Windows XP Networking

Windows XP Networking


I have been recieving a lot of questions in email about networking problems, I decided to make this page to help everyone find articles relevant to the problems they are having, from simple home networking problems, the differences in networking in XP and other verions of windows, setting up internet connection sharing, troubleshooting ICS, setting up your personal firewall and any number of other problems. Hope this helps.

Cannot Map a Network Drive Under Different User Credentials

If you use the Map Network Drive Wizard to connect to a network share by using different user credentials and you use the browse functionality to locate the network share, you may receive the following error message:
The network folder specified is currently mapped using a different user name and password. To connect using a different user name and password, first disconnect any existing mappings to this network share.
You receive this error message even though you are not aware of making a different connection.
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Troubleshooting Home Networking in Windows XP (Q308007)

This article describes how to troubleshoot Windows XP Home Networking. When you encounter such issues, the best first step is to use the Home and Small Office Networking Troubleshooter in Help and Support Center in Windows XP. To use the Home and Small Office Networking Troubleshooter in Help and Support Center:
Click Start , and then click Help and Support .
Under Pick a Help Topic , click Networking and the Web .
Under Networking and the Web , click Fixing networking or Web problems , and then click Home and Small Office Networking Troubleshooter .
Answering the questions in the troubleshooter can guide you to a solution. If the troubleshooter does not address the particular that issue you are encountering, continue with the troubleshooting recommendations in this article.
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Windows XP setting crashes dorm networks

Dartmouth students experiencing network difficulties over the past few weeks may themselves be causing the problem. According to Computing Services, laptop computers running Windows XP that are connected to the Internet through both the wireless and cable networks are crashing residence cluster connections when a "network bridging" feature is enabled.
Bill Brawley, director of user communications at Computing Services, said that the problem begins when a laptop with Windows XP switches between the wireless Internet card and an Ethernet cable connection.
"There are two sort of network interfaces then," Brawley said. "The bridge feature is handy on a home network, but on our network it bridges those two devices and sets up a loop in which packets travel between the networks, sort of a feedback loop. This messes up both networks for the whole building."
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Windows XP Networking Features and Enhancements

With Windows XP, one of Microsoft's primary focuses was to improve the user and administrator experience when networking personal computers. Many of the networking features added or enhanced in Windows XP serve that end.
As more and more home computer users are adding second and third PCs, or bringing laptops home from work, the need to connect these computers together and share resources has increased. Many of the features discussed in this paper, including the Networking Setup Wizard, Network Bridging support, and Network Diagnostics, make home networking easier and more convenient.
Connecting these newly networked home computers to the Internet safely is often the next step following creation of the home network. Some of the networking features added to Windows XP makes the PC the best gateway to the Internet for the home network. These features include Internet Connection Sharing, Point-to-Point Protocol over Ethernet support (PPPOE), and Internet Connection Firewall.
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Wireless LAN Technologies and Windows XP

The availability of wireless networking and wireless LANs can extend the freedom of a network user, solve various problems associated with hard-wired networks and even reduce network deployment costs in some cases. But, along with this freedom, wireless LANs bring a new set of challenges.
There are several wireless LAN solutions available today, with varying levels of standardization and interoperability. Wide industry support for interoperability and operating system support address some of the deployment questions for wireless LANs. Still, wireless LANs present us with new challenges around security, roaming and configuration. The rest of this article discusses these challenges and presents some possible solutions, focusing on how Windows XP will play an important role in providing those solutions with support for zero configuration, 802.1x security and other innovations.
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Windows XP and Broadband Internet Connections

