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Establishing infrared network connections between computers

Updated: January 21, 2005

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

Establishing infrared network connections between computers

An infrared network connection allows you to establish a direct connection between two infrared-enabled devices without using modems, cables, or network hardware. Instead, you align the two devices to establish an infrared link, and then use Network Connections to create an infrared network connection.

How you can use infrared network connections

You can use infrared network connections to perform a variety of tasks. For example, you can:

Access the Internet from a public location

While at an airport, a hotel, or any other location that provides public Internet access, you can sit at a kiosk and use your laptop, personal digital assistant (PDA), or other infrared-enabled device to connect to the Internet. Kiosks at such locations provide a built-in infrared port, so that you can align your infrared-enabled device with the built-in port and establish an infrared network connection.

When making this type of infrared network connection, you configure the infrared device as the guest. The server that your device connects to is the host.

Access shared information on another computer

You can establish an infrared network connection between two computers to access shared resources on one of the computers. For example, if you have a portable computer that you want to use to access files in a shared folder on your desktop computer, you can establish an infrared network connection between the two computers.

When making this type of infrared network connection, you configure the portable computer as the guest and the desktop computer as the host.

Creating network connections on both computers

To create an infrared network connection, follow the steps in Establish a direct infrared network connection between computers on both computers. When you create the network connections, specify the computer that has the information you want to access as the host computer, and the computer you are going to use to access the information as the guest computer.

For both computers, specify the infrared port as the device that will be used to make the connection.

Configuring permissions on the host computer

If you are connecting two Windows XP Home Edition, Windows XP Professional, or Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition computers, you can access shared folders on the host. However, before you can make the connection, make sure that the user name for the connection is given membership in a group on the host computer. For information on how to add users to your computer, see Create a local user account. The new user must have sufficient permissions to perform any expected tasks. If you are adding a user so that someone else can access your computer, you might want to add the new user to the Guest, User, or Power Users groups.

Accessing the local computer

After you set up network connections on both the host and guest computers, follow the steps in Use an infrared network connection. Working on the guest computer, you can then map shared drives on the host computer and use My Computer or Windows Explorer to open folders and access files.

Notes

  • If you only want to send files from one infrared-enabled device to another, you do not need to establish an infrared network connection. Instead, you only need to establish an infrared link, as described in Establish an infrared link.

  • Infrared network connections use the Point-to-Point protocol (PPP). Typically, this protocol does not require additional configuration.

  • In the Windows Server 2003 family, only Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition, supports infrared networking.

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