Home Network (Sharing Excel Files on 4 Computers)

Discussion in 'Networking & Security' started by Dane, Jan 21, 2019.

  1. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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    Hey everyone!

    Looking to set up a home network. We work from home with 2 main PCs, plus another 2x that we use in the house at different times (laptop / walking treadmill).

    It would be nice to be able to share a folder that contains office files and have one of the PCs as the home server to save the files to (or we can set up a running PC/server full time for this). Literally use for logging onto gmail/outlook, but one PC has most of the files we use and would like all computers to be able to see a couple of the excel files.

    What's the best way to do it? Windows 10 file sharing just does not seem to be cooperating and finally gave up about 3 months ago.

    Microsoft One Drive is an option, but $5 a month per user (2x) for a year seems high for something so simple. I could wire a home server or buy a home cloud/etc like below, but not entirely sure that's what we need

    https://www.amazon.com/Synology-Bay...d+storage&qid=1548089511&s=Electronics&sr=1-4



    Thanks!
     
  2. Vengance_01

    Vengance_01 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Most newer routers have the ability to plug into a flash drive/external HDD which can be shared. This way you have a central place where the files are stored in case of failure.
     
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  3. beyonddc

    beyonddc Limp Gawd

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    Sure, a NAS going to provide what you need but is it overkill for use case?

    Maybe just use the Google Drive to share files? or even DropBox
     
  4. Cmustang87

    Cmustang87 [H]ardness Supreme

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  5. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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    Vengance--I'll check ours right now--thanks for the update.

    Beyonddc + Cmustang87

    I simply used for an example, that's all. I can probably set something up for $150 or so...we have 2 users, so that's $120 a year....be using it for at least a couple of years. That's def. overkill.

    $80/yr for up to 6 users each with up to 1TB. Is this google drive or microsoft? Thanks

    Google drive converts the excel files, doesn't it? I read that, so I stayed away from google drive. If this isn't the case, I'm very open to it! Thanks!
     
  6. Brian_B

    Brian_B 2[H]4U

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    Problem with an NAS or thumb drive in the router is your still going to be using Windows File Sharing (SMB) to access that most likely. And that's what Win10 has totally screwed up.

    There are ways to fix it - but if you do get it fixed, then you can just share peer-to-peer as well, and no extra hardware required.

    I'll be honest though - the fixes don't seem to hold very well. I do have a NAS, and file sharing on that works well once you get it established. But in places where I don't have an NAS, we just pass around thumb drives using SneakerNet, or email as attachment. It's the most reliable option by far.
     
  7. Cmustang87

    Cmustang87 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Dane - It is Microsoft. The storage would be through OneDrive, and you'd get all the rest of the Microsoft Office goodies with it.
     
  8. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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    It's 80 a year? That's not terrible at all...I'll probably go that route if so! Thanks!
     
  9. RavinDJ

    RavinDJ 2[H]4U

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    I would get a cheap extra computer, install Win 7 Pro on it, and set it up for sharing. It's a simple mini-server for you.
     
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  10. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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    Ravin--and that will "talk" just fine to the Win 10 computers? I spent a day going through Win10 sharing as was a nightmare. I have another computer here we can put Win7 on and run it, easily. Thanks!
     
  11. SvenBent

    SvenBent 2[H]4U

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    Windows filesharing works perfect for what you are describing.
    You must be doing something wrong but its hard to help when you gave no information about it

    All my documents movie music etc is simply shared through windows 7 filesharing on my server
    i have ven set up some symlinks for some of the games on het diffrent computers to make sure settings are the same accross all of them.
     
  12. EniGmA1987

    EniGmA1987 Limp Gawd

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    What are these issues you are having with regular windows file sharing?
     
  13. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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    Sven--Enigma

    Windows 7 I simply had the shared folder and it worked PERFECTLY. Now Win 10 doesn't let me do it. I had help just like this about 6 months ago and we were stumped like 3 times. I got all the way into recognizing PCs in the house, but I cannot access them. We tried everything. I took down firewalls, ETC. I'd have to find all the notes we did, but it seemed ridiculous. And still doesn't work.

    If someone wants to walk me through a couple steps, I'll try right now! Thanks!
     
