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Configuring a network or dial-up connection

Updated: January 21, 2005

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

Configuring a network or dial-up connection

You can change a network or dial-up connection by modifying its settings. Dial-up settings, such as the phone number of the connection, the number of redial attempts, and so on, are defined for each connection. These pre-connection and post-connection settings do not modify or affect the settings of other connections. For example, you may have a dial-up connection that makes 10 attempts to redial a server that is frequently busy. You may have a second dial-up connection that makes 3 attempts to redial another server that is more readily available. The redial setting of the first connection never causes the second connection to redial more than its own established attempts of 3. There is no need to make changes to any settings outside of the settings of the dial-up connection.

Changes to some networking settings of a connection can affect other connections. For example, if you add the IPX protocol to the list of available network components for one connection, the IPX protocol also is available to other connections on the same computer.

You can modify connection settings when you are connected. You can also rename a connection when it is connected. However, the connection may need to be reconnected in order to save the changes. In a dial-up connection, modifying settings displays the message Since this connection is currently active, some settings will not take affect until the next time you dial it. In a local area connection, changed settings are stored automatically.

Each connection is configured with general settings that represent the basic information needed to connect successfully. These options are found on the General tab. For example, a local area connection only needs to list its network adapter. For a dial-up connection, the General tab includes required information, such as the device used to dial, the area code, the phone number, and the country/region code to dial.

For outgoing connections, you can set additional configuration options on the Options, Security, Networking, and Advanced tabs. You can set additional configuration options for an incoming connection on the Users and Networking tabs. Local area connections have additional configuration options in the Authentication and Advanced tabs.

You can configure advanced settings from Advanced Settings on the Advanced menu of the Network Connections folder. By modifying these settings, you can improve performance. For example, network providers and protocols are accessed in the order specified in Advanced Settings. If your LAN connection is enabled to access NetWare and Microsoft Windows networks that use TCP/IP and IPX, but your primary connection is to a Microsoft Windows network that uses TCP/IP, you can move Microsoft Windows Network to the top of the Network Providers list on the Provider Order tab, and move Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) to the top of the File and Printer Sharing for Microsoft Networks binding on the Adapters and Bindings tab. By changing your provider order, and by changing the order of protocols bound to those providers, you can improve performance. For more information about modifying the order of network providers, see Modify the network provider order. For more information about modifying the protocol binding order, see Modify the protocol bindings order.

The IPX/SPX protocol is not available on Windows XP 64-bit Edition (Itanium) and the 64-bit versions of the Windows Server 2003 family.

For more information about configuring connections, see Configure a connection to a remote network.

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