I suppose this is as much a personal reference as it is a public broadcast of knowledge, but here are the [few] steps to setting up Media Composer to read from network shares.

Disclaimer: I haven’t gotten a chance to test this on OS X yet, I will update when I do.

  1. Start by mapping your network share to a drive letter in Windows.  XP, Vista, and 7 all have different places of varying visibility for this button, but it can consistently be found by right-clicking My Computer.
  2. In the window that pops up:
    • Select the drive letter that you wish to assign.  Windows should only display unused letters, but I’ve seen instances where it hasn’t.  Also be sure not to assign letters you are familiar with for removable storage (my Compact Flash reader, for example, always comes up as F:)
    • In the “Folder:” field, supply the name of location of the share.  It should look like “\RemoteComputer*SharedFolderOnComputer*“.
    • Depending on the nature of the remote operating system and the environment it is in, you may need to supply credentials other than those used to log in to your computer.  We’re set up with Active Directory here, so I use my network username/password.
  3. Start Media Composer
  4. Open the console (Tools->Console or Ctrl+F6) and type in “alldrives” (no quotes) and hit enter.  The console should respond that all drives are now active whereas only “true” drives were available.  Note that the alldrives command works as an on/off switch.  Entering the command again will disable the use of network drives

You should now have the option to capture to the mapped network drive of your choosing.  Be aware though, depending on your network setup, working from shares can be slow.  Performance seems quite usable for now though and scrubbing is instantaneous, though playing from a new location on the timeline does take a second or two to get on track.  We’ve ordered a dedicated Intel NIC for the Avid rig in the hopes of seeing a bit of an improvement.  That being said, however, its still quite usable.