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  1. #1
    Lounger
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    UNC paths over Internet (XP Pro)

    I can access UNC paths by typing machine.school.edu in the address line of IE. This will show the list of shares available on that machine after prompting for login information if required.

    I did this all the time from my home to a school file server while this laptop was using Win2K. Now that I have upgraded to WinXP (a clean install) I can't do this trick while off campus though it still works from various campus subnets.

    Any idea how UNC support has changed and why I can't access this file server from off-campus anymore using WinXP?

  2. #2
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: UNC paths over Internet (XP Pro)

    1. Try to type the address without just
    machine.school.edu

    2. Try to type IP address instead (like 160.169.243.119 - of course, that one correspond to machine.school.edu).

    If you still can not connect, contact your ISP.

  3. #3
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    Re: UNC paths over Internet (XP Pro)

    If I just type the machine name, the web browser will assume I am trying to visit a web page. Since there is a web server on this machine, it will display that instead of the shared files which I am trying to access.

    Trying the IP address just yields an empty window that tells me there are "0 items". Previously in Win2K, this same operation would prompt for a log on and then display all the shares on the machine. Adding the path to the end (machine.school.edufolder) doesn't work as before either.

  4. #4
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: UNC paths over Internet (XP Pro)

    were you using a hosts file on the win2k machine? or connecting to the site using VPN?

    Typically, to connect to a share across the internet, you need the external IP or full path, so it knows where to look. A hosts file could do this.. dialing in with VPN would connect you directly to the server and servername would work.

  5. #5
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    Re: UNC paths over Internet (XP Pro)

    The win2k machine (this same machine before reformatting) had no special configuration such as entry in the hosts file unless it is put there automatically. I have no third party software doing such things and I doub it was done for me by the OS. The server I am trying to connect to has a public DNS entry since it is also a webserver. It is a small server where we place files for students in our classes to use.

    Historically, the fully qualified name (machine.byu.edu) rather than just the name (machine) was sufficient to do the DNS lookup and allow me to connect to the machine as a file server rather than just a web server.

    I would type machine.byu.edutts-data and I would be able to supply my username and login to that machine and view all the shares on the machine. The only change I know of was when I upgraded my laptop over a weekend and could no longer connect from home using my ISP connection. I can still connect this way all across campus which is divided into many different subnets.

    It seems (but maybe I am missing something really simple) that WinXP has changed something about the way it deals with UNC paths that doesn't allow access from outside the domain or something. I can't figure out anything else.

    Perhaps you have some additional insights?

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