Set up a virtual Windows Server 2016 for Homelab: Part 7: Mapping Shared Server Folders as client Drives

In this part of the Active Directory Setup series we will look at how to map a shared server folder as a client drive. We've already learned how to share folders before, but this time we'll make a group with specific users before so we can share specifically to this group.

Create the Group

As you can see, I've already made two separate Orgranizational Units in the picture below, namely: SueprHumans and Normal Humans. Let's create a group inside of the SuperHumans group.

Server Manager > Tools > Active Directory Users and Computers > SuperHumans > New > Group > 
give the Group a relevant name (I named mine 'Avengers'  pardon the typo) > default settings > OK

Now let's add users to this group to select who can map the shared folder we will designate later.

Right-click the newly created group > Properties > Members Tab > Add

type in name (Tony Stark) > Check names > OK

Now that we've added the target Users to the Avengers Group we can share the folder.

Share the Server Folder

File Explorer > New Folder  > Name Folder  (Merchandising Contract) > Right-click > Share with > Specific people... 

Click drop down area > Find People  > Enter in the name of the Group > Check Names >  Ok > Share

Now that we've shared to the target Group 'Avengers, let's begin the process to Map the drive on to the client workstations.

Create a GPO to Install the Mapped Drive.

Server Manager > Tools > Group Policy Management > Right-Click Group Policy Objects > New > 

Give the GPO a name (Mapped merch Contracts Folder) > OK > 

Right-click newly created GPO > Edit 


Go to User Configuration \ Preferences \ Windows Settings \ Drive Maps > Right-click the large white 

area on the right > New > Mapped Drive 

Drop-down list > Create > 

Type in the location of the Shared folder using the following format  \\Servername\Folder Name

Use: > Choose Drive letter you aren't already using. > Apply > OK

Now that we've created the GPO, let's apply it to our desired Organizational Unit.

Apply the GPO to the Target Organizational Unit

Right-click the Organizational Unit you want to apply link the GPO to > Link an Existing GPO...

Select the GPO > OK

Now that we've set up our GPO, let's log onto the Domain with a Workstation Client and Map the Shared folder.

Map a Shared Server folder as a Drive on Client

File Explorer > This PC > Right-click > Map network drive...

Choose a Drive letter > type in the Shared folder location using the following format > \\servername\folder name >  Finish

Now double check and find your shared network drive in the file explorer at This PC.

And now you have mapped a network drive!

In the next installment we will learn how to share a printer from the server and also access it from your client workstations.