The invisible network share

February 16, 2009


You can connect to a network share, but no files are visible and you’re not getting any error messages. Other users of the same share can see hundreds of files. What could be the problem?


A) Although it may appear that you’re connected to the share, you’re actually viewing a cached connection.

B) There is a network problem that prevents viewing files across the network.

C) The share is on a Windows Server 2003 device and you are using Windows XP Professional.

D) You do not have the correct permissions to view files in the share.


Answer: D) You do not have the correct permissions to view files in the share.

What good is having a network share if you can’t use it? Although some of the answers in this question can create problems, they don’t cause the problem we’re seeing with “invisible” files.

We are connecting to the share without an error, so can we conclude that our network share is available and we’re successfully connecting. We also know that the files really do exist, since other people can see all of the files in the share. Therefore, the next logical conclusion would be that there’s a problem with our account permissions and not with anything related to the configuration of the share.

The incorrect selections:
A) Although it may appear that you’re connected to the share, you’re actually viewing a cached connection.
A key piece in this question was that you didn’t get any error messages. If you ever have problems connecting to a network share, Windows is really good at complaining about it. Even if you could get some type of seamless cached connection (which doesn’t exist), wouldn’t it have a cached list of files? Since we can’t see any files, our problem can’t be written off to some strange caching issue.

B) There is a network problem that prevents viewing files across the network.
It’s easy to blame the network for all of our problems, but even the network subsystem would provide an error message if there was a problem communicating to a network share. Since we’re not getting an error message, the network isn’t the cause of invisible files.

C) The share is on a Windows Server 2003 device and you are using Windows XP Professional.

If different versions of Windows operating systems couldn’t communicate, today’s networks would be pretty worthless. All Windows operating systems can communicate seamlessly between each other.

Want to learn more? Watch “Using the Network”


To make the most of a network connection, you’ll need to know how to share files, configure network printers, and setup browser configurations. In this video, we’ll show you how to take advantage of these network resources and how to use Windows services to help manage your network resources.

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Category: CompTIA A+ Pop Quizzes

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