As you may have seen here, I’ve been on a run doing a number of things with Microsoft Azure. My goal here is that as I learn something – I share it with you.

Today I had a situation where I wanted to connect my Azure file share to my Windows PC. This is a very important step in putting a practical use case around the Azure file share from outside of the Azure cloud. I had a few questions and required steps to get there, so I decided to share them with some consideration so you can easily do this when the time comes for you.

Pre-Requisites:

  • Have an Azure storage account
  • Optionally, set encryption on the Azure storage account
  • Required, have secure transfer enabled
  • A file share is created in the files section of the storage account
  • Have files in the storage account that you want to access

Once these basics are established, you can browse into the share and connect the share to a remote device. This is shown in the figure below:

Connecting is easy from the Azure portal.

What is important is a message in the top right, it states that secure transfer required. This is outlined in this Microsoft Docs post that explains why secure transfer is required. This also requires SMB 3 support, which predicates that clients must we Windows 8 or higher as well as Windows Server 2012 or higher. Honestly if you’re still using older Windows OSes; you have bigger problems.

You can verify that the storage account (the parent item) ins configured to have secure transfer configured. You can see here that rwv0east0us0storage indeed has secure transfer configured:

Secure Transfer is a property of the storage account.

With this configuration, this account is ready to have a remote connection. I’m going to use a Windows PC to connect; however it could be a MacOS or Linux connection – should you be trapped like that.

What is beautiful is that the first screen shot has the PowerShell command you need to run locally on a Windows PC to have the share as your drive letter. I’ve zoomed into this here:

PowerShell is where it is at.

I am fine with the Z: drive letter for the Azure file share, and just like that I have access to my Azure files completely transparently on my Windows device and in Azure:

The file share is now my Z: drive.

Some additional, optional steps include setting up firewalls and virtual networks or Advanced Threat Protection for the access to this storage account.

Connection Steps:

  • Run PowerShell scripts on connect option
  • Test drive letter access remotely
  • (Optional) Configure security (firewalls, virtual networks, and Advanced Threat Protection)

Are you using file share connections to Azure? I found this process very straightforward. Share your use experience below.

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