can't figure out why a homegroup cannot be joined

setup a homegroup with 4 computers (windows 7 Pro)  Every few days everything stops working.  Multiple erros.  Link won't work or when you go into the shortcut for a shared folder on the computer that created the homegroup there is nothing in there.  Has to be something in the office where the computers are.  I have NEVER had an issue like this.  So, now I decided to start from scratch.    I left the homegroup on all the computers so yesterday they said create a homegroup.  Now this morning it shows that the 1st computer I created the homegroup for needs to join the homegroup.  Not sure if you can uderstand what I' saying.  I didn't create another homegroup on this pc but it says I need to join it.  It's asking the computer that created the homegroup to join the homegroup.  When I try to do this I can't.   Errors out.  That is where I will start on this issue.
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fred hakimRetired ITCommented:
These sorts of issues is why I never use homegroup.  If all you need is access to data between PCs, I find using standard windows networking to be the easiest.  

Make sure all computers are in the same workgroup, check by right clicking properties on my computer or this PC icons.

Then go to  Control Panel\Network and Internet\Network and Sharing Center\Advanced sharing settings
In there, configure your home network on each computer.  The options are self explanatory, but a few key items:  
     turn on network discovery
     turn on printer and file sharing
     turn on sharing for folks with network access
     If its a private/secured network, turn off  password protected sharing
    Allow windows to manage homegroups

At this point your public folders will be visible.  You can go to any other directories you want to share, open properties, and select the sharing tab. it provides options for who and how to share the directory (and all its sub directories).     Alternatively, you will probably notice a "share with" item on the right click menu.  It will also work, just fewer options than properties.   I usually select  [everyone] from the drop down, so all my PCs have access to the directory.

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Windows 7

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