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File Sharing over VPN

Posted on 2014-01-12
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Last Modified: 2014-02-04
I would like to have a file sharing service acrosss SAite to Site VPN connection....how can I have this option without  any Active directory involved?

Thank you
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Question by:renegadecy
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 39775536
If the Site to Site VPN setup is with hardware boxes (Cisco, Juniper, etc.) then Active Directory might only be used to set up users needing to browse folders. If you can set up the users manually and the folders they need, you may not need Active Directory.

Active Directory is not tied to VPN.

.... Thinkpads_User
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Expert Comment

by:David Johnson, CD, MVP
ID: 39775538
Any shares that are available on the network are automatically there when you vpn in
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 39775543
If the Site to Site is via hardware boxes (which is the way I do it) then shares are not automatic.  


.... Thinkpads_User
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Accepted Solution

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Shane Kahkola earned 1500 total points
ID: 39775552
If you have an established site-to-site VPN already, it's pretty simple.

First, create a share on the machine that contains the data or files you need.  
Be sure you set the share permissions, and the folder permissions for the user who will access the share.
This means you will have to create a local user account for the other person on the machine that is sharing the data.

The second part is a little trickier.  If you don't want active directory involved, and you don't have a common internal DNS running, then you will likely have to create an entry in your hosts file to map the IP of the other machine.
For example.  Machine_A (10.1.1.1)  has a share called "Files" and Machine_B (10.2.1.1) wants to access it.  You may have to create an entry in the hosts file if Machine_B that looks like this:
10.1.1.1 Machine_A

Open in new window

You can find the hosts file at c:\windows\system32\drivers\etc\hosts (with no extension). But you will have to open it with Administrative privileges.  You can often do that (depends on your user account privileges) from the Run command (hold down window key and tap R).  You would type:   notepad c:\windows\sysetm32\drivers\etc\hosts

Third, once you have done those things, you can map the network drive as follows (assuming Windows 7):
1. Open Explorer and click on "Map Network Drive"
2. Choose your drive letter from the drop-down box labeled "Drive:"
3. Type in the UNC path to the machine you want to map (i.e. \\Machine_A\Files)
4. I would check the box "Reconnect at logon" if you want that to stay consistent
5. Click the "Connect using different credentials" if you are logged in with a different username and password than the one you setup on Machine_A.
6. When you click Finish, you will be prompted to provide a username and password and will be given the opportunity to save the password so you don't have to constantly enter it.

Now, having said all that, if you are trying to bypass your network and do some peer-to-peer sharing, your IT admin will clobber you.  Otherwise, this is a very insecure way to obtain file son a network that has a site-to-site VPN.  I strongly recommend at least Windows Home Server to secure the data.  It doesn't use Active Directory, but it's safer.
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