If you’re interested in improving the security of your PC’s network and accessing network sharing, a good solution is making the switch from a public to a private connection. By default, the system will typically set your network to the Public setting. Why is this? The reason is simple. Windows doesn’t immediately trust any new network so it uses this setting to prevent sharing folders and devices with the network.
This security setting can be easily altered to gain access to some important features. When defining the type of a new network, it’s worth paying attention to your location as well as the purpose of that particular connection. Public networks, as you’ve probably guessed, are optimized for public areas such as coffee shops and shopping malls. File sharing is disabled because security is generally tighter.
In comparison, private networks refer to connections that you fully trust and use at home or work. These connections can be used to freely share files over the network or devices such as printers. Although the choice between making the network private or public is made when you initially establish the connection, that doesn’t mean you can’t modify it later as needed. Here’s how you do it in both Windows 10 and 11. The process is quite similar.
1. Go to Settings > Network & Internet
2. Select the type of connection from the left side
It doesn’t matter if you’re using Wi-Fi or have a wired Ethernet connection, you just need to find the name of your network. The one you’re currently connected to will be displayed on the right. Windows 11 users have a slightly different layout without the left side. You just need to navigate directly from the main section to your wired or wireless network.
3. Change from Public to Private under Network profile
Once you find the correct network connection that you wish to modify, all that’s required is to switch the first network profile setting. Make sure you only change to Private those networks that you fully trust. Now you will be able to enjoy unrestricted communication on the network with various devices.
The system activates network discoverability by default but you might not like that. It’s possible to further customize your settings by navigating to Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network and Sharing Center > Advanced sharing settings. If you don’t intend to share files through the network, it’s best to leave your connection profile to Public.