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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger
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    Homegroups good?

    I am about to move to win 7 (from xp / Ubuntu). I expect to finish up with two W7 machines, one Ubuntu machine for backups, and a dual boot netbook (for travelling) with Ubuntu and W7. If I understand correctly if I set up the W7s as a homegroup, then everyone starts of with access to everything, though I believe there are tweeks to allow stuff to be excluded. I need to be the other way around, I only want certain specific folders (some on Ubuntu and some on specific W7 machines) to be visible to the network. Would I be better off defining my network as a "Work" rather than "Home" one? does either work better or worse with Ubuntu?
    Peter

  2. #2
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Peter,

    IMHO, you are better off w/o a Homegroup. They seem to cause more problems than they solve. Most of the advice in WSL seems to be to leave them off.
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  3. #3
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    You can selectively unshare any folder you do not want to on the network. I do use Homegroups for now (I have tried both ways and was having an intermittent problem that Homegroups seem to have solved) Generally when you set up Homegroups, the default sharing level is everything is unshared and you must actually change the default to allow any folders to be shared on the network in Win 7.
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  4. #4
    Super Moderator Deadeye81's Avatar
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    If you want to read some excellent tutorials on HomeGroups, check out this How to Geek link on how to disable or enable HomeGroups in Windows 7. You will find links at the beginning of this article that should pretty much cover any questions you have about the HomeGroup networking feature.

    I use HomeGroup in my home network, and am able to network my Windows 7 machines via HomeGroup, and network my Windows 7, XP, and Vista using standard networking sharing - all without conflicts or other problems. The HomeGroup feature can cost you a little in the speed of file transfers, but in a home network I have found it to be almost imperceptible.

  5. #5
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    Still uncertain about homegroups

    OK thanks for advice. But, no-one suggested what is the good alternative to homegroups. Is it to define the network as "work" rather than "home"?

    I case I do go with homegroups, I read the pointed to geek articles, and they are informative - to a point. I note that homegroups work via libraries - well I guess I could live with that if I have to. But the wizard then asks about the type of files (pictures, documents ...). This is not relevant to me, I want specific folders to be accessible (or not) irrespective of the types of file in them. BTW what is a "document" in this lingo anyway? There seem to be a lot of file types missing here (zip, exe, dll, dwg .....). Where do they fit in?

    I do take the point about partitions. I went off this idea a decade or two ago since it just seemed to mean there had to be two lots of spare capacity instead of one. However these days disc capacity has outstripped my needs, and free programs to shift partition boundaries are easily available and easy to use - and seem reliable. So I think I will go back to separate partitions.

    For info - there is no music and no videos on these systems, no connections to TVs, no streaming anything anywhere. Essentially this is a very small business network, and the files are not scattered around. Each machine has a dedicated purpose and mostly has the local files it needs for operation, and each has a single user (or in the backup systems case, no 'user' at all, just an admin (also me)) - whereas 'homegroups', libraries, etc seem to cater to multi user nets with overlapping file types.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    I have found HomeGroup to be pretty much useless for my needs. I also use multiple partitions. I use a "Home network" which is not the same as a "HomeGroup". There are a few shared folders, but no shared 'Libraries". I don't use "Libraries" either. The only items in my "Libraries" are the default installation samples. I've had my stuff organized the way I like it since Windows 95 OSR2.

    I use a network printer, and I dual-boot Windows 7 and XP on my laptop. XP can see and be seen by the same network, use the same shared drives, and can use the network printer with ease.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

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