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2,001 Tips
Windows 95

Get Fast Access to Network Resources

Browsing the Network Neighborhood can be extremely time-consuming. You can save time by typing in the UNC (Universal Naming Convention) of the device that you're trying to use, if you know it. Do so from the Start/Run command line. The syntax for the Universal Naming Convention is \\servername\share. If you know only the server name, type \\servername and all of the server's shared resources will be shown in a folder.

Bypass the Password

You can bypass the Windows NT log-on prompt and automatically be logged into Win95 and the NT domain. But do so with caution-you could leave your PC and network resources open to anyone who boots your computer! To have Windows 95 cache your passwords, open the Control Panel and double-click on the Network icon. Change the "Primary network logon" to "Windows logon." Click on OK, but don't reboot when prompted. Click on the Passwords icon and then on the "Change Windows password" button. At the next screen, click on the OK button, but don't check off the "Microsoft networking" button. Type in your old password, but don't type anything for your new and confirmed password. Restart the computer. When prompted for the domain log-on password, be sure to check off "Save this password in your password list." The next time you reboot the computer, you won't be prompted for a password.

Troubleshoot IP Connections

Use the Ping utility included with Win95 to determine the status of devices you're trying to access. From the DOS command line, test to make sure you can ping yourself. If you don't know your IP address, you can get it by typing WINIPCFG in the Run dialog box in the Start menu.

Explore Neighborhood Properties

Hold down the Alt key and double-click on the Network Neighborhood icon on your Desktop, or on the icons within Network Neighborhood if you want to quickly access the Properties dialog boxes.

NetWare Likes Long Filenames

Take complete advantage of long filenames on NetWare servers by loading the OS/2 name space support on the NetWare server. First you need to load the name space NLM at the server console by typing load OS2. Then type add name space OS2 to SYS. SYS can be replaced with any other volume name you wish, but the OS2 name space NLM only needs to be loaded once. It's also a good idea to get the latest OS2 name space file and place it on the server's local DOS partition. Then add Load c:\directoryname\OS2.NAM to the server's startup.ncf file. Type Regedit at the Start/Run command line and open HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\VxD\NWREDIR. From the menu, choose Edit/New, then Binary Value. Name the binary value you just created SupportLFN and press Enter. Go to the Edit menu again and choose Modify, then enter 02 next to the existing 0000. Exit the Registry and reboot for the change to take effect.

How Do I Get There?

If you're curious about how many routers you pass before you finally reach a destination Web site or other TCP/IP host, run the Trace Route utility included with Win95 TCP/IP Networking. It's interesting to see how many hops (router crossings) it takes to get to a site on the opposite coast or elsewhere. But Tracert.exe is useful for other things as well. It's a helpful tool for determining slow links and Web sites that might be down. Type tracert <Ipaddress or host name> from the DOS command line.

Trash the Network Neighborhood

If you're a standalone user connected to an ISP, Network Neighborhood is unnecessarily using up real estate on the Desktop. Hide the Network Neighborhood by using the Policy Editor, which you can install through Control Panel. Go to Add/Remove Programs and choose the Win95 Setup tab, then "Have disk." Policy Editor is located at D:\admin\apptools\poledit (where d: is the CD-ROM drive). Once you've installed it, select File/Open Registry and double-click on Local User. Navigate through the folders and open Local User/Shell Restrictions. Click on the "Hide Network Neighborhood" selection, so that it's checked off. Click OK and Save. Reboot for the change to take effect.

Who's Sharing?

Find out who's using your shared resources with the NetWatcher utility in Windows 95. You can monitor who's using your network resources, disconnect a user, and add new shares or stop existing shares. You can also create hidden shares by placing a $ as the last character in the share name. Hidden shares can only be accessed if a user knows the entire UNC name for the hidden share.

Go Directly to a Directory

You can create shortcuts to network folders and directories by dragging and dropping them onto your Desktop. When you attempt to access a directory shortcut that you haven't logged into already, Win95 will prompt you for a log on and password.

Browse the Network Neighborhood Fast!

To move quickly through Network Neighborhood, hold down the Ctrl key and double-click on the icons in Network Neighborhood.

Synchronized Network Time-All the Time

From the DOS command line, type NET TIME [\\computername | /DOMAIN[:domainname]] [/SET] to synchronize Win95 to a specified server's time. Automate time synchronization with a server or workstation by creating a batch file and placing the Net Time command inside it. Then place the batch file in the StartUp folder. For example, open Notepad and enter NET TIME \\MARK'SCOMPUTER. Save the file as SYNCTIME.BAT. When you turn your computer on each morning, the command in the batch file will be executed.

Receive NetWare Broadcasts

Place WinPOPUP.EXE in your StartUp folder so broadcasts from Netware servers and users will be displayed in Win95.

Learn Your IP Address

Find out a computer's IP address by running Winipcfg from the Start/Run command line. In some cases, a network administrator has set up a pool of IP addresses called DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) under Windows NT Server. A workstation requests an IP address from a DHCP server and "leases" the IP address for a duration set by the network administrator. A common problem occurs when the DHCP server is moved to a different subnet and workstations on the network continue to look for the DHCP server at the old IP address. If the computer is not receiving an IP address from the DHCP server, run the Winipcfg utility to determine if the IP address of the DHCP server is correct. Click on the More Info button for details on where Win95 is looking for the DHCP server. If the DHCP server address is wrong, choose Release and then Renew. The IP address should now be updated with a new lease.

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