How To Turn On Network Discovery In Windows 11 – Step By Step Guide #2022

One of the most important aspects of Windows is Network Discovery. Network Discovery helps to transfer data over a local network from one Windows machine to another. This eliminates the need to move the data to a backup memory stick before restarting the operation on the target machine. Furthermore, this peer-to-peer networking option not only makes data transfer quicker and more comfortable. It also ensures that only the designated recipient receives the information. You can also grant restricted access to sensitive information. Today, this article will explain how to turn on Network Discovery in Windows 11.

Thankfully, the procedure of turning on Network Discovery stays the same in Windows 11.

From the Settings App, enable Network Discovery

When linked to private networks, Network Discovery is enabled by default. However, because not every public network is secure, it is disabled by default. Furthermore, your PC may have been set up such that Network Discovery is disabled by default, even for private networks.

  • To do so, visit the Start Menu and press the ‘Settings’ button beneath the ‘Pinned applications’ area to proceed. Alternatively, look for it in the menu by typing ‘Settings.’
  • Now, on the left sidebar of the Settings window, select the ‘Network & internet’ button to continue.
  • To proceed, tap the ‘Wi-Fi’ tile in the right area of the Settings window to turn on Network Discovery.


  • Hit on the connected network icon, which is located just beneath the ‘Wi-Fi’ tile.
  • On the following page, you have to select the ‘Network profile type’. And if not already chosen, choose the radio option before ‘Private Network’ to enable Network Discovery.
  • In the event, you can’t locate any other devices on a network, switch on Network Discovery. To continue, choose the ‘Network & internet’ button on the left sidebar of the Settings window.
  • Find and hit the ‘Advanced network options’ button in the right area of the window.
  • Select the ‘Advanced sharing settings’ icon underneath the ‘More settings’ area on the ‘Advanced network options’ page.
  • Furthermore, on the next page, look for the ‘Network Discovery’ tile and, if it isn’t already switched on, press the toggle switch to turn it on.
  • Seek the ‘File and printer sharing’ tile directly beneath it and click on the toggle switch to turn it on.
  • In case, you want to enable Network Discover for Ethernet connections, go to the Settings window and select the ‘Network & internet’ option from the left sidebar.
  • Afterward, find and hit the ‘Ethernet’ tile in the right portion of the window.
  • Finally, on the ‘Ethernet’ settings page, choose the radio button next to ‘Private network’ to enable Network Discovery for that local connection.
  • To make your PC discoverable on the network and transmit and receive files, make sure you’ve enabled ‘Network Discover’ and ‘File and Printer sharing’ from the advanced sharing options for private networks.

The procedure to activate Network Discovery for Public Networks

There may be times when you are linked to public Wi-Fi or Ethernet, but you still need Network Discovery to exchange files without altering the network category. Fortunately, you can also enable Network Discovery for public connections.

  • To enable Network Discovery on Public Networks, go to the Settings window and select the ‘Network & Internet’ option from the left sidebar.
  • In order to continue, find and hit the ‘Advanced network settings’ icon in the right part of the network.
  • The next step involves, scrolling to the bottom of the ‘Advanced sharing settings’ icon under the ‘More settings’ area on the next window.
  • Search and hit the ‘Public Networks’ tile on the ‘Advanced sharing options’ screen to enlarge the area. Once enlarged, select the ‘Network sharing’ tile and switch it to the ‘On’ position by clicking the toggle switch on the far right side of the tile. Then, immediately under it, go to the ‘File and printer sharing’ tile and change it to the ‘On’ position by clicking the power switch on the tile.

This is it, you’ve successfully enabled Network Discovery for public networks.

On a local network, how do you share a folder?

If your Windows PC has Network Discovery set on, you may effortlessly share a file or document with other Windows network devices. Furthermore, if you do not want people to edit the shared documents, you can easily pick who you wish to reveal the folder with, as well as the tailored access privileges to the contents.

To share a folder with machines on your local network, quick Access Explorer and navigate to the folder you want to share.

  • When you’ve found the folder or files you want to share, right-click on their logo to bring up the context menu. To continue, pick the ‘Properties’ option from the context menu. You may also access the properties by pressing the Alt+Enter buttons on your keyboard simultaneously.
  • Thereafter, select the ‘Sharing’ tab from the ‘Properties’ box. After which find and press the ‘Share’ option on the ‘Sharing’ tab.
  • Next, select the dropdown menu under the ‘Choose people to share with’ area in the newly-created window. Then pick the ‘Everyone’ option from the drop-down menu. Then, at the bottom right corner of the page, click the ‘Share’ button.
  • Whenever a folder is shared, all other users connected to the same local network can discover it on their File Explorer (This PC) interface. To end the session, hit the ‘Done’ option on the next display.

In Windows 11, how can you deactivate network discovery?

You must stop network discovery if you really want your Windows 11 PC to be unfindable in a network. Utilize the instructions below to do so:

  • First of all, you need to launch the Settings application.
  • Select Network & Internet in the left column when Windows Settings appears on your PC.
  • Pick Wi-Fi or Ethernet that you wish to make unreachable on the public network on the right side of “Network & Internet.” For example, my PC is linked to the internet through Wi-Fi, and I’d like to disable Network Discovery.
  • Then, on the Wi-Fi settings page, pick the Wi-Fi properties tile.
  • Next, pick the option for a public network.

That’s it. This profile will prevent your device from being found on the network.





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