Access XP share without password, from Vista

Question: Tonight I was trying to access, via Vista, a folder that was shared from a Windows XP Pro machine. I kept getting a username/password prompt, but there isn’t a password set on any of users! How can I access the folder?

Answer: by default Windows XP Professional won’t allow network users shared folder access without a password. So here’s how to allow network access using a blank password:

First, on the XP computer that is sharing the folder make sure you have both the appropriate “Sharing/Permissions” and the “Security”  settings set for the folder. To check those, right click on folder and check those two tabs (also make sure “Simple Folder Sharing” isn’t turned on or those tabs won’t be visible).


  • Go to the start menu and select the “Run”  option, and then type gpedit.msc and click “OK”
  • Navigate to Computer Configuration / Windows Settings / Security Settings / Local Policies / Security Options
  • Double click on Accounts: Limit local account use of blank passwords to console login only.
  • Select the option next to Disabled and click “OK”

This worked for me, so I hope this helps you too!

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