How can I Install the WorkgroupShare client to synchronise my Outlook folders across The Internet?

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Symptoms

You have a remote client that needs to be able to synchronize with the WorkgroupShare server across The Internet.

More Info

WorkgroupShare clients synchronize with the server using a proprietary TCP/IP protocol and so connections can be made from any Windows computer on your network or across The Internet. Internet connections can be made directly across the internet, through a VPN link or via a dial up connection to a remote access server on your network.

Detail

For a client to be able to synchronize, you must first be able to establish a network connection from your remote computer to the WorkgroupShare server computer. The most common way to achieve this is to ensure that the WorkgroupShare server has a direct connection to The Internet and that the server (or the router) has a static IP address. The remote computer can then use a direct connection or a dial up connection to access the internet and the WorkgroupShare server.

A clientSetup folder was created on the WorkgroupShare server when it was installed. Copy the contents of the ClientSetup folder onto a CD and take this to the remote client. Alternatively, send the files by email to the remote client. For WorkgroupShare v1 a self extracting client setup file can be downloaded from our website Click here.

Run the setup program on the remote client and specify the IP address (or domain name) and port required to connect to the server. If the correct list of users is presented later in the setup then the initial connection was successful. Once setup is complete, Outlook on the remote client will begin to synchronize its folders.

If you have a firewall protecting your network then you will need to open the necessary ports used by WorkgroupShare. These are, by default, port 8100 for the general connection, port 8101 for the secure connection and port 8109 for the WokgroupShare free/busy server. If a connection cannot be established from the remote client then refer to this Related FAQ

In a usual business situation the computer running WorkgroupShare will not be Internet facing, but instead be behind a router or firewall. The actual router will be the only device that has the external IP address(es); the other devices will have a non-routable IP address (usually 192.168.x.y or 10.x.y.z), these addresses are called non-routable as all routers will not route these addresses.

It is not possible to access these hosts from the WAN side of the router; therefore a technology called NAT (Network Address Translation) will need to be employed. Please see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Network_address_translation for more information.

It is not possible to describe how to configure every router; it is recommend that you search for NAT or Network address translation in your router manual.

The WorkgroupShare server should first be configured with a fixed IP address; it is not good practice for a server to have a dynamic IP address.

For this example, let the WorkgroupShare server have an internal IP address of 192.168.0.22 and the router have IP address on the LAN side of 192.168.0.1

By visiting the IP address of the router on the LAN side using a web browser it is usually possible to configure various settings of your router. You may require a password to log into the router.

The router should have an option called Port Forwarding or NAT, go into this option.

To configure a rule for WorkgroupShare a port forwarding rule must be added.
Set the external port to 8100, and set the internal address to 192.168.0.22 and the port to 8100, you may need to enter 192.168.0.22:8100 on some systems. This will route packets coming from the WAN side on port 8100 to the host 192.168.0.22 on the LAN side to port 8100.
Therefore if a client uses your external address then packets will be routed to 192.168.0.22 giving the impression that the WorkgroupShare server is listening on the external address on port 8100. You can of course have different servers on your internal network on different ports, but this is completely transparent.

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