Windows XP has built–in support for the Point–to–Point Protocol over Ethernet (PPPoE). This allows a computer running Windows XP to connect to any Internet service provider whose access equipment supports PPPoE for broadband Internet connections, which includes both cable modem and Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) technologies. Configuring Windows XP for a PPPoE connection is as simple as creating a new connection using the New Connection Wizard. Internet service providers that support industry–standard PPPoE server functionality will work with the PPPoE client supplied in Windows XP.
Internet service providers (ISPs) that use broadband Internet access technologies deployed in a bridged Ethernet topology, such as cable modem or Digital Subscriber Line (DSL), need a way to distinguish individual users so that Internet usage can be accounted for, and, if appropriate, billed to individual users. Because Ethernet is inherently a shared access technology, it provides no such facilities. By combining the Point–to–Point Protocol (PPP) with Ethernet, an ISP can use Ethernet topologies and still maintain the individuality of user access as if they were using a dial–up modem. The type of access and choice of service are managed on a per–user basis, rather than a per–site or per–access device basis. The combination of PPP and Ethernet is known as Point–to–Point Protocol over Ethernet (PPPoE) and is defined in the Internet Engineering Task Force RFC 2516.
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Frequently Asked Questions About the IPv6 Protocol for Windows XP

This article contains frequently asked questions and answers about the Microsoft IPv6 Protocol for Windows XP.
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Using Group Policy Settings with Windows XP Home Networking Features

Fortunately, Windows XP supports the use of different user accounts and location-aware Group Policy settings. By using a different user account when logging on to the computer when it is connected to the home network (such as a local user account), the organization intranet policies that restrict or prohibit the ability for you to change configuration settings within the Network Connections folder do not apply.
Group Policy settings to allow the use of ICS, ICF, and Network Bridge are tied to the network to which the computer was connected when the Group Policy settings were applied. Network administrators can define Group Policy settings that restrict or disable networking features that can cause problems with network connectivity and apply to the computer when it is connected to the organization intranet. When the user takes the computer home and connects it to their home network, the organization intranet Group Policy settings are not applied, allowing the computer to perform Internet connection and bridging functions not allowed on the organization intranet.
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Overview of Network Address Translation (NAT) in Windows XP

As more homes and small businesses add computers they are finding networking is an extremely powerful tool for sharing computer resources. An Internet connection is one of the more precious resources on the network and is likely to be shared. To do this and to enjoy an inexpensive, easy to manage, home or small office network, Internet gateways are being deployed. Internet gateways often provide NAT (Network Address Translation) as a means of connecting multiple hosts to the Internet sharing a single public IP address. Unfortunately, this solution breaks many types of networked applications—as will be described in this paper.
NAT Traversal technology has been created to enable network applications to detect the presence of a local NAT device. Once detected, the application can then configure the NAT, defining the appropriate mappings to solve their compatibility issues.
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Windows XP Bridging and Media Support for Home Networking

Windows XP supports a wide variety of networking technologies to connect computers in a home network. In a home with multiple computers that have different types of network adapters, such as a few computers on an Ethernet hub and a few computers that use wireless, attempting to connect them together can be a challenge.
Each set of computers that cannot be directly attached together because they exist on separate hubs or cabling systems or are separate technologies define a LAN segment.
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Wireless 802.11 Security with Windows XP

IEEE 802.11, 802.11a and 802.11b (also known as Wi-Fi) are wireless local area networking (LAN) standards that supply 1 megabit per second or above of bandwidth. Because these networks differ from wired LANs several issues unique to wireless LAN deployment must be addressed.
The major deployment issue for IEEE 802.11 wireless LANs is managing access to the network and privacy of the wireless traffic. The IEEE 802.11 standard defines the use of WEP pre-shared keys for access control and privacy. However, managing pre-shared keys across thousands of workstations is infeasible.
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The Internet Connection Firewall Can Prevent Browsing and File Sharing (Q298804)

When you enable the Internet Connection Firewall (ICF) feature, and then attempt to browse the Internet by means of My Network Places , you are unsucessful. Also, if you use the net view \\ computername command, you can receive the following error message:
System error 6118 has occurred. The list of servers for this workgroup is not currently available.
This behavior can occur because the ICF closes, by default, the ports for file sharing. The Master Browser attempts to reconnect to the client computer to send the Browse list, but the firewall prevents this reconnection attempt.
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How to Troubleshoot TCP/IP Connectivity with Windows XP (Q314067)

There are utilities that can provide useful information when you are trying to determine the cause of TCP/IP networking problems under Windows XP. This article lists recommendations for using these utilities to diagnose network problems. Although this list is not complete, the list does provide examples that show how you can use these utilities to track down problems on the network.
When you troubleshoot a TCP/IP networking issue, begin by checking the TCP/IP configuration on the computer that is experiencing the problem. Use the ipconfig command to get the host computer configuration information, including the IP address, the subnet mask, and the default gateway.
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How to Reset Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) in Windows XP (Q299357)

