To connect to the network


Open Network Connections


Double-click the connection you want to connect to the network.


If you are prompted, in the Connect connection type dialog box, type your user name, password, and logon domain.

If Logon domain does not appear in this dialog box, and you want to log on to a domain, type your user name and the domain name in one of two ways:

Your user principal name prefix (your user name) and your user principal name suffix (your domain name), joined by the "at" sign (@). For example,

Your domain name and your user name, separated by the backslash (\) character. For example, sales\user.

Note that the suffix in the first example is a fully-qualified DNS domain name. Your administrator might have created an alternative suffix to simplify the logon process. For example, creating a user principal name suffix of "microsoft" allows the same user to log on by using the much simpler For more information, see your system administrator.

Once you are connected to the network, you can minimize your connection window and use e-mail, Windows Explorer, and so on.


To open Network Connections, click Start, click Control Panel, click Network and Internet Connections, and then click Network Connections

If you are connecting to your local area network, the local area connection connects automatically.

Authentication is implemented in two steps: an interactive logon process and a network authentication process. Typically, the same set of credentials is used by the interactive logon process and the network authentication process. If your credentials differ, you are prompted to provide domain credentials each time you access a network resource. You can avoid this by logging on to your computer using your domain name, your domain user name, and domain password before you try to connect to a network resource. If you log on without being connected to the network, your operating system recognizes the information from a previous successful logon. You receive the message "Windows cannot connect to a server to confirm your logon settings. You have been logged on using previously stored account information." When you connect to your network, the cached credentials are passed to your domain and you are able to access network resources without having to provide a password again. For more information about authentication, see Related Topics.

The logon domain name you type should name the domain that the server is in. This is not the DNS domain name given by some PPP/SLIP providers.

If you are using IP connectivity on your local network connection and on your remote connection, you may not be able to see all computers on your local network. This is because after you connect, your remote connection becomes your default path for network routing. Consequently, you see computers on the remote network, and you see other computers on the same LAN segment to which your computer is connected. But you cannot communicate with computers on networks that were previously reached through a router on your local LAN.

In order to run applications over any configured connection, you may need to modify proxy client settings. For example, if you use a laptop in your office and use the same computer to connect to an ISP or other network from your home, you may have problems running all of your applications when you use the ISP connection. If this is the case, you should disable the Microsoft WinSock Proxy Client (WSP Client in Control Panel) to run the applications that you typically run when you use your laptop in the corporate office.

Related Topics

Remote Access Authentication Process

Automating a network connection

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