Another (fairly) quick post all about Windows Vista Meeting Space. If you are using Vista in an environment which requires you to collaborate with other people, the Meeting Space functionality is a brilliant tool. For instance, myself and a colleague can very easily start working on a document together, that is sitting on my machine, I can give him control, take control, share handouts and so on. At the end of our session, I can very easily ensure he receives a copy of the document that we have collaborated together on. This really is a top notch tool, but you know the best bit? Even if we were in the middle of a field, with no Internet connection at all, Meeting Space will quickly and easily set up a secure ad-hoc wireless network between the machines involved, so a lack of Internet connectivity becomes a boundary no more.
It's not just a great tool for collaborating - have you ever turned up to a presentation and there was no projector? Embarrassing is one word, and mildly annoying too! With Meeting Space however, why not just stream the presentation to the other machines from yours? Need to leave the room for a while? Delegate control to another member of the meeting space and let them flick through the slides from their machine! Great!
Anyway, enough blurb about what it can do from my experience - what about the stuff it can do that even I haven't tried yet?
Well, navigating through the wealth of information on the TechNet Vista TechCenter, I stumbled upon this beauty: The Windows Vista Meeting Space Step by Step Guide. One of the points it notes, under the section entitled "Benefits of Windows Meeting Space" was:
"A collaborative application focused on sessions that work in all topologies, including...Internet (if the firewall and associated ports are correctly configured) A means to invite, track, and detect the presence of attendees"
So, Meeting Space can be used over the net? I didn't know this before, but already I can think of a number of ways it would be useful, in a similar way to a remote assistance session, but for more people I guess!
I've pinched the following from that guide, but if you do want more information, I'd definitely recommend going to have a read of it.
Prepare Windows Firewall for Windows Meeting Space
Windows Meeting Space will automatically configure the correct exceptions for Windows Firewall the first time you start Windows Meeting Space. When Windows Meeting Space is started the first time, you are prompted to Setup Windows Meeting Space. Click Enable file synchronization and Windows Firewall exception to make the changes automatically. You will also be prompted to set up and enable People Near Me. In Name, type your name, and then click OK after reading the security warning.
If you want to manually configure Windows Firewall, the following table contains the ports and applications to be excepted.
To configure Windows Firewall for Windows Meeting Space
Like I said, there is a tonne of information in The Windows Vista Meeting Space Step by Step Guide around setup, troubleshooting and so on.
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