Question Home network shares and other devices on the network

tinpanalley

Golden Member
Jul 13, 2011
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I've got my desktop sharing specific folders. This is mostly to access video and audio from tablets and cell phones on the home network. But I'd like my laptop, on Wifi, to see the document network shares just to avoid using onedrive all the time. The shares are there and active on the desktop with no password, I don't see why I can't use them.
What have I not got set up right, do you think?
 

Tech Junky

Senior member
Jan 27, 2022
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Most things like this end up being the Windows Firewall.

Otherwise if the folders are under the user/docs directory they'll be PW protected using the user credentials. Make a new folder other than users location and you should be able to share them.
 

tinpanalley

Golden Member
Jul 13, 2011
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Most things like this end up being the Windows Firewall.

Otherwise if the folders are under the user/docs directory they'll be PW protected using the user credentials. Make a new folder other than users location and you should be able to share them.
No it's not under user--docs, they're in a different place but they are shared.
But no luck seeing them. Or any of the other shared folders from the desktop for that matter. Is it because the laptop I'm using is connected via WiFi?
 

Tech Junky

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Jan 27, 2022
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No it's not under user--docs, they're in a different place but they are shared.
But no luck seeing them. Or any of the other shared folders from the desktop for that matter. Is it because the laptop I'm using is connected via WiFi?
It's not WiFi. If you do a \\ip.add.res.ss of the machine you're trying to access does it connect?
 

tinpanalley

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Jul 13, 2011
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make sure none of the wired or wifi adapters is put in public profile, they should be using private profile while at home.


==

And sometimes Windows do have hard time seeing machines on your LAN

Thanks, @mxnerd, always helpful. So is there some better way to do this? I just thought it would be like accessing videos and music on the NAS via different devices/apps. How is it different with file sharing of docs, spreadsheets and photos for example? And no I don't wanna have to use OneDrive.
 

mxnerd

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Jul 6, 2007
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No matter what file types, sharing files on a Windows machine is always using SMB protocol, no different from NAS devices on the market which also use SMB protocol for file sharing. You just have to make sure the client device also use SMB, which PC & Apple Mac both support, but not Android devices, which you have to purchase APP to support SMB, and I have no idea about iDevices.

Music/Video streaming (using TCP/IP, HTTP, RSTP, etc) is different from SMB sharing, which I'm not really familar with.
 

tinpanalley

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Jul 13, 2011
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No matter what file types, sharing files on a Windows machine is always using SMB protocol, no different from NAS devices on the market which also use SMB protocol for file sharing. You just have to make sure the client device also use SMB, which PC & Apple Mac both support, but not Android devices, which you have to purchase APP to support SMB, and I have no idea about iDevices.

Music/Video streaming (using TCP/IP, HTTP, RSTP, etc) is different from SMB sharing, which I'm not really familar with.
Ok, I'm pretty sure that nothing is on public. I always set up windows devices as private. But I'll check.
 

mxnerd

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Jul 6, 2007
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Host name resolution on LAN is always troublesome, for decades. That's why everyone is moving to DNS server if they can. The problem is home users don't have a local/private DNS server, and devices must resort to broadcasting.

The DNS IP addresses entered in the router setup is for resolving public servers/machines on the internet, not your LAN machines/devices.

Just read some articles to see how complex it is.

 
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Tech Junky

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Jan 27, 2022
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home users don't have a DNS server
I use pihole ;) Then again I do networking for a living.

I'm pretty sure that nothing is on public
There's always a chance Windows changes things for you w/o letting you know. Whenever I change an SSID or swap something around in networking it likes to mark things as public. When in doubt disable windows FW on both sides and try again.
 

mxnerd

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Jul 6, 2007
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I use pihole ;) Then again I do networking for a living.
Yep. Pi-Hole must be on Linux though. Many pro home users set it up on Raspberry Pi.

Other choices are AdGuard Home DNS (I'm not sure it can local naming resolution, or is it just a ads blocking DNS?) / Technitium DNS (which I highly recommend if you only have Windows machine and can keep it running, as it can serve as a local DNS/DHCP and ads blocking server), of course you need to have a machine to be always on.

Once a local DNS is configured, devices will be get a name and refferred as pc1.myhomelab.local, mac1.myhomelab.local, etc. for example.
 
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tinpanalley

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Jul 13, 2011
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Ok have to admit I'm not understanding any of this right now.
I can't believe how difficult it is to just let your laptop connected to your home network via WiFi see files on your desktop's hard drive.
 

Tech Junky

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Jan 27, 2022
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@mxnerd

There's tons of options and you can even run pihole from a VM if you wanted to. Same goes for any of the other methods you mentioned. Doesn't need to be high power since it's not resource intensive.

I built a "server" from the ground up though to act as the router / switch / firewall / AP / DVR / NAS / etc. But you could simply take a cheap $50 PC off ebay and throw a multiport card into it and do the same. If you're using a VPN though a bit more power would make it run faster yet also provide whole network encryption w/o the worry of limits from the provider.

@tinpanalley

As long as your permissions allow connections to other LAN devices it doesn't make a difference if you're on WIFI or Ethernet. The machine you're connecting to needs proper permissions / firewall opened. If the docs folder has different permissions then it may need to be changed. The easiest way to "share" is by sharing the whole drive but, when you get into sharing folders it can get tricky depending on the OS.
 

tinpanalley

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Jul 13, 2011
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As long as your permissions allow connections to other LAN devices it doesn't make a difference if you're on WIFI or Ethernet.
Ok, cool, I get that now. Didn't make sense that it would matter anyway but glad to have that cleared up.
The machine you're connecting to needs proper permissions / firewall opened.
What needs to be opened for this to work? Obviously the extreme would be to turn off the firewall. But how do I get the firewall to let other devices on the LAN in and out free of problems?
 

Tech Junky

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Jan 27, 2022
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LAN in and out free of problems?
Well, if the device hosting the files is Windows and you're confident in the router/ firewall then shut off the device's firewall and permit all users "everyone" R/W permissions to the folders or the disk.

If it's a Linux / NAS setup then it should be simple to do as well. Just allow access and hit apply.
 

tinpanalley

Golden Member
Jul 13, 2011
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Well, if the device hosting the files is Windows and you're confident in the router/ firewall then shut off the device's firewall and permit all users "everyone" R/W permissions to the folders or the disk.
It's Windows. But how do I turn off the firewall in my LAN but not turn it off to the outside internet connection? Not getting this? There's an on-off switch/setting for each somewhere?
 

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