When viewing the list of components for a network interface, you may notice that the Uninstall button is disabled when Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) is selected. In Windows XP, the TCP/IP stack is considered a core component of the operating system; therefore, it is not possible to uninstall TCP/IP in Windows XP.
In extreme cases, reinstalling the Internet Protocol stack may be the most appropriate solution. With the NetShell utility, you can now reset the TCP/IP stack back to a pristine state, to the same state as when the operating system was installed.
The NetShell utility ( netsh ) is a command-line scripting interface for the configuring and monitoring of Windows XP networking. This tool provides an interactive network shell interface to the user.
In Windows XP, a reset command is available in the IP context of the NetShell utility. When this command is executed, it rewrites pertinent registry keys that are used by the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) stack to achieve the same result as the removal and the reinstallation of the protocol.
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How to Use Internet Connection Sharing (ICS)

To use ICS to share your Internet connection, the host computer must have one network adapter configured to connect to the internal network, and one network adapter or modem configured to connect to the Internet.
The connection to the Internet is shared to other computers on the local area network (LAN). The network adapter that is connected to the LAN is configured with a static IP address of 192.168.0.1 and a subnet mask of 255.255.255.0.
When you now start Internet Explorer, the client computer will attempt to connect to the Internet using the host computer's shared Internet connection.
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Troubleshooting Internet Connection Sharing in Windows XP (Q308006)

When you use ICS, you can share one Internet connection between two or more computers. Before you install or use ICS, you should contact your Internet service provider (ISP) or read your ISP's Terms and Conditions of use policy to determine if you are permitted to share your connection.
Using the Network Setup Wizard to configure ICS has several advantages: It automatically attempts to detect the connection to the Internet, it can configure Internet Connection Firewall (ICF), and it can bridge multiple network adapters that are connected to your home network. In addition, it also logs information that is related to the configuration that was performed by the wizard in the %SystemRoot%\Nsw.log file.
To install ICS, you can use either the Network Setup Wizard, or configure the shared connection manually.
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How to Configure a Static Client for Windows XP Internet Connection Sharing (Q309642)

This article describes how to configure a static client for Internet Connection Sharing (ICS). Windows XP ICS automatically configures internal clients so that they can access the Internet by using ICS. However, you may need to configure a host, such as a server, statically rather than allowing the host to be configured dynamically. To properly configure the host with static settings, you must provide the host with IP address and host name resolution information. Also, you must configure the ICS host (the Windows XP-based computer that is running ICS) with the name of the client so that name resolution can function properly.
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How to Configure Windows XP ICS for an Internal PPTP Server (Q309524)

Windows XP includes support for Internet Connection Sharing (ICS), which provides the ability to share an internet connection with other computers on a local network. ICS in Windows XP allows services to be mapped to hosts on the internal network, so that requests coming from the internet and destined for a particular service will be redirected by Windows XP to the appropriate computer on the internal network.
For example, you may want to place a Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP) server on the internal network and configure Windows XP ICS to forward the Virtual Private Networking (VPN) traffic to the PPTP server. This article describes the process that is required to map PPTP back to an internal host, so that an incoming VPN connection can pass through the Windows XP ICS computer. For the purposes of this article, it is assumed that the PPTP server is already configured properly and is able to accept PPTP connections from clients on the local network.
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Dial-Up Connection in ICS Does Not Prompt to Disconnect on Client (Q311074)

When you quit Microsoft Internet Explorer on an Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) client computer, you are not prompted to disconnect. The dial-up connection on the ICS host computer remains connected.
If you quit Internet Explorer on the ICS host computer, you are prompted to disconnect from a dial-up connection.
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How to Enable Internet Connection Sharing on a Home or Small Office Network Connection in Windows XP (Q314066)

