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Setting Up Windows XP on your Machine for Remote Desktop

To let our handheld control our Windows XP machine, we need to prepare our Windows XP machine to allow this control to take place. Do this by going to the Windows XP Control Panel and double-clicking the System icon. From the subsequent System Properties window, choose the Remote tab and ensure that the "Allow users to connect remotely to this computer" box is checked as shown in Figure 1. Go ahead and click the Apply button after you have enabled this option.

Figure 1

Figure 1. Enabling the Remote Desktop on your Windows XP machine.

Take note of the Select Remote Users... button. With this facility, you can add users that will be allowed to use the Remote Desktop facility on your machine. By default, the user you are logged in as when you are enabling Remote Desktop will be automatically allowed to log in remotely.

Notice also that checking the "Allow users to connect remotely to this computer" option will automatically open up your Windows Firewall to allow for Remote Desktop connections to be established with your machine. If your machine is connected to the Internet behind a router, you will need to forward the port 3389 to the IP address of your machine. This forwarding process differs from router to router, so you should refer to your router's documentation for information about how to do this. I've found that it is a good idea to try connecting to your box from your handheld within your intranet first, before venturing out and trying to connect to it with the complexity of firewalls involved.

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