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I recently installed Windows 7 on my PC and my Laptop.

I have a single Administrator level Account on each machine, with the same Account Name and Password.

I tried to access the Laptop's files from the PC using Windows Explorer. I typed in the Computer Name of the Laptop into the Windows Explorer bar (prefixed with double slash, and a single trailing slash like \\LAPTOP-NAME\).

To my surprise, all of the files from the Laptop's account appeared with read/write access seemingly being granted.

My question is: How is that possible?

  • Both machines are on the same LAN
  • Both machines are set to be in the "Home Network"
  • Neither machine is a member of a Homegroup (no Homegroup exists on either machine).
  • No folders have been manually shared.
  • I haven't configured anything to do with Sharing on either machine.
  • Windows Firewall is ON (both Home/Work and Public)
  • UAC is set to default

Is it just that Windows 7 clever enough to see the 2 Accounts have the same Account Name and Password?

It is freaking me out and now I have to go check if the same is true if the Laptop is on a Public network connection!

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2 Answers 2

up vote 4 down vote accepted

This has been this way ever since NT 4, if two computers are on the same network and both have an identical login name and password then they both have identical permissions. You just now found this out :)

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Instead of going to the Homegroup to share the files. Use the normal simple file sharing over a network. Then just double click the network icon of the computer's files you want to access. You don't need a password for this.

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