Skip to main content

IT@Cornell


How to Turn Off File Sharing: Microsoft Windows 7

If it's not necessary for you to share folders on your machine with other users, turn off file sharing. 

Otherwise, if you need to permit certain users access to certain folders on your machine, you can set up permissions to allow limited, password-protected file sharing.

Turn off File Sharing

  1. On the Start menu, click Control Panel, and then click Network and Sharing Center.
  2. In the panel on the left, click Change advanced sharing settings, and then click the arrow next to Home or Work.
  3. Check the following settings:
    • Network Discovery: Off
    • File and Printer Sharing: Off
    • Public Folder Sharing: Off
    • File Sharing Connections: Use 128-bit encryption...
  4. Click Save Changes.



Even with file sharing and public folder sharing turned off, you can still share folders, if necessary. For more information, see the Limit the Permissions for Shared Folders procedure.

Limit the Permissions for Shared Folders

With file sharing and public folder sharing turned off, you can still share folders. Use this procedure to turn on password protection for shared folders. After you turn on password protection for shared folders, only users who have an account and a password can access shared folders on your machine. You'll need to set up a user account and password for each person to whom you want to grant sharing permissions.

  1. On the Start menu, click Control Panel, and then click Network and Sharing Center.
  2. In the panel on the left, click Change advanced sharing settings, and then click the arrow next to Home or Work.
  3. Under Public Folder Sharing, click Turn on sharing so anyone with network access can read and write files in the Public folders.
  4. Click Save Changes.

If you're on a departmental network, consult with your local technical support provider to set up accounts and passwords for shared folders.

Create a Shared Folder

When password protected sharing is on, only people who have a user account and password on the computer can access shared files, printers, and Public folders.

  1. Right-click the folder you want to share.
  2. Select Share with and then select Specific people.



  3. Click the arrow and select a user name.
    If the user isn't in the list, you may need to create an account for them. See Create a New Account: Windows 7.
  4. Click Share.
    In the File Sharing box, you'll see a list of all shared folders.
  5. Click Done.


Stop Sharing a Folder

  1. Right-click the folder.
  2. Select Share with and then select Nobody.