With autofs you can easily mount network volumes upon first access to the folder where you want to mount the volume. Autofs is available for many OS and is preinstalled on Mac OS X so I show you how I mounted my iTunes library folder using this method.
About Network Drive Mappings. When a network drive mapping is marked as persistent the configuration is stored in the registry. This is so that the drive mappings can be rebuilt at each user sign-in. It is possible to configure network drive mappings by simply creating the required registry keys/values. Map a drive to your document library. Switch back to File Explorer. In the pane on the left, right-click the Network folder and select Map network drive. Click the link named Connect to a web site that you can use to store your documents and pictures. Click Next twice to walk through the informational steps of the Add Network Location wizard. Mapping these to real network drives You may however have the need to map these redirected drives to real drive letters inside your remote desktop session. For instance developers may have the need to have access to source code in a lab environment which they may not have RPC or NETBIOS traffic allowed.
autofs needs to be configured so that it knows where to gets its configuration. Edit the file
/etc/auto_master and add the last line:
This will tell autofs to look for a file in the '/etc' folder with name 'auto_smb'. In this case I want to create a configuration for automatically mount SMB volumes. You are free to choose a different name and can also use afp/cifs/nfs etc.
Be aware that macOS updates can overwrite this file! Make sure you'll check the content of this file after you've updated. I've encountered this behaviour with the latest macOS Catalina 10.15.7 supplemental update.
Normally Mac OS X tries to mount network shares into the '/Volumes' folder. This is the default folder for all mounted shares on a mac. However, if you try to directly mount into this folder, autofs will fail. You just add a '/../' in front of your desired mount path and Mac OS X will even accept the Volumes folder. However, some Mac OS Version doesn't like this so I switched over to use my own folder named '/mount'.
If you want to configure AFP, do it like this:
So add this line to
Mac OS X is clever enough to lookup the username and password from the Mac keychain so there's no need to add the username and password in clear text to the configuration file.
If you want to configure SMB, do it like this:
Auto Map Network Drive Mac And Pc
Add this line to
Unfortunately you will need to add the user and password to the resource :( You can try to lock it down further using the Mac OS permissions but that won't help when the attackers user got admin rights as well.
If you're using macOS Catalina 10.15 and macOS Big Sur 11
You’ll just have to prepend your existing automount paths with
/System/Volumes/Data. This is because macOS creates a second APFS volume for your user data, whereby the existing system installation is moved to a read-only APFS volume.
This is the version of
/etc/auto_smb in Catalina:
Restoring autofs after macOS updates
The recent macOS updates seem to overwrite the
/etc/auto_master file. You can try to set the file to read-only using the extended attributes of macOS. For more details see this blog post. Please add the entry for your autofs file again to the
auto_master file and save the file. We'll try to set the
auto_master file to read-only, in hope it won't be overwritten again.
The file is now write protected. You can try to edit it again with sudo and it will be read only. Its the same as when you set the file write protected in the finder.
if you use
it will be writeable again.
You now need to restart the autofs service with the command 'sudo automount -cv'. If you now type mount, you'll see a listing of currently mounted volumes. Your desired volume shouldn't be mounted, so unmount it with 'sudo umount /Volumes/volumename' or 'sudo umount /mount/music' before we continue.
Map Network Drive Command Line
You can now switch to '/Volumes/music' or '/mount/music' folder or let it list on the terminal. If you're using macOS Catalina you can open
/System/Volumes/Data/mount/music. Once you do that autofs will automatically try to mount the desired volume into this folder.
Auto Map Network Drive Mac Windows
Visit my blog post where I explain this gist a little bit more in detail. A complete list of blog posts with autofs can be found here.