How to Map a Network Drive on a Mac

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It's common to map a network drive on Mac or Windows computers in the corporate environment, but you can also set one up in a home environment with multiple devices that need access to the same information.

The instructions in this article illustrate how to map a network drive on macOS. While the steps may vary slightly based on the version of macOS you're using, they should generally be the same across all versions of the OS.

How to Map a Network Drive on Mac

Instead of downloading or copying the same data to all your devices, you'd save this data in a single folder, then share this folder with other devices. Once you have shared the location of this data via a UNC path, you can then map the network drive to all your devices with a few simple steps.

  1. Launch Finder.

    Launching Finder
  2. Click Go > Connect to Server.

    Go > Connect to Server
  3. Enter the path for the network drive you'd like to map and click Connect.

    Connect to smb
  4. If you're prompted for a confirmation, click Connect.

    Confirm server connection

    Accounts that don't have permissions to access this file/folder are unable to create a connection to the network drive.

  5. Once the network drive has been mapped, it will appear under your desktop as a mounted drive or under your Locations menu in any Finder window.

    Network drive in Finder

    Since mapped drives show up as mounted drives on your macOS device, you're able to disconnect from them by ejecting the drive.

How to Automount a Network Drive on macOS

If you want to ensure the previously mapped drive remains after a reboot, you must enable automounting via Login items under your user account preferences.

  1. Click the Apple Logo > System Preferences.

    System Preferences
  2. Click Users & Groups.

    Users & Groups
  3. Select the username that has access to the network drive.

  4. Select the Login Items tab.

    Login Items
  5. Navigate to the item you wish to add. Click once to select it, then click Add.

    Add item