  14. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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    Does Win 10 talk with Win 7? Dumb question, possibly, but I have no idea. I can set up a PC or server hardwired to our router if this will work--thanks
     
  15. EniGmA1987

    EniGmA1987 Limp Gawd

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    Obviously both need to be on the same IP subnet. This should be already done anyway for them both to have internet connectivity on the router.
    Next go to the "system" page where it lists your processor speed and such and make sure both are on the same workgroup. This sometimes matters and sometimes doesnt.
    Turn off the windows firewalls on both PCs, right click the folder you want to share and set it up. Go into permissions and set the user "Everyone" to full control. Then go to the security tab and add the user "Everyone" and set it to the highest permissions. It should work then.
    Next go to the network and sharing center and change the option from letting windows manager sharing automatically to having a username and password sharing. I think there is also another option here about password sharing too.
    Once you have it working, you can undo the everyone stuff and just make a specific user or two that can do it and then you make it only shared to people who know the username and password.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2019
  16. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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    I believe this works with one of our computers. I can see 3 PC, but my buddy is on his and he can only see his own. Any ideas?

    He made a public folder and I can see the picture he put into it.
     
  17. EniGmA1987

    EniGmA1987 Limp Gawd

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    He either has something in his windows firewall blocking, or his network and sharing config is not set up right.
     
  18. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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    We got it! Thanks. What's the safest way to now have a shared folder throughout the house?
     
  19. Cmustang87

    Cmustang87 [H]ardness Supreme

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  20. EniGmA1987

    EniGmA1987 Limp Gawd

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    What Cmustang87 said. Now that you have everything opened up to do the initial test to make sure it works, time to set it ti not allow "Everyone" and only allow permissions for users you specifically want. That is a great link Cmustang, explains it very well in simple terms. The way I have always done it is to share and set Everyone to full control, and then have specific users in the security tab for permissions they should have.
     
  21. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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    You 2 have been extremely helpful. I'll get you back 100% Updates to follow.
     
  22. EniGmA1987

    EniGmA1987 Limp Gawd

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    You can have 1 user on the computer hosting the files and have multiple other people log on as that user to get file access.You can also have 2 different users and for example have one of them have access to all files and financial files, and the other does not have permissions for financial files. Or if you have engineering stuff going on then the user with those permissions only has access to folders with engineering data and datasheets, but doesnt have permissions for any customer or financial data. Just as examples.
     
  23. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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    Thanks. I run the books, so My computer hosts all the xcel files right now. If I could edit an excel file from another computer in the house by either logging into the same microsoft account or something else, that'd be great. Some can just read if that's what we have to do.

    3 people currently are "logging in" as microsoft users. Not 100% what route to go right now.

    Our setup is as follows:

    Business is on floor one
    • User (1) on a PC
    • User (2) on a PC
    • 3rd computer is on a walking treadmill in another room

    Living quarters Floor 2 and 3
    • User 1 has laptop and PC on these two floors. My wife also has a laptop t hat she might log on and get files, but not as necessary.
     
  24. BitMaster

    BitMaster Limp Gawd

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    I think, since you run some kind of business on it as well, make it proper so it works from every device, anytime and anywhere. For that, you should NOT use a windows client but a dedicated box, either a NAS from any of the trustworthy vendors, or, if you dare, make your NAS yourself. Either way, you will most likely end up on some Linux.

    Since you asked us "how would you.." I assume the DIY Linux box is not yours, so my best advice is a dual bay NAS with 2 drives in RAID-1 and Gigabit connectivity. If you share 4k vids or other very large files on fast machines, you might want to look into devices with a 10Gbit link to be future proof, but that is only needed if you are a power user.

    Forget Windows Client as a relieable file server, it never was, isn't and likely never will.
     
  25. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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  26. Vengance_01

    Vengance_01 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Plenty but a bit overkill for just a few random files. What about a free Dropbox account? This should do exactly what you want without any costs. Anytime a file changes it's get uploaded to all other computer who has the desktop client and is not store locally which means no single point of failure.
     
  27. Dane

    Dane [H]ard|Gawd

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    How secure is dropbox? Dumb question, but I always ask. Dropbox is def. an option. Thanks!
     
  28. BitMaster

    BitMaster Limp Gawd

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  29. Vengance_01

    Vengance_01 [H]ardness Supreme

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    major cloud storage provider so I would say very. This way you don't need to mess with Windows share and a NA's(unless you want to and learn)
     
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  30. Cmustang87

    Cmustang87 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Yep - there's no way I would mess with a NAS for this use case with cloud storage is so easy and secure compared to messing with shares. Mobile access and access controls just makes it too easy.