Step-By-Step: Configure the Internet Connection Firewall to allow Remote Desktop

Learn how to configure XPs firewall to allow Remote Desktop access

Remote Desktop and Internet Connection Firewall (ICF) are two new features in Windows XP. Remote Desktop allows you to connect to a remote computer and see its screen as if you were working on it directly. ICF prevents TCP/IP traffic from accessing your network and computer.

Since ICF blocks all network traffic by default, it's necessary to open it a bit in order to connect to a computer that's behind a firewall. Remote Desktop uses TCP port 3389; therefore, you'll have to open this port on your firewall. If you use another third-party firewall, consult the manual for opening its port.

Opening ICF
If you use ICF in Windows XP, follow these steps on the remote machine (the machine you want to connect to using Remote Desktop):
  1. Open the Network Connections folder (located in the Control Panel).
  2. Right-click on the firewall connection and select Properties.
  3. Click the Settings button on the Advanced tab.
  4. Check the Remote Desktop box on the Services tab.
  5. Close all of the dialog boxes.

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