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When adding Network Shares to FileCloud Server in a Windows Environment please note that File Paths can't be greater than 260 characters, due to a PHP limitation. If you want to find out if you have files with a path greater than 260 you can use a 3rd party tool like Path Length Checker, which will read all the files from a specific location and show you which files are passing this restriction, you can visit the following link and download the tool:


Warning

IMPORTANT: See how to setup your FileCloud Server to access Network Shares

  • Windows: When using UNC paths (Paths like \\computername\sharename) be sure to set FileCloud to run as service and set the "log on account" for the service to be the admin user that has access to that UNC share path. Otherwise the network share cannot be added.
  • Windows: The Network Folder location should have full permissions for the user account that is used to run FileCloud Server, otherwise Network Share cannot be accessed via FileCloud

Introduction

Local Area Network (LAN) based Network Folders in FileCloud are special folders that allows the FileCloud users to access pre-existing (Legacy) files on your corporate Windows and/or Linux servers. 
When a Network Folder is given user access permission, it will show up in the "Network Shares" folder when the user logs into the FileCloud server.

Network Folders Restrictions

OperationAllowed (Y/N)
Sync using Sync App (Offline Access using Periodic Sync)Y
ShareY
Mount as DriveY
Copy from/to Managed Storage (My Files)N
Move from/to Managed Storage (My Files)N

Creating a normal LAN based network folder

To create a network share, the steps are:

  1. Login to the Administration Portal
  2. Navigate to "Network Folders" in left navigation panel
  3. Click on "Add" Button to launch the "New Network Folder" dialog box
  4. Select "Local Area Network" from the dropdown.

     
     
  5. Enter the name of the network share. This will be the name shown to the user to access this network share resource. For example, "Training Docs". This can have only alpha numeric characters.





  6. Select whether you want to use Normal Mount Paths or use Smart Mounts. Read more about Smart Mounts.



  7. For Normal Mount Paths: Select the remote folder to use as the network share
    Note: the FileCloud Webserver should be running as an account with full permissions on that folder. 
    The best way to do that would be run FileCloud as a service and then make that service run as a specific admin account with enough permissions on that folder share.





  8. Assigned Permissions specifies that FileCloud's permissions are applied to restrict user access.
    "NTFS" permissions specifies that the existing NTFS permissions are used to restrict user access. See more information about setting Network Folders with NTFS Permissions.



  9. Once the Network Folder is created, you can assign users and groups to this Folder. 


Smart Mounts For Network Folders

Smart mounts are special type of Network share whose file system paths contain variables. The variables will be translated to get to the actual filesystem path. This will greatly simplify access to network shares as long as certain criteria is met.
For example,take a look at the following image showing a folder structure in the filesystem.

In the folder structure shown in the image above, the Administrator can setup the Network share in such a way that:

  • When user "joe" logs in, he will be able to see c:\data\smart\joe folder and no other folder
  • When user "nancy" logs into FileCloud, she will only be able to see and access C:\data\smart\nancy folder.

To achieve this, create a network share with smart mount path like C:\data\smart\%USERID% . The system will automatically replace the "%USERID% variable with the actual user name and mount it to the Network Share for the user to access.
The following special tokens can be inserted in the smart mount parameter

PATH PATTERN SPECIAL VARIABLES
NOTES
%USERID% User id as a variable in path
%EMAILID%Email id as a variable in path
%DISPLAYNAME%User display name as a variable in path

Creating a smart LAN based network folder

To create a smart mount network share, the steps are

  1. Navigate to "Network Folders" in the Administration panel and Click on the "Add" button
  2. In the "New Network Folder" dialog, enter the Network Folder Name and select the "Smart Mount" checkbox. IGNORE THE "Network Folder Path" textbox
  3. Set the "Smart Mount Type" to "Path Pattern" using the dropdown box
  4. Enter the "Smart Mount" path in the "Smart Mount Parameter" text box
  5. Click "Add" to create the smart mount
  6. Select the newly created smart mount entry and assign access by clicking "Users" or "Groups" in the Network Share Details

