Linux and Windows systems are very different and use different file systems and protocols. Exchanging files between them can be difficult, especially since they use two different exchange protocols. However, that does not mean that it is impossible to Mount a Windows Share Folder on Linux. Follow below to find out how.
Share Your Windows Folder
Before doing anything, you need to make sure that Windows has been properly configured to allow file sharing on the network.
To enable this in Windows, right-click the network symbol in the notification area of the Windows taskbar. Click here on “Open Network & Internet Settings.”
Under the “Status” category, click “Sharing options.”
On the Windows Sharing Options menu, make sure “Turn on network discovery” and “Turn on file and printer sharing” are checked.
Click the radio buttons next to both options to make sure they do.
Click “Save Changes” to save your settings. Next, open Windows File Explorer and find the folder you want to share with your Linux PC.
Right-click the folder and click Properties.
In your folder properties, click the “Sharing” tab, then click “Advanced Sharing.” Click to enable the “Share this folder” checkbox, then click “Permissions.”
Define the control rights of your folder in the “Permissions” section. By default, Windows grants read-only access to your files.
If you want to allow anyone to read or write to the folder, click “Allow” for “Full Control” permissions. Configure these authorizations according to your own requirements.
When you’re done, click OK three times to close each of the dialog boxes.
Your folder should now be shared on your network so that you can access it from your Linux PC.
Depending on your Linux distribution, you may be able to automatically mount your Windows shared folder in your distribution’s file explorer.
However, this may not work properly. The safest way to Mount a Windows Share Folder on Linux is to use the CIFS-utils package and mount the folder via the Linux terminal.
This allows Linux machines to access SMB file shares used by Windows PCs.
To install CIFS-utils, open a new terminal window. For Ubuntu and Debian-based distributions, type:
For Arch users, type:
Once installed, you can then Mount a Windows Share Folder on Linux from the Linux terminal.
Mount Windows SMB Share on Linux
You must create a mount directory before you can mount your Windows SMB shared folder on Linux. This is where Linux mirrors the contents of your shared folder.
To do this, open a terminal window and enter the following:
Once created, type the following:
Replace “Windows” with the IP address or host name of your Windows PC and “SharedFolder” with the name of your shared folder. For the username, replace “Account” with your Windows username or the full email address for your Microsoft account.
You will be prompted to enter your Windows password before the assembly process is complete. Enter this and then hit Enter. If you used the correct information, your Windows folder should now be mounted and accessible in the folder you created.
Sharing Files Between Linux and Windows in Dual Boot
File sharing between Windows and Linux works great when you mount a shared folder between the two devices, but can you still share files with a dual boot setup? Linux and Windows have separate file systems. Linux generally uses Ext4 while Windows uses NTFS and also works with FAT32. However, this does not mean that it is impossible to view and share files.
You need a compatible Windows system, build 20211 or higher, and some other resources for it to work. Do not worry. Everything is free.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Why do I get a syntax error when trying to mount a folder in Linux?
Either there is a little error in the command in the terminal window or it has a space in the folder name. Spaces do not always appear correctly in the syntax. Instead of recognizing the command as the full folder name, the system sees two separate items.
Avoid this by enclosing the name in quotation marks. For example, Shared Folder would become “Shared Folder”. Of course, you can also just rename the Windows 10 folder to merge the words or put a hyphen in the middle.
2. Can I mount a shared folder if I use VirtualBox?
Yes. The process should work the same way. You can also share devices, such as USB drives.
3. Can I mount guest, network, or password protected folders?
Yes, but since you’re not using the main Windows 10 account, you need to tweak the syntax a bit. If you are mounting a network folder, you will also need the server or computer name.
While this guide applies to Ubuntu, it should also work for most major Linux distributions. It lists the syntax for various scenarios, assuming you’ve already followed all the steps above (except the final assembly).
4. Why do I only have read access for the shared folder?
If you want to save files to Linux shared folder, make sure you have full read / write access to the folder in Windows. If the Windows user account only has read permission, this is the only permission it also has on Linux. You need to change your account permissions in Windows 10. For business, your IT administrator will need to make the change for you.
5. Why aren’t folder changes showing up?
If you have made changes to the folder permissions, they may not appear immediately in Linux. You will need to remount the folder for the changes to take effect.
Use the above command to redeploy all shared folders. This should ensure that things work as expected. If you have random glitches, reassembling them will usually fix them.
Mount a Windows Share Folder on Linux gives you the freedom to access your most important files regardless of operating system. The SMB protocol is supported by Linux, so it shouldn’t be difficult to keep accessing your Windows files and folders after you’ve installed the CIFS-utils package.