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Submission details

33 +35/-2 votes

Multiple connections to a server or shared resource by the same user, using more than one user name, are not allowed

Submitted by me@justinho.com on June 27, 2008 to Annoyance, Usability

Messages like "Multiple connections to a server or shared resource by the same user, using more than one user name, are not allowed. Disconnect all previous connections to the server or shared resource and try again." have to be modified. This message fails to communicate the problem in language that is understandable to the average user, nor does it suggest a tangible method of resolution of the problem. This error message was written by a nerd, for nerds. Only nerds would know how to actually fix this problem.

Suggest, "Close all current network connections to this server and try again" button, or pointing to potential causes/resolution to this problem instead of just displaying the message.

High

Low

Not fixed

Discussion (3 comments)

ui_guy wrote on July 2, 2008, 1:35pm

I do share your frustration with the security message you get when you attempt to connect to resource that is already connected to using differnet credentials. But I have to vote it down becuase this is by design.

In fact, the only way to disconnect all previous connections is to logoff your current 'session' to the local workstation or server you are using and logon again and present the correct credentials to the desired resource.

The issue is that Windows caches your credentials for the duration of your session for each remote server you connect to. I'm sure there are a host of other reasons but the main one I can think of is the scenario that you've mapped a drive to a server share and then a Sys Admin comes along and attempts to map another drive to the same server. If that were actually successful, you would have elevated permissions over your existing mapping, causing a big security breach for as long as you were logged on to that session. Windows would get confused as to which credentials were valid for the resource you were connecting to - it wouldn't be able to properly query the remote ACL's on the resource.

Remember that NTFS is certified to C2 specification, a defacto requirement for Governments and Banks etc, this stuff is as serious as cancer. The dialog could be a little more helpful but simply offering to clear the credentials that are cached might give unintended results, particularly if you had drives already mapped, documents opened, applicaitons running. Also, how would you then release the new credentials without trying to map yet another drive or log off first? It goes on and on.

aakash wrote on September 14, 2008, 3:47am

@ui_guy: Correct me if I am wrong, but I don't believe you have to logoff to prevent this message. If you go to the "Disconnect Network Drive", you can select the connection and then disconnect it. This will allow you to connect.

ringoschplingo wrote on June 4, 2009, 11:10am

This is highly annoying when you come across it, however it can be rectified without a logoff (or at least I just recified it without logging off).

Try the following -
1. open the services snap in (start - run - services.msc)
2. locate the workstation service (this is a fundamental service that windows uses to access network rescources), stop this service. Other services are dependant upon it (in my case netlogon and computer browser), you will have to stop these services also.
3. Restart the workstation service and after this any services that were listed as being dependant in 2. above.

Now try opening the network resource again, your old credential should have been dropped, yey!

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