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Windows

Windows Vista - Sharing Files and Folders : Public Folder

11/16/2010 3:10:52 PM
Windows Vista supports two ways to share folders: public file sharing and standard file sharing. Of these two models, standard file sharing is preferred because it is more secure than public file sharing. However, public folder sharing is designed to enable users to share files and folders from a single location quickly and easily.

Windows Vista supports the use of only one Public folder for each computer. Any files that you want to make available publicly can be copied or moved to an appropriate folder inside the Public folder. The Public folder is located at C:\Users\Public and contains the following subfolders:

  • Public Documents

  • Public Downloads

  • Public Music

  • Public Pictures

  • Public Videos

  • Recorded TV

Another folder worth mentioning is the Public Desktop folder, which is used for shared desktop items. Any files and program shortcuts placed in the Public Desktop folder appear on the desktop of all users who log on to the computer (and to all network users if network access has been granted to the Public folder).

To access public folders using Windows Explorer, follow these steps:

1.
Click the Start button, and then click Computer.

2.
In Windows Explorer, click the leftmost option button in the address list and then click Public.

Public folder sharing settings are set on a per-computer basis. If you want to share a file, you just need to copy or move the file into the C:\Users\Public folder. When the file is copied or moved to the Public folder, access permissions are changed to match that of the Public folder so that all users who log on to the computer and all network users (if network access has been granted to the Public folder) can access the file.

By default, files stored in the Public folder hierarchy are available to all users who have an account on this computer and can log on to it locally. You cannot access the Public folder from the network. To enable and configure public folder sharing, follow these steps:

1.
Click Start, and then click Computer. In Windows Explorer, click the leftmost option button in the address list, and then click Public.

2.
On the Windows Explorer toolbar, click Sharing Settings.

3.
Open the Network and Sharing Center.

4.
Expand the Public Folder Sharing Panel by clicking the Expand button.

5.
Under Public Folder Sharing, select the public folder sharing option you want to use. The options available are as follows:

  • Turn On Sharing So Anyone with Network Access Can Open Files

  • Turn On Sharing So Anyone with Network Access Can Open, Change, and Create Files

  • Turn Off Sharing

Permissions are shown in Table 5.3.

Table 5.3. Share and NTFS Permissions for the Public Folder
Access TypeShare PermissionNTFS Permissions
Open filesReadRead and execute, list folder contents, read
Open, change, and create filesFull controlAll (full control, modify, read and execute, list folder contents, read/write)

6.
Click Apply to save the changes.

Note

Windows Firewall settings might prevent external access.

Other -----------------
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