Chapter 53. Using Shared Resources

Chapters 51 and 52 covered all the basics of setting up and sharing resources on a private home or small business network. This chapter assumes that you've already done all of that. Nothing in this chapter will work until the network is set up, you've turned on network sharing and discovery on each Windows 7 computer, and shared some things on the network.

This chapter looks at how you find and use shared resources from computers within the network. It looks at opening documents from remote resources, moving and copying files between networked computers, using remote printers, and ways of using shared media.

UNC Paths

Before diving too deep into methods for accessing network resources, let's take some time to delve into a topic that will help you navigate network resources more easily — UNC paths.

UNC stands for Universal Naming Convention. A UNC path is expressed in the form:


where MachineName is the name of the computer and PathName is a folder path on that computer. For example, assume that your network includes a computer named SNOOPY that you use as a file server. On that computer is a folder that you have shared as SharedDocs. Within that SharedDocs folder is a subfolder named Contracts. The UNC path to the Contracts folder would be \\SNOOPY\SharedDocs\Contracts. ...

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