Robocopy with PowerShell : ERROR 3 (0x00000003) The system cannot find the path specified


I have a PowerShell script for backup that I used on Windows 2003 Server for a long time, and now I have a problem with it on Windows Server 2012 R2. I have this message when I try to execute it:

2019/09/18 08:40:25 ERROR 3 (0x00000003) Creating Destination Directory Z:\BACKUP\D\ The system cannot find the path specified.

I run the PowerShell script in PowerShell ISE as administrator or as a scheduled task with highest privileges. The script is executing on a server on a domain (DOMAIN1) that has the source drive and the destination is on another server on another domain (DOMAIN2). There is no trust between the domains.

When I use the net use command it works fine with PowerShell ISE but not via scheduled task. When I use New-PSDrive it doesn't work anywhere. I insert GCI statement to be sure the drive is connected and it lists the content of the destination directory.

I simplified the code for debugging:

$strNetDrvPath   = '\\server.domain2.local\BkpDrv'
$strNetDrvUser   = 'DOMAIN2\BkpUser'
$strNetDrvPwd    = 'ABCD1234'

#net use Z: $strNetDrvPath /user:$strNetDrvUser $strNetDrvPwd
$objCredential = New-Object System.Management.Automation.PsCredential -ArgumentList $strNetDrvUser, ($strNetDrvPwd|ConvertTo-SecureString -AsPlainText -Force)
New-PSDrive –Name Z –PSProvider FileSystem –Root $strNetDrvPath -Credential $objCredential

gci Z: -Name

$strCmd = "robocopy D:\. Z:\BACKUP\D /B /MIR /NP /R:0 /LOG:D:\RC_Log.txt"
Invoke-Expression $strCmd
#cmd /c $strCmd

#net use Z: /delete /y
Remove-PSDrive Z

I left a comment with the net use command to show what I tried. What could be the problem? Is there a another way to do it that should work?

asked on Stack Overflow Sep 18, 2019 by Dann71 • edited Sep 18, 2019 by Ansgar Wiechers

1 Answer


When you want to use New-PSDrive for mapping a Windows network drive you need to add the parameter -Persist. From the documentation:


Indicates that this cmdlet creates a Windows mapped network drive. Mapped network drives are saved in Windows on the local computer. They are persistent, not session-specific, and can be viewed and managed in File Explorer and other tools.

New-PSDrive –Name Z –PSProvider FileSystem –Root $strNetDrvPath -Persist -Credential $objCredential

Since you provide explicit credentials net use should work just fine from a scheduled task. If it doesn't something else is amiss (for debugging scheduled tasks see here).

Also, DO NOT USE Invoke-Expression. robocopy can be run directly from PowerShell.

$params = '/B', '/MIR', '/NP', '/R:0', '/LOG:D:\RC_Log.txt'
& robocopy D:\. Z:\BACKUP\D @params
answered on Stack Overflow Sep 18, 2019 by Ansgar Wiechers

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