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Previously connected workgroup computers could not see eachother..

I have 2 laptops and a desktop wirelessly connected to my router to access the internet. I also have a desktop configured to be a network storage device which is connected to the router with an ethernet cable. All of these are running Windows XP.
All of these computers were on a workgroup and were working just fine. We could all see eachother and access files, etc. Then all of a sudden all I could see on any of the computers is the computer itself, none of the other workgroup computers. The shortcut I put on the desktop of each computer to access the storage folder in my storage computer still opens up to the correct and updated information. So the computers could still talk to eachother, but we couldn't see eachother to make new links. I didn't change any hardware or install any new system upgrades that I can recall, just one day they couldn't see eachother anymore. All of these computers have virus protection software (3 have McAfee and 1 has Norton Internet Security) which was installed and running while the computers were successfully connected. No new anti-virus has been installed.
I read some similar posts on the internet where people suggested turning the firewalls off to see if that cleared the issue up, and it did.
Now my anti-virus software is screaming at me that I'm not secure, so I guess I'm a little worried. Does my router provide a firewall and does it provide enough protection that I do not need these additional firewalls? Is there any way that I can get the anti-virus software happy again? (Those big red X'd kind of get under my skin).
Thanks in advance for any advice!!
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  1. Best answer
    If you are networking computers always turn off all firewalls. Once you have the network running, re-enable firewalls and they will adapt to the new connections happily.
  2. Quote:
    If you are networking computers always turn off all firewalls. Once you have the network running, re-enable firewalls and they will adapt to the new connections happily.


    Wonderful! Worked like a charm!
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