SharePoint 2013: UNC Paths to library not working

I experienced a strange problem with UNC access at our SharePoint site. The access to all libraries in SharePoint by UNC and Windows Explorer was working fine.


On a new SharePoint site collection on a new web application this did not work. „Windows cannot access…“, „Check the spelling of the name…“

Network Error

Strange behavior. I was not able to find differences within in the IIS configuration of the web applications.
After hours of pain I found the problem!

If the web application does not have a root site collection you will not be able to get UNC access to your libraries within this web application.
So go to central administration and add a site collection without an URL in the web application. You do not need to select a template – just click on custom and click <select template later>.

After you have created your root site collection all libraries within this web application can be accessed by UNC path in Explorer.

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