Microsoft

Using the Computer Management Console's Shared Folders snap-in

Managing open files, active shares, and user sessions can be time-consuming tasks -- but Derek Schauland explains how the Computer Management Console's Shared Folders snap-in can make your job easier by showing remote activity and resource access on Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, and Windows Vista.

Managing open files, active shares, and user sessions can take up quite a bit of time. The Computer Management Console's Shared Folders snap-in can make your job easier by showing remote activity and resource access on a given system.

Shared Folders will not list the documents that you are working on locally; keep this in mind if you open one of these objects on a system, and the view is empty. As with other Computer Management Console snap-ins such as Event Viewer, Shared Folders is available on all versions of Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, and Windows Vista.

Components of the Shared Folders snap-in

Shared Folders includes the following three objects, which allow you to monitor systems from the comfort of your office for any system on your network.

  • Shares: Shows the active shares (including all administrative shares) for the system to which you are connected.
  • Sessions: Shows all the user sessions that are connected to your system. If someone is accessing a Windows Server 2003 resource remotely, this snap-in will show you their session. You can disconnect sessions by right-clicking a session and choosing either Disconnect Selected Session or Disconnect All Sessions.
  • Open Files: Shows the files on the system that are currently open and shows you which users have the files or folders open; this can be helpful in tracking down why other users cannot open certain files. When using Open Files, you can close any file that any user has open simply by right-clicking the file's entry in the list and choosing Close Open File.

Remote connections

When accessing the Computer Management Console, you can connect remotely to other systems to view their resources. (The remote systems must be running Windows 2000 or higher.)

To connect remotely to other systems, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Computer Management Console by right-clicking My Computer from the Windows XP Start menu. (In Windows 2000, you right-click My Computer from the desktop. In Windows Vista, you right-click Computer or enter Computer Management in the Start Menu's Search box.)
  2. Right-click the computer object at the top of the left pane and select Connect To Another Computer. Or, click the Action menu and select Connect To Another Computer.
  3. Enter the name of the computer you wish to connect to and click OK.

If the desired system is available, the Computer Management Console will display the resources as available on the remote system.

Next week, I will focus on the Computer Management Console's Local Users and Groups snap-in.

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About Derek Schauland

Derek Schauland has been tinkering with Windows systems since 1997. He has supported Windows NT 4, worked phone support for an ISP, and is currently the IT Manager for a manufacturing company in Wisconsin.

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