How to access your office PC disk from home
Note: The following applies only to PC's running Win-9x/NT or 2000.
Mac's are not included.
Follow these steps:
If you have any comments or questions
please send them by e-mail to
- On your Office PC
- Turn on File sharing on your office PC. (If not sure how, then see
note no. 4 under "Advanced Topics" below).
- In Windows Explorer, select the drive you want to share, and
enable sharing of that
drive by right-clicking on it, then selecting "Sharing...".
(Win/NT and Win/2000 users: Click on "New Share" after selecting
Assign it a "Share name" and "Password".
Please do not use a password that will be easy to guess, or
you are opening your PC to attacks over the Internet.
Please do not enable file sharing without a password under any
For extra security, use a "share name" different from the drive
For example, use "C-drive" instead of just "C".
You can also choose to share just a single folder rather than an
entire drive (see note 5 below under Advanced Topics).
If you are unsure, please call Ravi for advice on security.
- Note down or remember the "share name" and "password" you just
created. You will need these from home. For this example, let
us assume that the share name is "c-drive"
- Remember to leave your PC turned on at night so you can access
it from home.
- If your office system is Win/NT or /2000 and your home system is
Win/95/98/ME then you need to enable guest login - see note no. 7
below under Advanced Topics.
- On your Home PC
- Dial-in and connect to the network using WiscWorld Connect (e.g.)
(or via DSL or Cable Modem).
- Open a Command prompt (MSDOS) Window (hint: Start -> Programs ->
Command Prompt (Win/95/98/NT) or Start -> Programs -> Accessories ->
Command Prompt (Win/ME/2000))
- Enter the following command:
NET USE G: \\phy-xxxxx.physiology.wisc.edu\c-drive
where G: is an available drive letter, phy-xxxxx.physiology.wisc.edu
is the IP name/address of your computer, and "c-drive" is the share
name that was assigned above.
(NT or win/2000 users: if you are connecting from an NT system to another NT
system, you will have to provide a username also.
The command should then be amended as follows:
NET USE G: \\phy-xxxxx.physiology.wisc.edu\c-drive /user:yyyy
where "yyyy" is the username on the remote system).
If you get an error message then see the notes under Troubleshooting
- If all goes well, you will be prompted to enter a password.
- When you enter the correct password, the office disk will be connected
to your home PC with the drive letter G:, and the message
The Command was completed successfully
will appear in the command window.
- You can now terminate the command window by typing "Exit"
- The office disk (drive G:) can now be used like any other
local drive (though slower).
- You can disconnect from the remote disk in one of the following
- Terminate the modem connection (i.e. hang up), or
- Right-click on the G: drive in explorer and select "disconnect",
- Open the Command Window and issue the command:
NET USE G: /delete
- Advanced Topics/Troubleshooting
- If you get Error 3787 when you try the "NET USE..." command, then
you need to change one setting in your Dial-up Networking options.
Proceed as follows:
- My Computer -> Dial-up Networking -> Wiscworld Connect
- Select "Server Types" then look for "Advanced Options"
- If the "Log on to network" option is not selected, then
select it by clicking on the check box next to it.
- Close all windows, reboot and re-connect to Wiscworld
- You can now proceed with the "NET USE..." command.
- If you get a message asking you to type "NET USE /?" for help
when you enter the "NET USE..." command, then you should examine
the "NET USE..." command carefully for syntax errors. All spaces
should be entered exactly as in the example.
- It is possible to automate the process of connecting to your
office PC disk by entering the "NET USE..." command into a
batch (.BAT) file, and simply running it by double clicking.
Note that this introduces a slight security risk in that your
disk password is stored in the batch file as plain text, but
if you are the only one using the home computer then you can
proceed as follows:
- Start Notepad (Start -> Programs -> Accessories ->Notepad)
- Enter the following command:
NET USE G: \\phy-xxxxx.physiology.wisc.edu\c-drive zzzzz
(or, for NT, NET USE G: \\phy-xxxxx.physiology.wisc.edu\c-drive zzzzz /user:yyyy)
where "zzzzz" is the password you assigned to your "c-drive" on
the work computer, and phy-xxxxx is the name of your work computer.
- Use the "Save as.." option in Notepad to save the file with
the above command to suitable folder on your hard disk (e.g. in
c:\batch). The file saved must be given a name of the form *.bat
- Exit Notepad, start Explorer, browse to the folder where you
saved the CONNECT.BAT, then drag it out with the right mouse button
to your desktop, and select "Create Shortcut Here". This will
create a shortcut on your desktop, which you can rename if you like.
- That's all. From now on you can (after connecting to Wiscworld)
connect to your office disk by simply double-clicking on the
- If you right-click on your office hard-disk in explorer, but do
not see the "Sharing" item in the menu that pops up, it
means that file sharing is not enabled on your computer, and you
must enable it first as follows:
Right-click on "Network Neighborhood", then select "Properties".
Click on the menu bar named "File and Printer Sharing", then
make sure the box marked "I want to be able to give others access
to my files" is checked. Then close all windows.
Note that this should be done on your office computer, not the
home computer, and is only necessary for Win/95/98 (and not
- If you try to share your CD-ROM drive but get an "access denied"
or "share directory not available" error, then please consult
the article on the following web page:
- You can make your (office) system more secure by enabling
sharing of just a particular folder rather than the entire disk.
This is done by first deciding which folder to share (e.g.
a folder named c:\guest), then use explorer to locate that folder,
then right-click on the c:\guest folder and select "Sharing"
from the pop-up menu.
Assign it a "share name" and "password" just as you would for
an entire drive.
The remaining steps are the same as above, the main difference is
that only this folder (and all sub-folders within) will be
accessible over the net, and the rest of your drive will not be.
- If your office PC is running Win/NT or Win/2000, and your home
PC is running Win/95/98/ME, then you have to create a "guest" user
on your office computer.
This is because Win/9x/ME do not allow specification of a user name
with the "NET USE..." command, and instead assume the username "guest".
To create a guest user on your office system, proceed as follows:
(Note: the following is not needed if both office and home PC are
running Win/NT or Win/2000)
After you have created the shared disk or folder for remote
access (as described in step-2 above under "On Your Office PC")
you should enable guest access to that shared folder.
This is done as follows:
- Start user manager (Start -> Programs -> Administrative Tools
-> User Manager)
- If there is no username "Guest" in the list of users, then
click on "User" from the top menu, then select "New User"
and enter "Guest" in the username field. Uncheck the box
marked "User must change password on next logon" and check
the box marked "Password never expires". Enter a
non-trivial password in the fields labeled "Password" and
"Confirm Password". Finally click on the Add button
to create the "Guest" username.
You should now be able to connect from Win/9x/ME computers by using
the "NET USE G: \\phy-xxxxx.physiology.wisc.edu\share-name"
command, and the password that you assigned to the "guest" user.
(Note: replace "share-name" by the actual share name that you used).
- Use Windows Explorer and right-click on the shared device
and select "Sharing".
- Click on the button marked "Permissions"
- If "Everyone" or "Guests" is in the list, then nothing needs
to be added. If neither is in the list then use "Add" to
add "Guests" to the list of users with access to the shared
- Click "OK" to close the sharing window.
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This page last modified on : July 20, 2001