Active Directory Home Folder won't map

Posted on 2005-04-14
Last Modified: 2008-01-09
I saw nother question exactly describing my problem asked a few months ago, but it's still open, so I'm going to ask it again. Here is what the original question said:

"I have customers running in an Active Directory environment with Windows 2003 server and XP clients.  The server has a share called 'home" and each user has an individual folder under that share.  Their user profiles are setup to connect their h: drive to \\servername\home\userfolder, but about half of the time at login, the h: will map to \\servername\home only.  It won't connect them to their folder.  

Permissions are correct and they can access their folder.  What could be happening here? "

I am having this same problem -- I tried deleting the folders, and creating them through the AD "Profile" tab, and this seemed to fix the problem once everyone rebooted. This morning, though, I've been getting email to indicate that the problem is back.

I have a share on the server, ch$. Under that, everyone has their own folder, created through the profile tab, the same as their user name. This is set to connect to their Y: drive.

When they log onto the system, they are often getting this Y: drive to map only to the ch$ share.

I can manually map to their folder from their machine, but the automatic mapping from the profile sometimes won't happen.

Any suggestions?
Question by:purplegenie93
    LVL 20

    Expert Comment

    How are you setting it exactly I mean what are you using for them?
    are you adding it by placing it in the Profile path this way: \\servername\ch$\%username%
    or are you doing it like this: Y:\\servername\ch$\john.smith

    The 1st is proper.

    Or you can instead depending on your situation use Folder redirection in your AD Group Policies.
    Doing Basci Redirection will give your users there Documents, Desktops, Application Data and Start Menus from where ever they login, in generally the same way as what you are trying to do.
    Look at that. It's under:

    USER CONFIGURATION > Windows Settings > Folder Redirection.
    There all you have to do is set it like this: \\servername\ch$
    It will automatically set the usernames up in that directory on first user login or pull from it to a new client login.

    I realize I did not deal with trying to fix your problem exactly. But if this doesn't help at all, please give some more info.

    Author Comment

    Well, the way we set this up is, in active directory user console, select the "Profile" tab, click the "connect" option, select the drive to map to from the dropdown box (we always use "Y:" for this) and then enter the path as follows:


    The folder is then automatically created with the proper permissions, and it seems good to go. For all the other shares on our system, so far, it *is* good to go. But this one share (and I've check the settings and permissions; it doesn't differ from the other shares in that respect) is the one that often will not hook the user up correctly when they log on.

    It's only a few users who are affected, so to give myself time to sort this out I just manually mapped the drive from their workstations. I'd like to know how to fix it in the AD console, though, because that's our workflow.

    I will look at the AD Group Policies as you suggest, but do you know of a reason why it won't just work by setting it up as I had in the Profiles tab? (It drives me crazy that it's only doing this for this one share -- our domain is fairly new, so I don't know if these users are just ahead of the curve, and our other users may start having this problem as well, with the other shares).

    Any thoughts you have on this are appreciated. Let me know if you need more info.
    LVL 20

    Accepted Solution

    This obviously is not a definative answer, but I've seen this happen a few times. And mostly it turned out to be either a bad connection from the client machine or an error of mine on the particular users profile that I setup, like leaving a space somewhere or something stupid. I don't even use the Profiles tab personly on my domain, I do it all from Folder Redirection in the GP's.

    Author Comment

    Thanks, I'll check little errors on the user profiles when I get to work tomorrow (that makes sense -- I haven't really combed the user accounts for errors other than on the profile tab since that's where the problem was). I don't think it's the connection on the client machines, b/c it's happening with users on this particular share only, and they are scattered out in different parts of the building.

    I'm a relative newbie at administering Server 2003 -- if you have the time, would you mind saying a little more about why you'd go the route of GPs rather than setting it from the user account itself -- is it because it's a time saver when dealing with a lot of users, more reliable, or both?

    Thanks for the tips, I'll post back about what I find.

    LVL 20

    Expert Comment

    I do it because I'm lazy... ;) It saves me time. I have a domain that I'm constantly adding and removing people from. So it's easier for me to just have the policy recognize where to place the users profile rather than have the user's profile tell the system where it should be. as far as more reliable... I'm not sure but it seems to work better. Thats only my observation not based on fact though. I had alot of problems early on with sync on the profiles doing it from the User Properites side of things.

    Author Comment

    I have several different shares for different sections of my organization -- would I just do a group policy for each of these groups, sending them to whatever the appropriate share is? This is becoming more and more attractive to me -- I, too, am very lazy. ;)
    LVL 20

    Expert Comment

    Well, the folder redirection is only used for the user's Applicatio Data, Desktop, Documents and Start Menu's, if your using them for something else like a Application Share or File Share.. You can accomplish setting up shares by either a login.bat file or a Login.vbs. I use the vbs myself. You can make multiple files for each OU, or you can make a file that finds what OU the user belongs to and maps certain drives based on your needs. An exmple of a single file would be like this (.vbs):

    Set objNetwork = CreateObject("WScript.Network")
    ' Forces script to skip errors (rem below line to see errors)
    on error resume next
    Dim WshNetwork
    Set WshNetwork = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Network")

    WshNetwork.MapNetworkDrive "I:", "\\servername\Rgm32"
    WshNetwork.MapNetworkDrive "S:", "\\servername\Share"
    WshNetwork.MapNetworkDrive "Z:", "\\servername\Installs$"

    Set WshNetwork = CreateObject("WScript.Network")
    PrinterPath = "\\servername\iR5000"
    PrinterDriver = "Canon iR5000-6000 PS3"
    WshNetwork.AddWindowsPrinterConnection PrinterPath, PrinterDriver
    ' WshNetwork.SetDefaultPrinter "\\servername\iR5000"

    Set WshNetwork = CreateObject("WScript.Network")
    PrinterPath = "\\servername\HP1300n"
    PrinterDriver = "hp LaserJet 1300 PCL 6"
    WshNetwork.AddWindowsPrinterConnection PrinterPath, PrinterDriver
    ' WshNetwork.SetDefaultPrinter "\\servername\HP1300n"

    ' WScript.Echo "Your Drive & Printer Mappings are complete and you belong to the STAFF Group"


    This example includes mapping printers as well.
    Hopefully this is helping you somewhat...

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