Through the Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) feature for network and dial-up connections, you can use Windows XP to connect your home network or your small-office network to the Internet. For example, you may have a home network in which a Windows XP-based computer connects to the Internet by using a dial-up connection. If you enable ICS on the computer that uses the dial-up connection, you can provide network address translation, addressing, and name resolution services for all of the computers on your network.
Note that, for Internet Connection Sharing to be enabled, the Windows XP-based computer must have two network adapters, one for the home or small-office network, and one for the Internet connection.
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Using Internet Connection Sharing with User Profiles (Q310651)

All of the Internet connections and passwords that you use with ICS must be available in every user profile in Windows.
ICS can connect to the Internet only using cached passwords that are available in the current user profile.
For example, consider the situation where the ICS host computer contains profiles for both User1 and User2, and User1's profile contains the dial-up connection and the cached password for User1. If you attempt to connect by using User2's profile, User2 must re-enter their password in order for the ICS host computer to gain access to the Internet.
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Description of the Network Setup Wizard in Windows (Q308522)

This article provides a description of the Network Setup Wizard in Windows XP, which can be used to configure the Internet connection for the computer and home network configuration for all computers on your home network.
The Network Setup Wizard provides the software configuration you need to set up a computer that is running Windows XP for use on a small home network.
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HOW TO: Enable the Internet Connection Firewall Feature in Windows XP (Q283673)

Microsoft Windows XP provides Internet security in the form of a firewall, known as the Internet Connection Firewall (ICF). This feature is designed for home and small business use and provides protection for computers directly connected to the Internet. This feature is available for local area network (LAN) or dial-up connections. It also prevents scanning of ports and resources (file and printer shares) from external sources. This article discusses how to enable the Internet Connection Firewall feature to provide Internet security for your computer.
The Internet Connection Firewall is useful when you want to protect a dial-up connection when dialing directly into an Internet service provider (ISP), or to protect a LAN connection that is connected to an asymmetric digital subscriber line (ADSL) or cable modem. You can also enable the Internet Connection Firewall feature on the Internet connection of and ICS host computer to provide protection to the ICS host computer.
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Creating a Bridge with Two Internal Adapters on a Windows XP Internet Connection Sharing Host Does Not Work (Q309640)

When you attempt to create a bridge by using two adapters on a Windows XP-based Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) host, the following error message may be displayed:
An unexpected error occurred while configuring the Network Bridge
This behavior occurs if all of the following conditions exist:
The computer has at least three network connections.
One of the adapters that you use in trying to create the bridge is the internal (also called private) ICS connection. This adapter has an IP address of 192.168.0.1.
The second adapter that you use in trying to create the bridge is not the public ICS connection.
Note that you cannot create a bridge by using the shared (public) ICS connection and the private ICS connection because of the design of ICS and network address translation (NAT) in general. Attempting to do so results in the following error message:
To create a Network Bridge, you must select at least two network connections that are not being used by Internet Connection Sharing or the Internet Connection Firewall.
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How to Connect to Network Resources in Windows XP Without Mapping a Drive or Port (Q311079)

This article explains how to use Universal Naming Convention (UNC) names with My Network Places to connect to network resources without mapping a drive or port.
You can access a file on a shared network resource when you type the location of the file in UNC format, or when you browse My Network Places.
To specify a file by using UNC format, use the following syntax:
\\Computer name\Share name\Path\File name
For example, to open a file named Report.xls in the Current\Month folder on a share named Documents, on a computer named Sales, type the following:
\\Sales\Documents\Current\Month\Report.xls
You can also use UNC names to connect to shared resources on NetWare servers. The NetWare syntax, Server/volume:folder, translates to the following UNC name:
\\server\volume\folder.
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How Domain Controllers Are Located in Windows XP (Q314861)

This article describes the mechanism that Windows XP Professional uses to locate a domain controller in a Windows-based domain.
The article details the process of locating a domain by its DNS-style name and by its flat-style (NetBIOS) name, which is used for backward compatibility. In all other cases, it is recommended that you use DNS-style names as a matter of policy.
The article also addresses issues that are involved in troubleshooting the domain controller location process.
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HOW TO: Search for a Computer on the Network in Windows XP (Q308887)

This article describes how to search for a computer on a network. If you know the name of the computer, you can access the computer by using the search companion, or you can search for the computer in My Network Neighborhood.
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HOW TO: Connect and Disconnect a Network Drive in Windows XP (Q308582)

