Windows 10: Allow only devices that have joined a Homegroup to access shared drive
Allow only devices that have joined a Homegroup to access shared drive
What I'm trying to do doesn't sound complicated but I'm really stumped.
I want to set up a home network (a desktop and other tablets/laptops) and set up some of the drives on the Desktop PC (NOT individual folders) as shared which can then be accessed only by my family's tablets/laptops. However, I don't want other people's devices (who I allow access to my router for internet access) to have access to these folders.
I thought I could use a Homegroup and use permissions to allow access to the shared drives for only the devices that have joined the Homegroup with the appropriate password.
So I set up a Homegroup and right clicked on the drive on the desktop PC and selected Advanced Sharing. I then set up sharing with permissions assigned only to the user named "HomeGroupUsers$" (which sounded logical). But, when I use a laptop which has joined the Homegroup then I get access denied when trying to open up the shared drive.
I then changed the permissions to use the group "HomeUsers" and I could then successfully access the shared drive from the laptop. However, when I connected a tablet to the router which had NOT joined the homegroup, I could still access the shared drive which is not what I want.
Is the use of Homegroup the right mechanism for what I'm trying to do? If it is, then what am I doing wrong?
Having done a bit of experimenting, I'm now totally confused as to the purpose of Homegroups. Although I want to share a drive on my desktop PC, I experimented with sharing a folder by Right-clicking>Share with>Homegroup (view and edit)*.
What I'm confused about is that I can access that folder using a tablet connected to the network which has not joined the Homegroup. Looking at the permissions for the for the folder I set up to be shared with the Homegroup, the permissions have been set for Everyone. So, what's the point of Homegroup and the apparent security offered by the use of a password?
Just to to re-iterate what I'm trying to do: I want to provided access to shared drives on my Desktop PC to all my family's devices but prevent access to these drives from other peoples devices that I have allowed to be connected to the network for internet access.
*By the way, can someone explain why there's different right-click sharing options for drives and folders. For drives you only get Advanced Sharing but for folders you get different Share-with options
Here is one of the ways to share the drive on Windows 10 with a little more security:
Turn on Homegroup.
Configure all computers for same Homegroup use. Passwords, and all that stuff...
Make sure, that all your computers are on the same domain name like "WORKGROUP", or whatever you choose.
Make sure Homegroup works on all computers, and they are communicating with each other.
01. Right-click on drive.
02. Choose: Share with - Advanced Sharing.
03. Open "Sharing" tab in the window, that pops up.
04. Click "Advanced Sharing".
05. Tick "Share this folder" box.
06. Click "Add" button.
07. Choose the name for your shared drive.
08. Click "Permissions" button.
09. Highlight "Everyone", and click "Remove" button (this step is is for your better security).
10. Click "Add" button. The window will pop up.
11. In this pop-up window click "Advanced" button. Another window will pop up.
12. In this window click "Find Now" button.
13. A list will appear below.
14. Choose from the list "HomeGroup User$" (!!!NOT "Home Users"!!!), and highlight it.
15. Click "OK" button to close the window.
16. Make sure to check-mark the boxes for "Full Control", "Change", and "Read" in "Allow" column (unless you want to give a restricted access)
17. Click "OK" button to close "Select Users or Groups" window.
18. Click "Apply" button, and then "OK" button on "Permissions for" window.
19. Click "OK" button on "New Share" window.
20. Click "Apply" button, and then "OK" button on "Advanced Sharing" window.
21. Click "Apply" button, and then "OK" button on "Properties" window.
Repeat this for each drive that you want to share on your network.
Then you can map your shared drives on your other computers, and you will have full access to it.
In other words - you just set up the permissions for Homegroup users on that drive, which is - you only, unless you have some other people in your Homegroup.
Just remember: Choose from the list "HomeGroup User$" (!!!NOT "Home Users"!!!)
This way you don't have to use your password every time you need an access to your drive(s).
And your neighbours, or buddies will absolutely have no access to your systems, because in order for them to have an access to your Homegroup, they have to join it with password, that only you have an access to.
I only tested this with Windows 10, Home, and Pro machines. Don't know, if it will work on other versions of Windows (although, it should)...
Hope that helps.
And remember: NEVER turn off password-protected sharing in your Network setup, like some posts suggest on these forums!
...Unless you want unsophisticated hackers, and your neighbors surfing your machines day and night
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