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Home Network issues XP and Vista

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Hi There,

I'm new to networking and decided that as I have 2 laptops running Vista and one desktop running XP I wanted to set up a network so that I could share files between the computers. I also have a wireless modem router (I am not up with the technical jargan but the modem is not connected to the phone line it is connected wirelessly) and it is a wireless router too. I have the Laptops connected wirelessly to the router and the desktop is connected via ethernet.

I have succecfully set up the network (I think!!!! It seems to be OK) with file sharing, but when I use say Laptop One to access the files on Laptop 2 it askes me for a username and password. I did not set up usernames or passwords. When I use Laptop 1 to access files on the desktop there is no problem and when I use the Desktop to access files on either Laptop it asks for the username and password. As I did not enter usernames and passwords, how can I find out what they are? If not how can I reset these to make it work?

The second thing I need to ask is what can I do to make sure nobody from the outside can access my network. I do have Windows Firewall activated, is this enough? What do I have to do as far as Private v's Public networks to ensure nobody gains access to my computers? Is Private v's public and issue on XP, if so how do I make the changes in XP as I have not seen any reference to public and private networks?

I hope my questions aren't too tedious as I am a network novice.
Thanks for your help.

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