Windows 10: Do I need a "workgroup", a "domain", a "homegroup" or what?

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  1.    06 Apr 2017 #1

    Do I need a "workgroup", a "domain", a "homegroup" or what?


    - I have two Windows 10 Pro (x64) PCs in a home/small office environment.

    - They are on the same Ethernet network. i.e. They are connected to a Negear N600 Wireless Modem Router.

    - There is a printer on the same network that I want both PCs to be able to use (Epson Workforce Pro WF-8510). I want each PC to be able to see the other PC's C: drive (or at least the directory C:\docs\).

    - I intend to use SynToy (v2.1) to manually synchronise files between them (unless I can find something that works better and which is also free).

    - For reasons of privacy, I do not like using "The Cloud" more than I have to. So I try to avoid OneDrive etc.

    - Fwiw, I also occasionally use a Dropbox account and a TeamViewer.

    What is the best way to share data between them?
    i.e. Do I need a "workgroup", a "domain", a "homegroup" or what?

    Apologies for newbie question. I had all this set up but have forgotten what I did...
    Many thanks

      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    06 Apr 2017 #2

    You don't need a domain. Workgroups and Homegroups are just about the same thing, so either will do what you want.

    I use robocopy with the /MIR switch to replicate data in 2 locations. Honestly though, I would put up one box to act like a file server, and then keep 2 external hard drives offsite and occasionally (once a week or however frequently you are comfortable), use Robocopy to make a secondary copy of your data. I don't find I want instant mirroring, because if I delete or mangle a file in the source, I don't want to lose it in my secondary location at the same time. And houses burn down and people break in and steal stuff, so I don't want to lose my data.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    06 Apr 2017 #3

    Homegroup gives more problems than it solves and you have to run ip6 which isnt used at the moment for anything else good old fashioned workgroup will do all you need
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 8,609
    10 Home x64 (1803) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       06 Apr 2017 #4

    You can only have a Domain if you are running a Windows Server, as large businesses do. Your choice is Workgroup or Homegroup, with Workgroup being the simplest to manage.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  5.    06 Apr 2017 #5

    If I click on "Network" in Windows Explorer it says "Enter your credentials to connect to DESKTOP01".
    i.e. Bizarrely it wants a password, but no password is required in order to log into my laptop when I reboot.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    06 Apr 2017 #6

    I don't know how you set up the network but maybe it wants your MS password.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    06 Apr 2017 #7

    CADesertRat said: View Post
    I don't know how you set up the network but maybe it wants your MS password.
    As far as I can understand it Microsoft seem to have conflated the Microsoft password (to get into with the password for the computer.

    I tried the only password I have for my microsoft account (which they forced me to change yet again for absolutely no reason), but it didn't work.

    However when I installed the laptop I managed to just skip entering a password. Now I wish I had entered one, as that way I would at least have one on the laptop that I could supply to the desktop!
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8.    06 Apr 2017 #8

    The easiest most reliable way I have found is to use a "Work Group" and assign the same password to ALL computers in my network so that knowing the name and password works when you want to access "Shared" files/folders etc. on the network.
    As I said, I have no idea what you have tried as to setting up your network. Clicking on NETWORK in explorer will not work if you don't have a proper network.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  9.    06 Apr 2017 #9

    Thanks - yes, in the end I "sold my soul to the Devil" and made all my passwords the same and all my users the same AND I allowed it to be the same as my Microsoft account password. And I'm in. :)

    But I deeply resent it because in practise it means that I am forced to use a much more long/secure/complicated password that I would normally want for my computer, and worse it (presumably) means that Microsoft has the keys to search my computer if they want to, which is deeply unacceptable.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails delme-microsoft.jpg  
    Last edited by Brink; 06 Apr 2017 at 22:36. Reason: removed political and trolling comments
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  10.    06 Apr 2017 #10

    I'm glad it's working.
    Last edited by CADesertRat; 07 Apr 2017 at 08:47.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

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