Requesting and Accepting Assistance
If you right-click My Computer, select Properties and click the Remote tab, you can configure the client settings for RA. Remember, RA is turned on by default on Windows XP, but it is turned off by default on Windows Server 2003. Ensure that the Turn on Remote Assistance and Allow Invitations to Be Sent from This Computer check box is marked. If you click the Advanced button, you can configure the two option settings for RA, discussed in the previous section. In the Remote Control section, you can clear the Allow This Computer to Be Controlled Remotely check box if you want to provide view-only access.
In the Invitations section, you can change the default expiration time for RA invitations from the drop-down list boxes. You can select from 1 to 99 and you can specify the time interval as Days, Hours or Minutes. The default maximum time for invitations to remain open is 30 days. You can make a request for someone to assist you by launching the Windows Help and Support Center and clicking the Remote Assistance link. When the Remote Assistance page appears, you can click the Invite Someone to Help You link, then proceed as follows:
- Select how you want to contact the person whom you want to assist you: via Windows Messenger, via an email invitation, or by saving the invitation as a file.
- If you choose to save the RA invitation as a file, you must type the name that you want to appear in the From box of the invitation.
- Specify the Set the Invitation to Expire parameters. The default is one hour.
- Click Continue. Leave the Require the Recipient to Use a Password check box marked for security reasons.
- Type a password for the person who will be assisting you and confirm it in the Type Password and the Confirm Password boxes, then click the Save Invitation button.
- When the Save as dialog box appears, choose a location on disk and accept the default filename of RAInvitation.msrcincident (unless you want to change it). Click Save to save the RA invitation file and then send the invitation file to the person that you want to assist you.
- When the assistant double-clicks the invitation file, she is prompted for the password for that invitation and must type the proper invitation password and click Yes to connect to the requester's computer.
- A message box appears asking whether you want to grant permission to the assistant to connect to your computer. Click Yes to allow the assistant to start the RA session.
- Once the requester accepts the assistant's offer for help, the RA session will commence. Either party can disconnect from the RA session by clicking the Disconnect button.