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While changing over to WinXP on some of my desktops, I noticed that the system would show a disconnected share if the share wasn't used recently (for example, in the past few hours). Apparently, the default time is 15 minutes before a server will drop the share from a user.
You can change the hex value of the registry key to 24 hours by changing the value to 5A0 as follows:
Binary value= autodisconnect
Change default to "1140" in decimal form (24 hrs * 60 minutes) or to "5A0" in hex.
For more information, see Microsoft KB article 297684.
This was first published in July 2004