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A common question of a lot of Windows users is how they can access the shares on their DiskStation without entering a username and a password (aka: Pass through authentication). It’s tempting to use accounts without a password, but please DO USE PASSWORDS on your accounts. Preferably a strong password. Passwords aren’t there to nag you, but to protect your precious data. Use passwords on your desktop computer and use passwords on your DiskStation. Read more about securing your data here. You’ll also learn why you should not use administrative accounts for regular daily use.

Now that has been told, we’ll now look into how to create some convenience in the use of passwords. You weren’t reading this post if you are not looking for a solution to deal with the credentials request when you want to access a share on your DiskStation. It’s assumed you have the Windows file service and the User home service are enabled on your DiskStation.

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Basically this is because your DiskStation has not found the credentials of the currently logged on user of the desktop computer. Either the username isn’t found or the password is incorrect. The first time Windows tries to access a share on your DiskStation, it automatically presents the credentials of the current user. When these credentials are rejected by your DiskStation, Windows will ask for credentials to try again.

The solution for this is simple when you want to use the same username on your desktop computer as on your DiskStation: make sure the username and password for each user you want to grand access to your DiskStation are the same. (The username is not case sensitive.) If you use the same username on your DiskStation and your desktop computer, make sure the password on the DiskStation and your desktop computer are the same.

If, for any reason, your username and/or password of your DiskStation and desktop computer do not match to each other, you can use a different approach. This is where the Credential Manager of Windows helps out.

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Start the Credential Manager.

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Select the Windows Credentials and click Add a Windows credentials.

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Enter in the address field \\{hostname} where {hostname} represents the host name of your DiskStation. In this example the host name is VIRTUALDSM51. The fields User name and Password are populated with the values of the account you’d like to use from your DiskStation. (In this example the account administrator is being used. Remember what is said about using administrative accounts earlier.) Click the OK button to store the credential in the Credential Manager. You can close the Credential Manager now.

If you choose the approach of using the same account on your desktop computer and your DiskStation or you choose to use the approach of using the Credential Manager, in either cases the result of browsing to the DiskStation in the Windows Explorer to \\{hostname} will result in showing the visible shares of your DiskStation without asking for credentials. (Depending on the credentials of your DiskStation being used.)

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Sometimes an application adds a local account that is also shown in the Windows welcome screen or suddenly makes windows asking you to select an account by presenting you the welcome screen you haven’t had before. To restore the auto logon feature, you can read a previous post here. It is however possible to suppress an account appearing on the welcome screen.

  1. Start the Registry Editor
  2. Go to:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\SpecialAccounts\UserList
  3. Right-click an empty space in the right pane and select New –> DWORD Value
  4. Name the new value exactly as the Username
  5. Leave the Value data as 0
  6. Close the registry editorIf you want to enable this user again on the Welcome Screen, either double-click the Username value, and change the Value data to 1, or delete the Username

The reason your computer is asking for a password is not to annoy you, but to secure your computer and your data. So using a blank password is a very BAD practice to login to your computer. If you are the only user of your computer and don’t want to enter your password every time you booting up your PC, you can consider to make your computer automatically logging in. Your resources are still protected with a password, but you don’t have to enter it. Be aware that everybody who has physically access to the computer, can access your resources with your account.

  1. If you use Windows 7 or 8, start netplwiz. All other Windows versions start control userpasswords2.
  2. The following Window pops up:

    Uncheck the option ‘Users must enter a username and password to use this computer’ and press the OK-button.
  3. A second windows pops over the first one:

    Enter an existing local user account name and accompanying password and confirm that password in the last field. Press the OK-button to persist the changes. Both poped up windows will be closed.
  4. The next time you boot your computer it will logon for you without entering your password.

There is a very annoying problem when you install VMware (or VirtualBox) on Vista (and Windows Server 2008 and above). When you install VMware it adds a few virtual network adapters. For various reasons, these adapters are listed in the Network Sharing Center as being on an “Unidentified network (Public network)” and all of the features under Sharing and Discovery are turned off .

Here is the best fix I’ve found in the VMware forum:

  1. Run regedit
  2. Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Class\{4D36E972-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}
  3. Underneath you should see several keys labeled 0000, 0001, 0002 etc… Look through these and find the VMware adapters. They will probably be near the end of the list if you just installed VMware.
  4. For each of the VWware adapters, add a new DWORD value named “*NdisDeviceType” and set it to 1 (make sure you get the * at the beginning of the name, I missed that the first time).
  5. Disable and Enable each of the network adapters.

That should take care of the problem. Setting *NdisDeviceType to 1 causes Windows to ignore the device when it does network identification.

It turns out that the same issue occurs when using other hypervisors (i.e. VirtualBox). The strategy is the same. Find the adapters created by the used hypervisor in the registry key mentioned above and add the *NdisDeviceType DWORD with a value of 1.

Source: Rob Boek