Network and Sharing

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This is a general Microsoft Windows XP overview of some Network items, and folder sharing.

User Accounts

Start and Control Panel

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The Control Panel has TWO(2) Views - Category and Classic

Control Panel - Category View

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Control Panel - Classic View

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Both views have - User Accounts - double click 'User Accounts' -

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New User and Passwords

The above Users Accounts window is used to add, delete, or change any and all user accounts. To add a new User and Password -

FIRST, a password MUST be added to the 'Administrator' account, and some name, usually the Company owner's name, must be added to this 'special' account. Only then should other 'user' accounts be created.

This 'special' account should ONLY then be used to add new programs, or delete programs from the machine, and some other 'administrative' tasks ...

All other machine users should be given what is called a 'limited' account, but they would find they could do almost everything ... and for each of these users, a new account should be created ...

Create a new account

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Click [ Next ] ... and select the account type - Administrator or Limited. A user does NOT need to be an administrator to do most things ... Click [ Create Account ] ...

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This only CREATES the account, and as yet it does not have a password

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Click on the new account ... and click -> Create a password

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Click -> Create a password. Enter the password twice, and a 'hint' about the password - then click [ Create Password ] ...

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You can also change the picture to an photo of the person, or some other image. This user would then join the list of users -

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Note, on this machine the 'Guest' account is 'off'. That means it is NOT enabled at all. The 'Guest' account can be turned on and given a simple password, and this would effectively be a forth user in this machine.

The other three accounts are 'Password protected'. If really necessary, all users could be given 'administrator' privileges, but this is certainly NOT recommended.

Then this 'User Accounts' window can be CLOSED.

When the machine next boots, it will stop at a log in screen, which will show the available users, one of which will of course be the administrator, and the others that use the machine.

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Selecting one of the User ICONS, and that User can sign in using their password.

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System Properties

To get to the System Properties, in Category View you must first click Performance and Maintenance, then the System Icon. In Classic view, the System Icon is shown.

The System Properties window has multiple tab, like -
[System Restore], [Automatic Updates], [Remote], [General] - the default, [Computer Name], [Hardware], and [Advanced].

The window usually opens showing the General TAB -

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Selecting the 'Computer Name' tab shows -

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The 'Description' of the computer is not too important, but to work with other computers on a LAN, the 'Workgroup' MUST BE THE SAME. This, and the Computer Name can be set using the [ Change... ] button.

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Network Details

To view what this computer sees on the LAN, start with the 'My Computer' window ...

The 'My Computer' window can be usually accessed in several ways -

(1) Top left Desktop ICON - double click

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(2) Through Start

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This 'My Computer' window can show in MANY sizes, and styles

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In the left pane of this window, the 'Other Places' needs to be expanded if it is closed - click on the two down arrows -

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In the expanded view, 'Other Places' should show

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Clicking on 'My Network Places' should show in the main pane, what other computers, and shared folders, this computer sees on the LAN ...

Under -- Local Network -- it should show 'Shared Folders' it is sharing with other computers, if any, and under -- Internet -- it should show 'Shared Folders' on other computers, and perhaps some FTP internet sites.

As can be seen in the following the ICON shown designates the difference -

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For LOCAL shared folders

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For NETWORK shared folders

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Double clicking on one of the NETWORK Shared Folders, in this case 'SharedDocs on New HDD' should show you its contents -

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Using this, files could be Dragged and Dropped into another folder on this computer - This would show READ access. And a file from this computer could be Dragged and Dropped into this NETWORK shared folder - This would show WRITE access in the target machine.

Also back to the 'My network places' window, there should be a left pane item - View workgroup computers.

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Clicking on this 'View workgroup computers' should show which computers belong to this workgroup, one of which should be ITSELF! - In this case, this is the Del01 machine -

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Double clicking on a NETWORK computer, in this case 'New HDD 26.2.2007 (Pro-1)', will show a list of what it 'shares' ...

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And again double clicking the network shared folders will show the contents of that folder ...


Folder Views

The above is the Tile View - The list of view is Thumbnails, Tiles, Icons, List, and Details. Use the button in the tool bar to select other views -

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Icons -
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List -
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Details -
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Thumbnail - this is usually more for images -
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It usually remembers the last view it was set to. The general default is Tiles.

Geoff McLane
Tuesday, November 06, 2007.
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