Skip to main content

Connecting to Network Shares - Knowledgebase / Desktop Computing and Printing / RemoteApp - OIT Service Center

Connecting to Network Shares

Authors list

Brown is now providing a Network Home Folder for all faculty, staff, and students. The Home Folder provides up to 100GB of network file storage for you to use. The storage also integrates with some CIS services such as  our  RemoteApps service.

To access your Home Folder, you can mount it from a Mac or PC, or connect to it via the Web using a separate interface. 

You will receive quota notices when your Home Folder data exceeds 90GB in size, but you may store up to 100GB of data when needed.


Connect on a Mac

  1. If you are off campus, connect to VPN.
  2. Open Finder on a Mac (the program you use to browse your files). If you open any folder on your Mac, you will be in Finder.
  3. Look for the "Go" menu at the top of your screen. From this menu, select "Connect to Server".
  4. You will be prompted to enter a path (address) for the share.
    The general format is as follows, italics replaced with your information:
    smb://  (for network home folder)
    smb://  (for departmental/personal shares) or
    smb://  (for research shares)

New in 2022

smb://  (for research shares)

  1. You will be prompted to log in with your Brown username and password.
  2. Your folder will open. You can open files and drag files to and from the folder.

Connect on Windows

  1. If you are off campus, connect to VPN.
  2. From the Start menu, select "Run" and type (replacing italics with your information): 
    \\\home\username  (for network home folder)
    \\\dfs  (for departmental/personal shares) or

    \\\research  (for research shares) or \\\research  (for research shares)

  3. If your computer is not in Active Directory (AD), you will be prompted to enter a username and password. Be certain to enter your username in the format ad\username (e.g., ad\jcarberr).
  4. The contents of your Network Home Folder will appear in Windows Explorer. 
  5. You may create a desktop shortcut to your Network Home Folder by right-clicking on the folder and selecting “create shortcut” from the quick menu. A dialog will appear notifying you that you cannot create a shortcut in this location, but the shortcut may be placed on the desktop. Click Yes.  You can also map as a "Network Drive", with the suggested drive letter of "H:/".

Note: You can make files available to your MyApps environment by putting them into the Documents folder.  For more details,  see "Related Pages" below.

Connecting from a UNIX machine

  1. Before connecting to the service, please make sure following packages are installed: samba-client, samba-common and cifs-utils.

  2. The easiest way (security implications of including password in a system generated mount) to access SMB shares is edit the /etc/fstab and include
    “<servername/sharename/folder_name>  <mount_point>  cifs user,uid=500,rw,suid,username=msusername,password=mspassword  0  0”

  3. To mount securely either by using credential file or by doing auto-mount during login process, little-bit of tweaking is necessary. Following links give a good insight on how to auto-mount SMB shares on unix/linux.

Web-Only Connection (Mac, Windows, or Linux)

  1. Launch a web browser (such as Firefox or Chrome) and visit the address
  2. Log in with your Brown Username and password.
  3. Navigate to your Home Folder by selecting "Isilon Home" in the pulldown window, then clicking the "Home" icon.

For more details, see Access Departmental File Services from the Web.

Helpful Unhelpful

87 of 119 people found this page helpful

Send us a note about this article

Contact the OIT Service Center

Phone: 401-863-4357


Location: Page Robinson Hall - 69 Brown St., Room 510

See our availability

Walk-ins Welcome! Appointments recommended.

For reserved service for a technical consult or a loaner check-out, you can schedule an appointment here.