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If you are an Avid Media Composer or Final Cut Pro user, you may find it necessary to send files back and forth between a Windows based PC and your Macintosh computer.  There are many different ways to network a Windows based PC with a Mac. One method is to map a network drive letter to your PC for easy access to your Macintosh computer.

For this article, I will focus on networking a PC so it can see the files on a MAC in a very simple network environment.  (i.e., a PC and a MAC hooked up to your local home network).

Here's a quick step by step tutorial on how to map a drive letter so you can access your Mac OS X user folder.

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Settings for Mac OS X (Snow Leopard)

First off, make sure your Mac OS X user has a password set.  Also take note of your Mac OS X username. If you have a username with more than one word in it, use the 'simple' username which is the same as your Mac OS X home folder. 

Navigate to the Mac OS X system preferences and double click on the sharing preferences.


sharing_preferences.png

Within the sharing preferences dialog box activate the file sharing preferences.  Then click on the options button.

windows_sharing_box.gif

Next, activate the option that says Share files and folders using SMB (Windows).  Also, check the username of the Mac OS X account that you want to share.

SBM_Windows.gif

After you press the done button, take special note of the IP address supplied within the sharing dialog box.

windows_sharing_ip_address.gif

*As a side note, you may also want to activate share files and folder using FTP.  This will allow you to share files outside of your home network.

Settings for Windows XP

After you’ve configured the sharing settings for your Macintosh, open up the windows explorer interface by using the shortcut (windows key + E).  The Windows key is located in the lower left portion of the keyboard in-between the Ctrl key and the Alt key.

windows_key.gif

Within the windows explorer window, right click on the My Network Places icon.  Choose Map Network Drive from the contextual menu.
Map_Network_Drive.gif

A Map Network Drive dialog box will appear.  This is where you specify the IP address that you wrote down from the Mac OS X sharing preferences.  Use the following example to map a drive letter to your Windows machine. 

\\xxx.xx.x.xx\mac_osx_username


ftp_address2.gif

Next, you’ll need to supply a password.

connect_to_macbook.gif

Finally, you should now have a standard windows drive letter that is mapped to your Mac OS X user.

mapped_drive_letter.png

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