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Access Windows Home Server from an Ubuntu Computer on your Network

If you’re a Windows Home Server user, there may be times when you need to access it from an Ubuntu machine on your network. Today we take a look at the process of accessing files on your home server from Ubuntu.

Note: In this example we’re using Windows Home Server with PowerPack 3, and Ubuntu 10.04 running on a home network.

Access WHS from Ubuntu

To access files on your home server from Ubuntu, click on Places then select Network.

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You should now see your home server listed in the Network folder as well as other Windows machines…double-click the server to access it.

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If you don’t see your server listed, you might need to go into Windows Network \ Workgroup and find it there.

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You’ll be prompted to enter in the correct credentials for WHS just as you would when accessing it from a Windows machine. It’s your choice if you want to have the password remembered or not…make your selection and click Connect.

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Now you will see the available folders on your home server. In this example we signed in with Administrator credentials, so we have access to everything.

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Double-click on the folder share you want to access content from…here we see MS Office documents on the server.

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Or, here we take a look at a music folder with various MP3 files which you can make Ubuntu play.

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You can access the files directly from the server, provided there is a Linux app that can handle the file type. In this example we opened a Word document in OpenOffice.

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Here we’re playing an MKV movie file from the server in Totem Movie Player.

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You can easily search for files on the server as well…

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If you want to store your Ubuntu files on WHS it’s just a matter of dragging them to the correct WHS folder you want them in.

If you’re using an Ubuntu computer on your home network and need to access files from Windows Home Server, luckily it’s a straight-forward process. You’ll often have to find the correct software to use Windows files, but even that’s getting much easier with version 10.04.

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 06/11/10

Comments (8)

  1. Spydeyrch

    Nice quick little guide. Did you have to have or already had installed SAMBA to get this to work? Does it work OTB? Thanks!

    -Andrew

  2. Mysticgeek

    @spydeyrch: I didn’t do anything with SAMBA …It was a fresh install of 10.04 – no updates or anything added – and detected the Windows devices on the network right away.

  3. Neal

    Nice post. Managed this on WHS v1 but am playing with Vail and am really stuck. Only a Windows Network icon appears and that results in an error saying it can’t find any Windows shares. I assume the issue is that Vail is based on Server 2008 and not 2003 – must be something needs changing on Vail but no idea what! Can RDP to it from Ubuntu though . . .

  4. Mysticgeek

    Thanks for the info. I have just recently started exploring Vail and haven’t tried accessing it from Ubuntu. As they say though… Vail is a Beta in the truest sense of the word.

  5. Antonio

    I cant really access windows share through Network like you posted, but im able to browse it through /mnt/ folder. Everytime i try to access using the posted way, it keeps asking me for username and pwd. :(
    Im using Ubuntu 10.4 64bits as a guest with vmware in a windows 7 host. Tested 32bits also.
    Is there a way to install a ftp server in the ubuntu guest that can be accessed from anyware?

    Thanks.

  6. Dave

    I can access the system and shared folders on the WHS machine but cannot access folders in the users folder. Ubuntu doesn’t ask for a user and password for these. I am new to Ubuntu and am not real good at it but it is the latest version.

  7. Jeff

    Love the graphic tutorial (I know too many years of Windows for me!). This works great every time! I can move, edit, play videos, etc. from my WHS 2003 in Ubuntu 10.10 perfectly. The problem I have is I can’t save files to my WHS 2003 shares from programs like Google Chrome or FireFox Internet Browsers. Let’s say a .jpg file. When I right click and save, I only get the options of (to save to) the local resources of my Ubuntu box. The shared drives do not appear when trying to save files via these internet browsers, yet the shares are mounted, and as I said, I can move, save, delete. etc. files in the WHS 2003 shares via my Ubuntu box.
    Why does my WHS 2003 shares not appear when trying to save a file via the internet browsers? Also I choose “Remember Forever” option in the Ubuntu credentials box, but after a reboot the shares do not remount. What’s up there?

    Thanks, Jeff

  8. Steve

    Please forgive this simple question but I’m learning by the seat of my pants. Can I use my newly discovered Windows Home Server to “host” web pages that can be accessed through my Ubuntu web server? Since my Ubuntu version 8.04 is on a 30 GB hard drive and my windows home server has 2 500GB hard drives? I will be upgrading my server after April cause right now I use it for teaching an intro course on PHP.

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