Windows Legacy OS

Question

Problems setting up home network

by robsta23 / February 4, 2012 2:15 AM PST

Hi,
I wonder if someone could help me?!

I have the 2 x laptop and 2 x desktop. I want to use one desktop as a NAS, so need to create a wireless network.
All devices currently have direct internet access through a wireless router.

If I use wireless network wizard, it sets up the home network fine, but I have to connect to this network to enable file share to the NAS, and in doing so have to disconnect from the existing internet connection.

It is not an option to configure three of the devices to connect to the internet through the fourth, as this will mean that device has to remain turned on at all times. At the same time, I don't want to have to disconnect from the internet every time I want to dump/extract a file from the NAS.

As everything is already independently connected the router, I would have thought it should be fairly easy to use the existing connection to feed the network, but it seems not- trying to add network places shows that no other device can be seen by any other.

Any ideas? I'm sure it shouldn't be this hard- its a two minute job with wired LAN!

Please help, I'm fed up with this now!

Many thanks in advance!

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All Answers

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Answer
Furthermore......
by robsta23 / February 4, 2012 3:08 AM PST

assuming its just me being stupid and this is easy to achieve, can the devices be configured to only see the NAS, and not each other?

i.e. Laptops 1 & 2 can share with NAS, but not with each other?

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I'm guessing here
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / February 4, 2012 7:34 PM PST
In reply to: Furthermore......

but I'm not sure that an XP computer is the best choice to be used as a NAS and you may be better off using a dedicated NAS server.

XP systems are personal computers and configuring them to act differently is always hit and miss. So a dedicated NAS for file sharing, then each of the computers on the network can be configured not to file share with each other.

But like I say, I'm only guessing.

Mark

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selective sharing
by Steven Haninger / February 5, 2012 5:48 AM PST
In reply to: Furthermore......

I'm not understanding why you're needing to disconnect from the internet to connect to the share unless it has to do with your AV and/or firewall settings. You also didn't mention which XP version you had but with either Home or Pro, you haven't exceeded the connection limit yet. There are ways to limit network access to just the NAS PC by how you set up users. If you'd create user accounts on each regular PC that were different from each other but common on the NAS PC that should be easy and should work. It wouldn't be fool proof, however. I don't know how bullet proof you expect this to be.

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Sorted!
by robsta23 / February 5, 2012 7:51 PM PST
In reply to: selective sharing

Hi guys,

Thanks for replying!

I've sorted this out now. It seemed my problems stemmed from a combination of shoddy Microsoft instructions and glitches:

Firstly it seems my original thoughts that, as everything was already connected to the router I shouldn't have to really do anything were correct. My problems came from using the network setup wizard, which I really didn't need to do.

Problem 2, that the devices weren't seeing each other came from mismatched workgroup names. In My Computer > Properties > Computer Name, all the workgroup names matched. Because of this I had no reason to go into the "change" option, but when I eventually did I found that in there the workgroup names didn't match.

Problem 3 was Windows firewall, which although set to allow file sharing, it wasn't doing, and therefore was blocking devices from seeing each other. I turned this off (which immediately displayed workgroup computers) and back on again without changing any settings. It crashed the PC, and after restarting it was fine.

I thought what I was trying to do shouldn't be that hard, but could I hell find any info on it (other than to use Network Setup Wizard, which did nothing to solve the issue).

So to anyone with the same problems: ignore the set-up wizard- if you're devices are connected to the wireless router individually, your network already exists. Check the workgroup name, and go into "change" to make sure it matches there as well, and turn off firewall while you get it set up. That should save you three days of b*ggering about.

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I thought you said you didn't want the PCs to see each other
by Steven Haninger / February 5, 2012 9:42 PM PST
In reply to: Sorted!

but only see the NAS. Anyway, if you're happy with how things are working now, that's fine. You don't want to turn off the firewall but want it turned on with the local network allowed as an exception. Now, while a common workgroup name does allow all the PCs in that group to see each other, this doesn't mean that PCs with other workgroup names cannot find each other. But accessing files across the network is more a matter of setting permissions. Which version (Home or Pro) determines how you do that. You don't want to use "simple file sharing". Another idea you might consider, however, is mapping shares from the NAS to your other PCs as desired. They will show up as another drive on the PC that needs access.

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Well, i didn't really....
by robsta23 / February 7, 2012 3:26 AM PST

but I was that fed up with messing with it by the time i got to that stage, I thought sod it. Its not a big deal. It wasn't a privacy thing or anything, just a matter of keeping things clean and simple. But the main thing of being able to use the NAS as a file dump from the laptops is working.

Regarding the workgroup names, no device saw any other until i changed the workgroup domain, then it was fine. And the firewall was just playing idiots with me! It was set up with the correct exceptions, but was still blocking access. Turned it off then straight back on again, it crashed the laptop, but then after reboot all was fine! It was only causing problems on one laptop, strangely, running XP Pro. But the other laptop, also running XP Pro and the NAS on XP home had no issues with firewall. All are on SP3 and all with latest updates. Just one of those things i guess.

I was going to map the drives (and may still do) but at the minute i've just got a shortcut on the desktop and it does the trick.

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Problems setting up home network
by helloSpinner / April 6, 2012 1:53 PM PDT
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