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Chapter 20. The Heterogeneous Network > Networking with Windows 95, 98, Me, and...

Networking with Windows 95, 98, Me, and NT

If you have computers running older versions of Windows as well as XP, you'll very likely want to network them—if not permanently, at least long enough to transfer files from an old computer to a newer one. What most people quickly find out is that it's not as simple as you'd hope. While all versions of Windows use the same basic networking protocols to share files and printers, compatibility problems crop up more often than not. And while some of the problems are easily explained and fixed, others remain mysterious and intermittent. (We Windows users are used to that, aren't we?)

Protocol Issues

The most significant issue facing would-be Windows networkers is that starting with XP, Microsoft has changed the default networking protocol from NetBEUI to TCP/IP. Windows XP doesn't overtly offer NetBEUI as an option, while older versions of Windows installed NetBEUI by default, and often didn't install TCP/IP at all. Unless you take steps to give all of your computers one common protocol, they won't be able to talk to one another.


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