General Question

FutureMemory's avatar

Exactly what do I need to network all the computers in my home?

Asked by FutureMemory (24721points) July 6th, 2011

Is there a way for me to access files that reside on computer A from computer B (my laptop), and vice versa? Is there software that will enable me to do this?

Forgive my obvious ignorance on the subject.

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5 Answers

Aethelflaed's avatar

What OS? I only know Windows. On Windows, you create a homegroup, and then share all the files you want to.

FutureMemory's avatar

One has vista, another 7, and a third one will have XP.

funkdaddy's avatar

You would need some sort of hub to set up the network and connect your different computers. (search for “router” on Amazon and you’ll get a ton) Some networks will connect with physical wires, some are wireless, it really depends on what types of connections your computers can make as to what will be easier.

Do your computers already share an internet connection? If so, they’re already connected and you would just need to create a workgroup (“homegroup” is the new Windows buzzword for it) and share your files. Usually there will be a “shared” directory under “My Documents” in Windows that is set up by default. You can also share folder by right clicking on them I believe (not sure if this is in all of the versions you have)

You might also look at a solution like Dropbox that basically just gives you a folder on each computer that has the same files in it and syncs up automatically as long as you have an internet connection. It’s free for a small account and you can take the files with you anywhere since they’re stored online.

FutureMemory's avatar

Thanks you two :)

koanhead's avatar

I’ll go along with @funkdaddy except say you should get a router and not a hub or switch. These are all slightly different devices and they do different things. For a home network you don’t need to know or care about the difference. I recommend you just get a nice wireless router- I particularly recommend the Linksys brand. The high-end of these devices will cost you about $50 and you can plug four computers in to it. It can, of course, accomodate more computers via the wireless part.

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