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Windows 7: HomeGroup and File Level Sharing Co-exist?

14 Oct 2011   #1
stlsailor

Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit SP1
 
 
HomeGroup and File Level Sharing Co-exist?

I set up a second computer on Windows 7 a few days ago. I was using the same network sharing that I used for XP->XP and XP->W7 for awhile. Today I set up a homegroup. All of a sudden when I tried to access a file through normal sharing it said I did not have permissions. I did, of course. Finally I exited the homegroup and suddenly the permission issue for file level sharing went away. Very odd.

What do I have to do to enable the two to coexist peacefully, or are homegroups simply one more thing to avoid? I actually don't know what purpose they serve, but thought I'd try them.

Dale


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 Oct 2011   #2
aem

Windows 7 Ultimate 64Bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by stlsailor View Post

What do I have to do to enable the two to coexist peacefully, or are homegroups simply one more thing to avoid? I actually don't know what purpose they serve, but thought I'd try them.

Dale
To be honest i don't know myself.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Oct 2011   #3
seavixen32

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-Bit
 
 

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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16 Oct 2011   #4
stlsailor

Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit SP1
 
 

Thanks for sharing these links.

After reading the white paper, and the one referenced in it, I came away with the idea that the purpose of libraries is to facilitate homegroups. And, the purpose of homegroups is to, uh, to, uh…well that’s actually not too clear. It seems to be to fix security issues in Simple File Sharing which those who used Windows XP home had to use. Maybe there’s more to it than that, but that seems to be the bottom line

Here are some observations / questions:

  • Public libraries and user libraries seem redundant. Why two Libraries—user and public—to clutter things? Yes, their default read/write permissions are different, but it sounds like those can be changed Perhaps there’s a benefit I’m not seeing.
  • Once you join a homegroup, you disable all the previous sharing you had set up until you disconnect from the homegroup. With a homegroup, you can still share anything on your computer, whether it’s in a personal folder or not—you just have to use the homegroup. Given that, the homegroup doesn’t sound all that difference from access level file sharing. Again, maybe there’s a big difference I don’t see.
  • One benefit – it sounds like you don’t have to have the same user account on each computer in the home group and authorize explicit user sharing unless you want to. If so, that is an improvement.
  • One drawback – sharing from a WinXP machine seems more difficult because you have to go through the View Network Tree rather than simply clicking on an icon in My Network Places. Is that correct?

The Question

Should I then move from traditional access level file sharing to home groups?

Reasons not to do it
  • There are minimal benefits and the current system works -- experience says anytime anything works Windows, leave it alone.
  • You have to go back and reshare all the documents you are currently sharing.
  • It’s more cumbersome with an XP computer on the network.
Reasons to do it
  • It seems slightly more versatile.
  • When MS decides something ought to be done one way, the software typically doesn’t play very nicely with an alternative you may need.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Oct 2011   #5
aem

Windows 7 Ultimate 64Bit
 
 

Do whatever works for you to be honest.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Oct 2011   #6
stlsailor

Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by aem View Post
Do whatever works for you to be honest.
Well spoken.

My assessment: Homegroups have 2 major drawbacks:
  • Inability to include Windows XP computers.
  • Inability to share folders outside of personal folders.
They have no advantages that I can see, since using advanced filesharing is no more difficult and doesn't come with these drawbacks.

That's the way I'm going.

Dale
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2011   #7
aem

Windows 7 Ultimate 64Bit
 
 

There's a third, it will make people forget how to manually share files relying too much on automation. Manually sharing files will give you more control over what you are sharing.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2011   #8
stlsailor

Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by aem View Post
There's a third, it will make people forget how to manually share files relying too much on automation. Manually sharing files will give you more control over what you are sharing.
I may not have my terminology right, and I want to be sure I understand what you're saying.

Basically what I do now is share on a folder by folder by basis by turning on sharing in folder properties and setting permissions for individual users both in folder permissions and in NTFS. The only real drawback I see is having to replicate log-ins across machines. In practice, since my wife and I are the only consistent users, I just give us both access to all the high level folders.

Is what you mention similar to or different from that?

Dale
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2011   #9
aem

Windows 7 Ultimate 64Bit
 
 

It's exactly that.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 HomeGroup and File Level Sharing Co-exist?




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