Microsoft has both improved and simplified home networking and the ability to share resources between computers in Windows 7 with Home Groups.
Inspired by the much-parodied Windows 7 launch party video, Robert Strohmeyer hosted a Windows 7 launch party of his own– including cake and party hats– where he demonstrates step-by-step how easy it is to create a Windows 7 Home Group and manage the files and resources that are shared with the group.
My one big complaint about Home Groups is the lack of inclusivity or backward compatibility. Home Groups are great assuming that every system on your home network is running Windows 7, but Home Groups don’t work with Windows Vista or Windows XP. It would be nice if Microsoft would develop some sort of standalone application to enable prior versions of Windows to participate in Home Groups.