Maintaining file synchronization on folders and directories over a network has been one of the challenges of systems administrators since the first consumer-grade networking operating systems hit the market in the early 1990s. As more computers become networked or cloud-enabled, and the default assumptions about computing hardware shift from “one computer” to “one or two computers, a tablet, and a smartphone,” the need to keep data coordinated among several devices has shifted down from the programmer and software developer level to the casual computer user.
The earliest solution to the coordination and synchronization problem is a dedicated network share. It’s also the most flexible solution, but requires the most effort to set up. On a Windows Server network, you can specify workgroups and home groups and restrict access by username and authentication processes.