Mapping CS Home Directories Using SAMBA (SMB)

Intro to Samba

Samba, as used in the Computer Science Department, is a method of mapping the department's Grad Net user home directories (residing on our Linux-based home directory file server) to Windows, MacOS, and Linux-based computers over the network. Basically, you can map your Linux home directory to, for example, some lettered drive on your Windows system. (The actual protocol used is called SMB, which stands for Server Message Block. You may also see or hear it as the term SMB/CIFS.)

As an example, on our CS Grad Network, a home directory such as /users/mary can be mapped onto a Windows system as drive H: or drive M: or whatever drive letter is available. The drive letter used is arbitrary.

Who Can Use This Capability in CS to Map Their CS Linux Home Directory?

This feature is currently available to anyone with a CS Grad Net Linux account.

NOTE: If your Grad Net Linux account was created before July 2018, you might need to have your CS password reset before you can use Samba for the first time. So, try mapping the directory first, and if you are unable to map your home directory using the below instructions, you will most likely need to have us reset your password (even if you can log in to our Linux systems without problems.)

How to Map Your CS Grad Net Home Linux Directory Using Samba

  • Make sure your system resides somewhere on the JHU network. You must have a JHU-based IP (plugged in network, Hopkins Wifi, VPN, etc.)
  • If your system is outside of JHU, then you need to first become part of JHU's VPN service.
  • On your Windows, Mac, or Linux system, use its appropriate drive mapping command/configuration to map your CS home directory. In the case of your home directory, the share name will be the same as your Linux account name.
  • You'll need the server name for the share:

Typically, use the following mapping processes:

Windows 10

  • Run This PC
    • There are two ways to get to This PC
      • METHOD 1:
        • Run File Explorer
        • Choose This PC
      • METHOD 2:
        • From Windows 10 Search bar, search and run This PC
  • Choose Map Network Drive
  • Choose Drive Letter from the drop-down (Remember, Drive Letter is arbitrary.)
  • Enter \\servername\sharename
    • in our case, you'd be entering as the server name. So, \\\sharename (where sharename is your username, for instance.)
  • Decide whether you want to check off:
Reconnect at sign-in
Connect using different credentials (you need to make sure you use the credentials for accessing your Grad Net shares, which might not be the same as the login you use when you start Windows.)
NOTE: If your windows system is on a different domain (e.g., WIN or something else) and you're having issues connecting to our CS shares, choose the Connect using different credentials option, and for username, prepend your CS username with csoffice\ So, if your CS username is jane1, then you should enter csoffice\jane1
  • Click Finish


  • Click on Finder
  • Choose Go
  • Choose Connect to Server
  • Enter smb://servername/sharename


Varies depending on your desktop environment. Please search the Internet for SMB/SAMBA filesystem-mounting techniques for your flavor of Linux.


Server Name Format

As mentioned above, in each instance of mounting the SMB share on the CS Grad Net, the server name to use is

e.g. in Windows:

(notice the use of back slashes.)

or on mac:

(notice the use of forward slashes.)