Sharing folders on macOS enables other devices on the same network, whether they're using macOS, Windows, or Linux, to access your files. This is particularly useful when collaborating on projects, sharing multimedia, or even providing access to important documents within a local network.

Apple's macOS integrates seamless file sharing capabilities via the File Sharing option located within System Preferences. By default, macOS uses both AFP (Apple Filing Protocol) and SMB (Server Message Block) to ensure cross-platform compatibility. With just a few clicks, you can set up a folder to be accessible from any device in your network.

Steps to configure folder sharing on macOS:

  1. Click on the Apple icon in the top-left corner of your screen and select System Preferences.
  2. Navigate to the Sharing pane.
  3. In the left sidebar, check the box next to File Sharing.
  4. Click the “+” button under the Shared Folders list to add a folder you wish to share. Navigate to the desired folder and click Add.
  5. (Optional) To specify user access permissions, select the folder in the Shared Folders list, then click the “+” button under the Users list. Add users and assign their access rights.
  6. (Optional) To configure additional options, click the Options button. Here, you can choose the protocols (SMB or AFP) used for sharing. Ensure “Share files and folders using SMB” is checked for cross-platform compatibility.
  7. Once configured, the folder will be accessible to other devices on the same network. Ensure you note down the displayed Computer Name or IP address to access the shared folder from other devices.
  8. To stop sharing a folder, simply select it from the Shared Folders list and click the “-” button.

Remember to always exercise caution when sharing folders, especially when they contain sensitive information. Always make sure your network is secure and trust the users you're granting access to.

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