If you want to assign this to all users in the system, simply assign it to the EVERYONE group. The EVERYONE group is a special group which has all the members in the FileCloud system


Granting access to Network Folder

Once the network share is created, the next step is to configure access to the share.
The network share access can be granted to

  1. Guest User
  2. Full Access User
  3. User Group

To grant access to a share,  the following steps should be performed

  1. Click on "Manage Share" in the left navigation menu to display the list of available network shares
  2. Select the network share entry to add the user or group access
  3. Click on "Manage Users" or "Manage Groups" in the Network Share Details panel 
  4. Set the appropriate Access level

The access level for a user or group can be

AccessDescription
Full AccessThis allows the user to read, write and share the contents of the share
Read AccessThe user can only read (no write and share) the contents
NTFS Access

The permissions are extracted from the actual Windows NTFS permissions and user actions are restricted based on those permissions.

See more information.

 

Network Folders with NTFS permissions

Please see more information regarding configuring Network Folders with NTFS permissions

Configuring Network Folders Behavior

You can configure some of the behaviors of Network Folders by using the settings below found in Settings->Storage tab.


FunctionDescription
Network Folders Display NameThis label will be displayed in the User portal when the user logs into their account.
Please Note: Once setup, don't change it as this will affect existing sync apps that have started syncing. Existing sync apps will continue to sync to the older name and only new network shares configured via Sync will use the new name.
User can share Network FolderThis setting controls whether or not a network share location can be shared by an user
Sync Network FolderThis setting controls whether or not a network share location can be synced by an user using sync client for offline access. You can disable offline sync for individual network folders as well.
Number of old versions to keep for each fileEnables versioning of files in network location. To maintain no versions enter 0.
Skip Versioning for files Greater thanThe file size limit in bytes beyond which the versioning will not be applied
Skip NamesThis is a regex filter which can be used to exclude files that match the regex expression from file listing. Example of a Regular Expression that skips some names from displaying is /(sub.*|copy.*)/
This skips all files which start with "sub" or "copy"
Enable Access Based Enumeration for NTFS

When browsing network folders with NTFS permissions, folders that users don't have access to (no permissions) are hidden from view.
Enabling ABE increases load on server. Note that ABE can be disabled for specific Network Shares if needed.

Store Deleted Files in Network FolderEnable this to store deleted files from network folders in a special deleted items folder
Do not store deleted files greater thanFiles greater than this size specified in bytes do not get stored in Deleted Files.
Enabled Indexed SearchTo enable indexing of network folders to allow fast searching. See this topic for more information.

Offline Access to Network Folders

FileCloud Sync app can provide offline access to Network Folders by allowing users to download files from Network Folders automatically similar to how synced folders work.
To enable Offline Access, you need to enable the Sync Network Folders option in Settings->Storage->Network Storage Settings.


See how to configure Offline Access to Network Shares in the FileCloud Sync app.
You can disable offline sync of certain Network Folders. Edit a network folder and enable the checkbox to Disable Offline sync.

Sharing Restrictions on Network Folders

To restrict sharing on network folder, following steps should be performed.

  1. Navigate to "Network Folders" in the Administration panel and Click on the "Edit" button for the respective Network Folder.
  2. In the "Network Folder Details" dialog box, set "Sharing" to "Shares not allowed".
  3. Click "Update" , now the Network Folder is restricted to be shared.

The following are the option available to set Sharing for Network Folder:

Sharing OptionsNotes
Allow All SharesAllow public and private sharing of the Network Folder
Allow Private Shares OnlyAllow only private sharing of the Network Folder
Shares Not AllowedRestrict both public and private sharing for Network Folder


 

Miscellaneous: ._cloud Folder

Network folders at times will create a ._cloud sub folders for various reasons that include:-

  • Store previous versions of Files
  • Store the deleted files under that Network Folder
  • Storing the image thumbnails.

There is no option to automatically delete the ._cloud folder. However, the previous versions of the files can be deleted by the user and the stored deleted files can be emptied by the admin by using the Clear All Deleted Files in the screenshot above.Even if thumbnails are deleted, they will be recreated once the image file is accessed again through FileCloud interface.


 

 

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