Mapping Network Drives

Please bear with here I haven't done much Windows netowrking, I primarly do Unix networks and .Net programming

I have an application which is installed on a 2003 server and is then shared so that users can access the application (User's have to map the server to a specific letter in order to execute the application.

The problem is when user's map the network drive, they also have access to all the system files and can potentailly accidently delete an important file.

We have tried to set up user permission on the specific folders but this causes the application to not work at all.

I think I have a solution in that we can set the Target Location of the software's desktop icon to target a network path instead of a directory path.

E.g At the moment it the Target Location is set to: Q:\Q-Pulse\Qpulse.exe

I would like to set it to \\cphlqpulse\q-pulse\Q-Pulse\Q-Pulse.exe

This way in theory users will not have to have the Q: mapped on their PC's but will still be able to access it as the Target is now a network path.

The first question is would this work

The next is that is it possible to prevent users from being able to map the drive but still access it from the netowrk path (\cphlqpulse\q-pulse\Q-Pulse\Q-Pulse.exe)

Any ideas/help would be great

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Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
>>The problem is when user's map the network drive, they also have access to all the
>>system files and can potentailly accidently delete an important file.

system files where? on THEIR machine or on the server??

>>I would like to set it to \\cphlqpulse\q-pulse\Q-Pulse\Q-Pulse.exe'

YOu cant map a drive to a file? you can do the following though

net use q: \\cphlqpulse\q-pulse\Q-Pulse
Pete LongTechnical ConsultantCommented:
These command can be executed from either command line, Batch File OR Login Scripts

This command maps a drive "Z:\" to a shared directory on a server called "Server1"

net use z: \\server1\sharename\

If you need permissions to use this network resource toy can also enter the username and password. (See Security Below)

net use z: \\server1\sharename\ /user:username password

The above commands will work until a user logs out or the machine is rebooted, to make the mapping permanent you need to use a "Persistent switch"

net use z: \\server1\sharename\ /user:username password /Y
If it's just the EXE file they need, can't you move it to a subdirectory and share just that?

You can play with the permissions but IME that can lead to excessive complexity and lots more potential for making a horrible mess.

Depending what's calling the file, you may find that instead of mapping it to a drive letter you can just refer to it by full name (e.g. \\server\share\filename) when you call it - the "share" on the server still has to exist but if you don't map a drive letter to it it doesn't pop up on "My COmputer" list for the user. (It'll still be in his MyNetworkPlaces however).

If in your program you link to the drive '\\cphlqpulse\q-pulse\Q-Pulse\Q-Pulse.exe', then the program will connect to it.

As for preventing users from connecting to the server shares, if they are not Domain Admins, then when they try and connect to the c$, they will have to enter a username and password. If you want to restrict the users from accessing the share that contains the application, you could create a user account and then only allow that user to have permission of read and execute in that share only, and remove the everyone group from having access to that share.

Make sure you also, add a administrator to that share to have full access and control so that if there are issues they can go in and sort out the access or rights.

Hope this helps

Parag Nawathe

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Windows Server 2003

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