Shared Resources

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What Does Shared Resources Mean?

Shared resources, also known as network resources, refer to computer data, information, or hardware devices that can be easily accessed from a remote computer through a local area network (LAN) or enterprise intranet. Successful shared resource access allows users to operate as if the shared resource were on their own computer. The most frequently used shared network environment objects are files, data, multimedia and hardware resources like printers, fax machines and scanners.


Techopedia Explains Shared Resources

Shared LAN points are used by a variety of system resources, such as hard drives, printers, scanners and network cards.

File and printer sharing occur via two network communication mechanisms: peer-to-peer (P2P) sharing and the client-server network model.

Sharing network resources requires abiding by certain constraints, as follows:

  • Security: Organizations present ongoing opportunities for unauthorized shared resources. Security mechanisms should be implemented to provide efficient parameters.
  • Compatibility: Various client-server operating systems may be installed, but the client must have a compatible OS or application to access shared resources. Otherwise, the client may encounter issues that create communication delays and requires troubleshooting.
  • Mapping: Any shared OS hardware drive, file or resource may be accessed via mapping, which requires a shared destination address and naming conventions.
  • File Transfer Protocol (FTP) and File Sharing: FTP is not affected by shared resources because the Internet is FTP’s backbone. File sharing is an LAN concept.

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Margaret Rouse
Senior Editor
Margaret Rouse
Senior Editor

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.