Windows XP Pro peer-to-peer network

Posted on 2006-05-11
Last Modified: 2013-11-21
I have a few XP Pro machines on a workgroup named, appropriately, "WORKGROUP."  I used to be able to share data and printers between the computers, but now for some reason I can't view other computers on the network and, subseauently, can't share anything.  When I try to view computers on my network, I just get a nasty message telling me I don't have permissions or something to that effect.  All computers are on the same "WORKGROUP" and have the same IP subnet.  Any ideas?
Question by:dwd4243
    LVL 4

    Expert Comment

    i'll start by asking the obvious: is the file / printer sharing turned on? maybe it got turned off by default after some update? is a firewall blocking udp / netbios packets?
    LVL 5

    Accepted Solution


    In order ta access a XP computer in a workgroup, you cannot leave the passwords blank (unless you change the setting in group policy).

    Set up an account with the same username and password with administrative rights on both computers and this should take care of your problem.

    Go to Administrative Tools | Local Security Policy | Local Policies | User Right Assignment | Access this computer from the Nnetwork | Ensure that the users to access the computer are displayed. By default, Everyone, ASPNET, Backup Operators, Users, Power Users, and Administrators are listed. I have seen viruses/malware remove replace users with system accounts.

    Here are some other tips about peer-to-peer network  that you probably already know if this was working before. But, maybe a username or password has changed.

    If John is a user on Computer A with a password of 1234, then John also needs to be a user on Computer B with a password of 1234.

    To allow users to log onto their computers without a password and then access the XP Professional machine without a password, you must make a security policy change:

    Go to Control Panel |  Administrative Tools | Local Security Policy.
    Expand Local Policies | Security Options.
    Double-click Accounts: Limit local account use of blank passwords to console login only, which is enabled by default. Disable this option and click OK.
    This will permit network access without a password. The user's computer can boot directly to the Windows desktop, and be validated against the corresponding XP Professional user account, without a password.

    Note that the term “blank passwords” isn't technically accurate.  There's a difference between having a password which consists of one or more blank characters, and having no password at all.  This setting actually permits access by users who have no password at all.

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