Windows XP Help

Networking with a Server

If you have more than two computers networked then you need to install a Hub or a Switch box installed. The Hub or Switch will have 4, 8, 16, 32 or more ports in which to plug in computers using straight through UTP (Unshielded Twisted Pair) cables. You can add more hubs via the Link port on the hub. Then all you need to do is set up a Local Area Network between the two computers.

You have a choice of three protocols you can use: Netbeui, IPX/SPX and TCP/IP (which is preferred).

Netbeui is Microsoft's early Workgroup type protocol, first used by Windows for Workgroups, it is very simple to install and requires no comfiguration. The disadvantage is that its very old, its not installed by default on XP and its non-routable, so its no good on a Wide Area Network.

IPX/SPX is the protocol used by Novell Netware until recently and is sometimes used by some games. Only requires a little bit of configuration such as the Frame type but thats it.

TCP/IP is the best protocol and is widely used especially for 'Business Class Networks' and the Internet. It requires more configuration than the above protocols but its has better support.

Installing a Local Area Network Connection

1. Install your network card.
2. Start, Settings, Network Connections
3. Select Create a new connection
4. Select Set up a home or small office network
5. Click Finish
6. The Network Setup Wizard will start
7. Read the checklist
8. Select Other from the list
9. Select This computer belongs to a network that does not have an internet connection
10. Enter a description and a name for your computer e.g PETERSPC (this must be unique)
11. Enter a Workgroup name. By default, XP uses XPHOME, on old windows it may be WORKGROUP. Make sure all computers use the same workgroup name or else will not be able see other shares on the network easily.
12. The computer will then set up the connection. This may take a few minutes.
13. At this point you can create a Network Setup disk on other PCs, use the Windows XP CD or just finish the Wizard.
14. If you select Finish, you then need to reboot.


1. Start, Settings, Network Connections
2. Double click your Local Area Connection and select Properties
3. On the General Property page:
Connect Using: <Name of Network card>
Connection using the following items: Client for Microsoft Networks, File and Printer Sharing for Microsoft Networks, QoS Packet Scheduler, Internet Protocol (TCP/IP)
Show icon in notification area: Yes

The Client for Microsoft Networks is required for connectivity to Microsoft Servers and other Windows PCs so that you can connect to other PCs, browse for them in My Network Places and so on. This uses Remote Procedure Calls (RPCs).
File and Printer Sharing is required if you want to share folders and data between PCs. This actually uses SMB (Server Message Block) protocol which allows computers to transparently share files over a network. It is also used with Unix, Linux and MacOS X.
Qos Packet Scheduling is a Quality of Service service to improve network traffic between computers.

Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) is the main protocol used to transmit data between PCs (it replaces the old NetBeui protocol in older Windows). By default, it is set up for DHCP, so an IP address is automatically assigned by a DHCP Server, such as a Windows 2000 Server. If you do not have a DHCP Server, then you should assign an IP address. An IP address is made up of 4 dotted numbers: Each number can be from 0 to 255. IP addresses are usually assigned by the network administrator at a work place, but for private or home users then you should use Private IP addresses, i.e. 10.x.x.x or 192.168.x.x.
PCs with Windows Server installed should always use a Static IP address, Clients, such as XP Pro, should use DHCP addresses wherever possible.
Next we have the Subnet mask, if your network is split is different LANs (or subnets), then you use this value to determine which part of the IP address is the Subnet and which is the Host or PC number. For example, for, the first 3 numbers (10.0.0) is the sub net and the last number (4) is the host number.
The Default Gateway is the IP address of the router to allow you to access other LANs or subnets. If you only have one LAN then this should be left blank, it should be the IP address of the router or server (which is also routing).
The DNS Servers are names of the DNS servers usually provided a Windows,Unix,Netware DNS Server or a router. See administrator for the IP addresses of your DNS servers.
If you click Advanced button you can modify or Add additional IP addresses, DNS servers and WINS servers if necessary. You can also change TCP/IP filtering for the Firewall on individual TCP and UDP ports.


Here you can enable/disable authentication for access to Wireless (802.1x type) networks and the type of encryption/authentication used (EAP, MD5 or Smart Card). You can also authenticate as computer when computer info is available and as a guest if computer information is unavailable.


Here you can enable the Internet Firewall Connection, this is provided mainly for Internet access and will prevent outside users from gaining access to your computer over the network. It does not prevent unauthorised outgoing internet data.To make full use of this, first make sure your Windows XP is updated regularly with the Security Updates from Microsoft's update site, and use programs such as Ad-aware to find and remove 'spy' software that may get installed on your computer which sends information to companies. For more advanced Firewalls, use something like Norton Personal Firewall, Mcafee Firewall or ZoneAlarm etc.

Adding your PC to a Windows 2000/2003 Domain

To add your PC to a Domain, you need to have Windows XP Pro as XP Home does not support joining a Domain (it is possible to attach to some resources although you have to authenticate each time). Joining a domain has several advantages over a Workgroup:

1. All usernames and passwords are stored in one place. You can use the same user and password no matter which computer you logon to as it comes from one place. In a Workgroup, you have to set up a new user and password for each computer.
2. Administration is easier as users can be combined into groups and groups can be given permissions to access certain files, folders and printers.
3. You can run a login script to auto matically set up drives and printers to resources from any computer.

To join a domain:

1. Load System Control Panel (or Properties of My Computer)
2. Click on Computer Name tab
3. The current computer name (which must be unique) and Workgroup/Domain is displayed.

4. Click on Change button.
5. Select Domain and enter name of the Domain to join.

6. You will be prompted with a user with permissions to add your computer to the domain (provided by administrator of the domain).
7. Reboot

You can manage users and groups on a 2000/2003 domain by installing the Admin Pack from a Windows 2003 (.NET) CD or from Microsoft's website on a Windows XP Pro PC. You cannot use the Windows 2000 tools on XP.

Sharing files and folders over a Network

1. In Windows XP Home, you are limited to sharing your Private data in your Document folder or the Shared Folders used by All Users. With Windows XP Pro and on Servers you can share just about any folder or even an entire drive.
2. To share a folder, select a folder, right click and select Sharing and Security.
3. Then tick box to Share this folder.

4. Then click on Permissions. By default, Everyone will only have Read access.

5. Change the permissions to add more rights such as Change to have read/write/modify rights or Full Control to read/write and change permissions.
6. You can all Add or Remove additional users and groups to have rights over the share.
7. If you click on the Security tab you can specify rights for users and groups on the files and folders. The share and NTFS rights combined give effective permissions, and those combined will provide the most restrictive permissions. For example, if a user has full control for NTFS rights, and read for Share rights, their effective rights are Read only.

Adding your PC to a Novell Netware network

You need to install the Client for Novell Networks from either the Windows XP Pro CD or install the latest Client from Novell's website at
When installing the client, check to make sure whether the client is to use IPX or IP protocols or both (check with your Novell admin to see which protocols to install).
Also, if the PC is not joining a domain, then also install the Novell Workstation Manager, which is need to manage and setup local XP users and profiles for you when you login to a PC.

You can manage Netware users and groups using the Admin32.exe from SYS:PUBLIC\WIN32 folder on a Netware server or install the ConsoleOne tool from Novell's website.

Using your PC with a Unix or Linux Server

For your PC to work with Unix or Linux servers, then you need to have DNS Servers installed so that you can connect to Unix/Linux servers by name (rather than IP address). Also, the Unix or Linux servers should have SMB enabled so that you can connect to shared folders on the server. Your PC should always use TCP/IP as its main protocol (not Netbeui) and enable File and Print Sharing. No other additional configuration is necessary.