How to Access Mac's Files on Your PC

        John Carter writes, "This handy tip is shamelessly stolen from here and edited by me for Lion and Windows 7 users."

How to access a Mac’s files on your PC

        You've got both Macs and PC's on your home network, and you want to share files between them. Yesterday we ran down the steps for mounting a Windows shared folder on the Mac. Today the tides have turned.
       Read on for the details on how to read and write files to a shared Mac folder from your PC.
       Enable Windows sharing. First, on your Mac, in System Preferences, click on Sharing. Under Sharing, check the box for “File Sharing." When File Sharing is turned on, it will look like this:

       Take note of the text on that dialog that reads "Windows users can access shared folders on this computer, and administrators all volumes, at \" Your address will be different, obviously, so write it down.
       The image above shows many more Shared Folders and Users than will be shown the first time. You need to add folders (click the + sign under Shared Folders) and select folders you want to share from the Finder window that pops up. Next, for each Shared Folder, add Users (click the + sign under Users) and select the permissions you want each user to have. The Users added must exist as a login on the Mac.
       Next, click on Options...   You should see this:

       If the first box is checked, other Macs will be able to see this Mac. If the second box is checked, other PCs will be able to see this Mac. For PC only access, only check the second box. If the top box is checked, you will see the following in the main window (even if the second box is also checked):

       The afp address shown is for Macs and is used only when just the top box is checked. If both boxes are checked or if only the second box is checked, replace afp with smb.
       Connect to your Mac from Windows. In Windows XP, from the Start menu, open the Run... dialog, and type the address you wrote down in the step above. Instead of the less-than-memorable IP address, you can use your computer's name, too. My Mac's name is nyx, so the sharing address I used is \nyxgina:

For Windows 7, type the IP address into the search bar:

       Or use the computer name: \Johns-MBPjcarter
       Windows will open a regular Explorer window that's peering in on your Mac user's home directory. If you have "show hidden files" enabled in Windows like I do, you'll see all of the Mac's hidden "dot" files and folders in the listing, like here:

And that's that! You're happily saving files to your Mac from your Windows PC. Isn't it nice when we all get along? Share your Mac and PC networking tips in the comments.— Gina Trapani