Why can't I access my homegroup?

There are a number of reasons why you might not be able to access your homegroup. First, try running a Fix It wizard to diagnose and fix common problems with accessing a homegroup.

To run a HomeGroup Fix It wizard

  1. Click this button:

    Picture of a Fix it button

    Fix this problem

  2. Click Run, and then follow the steps in the wizard.

If running the Fix It wizard doesn't solve the problem, refer to the following list:

  • Your computer might not belong to the homegroup yet, or it might have been removed. To join a homegroup, see Join a homegroup.

  • You might not be connected to the network that the homegroup is on. To connect to a network, follow these steps:

    • Click the network icon Picture of the wireless network icon on your taskbar, click the network you want to connect to, and then click Connect. You might be required to enter a network security key.

    After you've connected to the network, you can join a homegroup if one exists on your network.

  • The network location might not be set to Home. HomeGroup only works on home networks. To change your network location, follow these steps:

    1. Open Network and Sharing Center by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, and then clicking Control Panel. In the search box, type network, and then click Network and Sharing Center.

    2. Click Work network or Public network, and then click Home network.

      Picture of Network and Sharing Center
      Network and Sharing Center
  • Network discovery might be turned off. For more information, see Enable or disable network discovery.

  • The other computers in your homegroup might be turned off, hibernating, or not in the home; or they might have left the homegroup. For information on changing power saving options, see Change, create, or delete a power plan (scheme).

  • The other people in your homegroup might not have shared any libraries or folders. For more information, see Share libraries with your homegroup.

  • The homegroup password might have been changed on a computer that was then immediately turned off or went into a state of sleep or hibernation, but the new password wasn't immediately entered on the other computers in the homegroup. If this is the case, the new password won't be recognized on the other homegroup computers. To fix this problem, turn on the computer where the password was changed, and then enter the new password on the other computers.

If you still can’t access your homegroup, there might be a problem with your network. To run the Network troubleshooter, right-click the network icon (Picture of the wireless network icon or Picture of the wired network icon) in the notification area of your taskbar, and then click Troubleshoot problems.

Sometimes, restarting your computer or leaving the homegroup and then rejoining it might help you access the other computers on your homegroup.