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I have an external hard drive plugged into my PC and am too lazy and tired to be running up and down plugging it into my laptop, my TV, or my other computer to share files.

I know that you can share a hard drive on a network, but how do I go about doing it?

  • All systems are running Windows 7.
  • I'm more concerned about the PC to laptop, so if I can get that running I'd be quite happy.
  • From what I know, the user that the hard drive is under has to have a password, is this true?
  • I was also told that all computers need to be under the same workgroup.
  • Does the user have to be logged in to access the hard drive?
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possible duplicate of How to setup windows form external hard drive? – surfasb Sep 7 '11 at 4:54
also have a look at this. Treat the external hard drive as a shared folder and you should get you answers from the above link. – Thomas Sep 7 '11 at 5:21
Thank you for rewording my question Gareth. I took a look at those, thank you. – Robolisk Sep 7 '11 at 5:45
As completely different alternative, there are wireless routers/router-modems that support USB devices, so you don't even need a PC running to host the external HD, NetGear call it 'ReadySHARE' eg -… – Nick Josevski Sep 7 '11 at 5:47
up vote 2 down vote accepted

You could setup a HomeGoup. Then just add the c:\ to the HomeGroup.

Skip to part 2 to see how to add the c:\ drive.

Taken from A big thanks to the authors of the Dummies collection, Woody Leonhard

How to Set Up a Homegroup in Windows 7

  1. Click the Library icon on your taskbar to launch your Libraries window.**


  1. Right-click the Homegroup link in the Navigation Pane and click the Create a Homegroup button.

    If you don’t spot the words Create a Homegroup, your Homegroup is already set up on this PC; choose Change Homegroup Settings instead, and move to the next step.

    If you see a Join Now button instead, a Homegroup has been created on another PC in your network. You’ll need to get the password from the PC that created the Homegroup in order to join.

  2. Select what items to share on your Homegroup and click Next or Save Changes.** 3.

  3. Process the password and click Finish. 4.

Type the password into each Windows 7 PC within your Homegroup. If you forget the Homegroup password, you can find it on any PC on the Homegroup: Open any folder, right-click the word Homegroup in the Navigation Pane, and then choose View Homegroup Password.

Consider using this


Adding folders to a Windows 7 HomeGroup

  • Navigate to the folder you want to put in the HomeGroup.

Chose Start→Computer and then locate the folder you want to share.

  • On the menu bar, click the Share With button and choose how you want the folder shared.

Choose HomeGroup (Read) to give everyone in your HomeGroup read access to the files. Choose HomeGroup (Read/Write) only if you trust everyone not to delete or otherwise clobber the files.

  • Go to the HomeGroup window and view the available libraries and

selected folder/drive

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Omg. thank you. I know this before, I am just completely retarded. – Robolisk Sep 7 '11 at 5:47
Thanks, then just select it as the answer, and vote it up. Ok? – wizlog Sep 7 '11 at 5:48
@wizlog Appreciate the time taken to search and post, but please don't copy+paste the entire article, summarize them in your own words with images from your system with a link to the original article. The "answer" original answer is akin to a plagiarized post, please do the edits as per my comments. Thanks – Sathya Sep 8 '11 at 4:48

It looks like the 'HomeGroup' feature of Windows 7 will should be able to handle this for you.

You probably need to share specific folders on the drive, as root level drive sharing isn't supported. So just organise the files on the external HD into a few folders and "include them in libraries"

Full guide here.

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Thank you. It was, how retarded of me. – Robolisk Sep 7 '11 at 5:46

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