Just a quick post for you guys today. We’re going to look at how to set up network sharing in Windows 7- it’s a pretty simple process, once you’ve got it figured out, but getting everything set up can sometimes be a headache, just the same. So, let’s say you want to share files between two computers on a network- maybe copy a few over from one to the other. Here’s how.
The Initial Setup
Once you’ve got all your systems connected to a local network, it’s time to create a home group. It’s pretty simple to do. Navigate to your Control Panel, then click on Network and Sharing Center. Once you’re there, you should see the “Create a Home Group” option, assuming you aren’t already in one. Follow the prompts to set one up- it’s not too difficult. Once you’ve done that, you’ll need to have each other computer on the network manually join the homegroup.
If you’ve any systems in the network that aren’t running Windows 7, things get a little bit more complicated- but more on that in a moment.
Changing Advanced Settings
In the Windows 7 Network and Sharing Center, click on “Advanced Options.” Make sure Network discovery and File and Printer Sharing are both turned on. If you want all your shared files in a central location, you can always turn on Public Folder Sharing- though you could easily create a sharing folder elsewhere.
Finally, unless you foresee people you don’t actually know breaking into your home network, I’d turn off password protected sharing. It doesn’t do much other than complicate things, truth be told. If you’re setting up a work or public profile, however, leave it on- and only share the password and username with people you trust.
Networking with Older Versions of Windows
It’s actually pretty easy sharing files and folders with older Windows PCs. The first thing you need to do is make sure all the machines are members of the same work group. You can check whether or not this is the case by right clicking on “My Computer” and selecting “properties.” The default work group is simply “Workgroup.”
Ensure that you’ve got all your shared files and folders set up, and that your printer is set to be shared on your network (under “devices and settings, right click on your printer and select “properties,” then click “share this printer.”
Next up, it’s just a simple matter of noting the path of your printer, and adding it as a device on the other machines. The rest should take care of itself, as file sharing is concerned.
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