Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Windows: How to share files and folders with everybody, nobody andsomebody

As we have been discussing, Homegroup offers a fast and convenient way to automatically share music, pictures and more. Okay, have you ever thought about files and folders that are not automatically shared? Or What do you do if you’re in your office? Started thinking? This is why we use this feature Share with menu is for.
You can use this Share with menu to select individual files, folders and share them with others. The options in the menu will vary depending upon the type of the items you’ve selected and the type of the network to which your computer is connected. You can also share files and folders by copying or moving them into one of the Windows 7 Public folders, such as Public Music or Public Pictures. You can find them by clicking the Start button , clicking your user account name, and then clicking the arrow beside Libraries to expand the folders.

The below mentioned are the most common menu options are:
•    Nobody. This option makes an item private so only you have access.
•    Homegroup (Read). This option makes an item available to your homegroup with read-only permission.
•    Homegroup (Read/Write). This option makes an item available to your homegroup with read/write permission.
•    Specific people. This options opens the File Sharing wizard, so you can choose particular people to share with.
•    If a file or a folder is not shared and you choose to share it with  “Nobody”, you will be prompted to stop sharing.

What is the purpose of permissions
The purpose of setting permissions is deciding others to see a file.
•    Read. The "look, don't touch" option. Recipients can open, but not modify or delete a file.
•    Read/Write. The "do anything" option. Recipients can open, modify, or delete a file.
What have I shared?
If you’ve Windows 7, you can easily say what is shared by looking at the details pane in Windows Explorer. If you wish to open the Windows Explorer, you can press the Windows logo and the E keys together. You may also open the Windows Explorer, by clicking on the start button and typing your user name in the search box.
Then, click on any file or folder. Now, you can view the details pane at the bottom of the window to check if the selected file is shared. Moreover, you can also check the files that are shared with you.

What is Public folder sharing
You can get the simplest and easiest way to share things from the Share With menu in Windows 7.
Think of these folders like drop boxes; when you copy a file or folder into one, you make that file or folder immediately available to other users on your computer or to people on your network.
You'll find a Public folder located in each of your libraries. Examples include Public Documents, Public Music, Public Pictures, and Public Videos. Public folder sharing is turned off by default, except on a homegroup.
The public folders are included in Windows libraries. Why should we use the Public folders.
They're handy if you want to temporarily share a document or other file with several people. It's also a handy way to keep track of what you're sharing with others; if it's in the folder, it's shared.
The downside: You can't restrict people from seeing only some files in the Public folder. It's all or nothing. Also, you can't fine-tune permissions. But if these aren't important considerations, then Public folders offer a convenient, alternative way to share.

Now, let’s discuss about sharing files and folders on a homegroup.
1.    First, right click the item you want to share, and then click Share with.
2.    Now, you can select one of the following options:
o    Homegroup (Read). This options shares the item with your entire homegroup—but people in your homegroup can only open the item. Homegroup members can't modify or delete it.
o    Homegroup (Read/Write). This option shares the item with your entire homegroup and lets them open, modify, or delete it.
o    Specific people. This option opens the File Sharing wizard, which allows you to select individual people to share items with.
Now, it is required to select the specific people with whom you wish to share the files and folders.

Important Notes:
•    If you’re not able to view the “Share with menu” option, you might be trying to share an item on a network on the unsupported location. Moreover, the “Share with menu will also not be available when you select files outside your personal folder.
•    If you’re trying to share with specific people in your homegroup and you’re not able to view the File Sharing wizard, it is possible that they have not linked their Windows user account to an online ID.
•    Moreover, it is required to install an online ID provider on your computer.
•    If password-protected sharing is turned on, the person you want to share with must have a user account and password on your computer for full access to shared items. Password-protected sharing is located in Control Panel under Advanced sharing settings. It's turned on by default.
•    If you try to share something in one of the Windows 7 Public folders, the Share with menu will display an option called Advanced sharing settings.
•    This option takes you to Control Panel, where you can  turn the public folders ON or OFF.

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