I'm using Windows 10 Pro 64-bit.

My application (that was run as administrator) maps a folder from D drive to a network drive Z using the Windows Network API wnetaddconnection2().

When I opened File Explorer, I couldn't see the Z drive. However, when I opened other applications (e.g., Visual Studio) in Admin mode and browse to This PC folder, I'm able to see the Z drive under Network Location.

Why and how to solve this issue of mapped drives not showing up straight away after being mapped?

This issue does not happen

  • in Windows 7 OR
  • when my application is not run as administrator OR
  • after I restart explorer.exe OR
  • in Open file dialog in other applications (such as Word, Paint, Visual Studio, etc.)

Note: I have EnabledLinkedConnections set to 1, EnableLUA set to 1.

Tried Solution

One solution is to look into a program in Administrative tools called Local Security Policy and disable all the policies related to UAC in Security Settings > Local Policies > Security Options (Located in the bottom 15 policies of the list) except UAC:Behaviour..., UAC:Switch... and UAC: Virtualize...

However, I do not want to go down that route due to several issues occuring such as cannot open windows 10 app like Calculator etc.


1 Answer 1


Because of the UAC, the Shell runs with standard user permissions, it can't see mapped drives which were configured from your application running with admin rights.

There is a workaround called enabling the option EnableLinkedConnections:

  • Click Start, type regedit in the Start programs and files box, and then press ENTER.
  • Locate and then right-click the registry subkey HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System.
  • Point to New, and then click DWORD Value.
  • Type EnableLinkedConnections, and then press ENTER.
  • Right-click EnableLinkedConnections, and then click Modify.
  • In the Value data box, type 1, and then click OK.
  • Exit Registry Editor, and then restart the computer.

Or you can apply my hack to run Explorer as admin to also see the mapped drives.

  • I have actually already done the EnableLinkedConnections part (as stated in the question) so I tried your hack and it works. May 19, 2016 at 1:26

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