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The new macOS Ventura 13.3 update has not corrected a network connection issue that some are experiencing that first manifested in the last few months.
Apple did not promise to fix the problem, and has yet to publicly acknowledge it. However, while the issue has not affected all users, it has been repeatedly reported since around November 2022.
The issue is that where users could previously connect to Apple devices, or from Apple to Windows, over an SMB connection, they abruptly could not. It affected individuals connecting to, say, an iPhone, or to Enterprise-scale networks.
In every case, the connection was using SMB, but apart from that, reports are too varied and inconsistent to narrow down where the fault is.
“I use the SMB file sharing system to access files on my MBPro from my iPhone 12, on my local network. Until now, this has been robust, reliable and fast,” wrote user tresinnoctem on Apple’s support forums back in November 2022. “After updating my MBPro to Ventura 13.0 and my iPhone to iOS 16.1 I cannot connect the laptop to the phone or to my old iMac, running Monterey 12.6.”
Even individual Mac users can connect to networks or other machines directly from the Finder’s Go menu, using the Connect to Server… option. This File Sharing expects a Samba connection, so a general problem with macOS Ventura and this protocol should be affecting all users, yet it isn’t.
Given that it is widespread if not common, users in Apple’s support forums, then, were expecting to find it fixed in some update, and were hoping that macOS Ventura 13.3 would be the one. That was compounded by how it initially appeared that it might have fixed the issue for some users.
It appears, though, that even where users could now connect to their networks, it would prove to be temporary. Or it would turn out to mean them having to repeatedly resort to the same workarounds.
One such workaround has been reported by Apple support forum user “abromber.” Responding to previous instructions to reboot and reconnect the network devices, the user suggests an extra tip.
“Go to Settings/General/Sharing and click the little circle with the ‘i’ next to the toggle,” writes the user. “It will bring up a list of shares. Remove any shares that are listed.
“Then turn file sharing off and reboot,” continues the user. “Then turn file sharing back on. That is what finally worked for me.”
The fix proposed is not absolute, and has not worked for all users. Other users are looking at extended file attributes as the culprit, or custom icons — but if either were universally the case, the problem would be more prevalent.