This step-by-step article describes how to connect and disconnect a network drive in Windows XP. You can map a drive letter to any shared resource on a network. This makes it faster and easier to access the resource, either through the Windows XP user interface, or from a command prompt. Each mapped drive has an icon in My Computer, and a listing in the left pane of Windows Explorer (and in My Computer if you use the Folders view). Windows provides several methods for mapping a drive.
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HOW TO: Install NetBEUI on Windows XP (Q301041)

Microsoft has discontinued support for the NetBIOS Extended User Interface (NetBEUI) network protocol in Windows XP. However, it is understandable that migration to another network protocol, such as TCP/IP could involve significant time in planning and testing. Therefore, for those who are planning to migrate your system environment to Windows XP by obtaining the full, retail-released version of Windows XP, the NetBEUI protocol can be found on the Windows XP CD-ROM under the VALUEADD directory.
This article describes the process for manually installing the unsupported NetBEUI protocol on a computer running Windows XP. The NetBEUI files will need to be manually copied from the Windows XP CD-ROM before NetBEUI will show up in the list of installable network protocols.
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SimpTcp Warning Messages Appear When TCP/IP Print Server Starts (Q283491)

After you install Simple TCP/IP Services (SimpTcp) and Print Services for UNIX, the following two SimpTcp warning messages may appear when the Simple TCP/IP service starts:
Event Type: Warning
Event Source: SimpTcp
Event Category: None
Event ID: 19
Description:
The Simple TCP/IP Services could not open the TCP QOTD port. The TCP QOTD service was not started.
Event Type: Warning
Event Source: SimpTcp
Event Category: None
Event ID: 20
Description:
The Simple TCP/IP Services could not open the UDP QOTD port. The UDP QOTD service was not started.
This behavior can occur if SimpTcp and LPD (the printer daemon) are both trying to use port 17.
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HOW TO: Configure a Computer to Receive Remote Assistance Offers in Windows XP (Q301527)

This article describes the steps to configure your Windows XP-based computer to receive Remote Assistance offers.
The Remote Assistance tool can be configured to enable an expert user to initiate a Remote Assistance session by using the Offer Remote Assistance feature. This feature requires the computer of the expert user as well as the computer of the novice user (that the expert user is going to help) to be members of the same domain, or members of trusted domains. Domains are used in corporate networks for security purposes, and a network administrator usually manages them. The Offer Remote Assistance feature is not a viable option for most home-based networks.
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How to Use the Rasdiag.exe Support Tool in Windows XP (Q309553)

The Remote Access Service Diagnostics Tool (Rasdiag.exe) collects diagnostic information about remote services and places that information in a file. Administrators can use this tool to work with Microsoft Product Support Services to troubleshoot remote connection issues by taking a snapshot of the configuration data and capturing an attempted remote connection.
This tool is not documented in the Help file for Support Tools (Suptools.chm).
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HOW TO: Configure Offline Files to Synchronize When a Particular Network Connection Becomes Active (Q312171)

This step-by-step article describes how to configure Offline Files to synchronize when a particular network connection becomes active. You can make any shared folder on a network available offline so that you can use the files that are inside of that folder when you disconnect from the network. Normally, synchronization happens automatically whenever a network connection becomes active. However, you can configure your synchronization settings to specify the offline files that are synchronized when a network connection becomes active.
The Offline Files feature is designed for users that take their computer away from the network (for example, with a notebook computer), or that connect to the network periodically from a remote location. You can mark any shared folder that is available on the network or any Web page to be made available offline. The contents of these shared folders or pages are copied to a temporary folder on the hard disk on your local computer. When you disconnect from the network, you can work on any of these files. When you reconnect to the network, the files are synchronized with the originals.
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How to Manage Remote Access to the Registry (Q314837)

