Windows 7 – Homegroup

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Just like Play To, mentioned in one of my earlier posts, there are some more new nice new features in Windows 7!

In this blog I’ll tell you all about the Homegroup in Windows 7 and in the next few weeks I’ll tell you all about the other cool new features in Windows 7.

What is a Homegroup?
With the homegroup it’s very easy to share video’s, pictures, music, documents and printers. Everyone can remember the time where you had to be an computer expert to allow family members to access shared documents and pictures.

With Homegroup in Windows 7 this is history! (yeah, this sounds very positive, and it is!).

How do I create or install a homegroup?
Making a homegroup is easy. After you installed Windows you automatically get the question if you want to create a homegroup. At this time you also can select the libraries you want to share.

At the moment you start installing a next Windows 7 machine, instead of the screen you can see above, Windows asks you if you want to join the existing homegroup.

Of course you can also add an existing computer to a homegroup. Just go to the Network and Sharing Center (via the Network icon in the taskbar).

 

You’ll find the homegroup and sharing options by clicking the link you see in the image below.

 

Vervolgens kun je eenvoudig een homegroup maken.

Printers
One of the most exiting things of the homegroup are the automatic installations of your printer on all the pc’s in your homegroup. You don’t have to think about it, just after you joined the homegroup (in which printers are shared) they are automatically being installed on all pc’s in the homegroup.

Can you imagine? Never again you have to install the printer on the pc of your wife and kids by hand! It’s advisable to install Windows 7 on all the pc’s in your home (notice : it’s still a beta and therefore can contain bugs!), and sharing the music, films, documents and printers will never be easier again! In the image below you can see the installed printer on one of the pc’s in the homegroup.

 

My wife still has Windows XP on her pc for now (When she returns from work tomorrow it will be Windows 7!) and the first time she wanted to print since I installed Windows 7 on my own pc I had to create an account for her with the same password she uses on her own pc, so she can print without entering a password.

Connecting to shares of other homegroup members 
Accessing files from other homegroup members is just as easy as opening a document from your own pc. In the explorer you can see the Homegroup next to the libraries, computer and network. When you expand the Homegroup you can see al the homegroup members with their shared libraries.

 

I can’t imagine me returning to Windows Vista! I just finished installing Windows 7 on the pc of my wife, she just loves it!