After reading 100's of posts on various boards to get my network shares working properly I almost threw in the towel. Nothing I read anywhere worked.
BUT I tried a few simple ideas of my own and BAM! IT'S ALL WORKING!!
I'll explain what I did and hopefully something here can help some other once frustrated chaps like myself. Now I am using a VISTA desktop, (similar enough to win7), and I have about 14 shares setup on 15 1TB drives.(some internal, most external). I DONT allow EVERYONE ACCESS, NOR ANONYMOUS ACCESS, nor "media sharing". My shares can only be accessed with a username and password. (which is how you should WANT it, any other way is insecure and opens to many security holes.
Anyway, the MAIN key for me, was going into settings on WDLIVE & turning "AUTO LOGIN to network share" to "OFF
". If this is NOT turned off it seems you are NEVER prompted for authentication of any sort. Now when u go to File management or "Network Shares" you should be prompted with "account" and "password" fields. Here you can firstly try using your regular login on your pc/server and your password. What I did though was create a dedicated account for the WDLIVE, IE:a NEW user name with password on my pc/server. Then on each folder I wanted to share, I selected "properties", then "share" tab, then "advanced sharing". Check "share this folder". Then "permissions", then "add", and enter the name of the new user acct. you just created, then select "OK". I then highlight "everyone" and click "REMOVE". Then hit apply and ok. That's it. Any folders you share in that manner will only be accessible for "read" access AND only accessible with that username and password you just created above. That is the same username and password u enter into WDLIVE for network share access.
The only other settings to confirm are the following.
1- Make sure windows firewall is off.
2- In "Networking and Sharing Center" on server/desktop/laptop I have "network discovery" and "file sharing" set to "ON".
3- Remainder or other 4 options below "sharing & discovery" set to "OFF".
**Note: I've read alot of posts referring to intermittent or lost network file access after working fine. I've experienced this often as a result of the router becoming overloaded or running out of memory. Running p2p or torrents will definitely cause this sometimes. The same can occur on your file server or windows OS as there are various limits on connections etc. The usual fix is a disconnect/reconnect of power to router first, if that isnt successful then a reboot of NAS or Fileserver/Desktop.
(In addition, I personally feel "static" IP's seem to work a bit more reliably.)