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"Unable to access \\Mac\Home\Desktop" notification pops up every time Windows virtual machine starts

  • Parallels Desktop for Mac Business Edition
  • Parallels Desktop
  • Parallels Desktop for Mac Pro Edition


  • "Windows cannot access \Mac\Home\Desktop" notification pops up every time Windows virtual machine (VM) starts.

MacOs Terminal shows result similar to the following (when executing ls -la for default username location):


Incorrect macOs Desktop folder synchronization settings.

Your macOS Desktop folder location isn't default. By default, Desktop location is /Users/parallels/Desktop

Such issue might occur as a result of syncing your Mac Desktop folder with some third party cloud application.


Method 1 (Easy way):

  1. Start Parallels Desktop

  2. Open virtual machine configuration > switch to Options tab > Sharing tab > Click on Configure; then uncheck Desktop

  3. That is it! Error message is now gone from your Windows VM.

Method 2 (Advanced way):

Remove incorrect symilinks

Make sure that Desktop folder is actually located in /Users/parallesls/)

  1. Start the Terminal (Finder > Applications > Utilities) and execute the following command:

    ls -la

  2. Note corresponding path for your original macOs Desktop folder.


    (In this test case it's a link to a Dropbox location: /Users/parallesls/Dropbox/Desktop

  3. Make sure you original Desktop folder is copied to a backup location.

    For our test case we copied /Users/parallesls/Dropbox/Desktop/ folder to some safe location.

  4. In Terminal windows execute following commands one by one :

    sudo rm -rf ~/Desktop
  5. Copy macOs Desktop folder to it's default location.

    In Terminal windows execute:

    sudo cp -r /Users/parallesls/Dropbox/Desktop ~/Desktop
    sudo rm -rf /Users/parallesls/Dropbox/Desktop
  6. Restart your Mac.

  7. That is it!

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