Question Networking/Shared Folder - Please answer asap :(

n46krb

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I have 2 windows 10 PCs on a wireless network.

I have file/printer sharing turned on , on both and it is a private 'work network. ..and each PC can see the other but for some reason it gives me an error saying one can't access the other. The only thing that can be seen is the public folder. So on PC1 there are documents in the public folder and PC2 can see them and access them. We want both users to be able to access the files, but if any changes are made in any of those documents on either PC1 or PC2 by a user we want them reflected...and we want it so if user1 is working on a file and user2 tries to open it they can not.

Can someone please advise how to do this correctly? The easiest way. There is no home group in Windows 10 at least I can't find it we are using the latest versions. What about mapping a network drive? What would that do? Thanks
 

britechguy

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What you're looking to do is not easily possible, particularly the locking part.

It is entirely possible to set up something like the systems used by software developers where files must be checked out for edit, and others attempting to do same cannot until the original person who checked it out checks it back in. In those cases the files do remain able to be checked out, but in "read only" mode.

Your needs go well beyond simple networking issues into file management territory, which is a thing of its own.
 

n46krb

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Alright. Without the not being able to use one while its opened on another thing....
How can we at least make it so if user1 makes a change to the file, it reflects on user2's computer
 

britechguy

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You should be able to use OneDrive, but if both machines can see the Public Documents folder on "the storage box" changes would be reflected, too.

A file is a file is a file, and provided all parties have access to it, and provided only one has it "in edit mode" at any point in time and either edits it directly from where it's stored, or copies the edited version back to central storage when they're done, the changes will be there.

This isn't an issue of whether you're using cloud storage or storage on a local machine or NAS.

One relatively simple way of preventing multiple checkouts, if few people are involved and everyone plays by the rules, is having the person who's checking out a file for edit create what amounts to "a flag file" in the same folder just before they claim editing ownership. Say the real file is QuarterlySales.xlsx. You could have the user create a text file with their initials and enough of the real file name to identify it clearly, e.g., JQP_QtrSales_Editing.txt, that stays in the source folder until they check the file back in. Everyone has to understand, though, that the presence of that file means that absolutely no one other than the person who's staked claim to said file can edit it at that time. Once that file is deleted by the editing party then the file is fair game for the next person to stake claim to it.

This doesn't work in organizations where hundreds of potential editors are involved, but can be easily workable in an office of five.
 

n46krb

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Would there be any benefit to doing a mapped network drive? I understand what you said above but it seem s a bit complicated. They just want to be able to view and work on a file . Save and close the changes. Then user 2 open it on PC2 and changes be reflected. There is only 2 users in question, here... 2 computers. Not a big office environment.
 

britechguy

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I don't see any specific benefit related to the topography you choose, storage wise.

So long as each user is able to access the copy of the file and edit it, those changes are saved in the source location of the file. The next person to pick it up should see everything the last person that touched it did.

The trick, and with two people it's pretty simple, is just making sure that both do not ever try to edit at the same time. I believe that even if they did most MS-Office programs do create a lock file in the location of the file under edit, and the person opening it if another has it open is warned that their copy will be read only. That's easy enough to test out.
 

n46krb

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I have to try it myself first but according go them...they were able to open the same file the same time. And that they made a change in 1 file and it was not reflected on PC1 which is the source PC. The files are located on PC1 in a public shared folder and can be seen and accessed by PC2 fine. But they are saying changes are not reflecting and can open at the same time. I will have to sniff further and come back here.... thanks
 

britechguy

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Well it is possible that this is the case.

The central point I'm trying to make is the easiest way to avoid this is to ensure that these two NEVER open the same file at the same time. It is impossible, if one is editing a file in a set location and saving and exiting it before the other opens it, that the changes will not be there.

If both open it at the same time none of the changes either makes will be reflected until one of two things happens: one editor exits and saves or does a forced save. Even then, those changes will only be reflected if editor two opens the file AFTERWARD.

If two people open the same file at the same time, the baseline file is the same. Changes don't get committed as made (hence the reason you get the message from MS-Word and other office programs asking if you want to save your changes if you try to exit a file without having done so. Those changes are not committed to disc except by a forced save, the last of which happens upon closing the file unless you tell it not to save changes).
 

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