With Windows Vista Microsoft launched a new networking feature that made it really to share music, videos and photos between Windows devices called HomeGroup. HomeGroup was very handy for sharing content between your family’s Windows devices on your home network without having to understand the complexities of Windows Network sharing. Nowadays with cloud storage and apps there is less need for HomeGroup and so Microsoft have killed off the feature.

With the latest Redstone build of Windows 10 Homegroup is no longer available with Microsoft recommending you use cloud sharing or the share function in Windows 10. I know most people won’ miss it but I know a few people that still use it for sharing media (included recorded tv files). An interesting side note is that while writing our Windows 10 book I noticed that Microsoft never seemed to settle on the correct capitation for HomeGroup, I have seen Homegroup, Home Group, home group and what it’s supposed to be HomeGroup.

Here is what Microsoft say about HomeGroup:

A note about HomeGroup: Easily connecting to and sharing the important pieces of your digital life with those who matter most has never been easier with today’s Modern PCs and the cloud. Whether it’s connecting PCs and printers on your home network via the Share functionality in Windows or using OneDrive to share a photo album of your last vacation, Windows 10 makes connecting multiple devices and sharing content streamlined and simple. And it’s because of that evolution that with today’s build you’ll start to see us retire the HomeGroup service. HomeGroup was terrific for the pre-cloud and pre-mobile era, but today this functionality is built right into Windows 10 and apps. Starting with this build, the HomeGroup service is no longer operational in Windows 10. The user profile used for sharing and the file/folder/printer shares will continue to work.

Here are recommended alternatives to HomeGroup for you to get the best file-sharing experience in Windows 10 going forward:

File Storage:

OneDrive is a cloud-first, cross-device storage and collaboration platform for all of the pieces of data that matter most in your life ā€“ like your files, your photos, your videos, and more.

OneDrive Files On-Demand takes cloud file storage a step further, allowing you to access all your files in the cloud without having to download them and use storage space on your device.

Share Functionality: For those who prefer not to use the Cloud to connect their devices, the Share functionality for folders and printers allows you to see the available devices and connect them to and from other PCs on your home network.

Easier Connection: No more remembering cryptic HomeGroup passwords in order to connect to another PC. You can now simply connect through your Microsoft Account email address across devices.

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