Drive letter issue in 2003 terminal server application

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I have a situation where I have a terminal server with a C and D drive with all user related stuff on D & all system related & boot is C. I need to install a new application which requires each user to map drive letter C to a network folder on another server. Apparently, there's no way around this requirement. Since the terminal server already has a C drive, this is a problem. I've tied to find info on hiding the C drive but this doesn't seem to solve the problem. The alternative to completely reinstall everything using a non-C boot drive letter is not appealing--I just got everything working. I've looked for a why to change the Boot drive letter to another letter, but I haven't found anyone who has actually successfully done this, although someone said it's possible with "Registry Toolkit" which does a global search and replace in the registry. Someone else said a tool in Partition Magic will do the trick, but PQ warns that it shouldn't be used to change an installed boot drive to another letter. I'm thinking I might try one of these before the "nuke and pave" method. Is my situation hopeless?

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I’m assuming that you have contacted the application vendor to confirm the inability to map drive C:.

Since this is the standard drive letter for a system partition, it seems a little silly to force it to be mapped to a network share.

Any chance of knowing the applciation that is causing you the issue?



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  • Netguru
    The application is "Title Express". It wasn't intended to be multi-user, so in order to work, each user has to have his own C drive so that the application can keep temp files, etc. separate. At least this is what I'm told. It would be nice if terminal server had the capability to allocate a private C drive to each user. I know there's the capability to have all the common folders, like "My Documents" be separate, but I can't figure how this might help the problem.
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  • Nephi1
    NTFS has a neat little trick up it's sleve. As to how to set it up I do not remember, but I think sysinternals has the utility for it. The process is called a "symbolic linking" IIRC. Under NTFS you can map a folder on a drive to be anywhere else. Eg. 'c:titleexpress' could be mapped to 'server88sharetitleexpress' This would allow legacy applications to be relocated to a network resource without needing an upgrade. This could work for your problem.
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  • Netguru
    Thanks, but I don't see how this helps. My problem is that each TS user has to have a unique drive C which points to a network share folder which no one else points to. I think the application must be hard coded to a specific path and if two users were to run simultaneously, there would be a conflict with temp files.
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  • Poomba1
    So how far have you tested this, TS creates unique tmp folders, where are these files being cretaed?
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  • 3wsparky
    where are the tmep files stored ie c:program filesapplicationtemp ? could you not create a c:program filesshared appusernameapplication this would allow each user to run there own version of this software of course it does depend on the size of the install due to creating multipul copys of the same software
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  • Howard2nd
    In the world of DOS (Disk Operating System) this was not an uncommon problem - since programs were single user on single computer and in some cases single drive. SUBST(itute) and JOIN are very powerful and therefore dangerous commands. You want to create a folder on the 'C:' drive for this single user program (Title Express). If the program actually remapped the 'C:' from the local machine it would quit working. NO Command files. SUBST is still with us to make a folder path appear as a drive letter. (i.e d:whatever = w:) JOIN which did the reverse is not. If you take a folder on one drive and make it appear as a folder on another then the system hangs any time the JOINed folder is not available. A - get a program that works with standard assignment of drives. OR B - let the tail wag the dog and redo everything for that one program. When you go to the management decision makers take your projected manhours for dedoing everything and perpetual maintenance costs with having a non standard application. In forty years of computing and engineering I have never seen an application so good or so important that non-standard operation did not end up costing more than it was worth. Good luck.
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  • Netguru
    I thought about subst, but it won't let you reassign c: if there's already a c:
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  • PhilReed
    The only way to get Term Server to not have a C: drive is to install linux or freebsd on the 1st active drive then install win server. However I suspect this is not practical. Citrix allows you to remap the server drive letters so that C becomes M etc... However the most pratical answer is to dump the old application and use something else.
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  • Mrfreddie123
    Drive letter mapping has been fairly common with Citrix Metaframe and they even provide a utility - driveremap - that remaps the drive (usually c: to something like m: before you install citrix). With XP FR2 this utility became a standalone one and was included on the cd (previously it was part of the setup). You could try getting your hands on it and changing the drive letter without installing citrix. All your applications will likely break as normally you'd run the driveremap right after windows install and then setup apps on final driver letters. I've used it with Citrix before and generally eveything is working ok - however i've experienced myself and have heard from others that sometimes the applications and windows just plain act weird with mapped drive letter - basically test, test, test if you do go ahead.
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