How to Fix File Not Sharing on Mac

File sharing is one of Mac’s features that allows you to easily share files and folders with other Macs on your network. However, there may be times that file sharing is not working on Mac.

If you are experiencing this issue, you’ve come to the right place. Let’s learn how to fix file sharing not working on Mac! 

Enable File Sharing

First, your file sharing may not work because it is not enabled on your Mac. This setting should be activated on both computers that want to activate file sharing.

To enable file sharing, do the following steps:

Click the Apple logo on the left side corner and go to “System Preferences”. Look for the folder “Sharing”, click it, and tick the box beside “File Sharing”.

File Not Sharing on Mac

If you want to select a specific folder to share, select the folder and tap the “+” sign on the bottom part of the screen. 

Under the Users column, ensure that the person you want to share the file with is listed. If not, add the user by clicking the “+” sign.

You can also change each user’s access level on the files you share. They can either Read/Write or Read-only. 

Close the settings window, and you’re done. 

Related: How to Fix ‘Shared with You’ Not Working on iPhone

Enable Guest User

If a guest user of your Mac wants to access your file, you should allow guest users to connect on the File Sharing feature. Be careful though, as enabling this will allow all Macs connected within the same network to view the shared folders. 

Here are the steps on how to enable guest users:

First, click the Apple logo on the left corner of your screen, then select “System Preferences”. From there, click “Users and Groups”.

Click the “lock icon” at the bottom to change the settings and type your Mac’s password. Click “Guest User” on the left column and check “Allow guest users to connect to shared folders”. 

File Not Sharing on Mac

Restart Your Mac

If file sharing is still not working after you’ve enabled file sharing and the guest user, the changes may not have been reflected yet on the system. It is recommended to restart your Mac or re-log into your account.


To restart your Mac, simply click the Apple logo and click “Restart”.

If you want to log out, click the Apple logo and select “Log Out (username)”. 

Check the Files/Folder Settings

If you try to open a file or folder but it says you do not have permission to view, it’s best to check the folder settings. Files in a shared folder don’t automatically grant full access to the folder’s content. 

To change the settings and access a folder with all the files in it, right-click on the folder in “System Preferences”, then go to “Sharing”.  Tick “Apply Permissions to Enclosed Items”.

Use Terminal to Repair File Sharing

Some users have reported a malfunction in file sharing on macOS High Sierra. If you are experiencing this similar problem, you can repair file sharing using Terminal by doing the procedure below:

First, open “Finder” and launch “Applications”. From there, open “Utilities” and launch “Terminal” app.

On the “Terminal” page, enter this command:

sudo /usr/libexec/configureLocalKDC.

Then, press “Enter”.

You will be asked to input your Mac password, then press “Enter”. To reflect the changes, exit the Terminal app and restart your computer.

To check if the issue was fixed, try connecting to the file sharing again. 

Share Files Via iCloud 

If you are still struggling with file sharing after doing the different methods above, consider using other file sharing methods such as iCloud. 

Below is how you can share files via iCloud:

First, open “Finder” and select “iCloud Drive” from the menu on the left sidebar. Right-click the file you want to share and then hover “Share”. You can either copy the link or manage the shared file. When you choose the latter, you can change who can access the file and their level of permission.

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 If a file is on the iCloud drive, you can also share it via airdrop, message, mail, or notes. 

Related: How to Use Private Relay on iCloud


If you have multiple Macs connected to a single network, file sharing can come in handy. However, there are times that you may experience issues with this feature. If this happens to you, just follow the methods that we recommended above, and the file sharing feature will be working properly again.

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