How to network two or more home computers

Perhaps you want to access files, share a printer or scanner, play multiplayer games, or maybe you just want to play music from another computer (in which case maybe you should be thinking about Spotify). 

This post will teach you how to network two (or more) computers together helping you get the most from your machines.

Most home internet providers supply you with a modem / router for your internet connection. These are the hub of your network and are the key to setting up your home network.

Networking your home computers with Ethernet cables is easy. All you need is:

  • Ethernet cables
  • Networking cards in each computer/laptop
  • Router

Next, you need to select the computers you want in your home network. Connect an Ethernet cable from each machine to your router.

Make sure each computer can access the internet through the router and add all your machines to the same workgroup.

By default Windows computers are part of a workgroup simply called “workgroup”. If for some reason they aren’t here’s how you check. In Windows 7, right-click the computer icon on the desktop, and go to properties, you should be able to see to what network the computer belongs to.

a Windows 7 machine open Control Panel -> All Control Panel Items -> Network and Sharing Center then press on Change advanced sharing settings.

Check the box file and printer sharing then find a folder you want to share.

File Sharing

Right click on the folder and press share with, and then click Advanced sharing. In the Advanced Sharing dialog box, select the Share this foldercheck box. To specify users or change permissions, click Permissions. Click Add or Remove to add or remove users or groups. Select each user or group, select the check boxes for the permissions you want to assign for that user or group, and then click OK.

Printer Sharing

Press on the start icon in the bottom left hand corner of your screen. Open Devices and printers and Double click on the printer you want to share on the network.

Now double click on Customize your printer.

Now go to the Sharing Tab, press on change sharing options and tick the box to share the printer and type in its share name.

It’s as simple as that.

Just remember that when you network your machines, all your data is accessible to everybody else on the network. So you may need to set permissions on each drive and folder of your respective computers.

Because you will be connecting to the internet through your network, make sure you have a firewall and anti-virus software on each computer enabled at all times.

If you need help with your home network in Buckinghamshire Nexus IT Support & Repair in Gerrards Cross & Beaconsfield can help. Call us on 01753 884700 or 01494 730120.

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