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Study: File Sharing in a Workgroup Environment

This is something different from the Workgroup Environment. The following are some best practices for sharing files on Windows Vista computers.

•    Make sure Network Discovery is turned on for all Windows Vista computers on your network. Network Discovery makes browsing for shared resources faster and more reliable.
•    Enable sharing on your Public folder to share files with other users on the network when all users should have the same level of access to these files. Then drag your files and folders into Public to share them easily.
•    If you share files from within your user profile, share them from the appropriate folder: Share documents from within your Documents folder, share music from within your Music folder, and so on.
•    If you share a file or folder, e-mail or otherwise communicate the UNC path to your share to network users whom you want to be able to access the share. Otherwise, users will have to browse the network using Windows Explorer to find any new shares present on the network.

•    Make sure if you are setting up a work workgroup or a home network that your network type is a private network. This will allow you to enable things such as discovery and sharing on this network, but when you pick up your laptop and take it to a wireless hotspot, the computer will be less exposed, because your network type will switch to the public profile, which won’t have services such as discovery and sharing turned on. Additionally, the Windows Firewall exceptions will apply only to your private network, blocking incoming requests when connected to public networks.
•    Share files from within your user profile when you want to have greater control over who can see and access shared files on the network. Windows Vista’s Access-Based Enumeration technology means that users can see only the shared files for which they have a minimum of Read permission—if they don’t have Read permission, they won’t even know the file is shared.
Make sure that you’re not sharing the user profile folder from the network. Moreover, don’t make your profile folder visible from the network. If you share a file from within your profile, it will automatically cause the %SystemDrive%\Users folder to be shared on the computer, and this means that other users on the network will be able to see your user profile folder on the computer.
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