Laptop on Domain to home workgroup

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jgsketch

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Mar 2, 2004
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Hello,
I'm in need of some desperate help. I'm an IT guy for a small architectural firm. My boss has a XP pro laptop that logins to a domain here at work. He wants to be able to go home and use print and file sharing, without having to log out of the domain and login in locally. From the research I've done, Microsoft says you cannot bring a domain into a workgroup. I understand that. I've also found some interesting ways to get around this.

I've tried setting the workgroup to the same name as the domain. I was then able to see the other PCs, but not beyond that. Next, I tried setting up a local user account on all the other PCs, with the same name and pass as his laptop. I was then able to use the shared printer, but still cannot access the shared files on other PCs. But I can see the directories. I've gone through all the settings and file and print sharing settings I can think of. Both networks are working off DHCP, and the entire network at home is wireless. I've also tried all this with the XP firewall off. Maybe I'm missing a setting somewhere.

With so many people with laptops at work, I can't believe that there is not a solution yet for them to come home and connect to their home networks. There has to be some way of doing this. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
 
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If you can access the shared printer you have a lot going for you.

If you can't access shared directories, you might look at what permissions those directories have.

You might also check to see if you are using Simple File Sharing or not.
 
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this may help. quoted from http://www.howtonetworking.com/workgroupnet.htm.

Q: How can I share files between workgroup computer and domain/workgroup computer?

I have a home wireless network and share files and a printer between two computers. I also use Win 2000/XP laptop at work with domain network. How can I share files between these computers at home?

A: Deepening on your network setup, you may 1) Logon local laptop using the same logon id and password on both machine.
2) change workgroup name to match win2000 domain and the laptop needs to install at home first ad then join the domain .
3) without changing the workgroup name and logon ID, just enable guest account in win 2000/XP.
4) If you are running XP, enable Simple File Sharing.
5) logon domain user on the domain laptop (even the workgroup is different), use command net use \\workgroupcomputer /user:administrator, (here administrator is workgroup computer local administrator), the enter workgroup computer administrator password. You should be able to access the workgroup resources
 
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jgsketch,

From your first post it sounds like since you can access a shared printer you mention that you have the same workgroup name already in place and created the same user accounts and passwords on all computers. You also say that after you changed the workgroup to be the same as the domain name you can then start to browse. But it is now a permissions issues with shared folders. Is that correct?

As I suggested in my first post, double check to see if Simple File Sharing is enabled or not. To do this, open the Windows Explorer - Tools / Folder Options / View - Scroll down to the bottom

You might also try sharing something like a c:\test directory just to see if that makes a difference.

From a cmd prompt, try running "net view \\computer" - where computer is one you want to connect to and see if there are any error messages

From a cmd prompt, try manually making a network connection:
net use x: \\computer_name\share_name

where computer_name is the name of the other computer and
Share_name is the name of one of it's shares. Sometimes the error message gives an indication of the solution.
 

jgsketch

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Mar 2, 2004
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Thanks for the quick response. I'll have to check to see if the Simple File Sharing is on. Right now just the default shared folders are on. I'll also check to see if the Guest account is enabled.
 
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If security is at all a concern, you might reconsider enabling the Guest account. While that might allow access from the one computer, it also might unnecessarily open up that computer to others as well. Would rather see you solve the problem in a more secure way.
 

jgsketch

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Mar 2, 2004
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56
The Guest account has been turned on and we will wait and see if he calls tonight from home. Hopefully I will be able to go out this afternoon with his laptop and check a few of the above suggestions. At this time security is not too much of an issue at home. I'd rather get it working and then work backwords to secure the laptop.

Thanks for the responses, you guys just might keep me from getting fired as this has been a month long strugle along with several other tech issues like smart phones and connecting them to email. lol.
 
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Smart phones are one of the reasons I like Outlook rather than Outlook Express. If you need them, it is great for synchronizing items like all your Contacts and Calendar items. Also I use mine to view a lot of customer configuration documentation kept in either Word or Excel files.
 
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