Recently Illustrator has started duplicating the same image when used multiple times in the same document, but only if I work off my portable drive. Attached is an example of what I'm referring to. Left is when I save on my local HDD and package the file, Illustrator treats the same image (even though it's used multiple times) as one base image. But if I work off my portable drive (which is 99.99% of my work) it duplicates the image several times, once for every linked instance (right side). I've looked at my settings and online and can't find an answer. Help?
For some reason I can't edit my post, so I'm adding that I am using the latest version of Illustrator (25.1) on a Mac running Mojave (I'm keeping it for now since a program I use won't run on more recent versions of Mac OS). I'm also embedding the issue below so no one needs to download the image file.