IMPORTANT : This article contains information about editing the registry. Before you edit the registry, make sure you understand how to restore it if a problem occurs. For information about how to do this, view the "Restoring the Registry" Help topic in Regedit.exe or the "Restoring a Registry Key" Help topic in Regedt32.exe.
This article describes how to manage access to the registry on a remote computer.
Some services must have access to the registry to function correctly. For example, on a system that runs directory replication, the Replicator account must have access to the relevant registry key. Registry Editor supports remote access to the Windows registry; however, you can also restrict this access.
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HOW TO: Find a Printer in Active Directory and Set Up a Connection in Windows XP (Q305609)

This step-by-step article will show you how to locate, connect to, and configure a network printer. You can use the Find Printers feature to search for printers in Active Directory when you are logged on to a Windows-based domain.
NOTE : If you are connected to a workgroup rather than a domain, the Find Printers feature is not available.
Find a Printer in Active Directory.
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HOW TO: Save and Restore Dial-up Connections in Windows XP (Q284269)

This step-by-step article describes how to use the Remote Access Phonebook (Rasphone.pbk) file to save and later restore dial-up connections, and to copy your computer's connections to other computers.
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Modem Automatically Attempts to Establish a Dial-Up Connection When You Start Your Computer or Start a Program (Q316530)

IMPORTANT : This article contains information about editing the registry. Before you edit the registry, make sure you understand how to restore it if a problem occurs. For information about how to do this, view the "Restoring the Registry" Help topic in Regedit.exe or the "Restoring a Registry Key" Help topic in Regedt32.exe.
When you start your Windows XP-based computer or start a program on your computer, the modem may attempt to automatically dial a connection to your Internet service provider (ISP).
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Dial-Up Networking Connections Do Not Work After Upgrade to Windows XP (Q303488)

When you upgrade your Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition (Me) or Microsoft Windows 98-based computer to Microsoft Windows XP, your Dial-up Networking connections may not work as expected.
When you attempt to navigate through a Dial-up Networking connection, Microsoft Internet Explorer attempts to connect through a proxy server. If the proxy server is unreachable through the Dial-up Networking connection, you receive the following error message:
The Page cannot be displayed.
If the proxy server is reachable, the user's connection uses the proxy server unintentionally.
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Error Message: The Operating System Image You Selected Does Not Contain the Necessary Drivers for Your Network Adapter. Try Selecting a Different Operating System Image. If the Problem Persists, Contact Your System Administrator. (Q315074)

When you try to run a Remote Installation service (RIS) installation on a client computer that is using an Intel network adapter driver, you may receive the following error message during Text-mode Setup:
The operating system image you selected does not contain the necessary drivers for your network adapter. Try selecting a different operating system image. If the problem persists, contact your system administrator.
Setup cannot continue. Press any key to exit.
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HOW TO: Use Offline Files in Windows XP (Q307853)

This article describes how to use the Offline Files feature in Microsoft Windows XP.
You can make network files available offline by storing shared files on your computer so that they are accessible when you are not connected to the network. If you do this, you can work with the files the same way that you work with them when you are connected to the network. When you reconnect to the network, changes that you made to the files are updated to the network.
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Description of 1394 Connection in Windows XP (Q307736)

Windows XP provides support for Internet Protocol (IP) networking over the IEEE 1394 bus. The interface is listed in the Network Connections folder as "1394 Connection". Internet Protocol (IP) over Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc. (IEEE) 1394 does not require a network adapter, but can be connected only to other 1394 interfaces; you cannot directly connect a 1394 cable to an Ethernet hub.
Windows XP requires an OHCI IEEE 1394 interface to enable IP over 1394. When the 1394 interface is installed, Windows XP creates a 1394 Connection in the Network Connections folder. You can modify Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) configuration settings by using the properties for this connection. To create a network by using IP over 1394 support, connect two Windows XP computers with IEEE 1394 ports together with a 1394 cable. While this connection is present, Ipconfig.exe displays the interface as 1394 Connection.
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HOW TO: Set Up a Direct Cable Connection Between Two Computers in Windows XP (Q305621)

A direct cable connection is a link between the input/output (I/O) ports of two computers by using a single cable rather than a modem or other interfacing device. In most cases, you make a direct cable connection with a null modem cable. You can use a direct cable connection to transfer information between the computers to exchange files, access resources, and so on.
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Behavior of RAS Connections With the Fast User Switching Feature (Q289669)

