For Linux Users: Why Not Samba?
If you don't have the kind of limited functionality requirements that make it possible for Samba to work right out of the box for you, Samba is a pain to keep up and frequently more of a pain to keep running. I regard Samba as more suitable for professional server administrators than it is for a typical Linux desktop user.
And Opera Unite will make it easy to do things you can't do with a Samba setup (e.g., a streaming media server).
Here’s the downside: To provide service that's on whenever your computer is, you will have to open Opera automatically every time you start your computer if you want files to be automatically available to other authorized users. That's easy enough to set up in /etc/rc.local or in your distro's Session Manager. But, if you only want files available when you choose them to be when you are physically at your computer or running it via remote control, it's not a downside.
You can also set up Opera Unite to not start your web services by default and simply act like a browser until you tell it otherwise. Or, if you're accessing your computer remotely, just start Opera Unite via remote and access your files. Or, you can start a server-only Opera Unite instance that starts automatically on startup when they finally have that functionality working. And if you want a browser session for regular web surfing, simply open a new instance of Opera as usual.
In my case, I have a server instance that opens on startup (services have to be started manually) and a regular webbrowser instance that opens from the taskbar.