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A typical device not supporting SMB 2 or newer are older Fritz Box routers (popular in Germany), and if you try to access a USB hard disk attached to act as a NAS, you'll be unable to reach the router trying to connect to it. Click on "Change advanced sharing settings" on the left pane and expand the "Private" sharing profile and make sure that Turn on network discovery and Turn on file and printer sharing are selected.
Once I added the same "Full name" to the host, everything worked as expected.
My guess is that the problem was caused because some folders had been created by one user on the host machine, and others (that I couldn't access) were created by the other.
Now, find out the hostname of the W8 box by typing this into the Run command box: Here is a workaround.
Sometimes Network Discovery under windows simply won't work, but the network is present, just inaccessible.
After changing those settings, everything started working as expected.
It was trivial to change the Network 3 connection to be private (Windows I, click on Internet access, then View Connection Settings at the top, where I could Select Network 3 and turn on "Find Devices and Content").
When typing the \w8 in windows explorer I get a message that says If I enter \[w8's ip address] either in windows explorer or in the start menu I get the same results as above.
I made sure that Client for Microsoft Networks was installed and checked on W7 and w8 for the Local Area Connection, as well as the connection to the Internet Service Provider. I made sure all these services were running on both w7 and w8 UPn P Device Host was not running on w7, but starting it made no difference.
This article is what fixed it for me: I had what I THOUGHT was the same user name on the XP (host) machine, but couldn't connect to certain folders on it.
It turns out that although the "Full name" was the same on both PC (in Admin, Local Users and Groups, Users), the "Name" was different.