2 drives of same name causing problems

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by elf69, Oct 2, 2016.

  1. elf69 macrumors 68020


    Jun 2, 2016
    Cornwall UK
    A friend is now using an apple after years on windows.

    So we had a pen stick plugged in and viewed some files from the windows machine all ok.

    She had another stick so plugged it in and browsed to some folders within folders but was unable to open a .doc file as this is all thats on the drive.

    It came up and said about unsupported character in name of file or file was in use.

    So went back to desktop and noticed both drives where "untitled".
    Ejected one drive then was able to open the .doc files.

    Plugged other drive back in and again unable to open the file.
    I renamed one drive.

    Is this normal?
    All my sticks are named so not come across this myself.

    I changed name and issue gone but they have lots sticks all "untitled".
    So I told them one drive at a time to save issues.
  2. satcomer macrumors 603


    Feb 19, 2008
    The Finger Lakes Region
    Who wouldn't name their files with something else than untitled for a document name? You wouldn't last in business not naming a computer document!
  3. elf69 thread starter macrumors 68020


    Jun 2, 2016
    Cornwall UK
    No the drives have same name, not the files!

    the drives have never been named and are as they came out factory.

    If two drives with same name plugged in it seem we cannot open the files from any one of the drives.
    unplug one drive then can open the files.

    Seems odd as windows is fine with this.

    The files names are NOT the same only the drive name.
    I renamed one drive so problem avoided but is this normal in mac?
  4. jahala macrumors regular


    Feb 7, 2008
    I had a similar problem when I was connecting to network shares that had the same name but were on different servers. It has to do with the way the drives are mounted on the mac. To solve my problem, I ended up writing a script to mount the network drives in the same order every time.

    In your case with the numerous removable drives that are all called "Untitled", I would say your problem is normal. For myself and the other Mac users I know, the first thing we do with a new removable drive is name it so we can distinguish it from other removable drives. Consequently, we do not run into your problem.

    In addition to the one-drive-at-a-time suggestion, I would also suggest that one person start naming the drives as they are used. Keep a log of the names that are already used so two drives don't get the same name. It could be as simple as Untitled1, Untitled2, Untitled3, etc. As a time saver, you could print out a list of names and the person can just cross them out as they are used. Whatever is simple and easy. Then you can use multiple drives at once.
  5. Fishrrman macrumors P6


    Feb 20, 2009
    Simple solution:

    On the Mac, give each drive (hard drive, USB flashdrive, etc.) ITS OWN DISTINCT NAME.

    Problem solved.
  6. elf69 thread starter macrumors 68020


    Jun 2, 2016
    Cornwall UK
    I have done so as above!

    but if they buy more of same drive which is likely as they get given them for their work it will happen again.

    Is it normal to do this?

    As in windows 7 no such issue only in the mac running el capitan

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5 October 2, 2016