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How To Add Windows Home Server Network Users

Buying another home or office PC? Here's how to add your new user to the Microsoft Windows Home Network Server.

Microsoft's Windows Home Server (WHS) makes it easy for households or small businesses with multiple PCs to share files and folders and automatically back up each PC. When you buy a new PC, it's just as easy for you as the administrator to add the new user to the network. In fact, you can easily add up to 10 users to WHS, in addition to the guest account.

To add a new user, first open the WHS Console from the PC you used to set up the server. Click the User Accounts tab in the console. To set up a new user, click on Add.

Enter the new user's first name – last name is optional. Enter the logon name. If you want enable remote access for the user, check the box.

If you are enabling remote access, you will need to choose the type of access for the user in the dropdown box. You can select various levels of access – to shared folders and home computers, to shared folders only, or to Home Computers Only. I recommend that, unless the remote user absolutely requires it, you only allow access to shared folders.

When adding a user, use the same login credentials for the server as the user's Windows username and password. This is one less thing for the user to remember and will make it easier to access WHS. If you don't set this up beforehand, no worries - the system will prompt the user to synchronize credentials. For remote access, WHS requires the user to have a strong password of at least seven characters, including three of each of the following at a minimum: uppercase letters, lowercase letters, numbers and non alphanumerical symbols. Note: Users who are not granted remote access privileges only need a password that is five characters long.

After you've entered the logon name and password, the system will then prompt you to set access to shared folders. This is where you allow or disallow access to shared folders.

Use the radio buttons beside each folder to allow full access, read only or no access. Full access will allow the user to add and delete files, so choose wisely. When you’re done, hit Finish.

When the wizard is complete, close the process by clicking Done. You will see a screen notifying you that you’ve successfully added the new user account to your WHS setup.

The new user account will appear under the User Accounts tab in the console. Repeat the process as needed for others you’d like to add to your WHS.

David McCabe is a senior founding editor at BYTE and lives in Helenville, Wis. Follow David @homeservershow or email him at

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