Networking with Windows

Microsoft Windows may dominate the corporate market, but there are Macs in the offices of America. Mac OS X represents a historic moment in Mac–Windows relations: It lets Macs and Windows PCs see each other on the network, with no special software (or talent) required.

In fact, you can go in either direction: Your Mac can see shared folders on the Windows PCs, and a Windows PC can see shared folders on your Mac. Read on.

Seated at the Mac: Seeing the PC

Suppose you have a Windows XP machine on the network (although the same feature works in Windows Me, Windows 2000, and other recent editions). Here’s how you get the Mac and PC chatting:

  1. On your Windows PC, share a folder.

    You have to specify which folders you want to make available on the network, if some administrator hasn’t already done so. In Windows XP, for example, you right-click a folder, choose Properties from the shortcut menu, click the Sharing tab, and turn on “Share this folder on the network” (Figure 13-11, top). In the “Share name” box, type a name for the folder as it will appear on the network (no spaces are allowed).


    If you’ve never shared a folder on this PC before, you won’t see the “Share this folder” option. In its place, you’ll see a link that runs the Network Setup Wizard. Go ahead and run that, supplying a computer and workgroup name when prompted, and then restart the PC to turn on sharing. Then start over with step 1.

    Repeat for any other folders you want to make available to your Mac. ...

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