Reassign Drive letters: Shared MAC Drives

Discussion in 'Windows Guest OS Discussion' started by rauckr, May 24, 2011.

  1. rauckr

    rauckr

    Messages:
    48
    I am sharing an external MAC drive with a Windows 7 guest operating system. How do I reassign the drive letter I see in Windows 7 for this drive? It is getting drive letter X:\ assigned to it and one of my Windows applications (ICAP/4 Spice) cannot tolerate it. Spice Technical Support found the problem and indicated it as a bug needing to be fixed. They said the work-around was to rename the drive letter. This is a MAC drive being shared with Windows 7 and I do not know how to reassign the drive letter.

    I have a 17" MacBook Pro (last years model) running OS X 10.6.7. I have 8 G-Byte of RAM (4 G-Byte assigned to the guest OS) and a 500 G-Byte hard drive with tons of free space. I am running Parallels Build 6.0.11994.
     
  2. rauckr

    rauckr

    Messages:
    48
    Solution

    It appears from the reference material I have been able to find that Drive Letters are auto-assigned by Parallels for host shared folders and you cannot directly change them. I was able to work around this limitation by unchecking the share all folders box and instead checking share Home Folder only. I was then able to set up an additional custom folder to share that was the Data folder of interest. This reduced by one the total number of folders shared. Parallels starts assigning letters to folders at Z:\ so the Data folder is now Y:\ instead of X:\ and everything works. I would prefer to pick the drive letters myself but I can get by with this work-around.
     
  3. J_Semp

    J_Semp

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    9
    Hi Gents,

    I have been experiencing similar problems. I have a MBP (mid 2012) 8GB DDR3 (4 to Win7 Home Premium Guest OS) running Parallels 8 for Mac (most recent update).

    We use the VM to run SolidWorks (the reliability of Macs finally pushed us away from using PC's). If you aren't familiar with the program, it is a 3D modeling program which is extremely comprehensive and can use quite a bit of computer resources. SolidWorks has about 30 different kinds of files (some used much more often than others, some never used for our purposes), and what we are doing is setting the default file locations for all of these files to look at our server (which is a Mac Mini running the latest Mac Server software).

    We have had some problems with mapping drive letters. Parallels assigns shared drive letters beginning from the end of the alphabet, in the order that they are connected. We have gotten around the major issues by disabling smart mount, setting our custom shared folders (in the parallels settings panel) and coupling that with a startup Automator program that runs on startup (on the Mac side). This program connects to the server and then connects to each folder in order. The order that the startup program connects to the folders is the same order that I added the custom share folders on the parallels side, and this has seemed to work decently for keeping the same drive letters upon startup, so the links within SolidWorks are not broken and it can find the files in their designated location.

    This, however, does not let me choose what to name the drives. I cannot find a way to tell parallels that pdf://Drawings should ALWAYS be drive "Y" in the windows guest OS. If there is a USB drive plugged into the computer when parallels starts up, It will shift the assigned drive letters up by a letter and break all pre-established file directories in Solidworks.

    Is anybody else experiencing this same problem?

    Thanks,
    J_Semp
     
  4. rauckr

    rauckr

    Messages:
    48
    Another victim

    I feel your pain. I have the same issues where the drive letters keep changing and breaking links to external data drives. If Parallels is used for casual purposes: surf the internet and play games, these issues may not be seen. Use for serious work brings these issues front and center quickly.

    I hope you are not also experiencing "Finder not responding" issues. Mac reliability has been extremely good for me until recently when this issue surfaced.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2013
  5. J_Semp

    J_Semp

    Messages:
    9
    I hope that as more and more people begin using Parallels for work-intensive purposes (as opposed to the companies using it to run accounting software) that many of these issues will be stamped out.

    Luckily I have not ran into the "Finder not responding" issues, and I cant say I even know what that is. Is that when you try to access the same folder from both Windows and Mac, and the Mac side becomes unresponsive? There are some workarounds for what I can assume may be causing such an issue (if my definition is correct anyway)... What exactly are you experiencing?

