It isn’t uncommon to have some essential work-related data on the external USB hard drive that everyone in your office need to use from time to time. Clearly, it would be rather inconvenient to physically reattach the device each time a different user wants it. There must be a solution allowing access to that external hard drive over Ethernet (or other networks, s.a. Wi-Fi, LAN, or Internet). You can go with one of the two options we are going to talk about right here.
Using the software solution for sharing your hard drive over the Ethernet network may become the easiest way for you. No need to set up the network or get additional cords. Just use the USB over Ethernet software.
How to make your USB hard drive accessible over Wi-Fi
An alternate method of USB hard drive sharing is to map it over Wi-Fi as a network external HDD.
For this to work, your PC has to be hooked into a Wi-Fi network.
Open your favorite Web browser and type the IP address of your router in the address bar. Typically it will be something on the lines of 192.168.1.1.
At this point, you’ll be asked to enter your login and password. This done, open Settings, and go to the tab ‘Drive storage’. Then right-click your external hard drive’s name to invoke the shortcut menu and click ‘Map network drive’.
You may want to change the external hard drive’s name for ease of identification, then click ‘Reconnect at sign-in’.
Upon setup completion, click ‘Finish’. Chances are, you’ll see the external drive in your computer’s system only after reboot.
The strongest point of this is that you won’t need to splash your cash on any extra apps and gadgets. But it hardly makes up for its main disadvantage – it only works while you have network access, and you’ll have to stay within the Wi-Fi coverage zone the whole time you’re using the device. USB Network Gate by Electronic Team, Inc. has no such limitation and will allow you to use external hard drive remotely through any network.
Taking into account all the above, it is obvious that USB Network Gate is the best possible option if you need to gain remote access to the USB external drive while not having to be stuck in the network coverage area, or buy some pricey special-purpose hardware.