Remote Assistance


I was recently asked to help someone with Remote Assistance in Windows XP. The person involved sent me the invite, but I was unable to initially connect. If you have had that issue. Let me show you how to solve this, with a bit of editing.
 
First, you have to make sure Remote Assitance is turned on. It is on by default, so if you have not dinked with Windows XP, you should be fine. If not, click on your start menu, then right click My Computer. Click on the remote tab and you can find the checkbox.
 
2RD
 
You may also want to click on the Advanced button and ensure you have not restricted rights too much to actually get help. Creating the Remote Assistance request is simple. I have no clue where to find it "normally", but I do this:
 
  1. Click on the Start button
  2. Find Help & Support and click on it
  3. Type Remote Assistance in the search box and click the button
  4. When it finds Remote Assistance, click on the link
  5. Click on  the Invite Somebody to Help you link
  6. Click on the bottom option: Save Invitation as File (Advanced)
  7. Set the number of hours for the invitation to expire – 1 is default – and click the Continue button
  8. DO type in a password on the next screen – this is a safety measure – and click the Save Invitation button
It is important that you put in a password and tell this to the person, but not in the same email as the invite. Do not send this yet. You will have to edit the file and possibly some other settings on your side to get this working. Here is what the file looks like:
 
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="Unicode" ?>
<UPLOADINFO TYPE="Escalated">
    <UPLOADDATA USERNAME="Gregory A Beamer" RCTICKET="65538,1,192.168.1.8:3389;windowsxp:3389,*,QLzAUI8vpYzdZRgxQj50v2ntEQyjFODglBgW7GeGJcQ=,*,*,cs/oOkosIWmDMyfff7eDAmH0D7o=" RCTICKETENCRYPTED="1" DtStart="1216230419" DtLength="5940" PassStub="Kf*9Ltnk1WtIY3" L="0" />
</UPLOADINFO>
 
Note the highlighted section. This is the IP address the person will try to help you at. Notice anything that will not work? Yes, the address is 192.168.1.#, which means you have a router on your broadband connection. That is not going to work.
 
So, open an Internet browser and type the URL http://whatsmyip.org/ in the browser bar. This will ping back your IP address. Open the file RAInvitation.msrcincident and change the highlighted portion to your IP. Let’s suppose your IP is 68.52.140.22, which would be a Comcast IP (no that is not my IP, but thank you for asking). So, you edit the file to reflect this change.
 
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="Unicode" ?>
<UPLOADINFO TYPE="Escalated">
    <UPLOADDATA USERNAME="Gregory A Beamer" RCTICKET="65538,1,68.52.140.22:3389;windowsxp:3389,*,QLzAUI8vpYzdZRgxQj50v2ntEQyjFODglBgW7GeGJcQ=,*,*,cs/oOkosIWmDMyfff7eDAmH0D7o=" RCTICKETENCRYPTED="1" DtStart="1216230419" DtLength="5940" PassStub="Kf*9Ltnk1WtIY3" L="0" />
</UPLOADINFO>
 
You can also change the port if you desire, it is the number after the colon. Before you do that, pay attention to the rest of the instructions, however, as you will need to focus if you change this.
 
The next part is fairly simple. Log into your router. In most cases, the router IP is 192.168.1.1. If you do not find one there, consult the manual for your router. Log into the router and find the port forwarding section. This can be called a variety of things, like gaming exclusions, or server exclusions, or whatever. You will have to open the port in question (3389 by default) and point it to your IP address. You can find this by opening a command prompt (windows key + r and then type cmd) and typing ipconfig. The IP address will be something like 192.168.1.#, with the last number changing for different machines on your network.
 
Now, zip up the file and send it to your buddy. He can double click, type in the password, and you should be able to get some help. If you do not have a router, your IP address should be correct, so there is no need to jump through these hoops.
 
Hope this helps!
 
Peace and Grace,
Greg
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