How to access (SMB) network shares from an iPad

With the introduction of iOS 13, Apple have made it possible for an iPad to access SMB (Server Message Block) network shares. This means that if you have a file server at home, your iPad or iPad Pro can behave more like a regular personal computer.

Notes: You can also access SMB shares using the File App on an iPhone. However, due to the size of the iPhones screen. The layout of the File App is a little different.

In this video we look at how you can access your network shares from within the File app. However, please note that in order for this feature to work your iPad needs to be running iPadOS 13 or higher.

Notes: In this video we are wirelessly connecting to a Synology Network Attached Storage (NAS) device. If you would like to find out more about how to configure a Synology NAS please view our series on How to configure a Synology NAS

Quick reference notes:

  • Make sure your iPad or iPad Pro is connected to your home network
  • From the Home Screen, locate and select Files
  • Within Files you will need to select Locations to display a sidebar
  • From within the sidebar select the Options (…) icon
  • Choose Connect to Server from the menu
  • Enter either the IP address or host name of your File server or NAS
  • Select Connect
  • Choose either Guest or Registered User
  • If you choose Registered User, enter a valid User Name and Password
  • By selecting Next your iPad will be connected to your SMB shares.

Notes: Your User Name and Password credentials will be automatically saved to your iPad. This is so you will not be required to enter your user credentials each time you access your SMB shares.

Reference materials:

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