When you use the Fast User Switching feature in Windows XP, you can switch between multiple users without quitting programs that are running in the original user's session. This article describes the behavior of Dial-up Networking connections with user switching.
The following table in this section describes the behavior of Remote Access Services (RAS) and Virtual Private Networking (VPN) connections in the logon Welcome screen. The vertical column describes whether the Save this user name and password for the following users option is enabled or disabled and, if it is enabled, whether the Me only or Anyone who uses this computer option is selected. The horizontal row describes whether you are switching users or logging off.
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HOW TO: Use the Fast User Switching Feature in Windows XP (Q279765)

In Microsoft Windows XP, if you enable the Fast User Switching feature, multiple user accounts can log on to a computer simultaneously. This article describes how to enable and use this feature. With Fast User Switching, users can switch sessions without closing Windows, programs, and so forth. For example, User A is logged on and is browsing the Internet, User B wants to log on to their user account and check their e-mail account. User A can leave their programs running while User B logs on and checks their e-mail account. User A can then return to their session where their programs would still be running.
Fast User Switching is enabled by default in Windows XP Home Edition and Professional on computers with more than 64 megabytes (MB) of RAM. However, Fast User Switching is not available on Windows XP Professional-based computers that are part of a domain network.
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Cannot Join Windows XP Client to a Windows NT Domain (Q314366)

You may not be able to join a Windows XP Professional-based computer to a Windows NT 4.0-based domain. When you attempt to change the domain membership for the Windows XP Professional-based computer in the Identification Changes dialog box, you receive the following error message:
Network Identification:
The following error occurred validating the name " domain name ".
The specified domain either does not exist or could not be contacted.
If you attempt to use the net view command from the Windows XP Professional-based computer, you receive the following error message:
System error 53 has occurred.
The network path was not found.
If you attempt to ping by name from the Windows XP Professional-based computer, it does not work. You can ping by IP address.
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Delays Occur When Establishing Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol Connection with a Connection Manager Administration Kit Profile (Q280482)

When you attempt to establish for the first time a Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP) connection by means of a Connection Manager profile, you may experience a significant delay before you are able to connect, or you may be unable to connect.
This behavior may occur because of the default behavior of a Connection Manager Administration Kit (CMAK) profile which attempts to establish a tunnel (a connection) using Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol (L2TP) before it attempts to use PPTP. If the virtual private networking (VPN) server is unable to accept L2TP connections, the attempted connection can time out. At this point, the connection can fail over and attempt to connect by means of PPTP.
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Unsuccessful Completion of the Home Networking Wizard (Q291867)

Upon an unsuccessful completion of the Home Networking Wizard, you may receive the following error message:
Cannot complete the Home Networking Wizard.
An error has occurred during configuration of home networking on this computer. For more information, see the home networking log file.
The Home Networking Wizard log file contains detailed logging information to assist Microsoft Product Support Services in troubleshooting problems encountered during the Home Networking Wizard.
The Home Networking Wizard log file, Hnetwiz.log, is located in the %SystemRoot% folder.

Windows XP Networking Features and Enhancements

With Windows XP, one of Microsoft's primary focuses was to improve the user and administrator experience when networking personal computers. Many of the networking features added or enhanced in Windows XP serve that end.
As more and more home computer users are adding second and third PCs, or bringing laptops home from work, the need to connect these computers together and share resources has increased. Many of the features discussed in this paper, including the Networking Setup Wizard, Network Bridging support, and Network Diagnostics, make home networking easier and more convenient.
Connecting these newly networked home computers to the Internet safely is often the next step following creation of the home network. Some of the networking features added to Windows XP makes the PC the best gateway to the Internet for the home network. These features include Internet Connection Sharing, Point-to-Point Protocol over Ethernet support (PPPOE), and Internet Connection Firewall.
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Adding Windows XP to an Existing Network

You've just bought a computer with Windows XP Home Edition or Windows XP Professional installed, and you can't wait to add it to your local area network. Or maybe you've upgraded an older computer to XP, and now it can't see the network at all!
Windows XP can network successfully with all other versions of Windows, but there are many potential traps and pitfalls. We'll help you avoid them, starting with a quick list of the main points, and then adding the details.
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