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Accessing USB storage devices connected to the FRITZ!Box over a VPN connection

The mechanisms that operating systems like Windows or macOS use to automatically detect and display USB storage devices connected to the FRITZ!Box only work within the home network, and therefore not over VPN.

However, there are still two ways to access a USB storage device connected to a remote FRITZ!Box over a VPN connection. Which access method makes the most sense depends on whether you prefer to use a web browser, or whether you would rather use the Windows Explorer or macOS finder to access network shares.

Important:You cannot access a USB storage device connected to the remote FRITZ!Box if the USB storage device is configured for use with the USB remote connection.

1 Preparations

  1. Determine the local IP address of the remote FRITZ!Box with the USB storage devices you want to access.

    Note:The local IP address is the IP address at which the FRITZ!Box can be reached in the home network. In the factory settings, the FRITZ!Box has the IP address 192.168.178.1. However, the IP address is usually adjusted when the VPN connection is set up.

2 Accessing USB storage devices with a web browser

3 Accessing USB storage devices over a network share

Windows 11

  1. Click the search symbol in the Windows task bar.
  2. In the search box, enter \\ followed by the local IP address of the remote FRITZ!Box (for example \\192.168.10.1) and press Enter.
  3. Enter the name and password of a FRITZ!Box user who is authorized to access NAS contents, and click "OK".

    Note:You can edit the account information and access rights of users under "System > FRITZ!Box Users" in the user interface.

    • Now a window with the network folder "FRITZ.NAS" opens; this folder displays the partitions on the connected USB storage devices as folders.
  4. If you want to configure a folder as a network drive, right-click the folder, then select "Show more options" and then "Map network drive..." from the context menu. If the option "Map network drive..." is not displayed:
    1. Click "This PC" in the navigation area of the Explorer, and then click (More info) in the menu bar.
    2. Click "Map network drive". In the "Folder" field, enter the path to the folder you want to map as a network drive.

Windows 10

  1. In the search box in the Windows taskbar, enter \\ followed by the local IP address of the remote FRITZ!Box (for example \\192.168.10.1) and press Enter.
  2. Enter the name and password of a FRITZ!Box user who is authorized to access NAS contents, and click "OK".

    Note:You can edit the account information and access rights of users under "System > FRITZ!Box Users" in the user interface.

    • Now a window with the network folder "FRITZ.NAS" opens; this folder displays the partitions on the connected USB storage devices as folders.
  3. If you want to configure a folder as a network drive, right-click it and select "Map network drive..." from the context menu. If the option "Map network drive..." is not displayed:
    1. Click "This PC" in the navigation area of the Windows Explorer and then click "Computer" in the menu bar.
    2. Click "Map network drive". In the "Folder" field, enter the path to the folder you want to map as a network drive.

macOS

  1. Open the Finder.
  2. From the "Go" menu, select "Connect to Server...".
  3. Enter the local IP address of the remote FRITZ!Box (for example 192.168.10.1) in the "Server Address:" field.
  4. Click "Connect".
  5. Enter the name and password of a FRITZ!Box user who is authorized to access NAS contents.

    Note:You can edit the account information and access rights of users under "System > FRITZ!Box Users" in the user interface.

    • Now a window with the network folder "FRITZ.NAS" opens; this folder displays the partitions on the connected USB storage devices as folders.
  6. If you want to permanently add a folder to the Finder:
    1. Select the folder, and then select "Make alias" from the Finder menu "file".
    2. Drag the alias you made to the "Favorites" area of the Finder.

Linux (using Ubuntu 20.04 LTS as an example)

  1. Open the file manager.
  2. Click "Other Locations" in the sidebar of the file manager.
  3. In the field "Connect to Server", enter smb:// followed by the local IP address of the remote FRITZ!Box (for example smb://192.168.10.1), and then click "Connect".
  4. Enter the name and password of a FRITZ!Box user who is authorized to access NAS contents and enable the option "Remember forever".

    Note:You can edit the account information and access rights of users under "System > FRITZ!Box Users" in the user interface.

    • Now a window with the network folder "FRITZ.NAS" opens; this folder displays all of the partitions on the connected USB storage devices as folders.
  5. Open the folder you want to permanently add to the file manager.
  6. Right-click the corresponding folder in the sidebar and select "Add Bookmark" from the context menu.