Mapped Network Drive Duplicate Files Scan With Duplicate Finder
Network drives are commonly used across organizations. As a part of the drive mapping technology, you can use network drives to connect to a shared network folder on a server computer. Network drives establish a connection between file sharing server and client computer. You may read and write files on the host computer without physical access to it.
In contrast to local partitions that only the user with the computer system can access, network drives can be accessed by anyone authorized to connect to them. Typically, network paths start with “\\” followed by the name of the server and then the folder name you’re authorized to access.
The best thing about network drives is that you can access them similar to just another local partition of your hard disk. When you map a network drive, it looks quite similar to other partitions on your hard disk. You can access the contents of a folder stored on your corporate network or office server straight from your home. With just a few clicks, you can get easy access to customer details, financial records and other data without physically working from your office. There are so many other advantages that network drives offer to both businesses and professionals.
There is a major drawback though. As network drive transfers your data over a network connection, your computer must be connected to an active Internet connection. Frequent Internet disconnectivity issues can interrupt the data transmission process. You might be unable to access/ write your files when it occurs.
- A network drive facilitates you to share files without physical access to host machine
- You can define read/ write permissions depending on your requirement
- A network drive is very useful for backing-up and mirroring
- Network drives support extending your storage using SAN, NAS and other technologies
- Frequent Internet connectivity issues can interrupt network drive connection and cause the files to disappear. You might not be able to view or modify files when it occurs. Imagine you’re working on an Excel spreadsheet and it suddenly disappears due to loss of connectivity.
- A network drive is vulnerable to security attacks, hacking and other digital threats. Therefore, the server and client systems must be protected with a powerful Firewall system and other security measures.
- Anyone who has access to your network drive credentials can unauthorized login to the system, steal your information, wipe out your data or make it unreadable. This is especially observed in so many cases of ransomware malware attacks on corporate networks. The cyber criminals infected the victim’s system, encrypted their sensitive data, perpetually preventing them from accessing it. The attackers then demanded a ransom of payment to unblock their data.
How to Scan your Network Drive for Duplicates?
Just like any other storage means, network drives too are prone to duplication. As you use them for a year or two, you accumulate too many identical files. Not only do these files occupy your network drive storage, but also cause difficulties retrieving your data. You may run into errors due to inadequate disk space or similar issues.
Scanning your network drive for duplicate files is very easy. With the right tools, you can do this job in just a few minutes. We will use an algorithm based tool Clone Files Checker to identify and fix duplicates on your network drive.
Step 1: Map network drive in Windows
Before we search your network drive for duplicates, it is important that you map the network drive in Windows, if you already haven’t. The procedure is fairly simple.
Make sure that the remote computer you’re trying to connect is switched on. Besides, you also need to have adequate permissions in order to establish a remote connection.
- Double-click on This PC icon on your Desktop.
- Do you see the Ribbon interface? If you don’t, click the downward arrow on the upper right corner of your screen. It will expand the hidden Ribbon interface.
- Now move to the Computer tab.
- You will see a Map Network Drive icon in the Network category. Click that icon.
- Windows will launch Map Network Drive wizard on your screen.
- Select a drive letter which is not being in use. You can choose any unavailable drive letter.
- If you know the exact network path to the folder on your remote server, type it in the Folder textbox. Alternatively, you can use the Browse button to locate the folder yourself. An example network path is: \\server_name\shared_folder_name
- Check-up the box Reconnect at sign-in to establish an automatic connection at every Windows boot interval.
- Click on Finish to complete setting up your mapped network drive.
Step 2: Scan your mapped network drive
Now, let’s move on to the actual procedure.
- Download, install Clone Files Checker.
- Click on the Add button, and select your network drive.
- Once you’ve selected the network drive, choose one of the following options:
- All Files: Use this option to scan all file types for a complete scan. You can expect a complete scan to free up the maximum amount of storage but it may take longer if your network drive contains too many files.
- Custom: Use this option to scan only a set of file extensions. The scan time will be shorter but results will be very limited. Use this option only if you wish to narrow down your search.
- CFC gives you optional upper, lower file size filter settings. Use these settings to define an upper and lower limit for the scan. For example: Scan files only above 10 KB in size upto 20 MB.
- Click on Start Search and the scan should begin.
- Once the scan is finished, Clone Files Checker will display a list of all duplicates that are found on your mapped network drive.
- You can go through the files list, compare the results, open them or preview the contents, and do much more.
- You can even batch select files using the Select Duplicates button. CFC displays various file selection patterns to enable you to select the newest or oldest files in each group, most modified or least modified files in each group, and so on.
- Once you are done selecting your files, use the Select Action button and select one of the following options:
- Move to folder: Using this option, you can move all the duplicate files to another folder on the same mapped network drive or a local folder on your computer.
- Delete duplicates: Using the option, you can wipe out all duplicates in one click. CFC offers you a backup option to create a backup of these files in the event you need them again.
Vikas Medhekar is a tech enthusiast. He has accomplished MBA in Financial Markets and MCom in Management. He loves writing blogs on technology & computers to help users make their digital life easier.