How do you share files for everybody?

Before you answer, please read on, because the trivial solution does not work if Microsoft accounts are involved .

I have a home network, with Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 machines, all in the same Workgroup. There's no homegroup I want to be able to share individual folders on the network, by setting them to shared through File Explorer. In windows 7 and vista, i just go to network and sharing center, enable file and printer sharing, disable password protected sharing, and it all works. In Windows 10 and Windows 8, the same still works, but only if both machines use local accounts . When one of the machines accessing files or sharing them uses a microsoft account it is no longer possible to access any files or folders on the other machines Specifically, if the machine with the microsoft account tries to access the machine with the local account, it will prompt for a username and password, and access will fail unless username and password of an actual user on the target machine are provided. Changing the Microsoft account to a local account immediately fixes the problem , with no other configuration changes.

This problem is real, and i've reproduced it on several machines, had friends encounter the same problem, and i've found several reports of other users with the same issue, but no solution. The problem seems to be the same in windows 8 and windows 10

Successfully implemented workarounds (not solutions):

  1. Store the usernames/passwords to the other machines in the credential manager and give up the idea of sharing without password. Use a common account for the best access
  2. Don't use microsoft's account
Best Answer

I managed to share folders without passwords in Windows 10 with Microsoft Accounts by following this guide:

I've created this website to prevent rot

  1. Open Network and Sharing Center
  2. Then click on the change advanced sharing settings link in the left hand panel. screenshot
  3. Now expand the all networks section screenshot
  4. Finally switch the radial button to the turn off password protected sharing setting and click save changes. screenshot
  5. It works!

I did not try this extensively (for example if you need to have a password protected share instead), as all the shares in my LAN don't need to be password protected, and since there's no wifi, I know that i'm the only one to access the share. But I think, if it disable all the passwords, it will still work with NTFS access permissions