What is media streaming?  This involves taking different types of media content (photos,music,videos) and being able to stream them to different devices inside and outside of the home.  These devices can read media that is stored in a different location without transferring it to their main memory.  Some of these devices include gaming systems, tablets, personal computers and other devices with streaming capabilities.

What is file sharing?  File sharing sharing is the ability  to share different files on a network. For example, word documents and powerpoint presentations.

How does it work?  The wireless router connects all the different network capable devices that are available in the home.  The data is stored on a personal computer or server in a central location.  All of the devices can access these files twenty four seven.  For example, if you had a Roku in one room and a PS4 in another, both of these devices could play the movies that are on the media server.

Lets get started . First make sure you have an AC compatible wireless router (Netgear AC2300),computer or NAS (Network Attached Storage Device) and devices to access the data   As you can see in the picture the router is surrounded by all the different devices.    

Once you have the wireless network setup with the internet, the next step is to find a spot for the personal computer that is going to hold all of the files.  Just to let you know, when using a desktop or laptop for a media server it’s going to consume more power then using an NAS, plus it won’t have as many mobile capabilities.  When connecting your computer to  the network it’s best to hardwire it to the router.  This will give you a better connection.

In this article I am going to explain how to share media files and office documents with a Windows 10 PC.  After you connect the PC to the router, please turn it on and find your way to the desktop.   Start out by right clicking on the wifi or network icon on the bottom right hand corner and go to “Open Network Sharing Center” and on the left hand side click “Advanced sharing Settings.  Now make sure that network discovery is turned on along with file sharing.   This will let other devices on the network find the media you’re sharing.  Lastly, click “allow” to let windows manage homegroups.

Now click the “guest or public” arrow and then the “all networks” arrow and turn on sharing and click media streaming.

This is where you’re going to name the media library and choose what network it’s going to pop up on.  Also, this is where you set access rights to different devices.

After that step if you want to store the media in a special location. Go to the “public videos folder” and under “location” you can redirect where the videos are stored.

After all is done, you can now access any of those media files you put into the location.  This is an example of how Roku’s media player looks.

To start setting up file sharing please find “My Computer” and double click it or click on the folder on the bottom toolbar.

Now find the folder to share files from and right click it and click on advanced sharing.  Remember when changing these options you need administrative permissions.  I right clicked on the E drive.

After clicking, the “advanced sharing” box will appear.  Please make a check mark in the ”share this folder” box.  Next please name the share and leave the number of simultaneous alone.

Now click on” permissions”, and as you can see the default “Everyone” group is there with read access.  This gives everyone access to the files but, they can only read them.  Depending on the network you can tweek the “permissions” to what fits you.  An example would be if you have another computer in the house you want to use to add and delete files in that folder, you would want to give them full control.  When you’re set, please click OK and OK to get back to the desktop.

                            If you take a look at the E drive I shared,  you can tell that it’s shared by the little people icon.

Another way to see if it’s sharing , is to look at the left hand column …click “network” and the “computer name” and it should come up.

After going through all these steps you should have successfully shared a folder on your network and setup media streaming.  Going through this process can be very tedious and sometimes it requires some troubleshooting.  I hope everything works out and happy networking.