Mapped drives not showing in File Explorer

It is easy to access the files from the network using different devices if the network drive is mapped. The concept of mapping helps to access the network based storage from different devices connected on the same network. Generally, you can access the network drive from the icon in the File Explorer. Users came across with the issue mapped drives not showing in File Explorer.

Sometimes, the network drive icon from the File Explorer misses and you will not be able to access the mapped drives from your computer. There are chances that, you might access them using the command prompt or using the IP address from the Run window. In such cases, when you try to remap the drive without making any changes in the computer, it may prompt some network error.

Why mapped drives not showing in File Explorer?

The reason for mapped drives not showing in the File Explorer is the level at which the mapped drive is accessed.

As per Microsoft, when you map drive there are symbolic link objects created that assign drive letters to UNC path. These objects are specific for a login session and is not shared between sessions. Therefore, when you use access the mapped drive at user account level, you have least rights and it shown in File Explorer. However, when you access mapped drive at administrator level, it is not shown in File Explorer because EnableLinkedConnections registry entry forces the symbolic links to be written to both linked logon sessions that are created.

How to fix mapped drives not showing in File Explorer?

Making changes in the Registry DWORD value helps to fix this issue and helps you to get the mapped drive icon back on to the File Explorer. Follow the below resolution steps to perform the same.

Quick Note: Following troubleshooting steps involve registry manipulation. If something goes wrong during troubleshooting, it may affect system adversely. We recommend you to perform a Registry backup and create a System Restore point before proceeding with the further troubleshooting steps.

  1. Press Windows logo + R keys on the keyboard to open RUN window. Type regedit and click on OK.

2. It will open the Registry Editor window. In the left hand pane, navigate to the below location.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System

3. Now, in the right hand pane of the Registry Editor, search for the DWORD named EnableLinkedConnections.

4. If you do not find the DWORD, just right click on the empty place, select create DWORD and save it.

5. Now, double click on the DWORD to modify it. Set the Value Data to 1, click on OK and close the Registry Editor.

6. Reboot your computer now and you can find the mapped drive on the Windows File Explorer.

Hope this simple resolution helps you to fix the issue with mapped drive not showing up in File Explorer. If you need further help, do comment below.

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