ConnectedNAS Professional SMB Client and Server is a robust, full featured file sharing application that transforms your Android smartphone or tablet into a participating member of a Windows, Linux, or MacOS network. ConnectedNAS is unique and is different from other Android SMB applications in two significant ways. First, the ConnectedNAS client is integrated into Android. Most SMB Clients are integrated into a File Browser application which enables you to browse and copy files between your Android device and computer. But these files are not visible to applications such as Word, Powerpoint or other apps until you have copied them locally onto your device. By integrating ConnectedNAS into Android, all apps that utilize the relavent Android features, have access to your files even when they are remote. This means you don’t need to copy files back and forth and you don’t need to use a File Explorer kind of application to access your files. Second, Connected NAS Professional includes a SMB Server. This allows you to expose files and directories that are stored on your smartphone or tablet with other computers and Android devices on your network.
This help document is designed bring a user up to speed on the use of ConnectedNAS and to explore various features of the application. Please also view our help page on the ConnectedWay website for more information.
NOTE: ConnectedNAS leverages Android’s Storage Access Framework (SAF) and requires Android 4.4 (API level 19) or greater.
The easiest way to demo the capabilities of the ConnectedNAS SMB Client and Server is to provide a simple example walkthrough. A user should learn enough from the walkthrough to be able to configure and use the product in more general configurations for the user.
The sample walkthrough will configure the ConnectedNAS Storage App as both an SMB Client and an SMB Server. In other words, we will expose a directory on the Android device to the SMB network and we will access that SMB share from the same Android device. This will allow us to walk through all aspects of configuring the SMB client and server. While following this walkthrough, you will learn how to enable the SMB server capabilities of your smartdevice and configure a directory so that it is shared on the network. You will also learn how to discover and configure remote computers on your network so that you are able to read and write files stored on those computers.
We’ve chosen to demo this capability in a loopback mode so that we can demonstrate both the client and server capabilities of your app without having to involve other devices.
ConnectedNAS can be installed directly from from Google Play Store. The ConnectedNAS Play Store App page is:
To run, either hit “Open” from the ConnectedNAS Play Store App page or locate the “ConnectedNAS” Icon in your phone’s apps and click on it to open.
When run for the first time, the app will request access to photos, media, and files on your device.
This functionality is required for operation of the app. Please click “Allow”
You will then be shown the ConnectedNAS Application main screen. The main screen has a title bar with a pulldown menu on the right side of the title bar. Below the title bar is the main window of the app. This window contains tabs which are accessible by swiping right or left on the main window. There are three tabs: File Servers, Exported Directories, and Authentication Realms. As you use the ConnectedNAS as an SMB client, you will populate the File Servers tab with information about remote computers that you wish to access. When used as an SMB server, you will populate the Exported Directories tab with information about local directories that that you will be exporting to the network. The Authentication Realms tab is used for setting up Windows Active Directory servers. These are optional and are only used when the Android device is being deployed in an enterprise network managed by Microsoft or Samba Active Directory.
These screens will look like:
If you wish to share files that reside on your Android device with other phones and computers on your network you will want to enable the SMB server and you will want to configure one or more directories to share. By default, the SMB server capability is disabled.
Select the “Menu Options” icon in the top right of your screen to the right of the ConnectedNAS Title bar. This is sometimes called the “Kabob Menu” for obvious reasons. You will see four menu options: About, Settings, Files App and Help. This is shown below:
Please take the time to read About page by clicking the About menu item. Clicking on the Files App menu item will bring up the Android built in file explorer which you use to browse remote files. This will be discussed more later. The Help page will load the help text in a browser window. The settings menu item will bring you to a dialog window for configuring the server. Click on that now.
This will show you a settings screen that looks as follows: