MS Project? There was a legacy issue with old versions of Windows/Office (maybe as far back as NT?) that caused repeat mappings as a result of previously-indexed locations, recent files and similar. Shortcuts could also play havoc with drive mappings, but unlikely you're running such old OS'.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Jul 2013   #3

Windows 7 Profession 64bit SP1
 
 

Hopefully this makes sense:
- my laptop isn't part of the network...it's a standalone computer that just accesses a specific folder from the network. So as far as startup scripts from my company, there's nothing that I'm aware of, but I'm assuming it wouldn't work on my computer anyways

- I have MS office running, but not MS project.

- you're comment about shortcuts reminded me that there's a shortcut on my desktop to the network folder that I USED to be connected to. I have clicked on it in over a month...would Windows 7 automatically try to reconnect just because the shortcut exists? I deleted it so we'll see what happens.


Let me know if you find anything.

Thanks.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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02 Jul 2013   #4

Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gogrizz View Post
Hopefully this makes sense:
- my laptop isn't part of the network...it's a standalone computer that just accesses a specific folder from the network. So as far as startup scripts from my company, there's nothing that I'm aware of, but I'm assuming it wouldn't work on my computer anyways
That makes perfect sense - if your laptop isn't on the network (domain), then presumably you have to provide credentials when you first boot up and try to access said share.

If you are on the domain, said credentials are provided upon login and this would also look for the Group Policy which could instigate a startup script; but that is unlikely to be the cause of the issue, in my opinion.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gogrizz
I have MS office running, but not MS project.
Thanks for confirming. I don't think either of these is the issue - I think I just went off on a bit of a tangent to try and spur my own memory into action.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gogrizz
you're comment about shortcuts reminded me that there's a shortcut on my desktop to the network folder that I USED to be connected to. I have clicked on it in over a month...would Windows 7 automatically try to reconnect just because the shortcut exists? I deleted it so we'll see what happens.
I have a feeling this might be the source of the problem, especially when you throw Windows indexing into the mix. I have seen all sorts of strange things occur as a result of broken shortcuts - although, generally, Windows should just ignore them or delete them.

My logic is that it might be trying to index your desktop and, seeing a shortcut, it may be trying to force a connection to that shared resource. If - as I suspect may be the case - you aren't connected to the domain directly, it would not be able to source the credentials (without prompting you to provide them) and is therefore not going to establish the connection. It may continue to try for some time before eventually giving up, or perhaps re-trying on another free drive letter.

This would perhaps explain the end results - lots of mappings (or attempted mappings) to the same network resource.

Now, this may not be the case - I am in London so still haven't returned to work since my last post to confirm - but in my mind it makes sense.

See how you get on having removed the obsolete shortcut, in any case. Perhaps a simple answer to a frustrating problem.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Jul 2013   #5

Windows 7 Profession 64bit SP1
 
 

Bump.

I deleted all of the shortcuts that I could find that might reference the network drive. I'm still getting the same problem.

Anyone have more ideas?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jul 2013   #6

Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
 
 

This exact same issue reared its head in my office earlier this week.

The culprit in my colleague's case was not a desktop shortcut, but rather a hyperlink in a Word document that was configured a bit oddly. It was resolving itself via the network share name (rather than drive letter path). Every time he clicked on the link, guess what? Another instance of the drive mapped to the next available letter.

For example, we have a drive mapped to everyone's V:\ here in work. This chap had four hyperlinks from a Word document to locations in V:\.

Three of them read as: file///V:\folder\subfolder\file.xls

One read as: file///server05\Filing\folder\subfolder\file.xls

Perhaps you have something similar? I hasten to add he is working on an XP machine with Word 2003, but it is the sort of behaviour I could imagine may still occur on newer OS'.

Have you got any particular files (with hyperlinks, or linked data for example in Excel) that you have been working in around the time the problem arose?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Sep 2013   #7

Windows 7 Profession 64bit SP1
 
 

Fixed.

This issue disappeared for a while (not sure why) then came back. I went through some files (thankfully not very much) and found a shortcut to a PDF that, rather than going to the N drive where it was supposed to, had it's URL set to the Z drive - which is weird because I've never had a Z drive on this computer.

Either way I deleted the shortcut and the problem is gone. Thanks for your help fmedecine.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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