Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Problem adding Win 8 PC to existing Win7-XP workgroup

  1. #1


    Posts : 22
    win 8.1

    Problem adding Win 8 PC to existing Win 7-XP workgroup


    When setting up a new Win 8 notebook, I happened to click on Network and,
    amazingly, there were icons listed for my three Win 7 PCs without me setting anything
    up. (My sole XP machine wasn’t listed, however.)

    I was able to use these mysterious Win 7 connections to copy setup stuff to the Win
    8.

    My enthusiasm quickly subsided when I found that my Win 7 machines were
    barred from entering the Win 8 machine despite each listing an icon for the Win
    8 when Network was pressed in Explorer.

    I noted that my wireless connection was listed as the 'network', so I set
    about adding the Win 8 to my workgroup (I can’t use a homegroup as an XP is
    involved) and then turned off wireless. On my Win 7s and the XP this forces
    communication via my wired connections. When the Win 8 was connected via an Ethernet
    plug, it could still see the Win 7s but not the XP and stubbornly continued to
    list the wireless network as the connection and that the connection was now via
    Ethernet. That didn't make sense. Clearly there is a difference between how Win 7 and XP recognise a workgroup and how my Win 8 PC is going about it.

    I should add that a humble XP netbook can be added on an ad hoc basis to
    my wired network. I want to do the same with the Win 8 notebook.

    My wireless ‘network’ that the Win 8 PC is so enamoured with is only there
    so that phones and tablets can get online. It is not supposed to be my preferred
    way of networking PCs.

    Any suggestions as to how to successfully set up a workgroup with the Win 8 as a proper member will be very gratefully received.

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Central IL
    Posts : 3,468
    Linux Mint 17.2
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    Posts : 22
    win 8.1


    Thanks for the reply, but, as I said, I can't use a homegroup as there is an XP involved. The Win 8 says that it is a member of a workgroup but so far only on its own terms.

    Eventually I have got the three Win 7s and the Win 8 to relate both ways, but the XP is excluded by the Win 8. Strangely, this incomplete relationship can be carried out with wireless turned off in the Win 8. Some black magic seems to be happening here. What is the conduit if it isn't wireless?

    I do think that the Win 8's bizarre refusal to give up wireless and adopt wired, as the other PCs have done, is a symptom of something amiss.

    Meanwhile the Win 8 is well and truly turned off until I can get it to relate to other PCs in the way that the Win 7s and the XP do.

    I have previously looked at the MS 'help' steps you cited and they don't help me. When I got to the stage of selecting a network, wireless-crazy MS didn't list anything other than my wireless connection and a couple of nearby protected networks (this is a PC and not a phone!). On my Win 7s and XP, I am able to select my own wired network, the name of which contains my surname. Win 8 can't, or won't, see it. This results in the XP being ignored by the Win 8.

    This is all very disappointing. Thank goodness the Win 8 is a cheap notebook. I would have hated to pay 2 or 3 times more for a Win 8 PC and get this rubbish. But I will be happy to be told I have missed something that results in a fix.
    Last edited by stony41; 10 Mar 2014 at 23:24.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Posts : 22
    win 8.1


    I have just looked into this further. When I turn off wireless and plug in an Ethernet cable, I have swapped from an Intel wireless controller to a Realtek wired controller. It is just that in Win 8 Microsoft have dropped the ability of users to name their wired network. A poster on another forum has said it all: 'O, o M$, y u no make sense?'.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    Central IL
    Posts : 3,468
    Linux Mint 17.2


    Everyone knows you cannot use Home Group with XP. That is why I posted that link. First thing is to read through everything in a link that is posted. Second is to come back with any questions that you may have. Not cite that it is incorrect information, even though it is correct information to begin with.

    I am not even going to try to make sense of what that last verbiage was in post #4. Due to it has nothing to due with your question.

    Read through the link I posted, and it will work out fine for you.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Posts : 22
    win 8.1


    Quote Originally Posted by broe23 View Post
    I am not even going to try to make sense of what that last verbiage was in post #4. Due to it has nothing to due with your question.
    It has everything to do with my question. Sloppy work from MS prevented me from naming my own network, something that I could do in XP, Vista and Win 7. Fortunately I have just found a workaround (I think from this forum - I don't have my Win 8 notebook open at the moment) which allowed me to use regedit to easily rename the erroneous name plonked there through the efforts of a slack programmer. Many thanks to the forum for the assistance. I can now get on with finishing the setup of the new machine. I am hoping that with the same network name on all network PCs I might be able to get the Win 8 to see the XP. It is too late at night for me to find out.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    Central IL
    Posts : 3,468
    Linux Mint 17.2


    There is no sloppy work by Microsoft. If you read through the information in the link I posted, it states very clearly how to use Network shares in a mixed Windows environment.
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  8. #8


    Posts : 22
    win 8.1


    Looks like sloppiness to me to disallow the renaming of the user's own network after allowing it in previous Windows versions.

    As for the much-vaunted 'guide' from Microsoft that you keep referring to, step 2 doesn't work for me. Right-clicking on the network icon is dead as a dodo for me.

    This is typical. I would love to be given a dollar for every time I try to follow a guide from Microsoft or from another user and find that the PC I am on doesn't have the option in question or in this case clicking on something doesn't work. This will keep happening until Microsoft stops OEMs from interfering with Windows settings.

    Furthermore, because the Win 8.1 refuses to acknowledge my XP I can't print from it. Three printers and a scanner are attached to the XP. The only printer Win 8.1 can see is one attached to a Win 7 PC. Unless I can get this resolved, I will only be able to use the 8.1 for a limited range of tasks. Good thing I bought a cheap model.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9


    Central IL
    Posts : 3,468
    Linux Mint 17.2


    Again, there is nothing sloppy about how Microsoft did this. The guide does work, due to I have had to use it a few times. If you want something better, there is always Linux.

    As for printing from XP to a network shared printer, you would be best instead of having a printer connected to a computer, to go with a network capable printer, that connects either by Ethernet or by WiFi. If you do not want to go that route, you can get USB Network adapter for it.

    You really need to have the printer or scanner on one of the Windows 8.x or Windows 7 machines, or use the USB Network adapter, or setup a stand alone computer as a Printer/Scanner server.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10


    Posts : 22
    win 8.1


    I will just have to accept your opinion on the procedure, as my Win 8.1 installation won't allow me to follow it as instructed.

    Thanks for your printer and printing suggestions, but I am happy with my existing printer and scanner setup. It works well.

    I will try to get a couple of my guru mates to come around to see if they can tame the beast. I can use it to do a number of things, but just not printing.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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