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Tip of the Day
Language: NT
Expertise: Beginner
Oct 22, 1999

Accessing a Workstation in a Domain

Question:
I would like to know how to access a workstation which is configured and logged on to an NT domain, from another PC in a workgroup environment? Most of my company's PCs are in an NT domain, but there are some that are not. When I try to access the PC from the Network Neighborhood, I am asked to key a password I never knew about (ie:\\PC\IPC$).

Answer:
IPC stands for Inter-Process Communications. There are several types of IPC, including named pipes, mailslots, RPC, and sockets. The IPC$ is actually a named-pipe IPC. IPC$ is the method NT uses to make all its initial connections to remote resource, including remote computers.

When you are trying to connect from a domain workstation to a non-domain workstation, there are no shared user/password combinations (even if you have the same UserID and password on the peer machine, the internal GUID is different). The initial IPC$ connection (which is the first connection) needs to know a password/ID combination to kick-start the operation. So, you need to enter a password/ID combination that is valid on that other machine (if it is a peer NT) or on the domain (if the peer NT is trying to connect to a machine on the domain).

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