Mounting University of Lethbridge “P” and “W” drives under Linux

Here’s how to find the “P” and “W” drives at the University of Lethbridge.

“P” drives

Your “P” drive is the windows share that represents your standard network desktop (i.e. the thing you see if you log into a classroom or other computer on campus).

The address is ulhome.uleth.ca/$USER where $USER is your account username (the same as the lefthand side of your uleth email account, or, in my case, daniel.odonnell.

ulhome is a CIFS drive. To mount it, you seem to have to use the commandline (I can’t seem to find the right protocol to use to use the GUI that comes with the file navigator in Ubuntu. I found instructions that worked for me here: http://www.tonido.com/support/display/cloud/Howto+properly+mount+a+CIFS+share+on+Linux+for+FileCloud

One-time mount

To mount the drive by hand for a single session, do the following:

  1. Make sure cifs-utils is installed
  2. Choose a mount point. This can be an existing directory (if the directory has local content, it will not be available while the network drive is mounted). Or you can create a custom mount point. I did the latter: mkdir ~/ulhome
  3. Mount the remote drive. sudo mount -t cifs -o username=$USER,password=$PWORD,rw,nounix,iocharset=utf8,file_mode=0777,dir_mode=0777 //$REMOTEURL $MOUNTPOINT (where $USER = username; $PWORD = password; $REMOTEURL = url of CIFS drive; and $MOUNTPOINT = the directory you chose or created in step 2. Note: your IT department may not give you the full remote URL, since Windows can use the first part of the subdomain; at the U of L, for example, IT tell you the share is called \\ULHOME. I guessed it is probably in the University’s main domain and was correct: \\ULHOME is the same as //ulhome.uleth.ca/)

To permanently mount the drive you need to create a password file and use that in /etc/fstab:

1. Create a file /root/.smbcredentials with the following content:

username=$USER password=$PWORD

p.2. Change the permissions such that only root can read the file.

sudo chmod 700 /root/.smbcredentials

3. Now add the following line in /etc/fstab file.

//$REMOTEURL $MOUNTPOINT cifs credentials=/root/.smbcredentials,rw,nounix,iocharset=utf8,file_mode=0777,dir_mode=0777 0 0

4. Test if the line added in the fstab file works.

  1. sudo mount -a

5. Now the remote share should be mounted at /mnt/storage.

Your “W” drive

The “W” or public drive (the drive your web files are on) is found at files.uleth.ca. This can be ssh’d into and so is a lot easier to use.

ssh $USER@files.uleth.ca

C’est tout.

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