How to Connect My Windows XP and Windows 7 Computers Together on a Wireless Network

By Ruri Ranbe

Computers that are connected to the same wireless network can connect to one another through the home networking options in Windows. Although Windows XP and Windows 7 use different methods to set up home networking, as long as both computers use the same network name and have sharing enabled, the computers can share file libraries and network devices with one another while online.

Step 1

Log in to Windows 7, then sign on to the wireless network. Click "Start," then click "Control Panel."

Step 2

Type "home" into the search box, then click "Choose homegroup and sharing options."

Step 3

Check the box next to "Pictures," "Music," "Videos," "Documents" or "Printers" to share the files or devices with the Windows XP computer.

Step 4

Click "Change advanced sharing settings..." Click "Turn on network discovery," "Turn on file and printer sharing" and "Turn on password protected sharing." Click "Save changes."

Step 5

Click "Control Panel" on the address bar to return to the main page. Click "System." Scroll to "Computer name, domain and workgroup settings" to view the name of the workgroup.

Step 6

Sign in to the Windows XP computer and log on to the wireless network. Click "Start." Click "Run." Enter "sysdm.cpl" into the dialog box. Click "OK" to open "System Properties."

Step 7

Click the "Computer Name" tab. Click the "Change" button. Enter the name of the Windows 7 homegroup into the "Workgroup" field.

Step 8

Click "OK" to close the "Computer Name Changes" window, then click "OK" to close the "System Properties" window. Restart the computer.

Step 9

Click "Start." Click "My Computer." Click "Tools," then click "Folder Options." Click "View" and check the box next to "Use simple file sharing." Click "OK."

Step 10

Right-click a folder to share with Windows 7. Select "Sharing and Security..." from the context menu. Click the "Sharing" tab.

Step 11

Check "Share this folder on the network." Click "OK." Repeat the step for any other user folders you want to share with Windows 7.

Tips & Warnings

  • To access XP files and devices on the Windows 7 computer, click "Start." Click "Network." Double-click the name of the Windows XP computer.
  • To access Windows 7 files and devices on the XP computer, click "Start," then click "My Computer." Select "My Network Places" from under "Other Places" in the left pane. Select "View workgroup computers" from "Network Tasks." Double-click the name of the Windows 7 computer.
  • If you have password-protected sharing enabled, you must input the user account name and password for the other computer when you attempt to access the shared files or devices.