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Fernando Monter
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Offline Files (Windows Sync Center)

Hello, good morning! In my environment we map several network drives through an AD logon script. All of them map as expected.

The issue comes when we try to enable Offline Files for any specific drive. It starts syncing, finishes and shows no errors BUT when I try to access any of the mapped network drives I get different errors such as:
a. Network path not found
b. This connection has not been restored
c. Microsoft Windows Network: The local device name is already in use
As a workaround, if I run NET USE * /DEL and then re-run the logon script all network drives work again, or if I reboot the computer.

I do not thing the workaround is a viable one on a production environment so I want to ask I anyone has seen a similar issue and what to do recommend me to do to investigate it or solve it.

Thank you!
* NTFSWindows OSNetworking* Sync Center

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Fernando Monter

8/22/2022 - Mon

For files to be available offline, the settings on the share must allow it.

In your case it seems the offlibe files are available on the workstation and to the user.

Often offline files deal with folder redirected ... That one wants to maintain access too off network.

Not sure I understood you situation,
So offline files to the map drive are available offline if you map the drive while not connecting to the network?.
Fernando Monter

Hi Arnold, thank you for interesting on the issue. So here's exactly what happens:
1. Computer is domain-joined, connected through a wire to the network and through a logon script maps several network drives - All network drives access without issues.
2. I enable Offline Files, and Windows asks for a reboot. After reboot - All network drives access without issues.
3. I make available offline any drive, set of folders or set of files, Sync Center syncs successfully and folders/files become offline - Network drives are broken getting several error messages such as:
 a. Network path not found
 b. This connection has not been restored
 c. Microsoft Windows Network: The local device name is already in use
Now... sometimes if I give the computer some minutes, some drives will become available again; sometimes it never recovers
4. I disable Offline Files, and reboot the computer. After logging back in all drives access without issues again.

If you need offlibe access, fo not disable offline folder access, reboot allowing your new config/changes to take effect.

I found the offline files are worth while for mobile, desktops/workstation are always connected to the network and if access to mapped drives has issues, there are much larger issues..

Napped drives, depending on what is there in terms of how much data needs to be retrieved and ...

Which server OS the mapped drives cone from, since 2012 there is workspace folders that supposed to be better, more reliable compared to offlibe files.
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Fernando Monter

Thank you for helping me out here! I found that the root issue is that Offline Files and DFS does not work well together.

I've updated my shares to use NetBIOS or UNC paths and it works like a charm now :)