    I cant tell you how many hours I've been researching this drive letter problem... 2 open tickets, lord knows how many forum posts I've browsed through. It's great software but i will say that I am disappointed with the results of my open tickets thus far.
     
  6. rauckr

    rauckr

    Messages:
    48
    Finder not responding

    This issue is not really related to Parallels. It is another unrelated Mac issue. Periodically my MacBook Pro will stop functioning normally and a check of the Activity Monitor will reveal that the Finder is not responding. The solution is a hard reset using the power switch followed by SMC and PRAM resets. You had alluded to the fact that you have migrated to the Mac due to better reliability. I generally agree with this assessment but I have been having this Finder issue recently. I have been working with an Apple Support specialist and the freezes are less frequent than before. A support session earlier today may have finished correcting the problem but it will take some time working with the system to be sure.
     
  7. J_Semp

    J_Semp

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    9
    Well good luck with getting the Finder issue resolved... Luckily I haven't had many problems at all with native Mac applications.

    On a side note, I spent about an hour on the phone today with Parallels Tech Support regarding the Drive Mapping issues i described earlier. The only workaround is to manually map the drives thru Windows... AFTER setting up the custom share folder options thru Parallels. So I was basically told that the only way to permanently assign a letter designation to a Mac shared drive is to have parallels name/mount the drives, then duplicate the drive with the desired letter designation. So you end up with 2 of the same drives called out by different letters.

    This is absurd in my mind. Anybody using Parallels in order to run anything other than basic programs is basically left in the dust as far as drive designations goes. I was told that my issue would be forwarded to "management" and would possibly become a feature request, of course with no timeframe or updates promised (or even mentioned).

    On the bright side, once my ticket was transferred 3 or 4 times between different people and departments I was contacted twice within 12 hours (impressive turn around time for a foreign based tech-support if you ask me).

    Wishing you good hunting in regards to the Finder solution!
     
  8. J_Semp

    J_Semp

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    Oh and btw, if tech support doesn't fix the problem you should take a close look at your activity monitor... I constantly have Mac processes crashing and restarting (within seconds, if that, of each other). I have noticed that times where my MBP is acting particularly glitchy correlate heavily to the number of crashing processes. Hope I didn't just reveal another problem for you though... Seems the deeper you dig with Parallels the more oddities one will find.
     
  9. Paulism

    Paulism

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    1
    Same problem

    It is constantly remapping my folders. Very frustrating
     
  10. serv

    serv Parallels Developers

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    810
    Drive letter assignment is actually managed in Windows. To remap existing assignment:
    - open Windows Explorer
    - expand Computer hierarchy on the left pane
    - right-click on the drive and select Disconnect from the menu
    - type '\\psf' (without quotes) in the address bar, a list of shares will show up
    - right-click on folder that you've just unmapped and select Map network drive...
    - choose appropriate drive letter, make sure Reconnect at logon is checked and click OK

    Note that shares that don't have a letter assigned will be mapped automatically by Windows on next boot.
     
  11. J_Semp

    J_Semp

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    Thank you very much for the solution... I do have to ask why I have spoken to 3 different Parallels Support members via telephone and didnt receive that solution at all... I am tempted to post their email summaries of my support calls to show this...
     
  12. serv

    serv Parallels Developers

    Messages:
    810
    Apparently, the problem and solution are inherently Windows related. People you talked to were probably looking at it from the wrong angle, in terms of VM settings.
     
  13. J_Semp

    J_Semp

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    9
    I see... well thank you very much for the reply and solution. I will test that out and post my results here... This issue is a nightmare for people who point their VM's to a Mac server!
     
  14. Riyald

    Riyald

    Messages:
    4
    This thread resolved my problem as well. Thanks to the contributors of this thread as well as forum.
     

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