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What is a homegroup?

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Quick Answer

A homegroup is a group of PCs on a home network that can share files as well as printers. The principal advantage of using a homegroup is the easy file sharing. Multimedia such as pictures, videos and music are also shared among people on a homegroup. Similarly, other people cannot modify the shared files unless they are given permission to do so.

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Full Answer

Computers set up with Windows 7 editions such as Home Premium, Professional, Ultimate and Enterprise automatically create a homegroup. In addition, a homegroup may be created by following a few simple steps. Open HomeGroup by clicking the Start button. Click Control Panel, type "homegroup" in the search box, and then click on HomeGroup. On the “Share with other home computers running Windows 7” page, click Create a Homegroup, and then follow the instructions.

If the network already has a homegroup, Windows issues a prompt to join the group instead of creating another one. If the system has no home network, it is required to set up one prior to creating a homegroup. If a computer belongs to a domain, a homegroup can be joined, but it is not possible to create one. Files can be accessed on other homegroup computers, but files can't be shared with the homegroup. After creating a homegroup, other computers can be added to it to allow access to shared libraries and printers.

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