You can encounter the “Network connection does not exist” error when attempting to disconnect a mapped network drive which can be due to a drive letter conflict between the network drive and another local device on the computer. Invalid registry entries can also contribute to this issue. Fixing the problem of “This network connection does not exist” is important because a drive letter needs to be available for users to map it to a shared network folder. Please see How to Create a Password-Protected VHD Using BitLocker on Windows 11, and Resolving Access Issues: You Might Not Have Permission to Use This Network Resource Error.
Let’s explore effective methods to rectify this problem and smoothly disconnect mapped network drives.
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Method 1: Verify Drive Letter Availability
Press “Windows key + R” to open the Run command. Type “diskmgmt.msc” in the box and press Enter or click OK to open Windows Disk Management console.
In Disk Management, examine the drive letters allocated to local disks, drives, removable drives, CDROMs, etc. Confirm that none of these shares the same drive letter as the mapped network drive.
Based on the outcome, proceed as follows:
- If the mapped network drive’s letter isn’t assigned to a local drive, proceed to the next method.
- If a local drive uses the same drive letter as the network mapped drive, proceed to the next step to change it.
Change the drive letter of the local device by right-clicking it, selecting “Change Drive Letter and Paths.
Click “Change” to reassign an alternative drive letter.
Selecting an alternative drive letter, and click OK to confirm the change.
Attempt to disconnect the mapped network drive again (if it still exists).
Method 2: Rectify via Registry Edits
Open the Registry Editor by pressing “Windows + R,” type “regedit,” and pressing Enter.
Navigate to the following registry path:
Delete the “MountPoints2” key.
Then, navigate to:
Look for a key named with the letter of the mapped network drive under the “Network” key. Delete this key if present.
Close the Registry Editor and restart the PC. After the system reboots, it will remove the mapped network drive.
By implementing these solutions, you can effectively resolve the “Network connection does not exist” error when disconnecting mapped network drives. This ensures uninterrupted network drive management and contributes to a smoother computing experience.