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HomeGroup Doesn't Work As Expected with Same-Named Accounts

    Question

  • Hello Community,

    I am running into problems configuring HomeGroup with my collection of Windows 8.1 machines.

    I have 3 Microsoft Accounts:

    1. Personal: first.last@live.com
    2. Business 1: first@domain.us
    3. Business 2: first.last@domain.com

    I have these 3 accounts added on two machines:

    1. Machine A: Personal/Business 1
    2. Machine B: Business 2

    All 3 have the same first and last name.  So, when all 3 join Homegroup, there is only 1 node in explorer ("First Last", with the icon being from the live.com account, for whatever reason), and 3 nodes under that with the machines the accounts are on.

    The problem I am running into (besides there just being 1 node in home group, there should be 3 -- 1 per account, IMO) is that sharing libraries from Machine A\Business 1 does not show up properly in the Explorer of Machine B\Business 2.  For instance, if I share the Documents Library, it displays in the Machine B\Business 2's explorer, but when I double-click it, it doesn't do anything.

    Furthermore, if I explicitly share Machine A\Business 1's Document's folder (not library, the folder), the folder does show up in Machine B\Business 2's explorer, but when I double-click it, it produces an error dialog saying it cannot navigate to "C:\Users\Business1\Documents".

    It appears that when Machine A\Business 1 shares items, the shares are being logged into Homegroup as local resources, and not network resources.  So, when another user attempts to access them, they are being accessed with a local path rather than a network path.

    Is this a known issue?  If so, is there a workaround/fix for it?

    Thank you for any assistance you can provide,

    Michael

    Friday, December 06, 2013 1:14 AM

All replies

  • Hi Michael,

    I cannot repro your issue in my environment. Did the share from your personal account on Machine A work fine?

    Would you please test if the share from your business 2 on Machine B work fine? Let me know your test results.

    Meanwhile, let’s try to recreate the homegroup and rejoin your computer to check the results.

    If the issue only happened on business 1 account, please follow these steps to capture the behavior during the share and access process as you mentioned in your post by using Network monitor. If you find any error or unexpected communication issue, please post back the log.

    Microsoft Network Monitor 3.4

    http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=4865

    Analyzing Network Data with Network Monitor

    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc723623.aspx

    Hope these could be helpful.


    Kate Li
    TechNet Community Support

    Sunday, December 08, 2013 2:53 PM
    Moderator
  • Hi Kate,

    Thank you for looking into this.  I should also mention that these machines are Virtual, being hosted on a Windows 8.1 Hyper-V host.

    One thing I did not try was to restart my machines after making updates to my Homegroup settings.  This should not be necessary, but Homegroup does seem especially buggy/erratic when initializing and setting it up.  I should have time this weekend to look into this further.

    Thank you,

    Michael

    Wednesday, December 11, 2013 12:30 PM
  • OK,

    I spent part of my time this morning (well, ok... ALL of my morning, heh) looking into this.  My suspicions around the problem stemming from the same first/last name were unfounded.  I was able to reproduce the same problem from multiple machines with different email addresses and/or different first/last names.  Here is a screenshot of what it looks like from a machine in an unexpected state: 

    http://sdrv.ms/19thmva

    As you can see, the nodes display, but there isn't anything below them.  Furthermore, right-clicking and selecting properties displays the error box that is presented in the image.

    I suspect that my Homegroup settings are somehow corrupted across the network.  I would ideally like to find a way to "scrub" (or manually remove) all settings related to Homegroup from my machines and start over again.  Simply removing all machines from the Homegroup and creating a new Homegroup does not fix this problem.

    Is there any guidance/tools out there to completely scrub a machine of any settings of Homegroup?

    Thank you,

    Michael

    Monday, December 16, 2013 5:44 PM
  • Happy New Year... Ping. B)
    Monday, January 06, 2014 12:23 PM