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Key Points

  • To set up a network with Windows XP, you need a network adapter for each computer.

  • If you use standard network adapters, you must plug them into a hub or switch, using standard patch cables. On a two-computer network, you can use a crossover cable instead.

  • Windows XP automatically configures basic settings for your network, allowing computers on the network to communicate with one another. To finish configuring your network, be sure to run the Network Setup Wizard.

  • Sharing an Internet connection requires that you install a router or set up Internet Connection Sharing on a computer running Windows XP.

  • To set up a workgroup, all computers on the network must use the same workgroup name.

  • Windows XP automatically configures wireless network adapters.

  • To troubleshoot Windows networking problems, first check for physical problems, then make sure that the TCP/IP settings are correct.

  • By default, Windows XP uses Simple File Sharing; Windows XP Professional users can opt for the more complex classic sharing instead.

  • You enable and disable Simple File Sharing in the Advanced Settings list box on the View tab of the Folder Options dialog box.

  • With Simple File Sharing, you can share folders with all users of your computer, all users on your network, or with nobody (that is, you can make certain folders private).

  • You can restrict folders that you share over the network so that other network users can only read files but not modify them in any way.

  • When you share a folder, you’re sharing all its files, all its subfolders, and all the files and subfolders they contain.

  • The Shared Documents folder provides a convenient place to share documents with everyone who logs on to your computer.

  • To share a folder or printer with other network users, you must enable network access to your computer; the easiest (and safest) way is to run the Network Setup Wizard.

  • To share a folder, open it and then click Share This Folder (under File And Folder Tasks in the task pane). If the task pane isn’t visible, right-click the folder icon and choose Sharing And Security from the shortcut menu.

  • To share a printer, select it in the Printers And Faxes folder and then click Share This Printer (under Printer Tasks in the task pane).

  • To find a shared folder or shared printer on another computer on your network, open My Network Places.

  • To use a shared printer, install it (choosing Network Printer in the Add Printer Wizard) or connect to it from the shortcut menu (right-click it in My Network Places and choose Connect).



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