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DCOM Settings

The following is a series of screen shots and notes on configuring Windows DCOM for Catalyst Pro. This setup is necessary when you want to run the Catalyst Pro drivers on a remote computer to allow multiple users to access the panels.

Terminology:

  • The Server is the computer connected to the panels and running the driver. For this example we will assume the IP address of the server is 192.168.0.1.
  • A Client is any of the remote computers running Catalyst Pro.

Notes:

  • Windows security is a tricky subject and we do not claim to be experts on it. These screen shots are directly from a network of two computers running Windows 2000 Professional. The settings should be identical, or nearly so on all versions of Windows, but see the important notes below for Windows 95 and 98.
  • The system works perfectly as shown below but we were not concerned with keeping others out of the system since there are only two computers on the network. It is your responsibility to make sure your network is secure once this setup is complete.
  • You need to do a full install of Catalyst Pro on both the server and the client. The server does not need a registered copy. The install on the server only uses the drivers, not Catalyst Pro itself. Once installed, you never need to run Catalyst Pro on the server.

  • First, make sure your site in Catalyst Pro is set up properly on the client machine. Note the IP address of the server in the "RemoteName" property. The "Comport" and "BaudRate" properties (when present) are set to the comport and baud rate that the server uses to communicate with the panel.

  • On the server, run the Windows program "DCOMCNFG". For Windows 95/98, you will need to download and install "DCOM95" or "DCOM98" from the Microsoft home page. See the notes on Windows 95/98 below.
  • Select the "Default Properties" tab and change the settings to:

  • Note that you must check the "Enabled COM Internet Services" if you want to access the driver over the Internet.

 

  • Select the "Default Protocols" tab and make sure that "TCP/IP" is at the top of the list. 

 

  • Select the "Applications" tab, highlight "CatAndoverComDriver" and click the "Properties" button.

 

  • Change the settings on the "General" tab to match the picture below.

 

  • Change the settings on the "Location" tab to match the picture below.

 

  • On the "Security" tab, select "Custom" for each of the three categories and then edit each of them. It will probably be easier if you initially set it up so that every entry in the list has "Allow Access" and "Full Control" until you get it working, then take out those who you do not wish to have access. At a minimum, you must select Administrators, Network, Interactive and System.

 

 

 

  • Change the settings on the "Identity" tab to match the picture below.

 

  • Verify that the settings on the "Endpoints" tab, matches the picture below.

 

  • On the client machine, make all the changes listed above, with one exception. After selecting "CatAndoverComDriver" and clicking the "Properties" button, change the "Identity" tab to match the picture below:

 

You should now be able to establish a remote connection with Catalyst Pro. If Catalyst Pro is still giving you the "Cannot access the driver for this Site." message, it means that Windows is still rejecting the connection. Some of the causes may be:

  • A firewall program blocking access.
  • Using a router. Windows does not support this type of DCOM through a router.
  • Other security settings in Windows unrelated to DCOM.
  • Third-party network security settings.

Internet Access Notes:

To run DCOM objects over the Internet, Windows NT/2000/XP requires that the client user also be a user on the server. In other words, if the remote user (on the client machine) has logged in to his local computer as "John" with a password of "Password", then the server must also have a user named "John" with the password "Password", and he must be given rights to access/launch the driver. You may need to have an experienced System Administrator set this up for you as it is more involved than using it over a local network. 

Windows 95/98 Notes:

Windows 95/98 do not automatically support DCOM. You must download and install one of the following on both the server and/or the client if they are running Windows 95 or 98:

For Windows 95: http://www.microsoft.com/com/dcom/dcom95/download.asp

For Windows 98: http://www.microsoft.com/com/dcom/dcom98/dcom1_3.asp

Once installed, manually add/change the following registry values to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\OLE:

  • EnableRemoteConnect = "Y"
  • LegacyAuthenticationLevel = 1 (DWORD)

Windows 95/98 will not automatically launch DCOM objects, so you need to run the Catalyst Pro driver manually on the server. You can do this by placing "CatAndoverCom.Exe" from the "Catalyst\Driver\Andover Controls" folder in to the "Startup" folder of Windows, or just double-clicking it in Windows Explorer. You will not see the program running. It runs in the background.

Finally, Windows 95/98 requires that the program "RPCSS.Exe" be running on both the client and the server. You can also place this in the "Startup" folder.

 

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