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Configuring File and Printer Sharing on a Mac computer

File and Printer Sharing is an operating system feature on your Mac® computer where all the computers in your network can send communications to a computer or send print jobs to a printer.  All your computers should be part of the main network for File and Printer Sharing to work properly.
 
• File Sharing - This allows easy access and sharing of files and folders on computers that belong to the same network.
• Printer Sharing - Allows computers that are part of the main network to send print jobs to a printer connected wired or wirelessly to your computer.
 
 
Configuring File Sharing

You can share your entire Mac with others or limit specific users’ access to only certain folders.  Follow the instructions below to know how to configure file sharing on your Mac computer.

NOTE:  Apple
® File System (APFS) volumes cannot be shared over Apple Filing Protocol (AFP).

Step 1:
Click on the Apple menu.  Then, go to System Preferences > Sharing.
 
Step 2:
Select File Sharing.
 
Step 3:
Select the folder you want to share by clicking the add User-added image button below the Shared Folders list.
 
Step 4:
Locate the folder you want to share and select it.  Then, click Add.

 
Step 5:
Control-click the name of the folder.  Then, choose Advanced Options and set your desired options.  Click OK.

Step 6:
By default, any user setup on your Mac computer in Users & Groups options can connect over the network.  If a user has an administrator account, that user can access your entire Mac.

To set the access for specific users or groups to a folder, select the folder in the Shared Folders list and click the add User-added image button at the bottom of the Users list.  Then, perform any of the following.
  • Add users or groups from all users of your Mac - To do this, go to Users & Groups and select one or more names.  Click Select.
  • Add users or groups from everyone on your network - To do this, select network users or network groups in the list on the left, and one or more names in the list on the right.  Click Select.
  • Add someone from your contacts and create a sharing-only account for them - To do this, select contacts in the list on the left, and a name in the list on the right.  Click Select, create a password, and click Create Account.

Step 7:
You may also specify the file system permissions for a user.  To do this, select the user in the Users list, click the triangles next to the username, and then select any of the following:
  • Read & Write - This allows the user to view and copy files to and from the folder.
  • Read Only - The user can view what is in the folder but cannot copy files to it.
  • Write Only (Drop Box) - The user can copy files to the folder but cannot view its contents.
  • No Access - The user cannot view or copy files from the folder.
Configuring Printer Sharing

In configuring the printer sharing feature, the computers must be connected to the same local network as your Mac.  Follow the instructions below to know how to configure printer sharing on your Mac computer.

IMPORTANT:  The Mac users must be running OS X® 10.4 or later.

 
Step 1:
Click on the Apple menu.  Then, go to System Preferences > Sharing.
 
Step 2:
Select Printer Sharing.

 
Step 3:
Under Printers, select the printer you want to share.
 
Step 4:
By default, sharing is set to Everyone.  This means all the users on your network can access the printer.  To restrict the access of other users, click the add User-added image button below the Users list, then perform any of the following:
  • Select a user from Users & Groups - This includes all the users of your Mac.
  • Select a user from Network Users or Network Groups - This includes everyone on your network.
  • Select a person from your contacts - Create a password for the person you selected from your contacts and click Create Account.

NOTE:  When people are added to the Users list, the access to the shared printer is reset to No Access for users on your network.  To provide access to Everyone again, click the triangles and select Can Print.

QUICK TIP:  If you want to remove a user, select the name and click Remove.

For more configuration instructions on your Mac computer, go to the Apple support site.

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