November 27, 2020

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Why is my PC asking for a login/password in a home LAN/Network?

4 min read

Question:

Why is my PC asking for login/password in my Home LAN/Network? I am using Windows 7 64-bit. I don’t want to enable password protection, so why is Windows putting it there for me when I clearly didn’t ask for it?

Answer:

Setting up a local LAN network can become a very frustrating task because there are so many things that can go wrong. When your LAN cable and everything else starts to work, then the last thing you want to see is the login screen problem. This is when Windows asks you to enter login credentials to access other PCs in your LAN. I personally have faced this issue several times in the past; there are multiple reasons why this issue can occur.

Solution 1:

Go to the following location: Control Panel\All Control Panel Items\Network and Sharing Center\Advanced sharing settings

Here, you can see two drop-down menus, Home or Work and Public. First, click on “Home or Work” and enable the following option “Turn off Password protected sharing.” You can also enable “Turn on network discovery.” Next, click on “Pubic” and enable the same options. Now check your LAN; if it is still asking for username and/or password, then try the next solution.

Note: once you change the two options above-mentioned, Windows remembers your choice and these options shouldn’t revert back. If you are using a Firewall, like TinyWall, then it is possible that Windows will reverse changes you make in “Advance Sharing Settings.” To test if your PC is doing this, restart it and check “Advanced sharing settings.” If they are reverted, then check your firewall for settings that lets you unblock LAN traffic.

Solution 2:

This one time, I wasted so much time to find the culprit of this issue. I did everything but I was still seeing the login screen. The solutions I found online failed to work for me; in the end, I did find the reason why my LAN was asking for login details. The PC that I was trying to access, it had a Windows, or User-Account password. :) I used that PC’s “Computer Name” and the user-account password as login credentials; that got me through the login screen and I was able to access it. As a permanent solution, you need to remove Windows Password. Also, if any PC in your LAN is using any security tool, or software that locks the PC after certain period of time, then that can too cause this issue.

Solution 3:

Firewalls can cause all kinds of problems. The best way to find if your firewall is the cause of this issue, delete it. Sometimes, disabling it isn’t enough; you will need to uninstall it. You can reinstall it once you eliminate it as being the suspect.

Solution 4:

File and Folder permissions feature in Windows is another cause of such headache. There are several issues I faced whose culprit was this feature. Create a new folder in D or E drive; right click on it and then choose Properties. Select the Sharing tab; click “Advance Sharing.” Check the “Share this Folder” box. Then click on Permissions; add Everyone, Guest, Remote Desktop Users, Anonymous, and Network. Give them Full-Access/Permissions to this folder. Restart your PC; in the other PC, click on Start > Network. Here, you should see all computer names and shared-folders you have in your LAN. Try to open the New-Folder you created. If you can access it without any login and if clicking on PC-name shows you the login box, then file and folder permissions feature is causing this issue.

Solution for XP users:

1. Open “My Computer”
2. In the Top-Left menu click on “Tools” and then “Folder Options”
3. Select the second tab that says “View”
4. Under the heading “Advanced Settings,” scroll down until you see this option “Use Simple File Sharing”
5. Click on Apply and then OK.

This should solve the issue but if it does not help then try the following workaround:

1. The other PC, which you are trying to access via LAN, open “My Computer” in it.
2. Right click on the Folder that you want to access via your PC. Then select “Sharingand Security.”
3. Here choose to share this drive and tick the following option “Allow Network Users To Change My Files”
4. Click on Apply and then OK
5. You can also share your hard-drives/partitions.

This should give you access over LAN to specific folders or hard drives. Following resources may come in handy:

1. Resetting Network Connections
2. Logon failure: unknown username or bad password
3. Windows 7 help
4. Establishing File & Folder Level Permissions: Windows 7
5. Network shares asking for login credentials

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