Eric's Networking

Open Ports in the Windows XP ICF for File and Printer Sharing


This article describes how to open ports for Windows XP Internet Connection Firewall (ICF) to allow file and printer sharing over a network.

More Information

The Windows XP ICF blocks file and printer sharing by default. Ports for file and printer sharing may potentially need to be manually opened for file and printer sharing to work over a network. You may have to use this procedure if you are using Windows XP ICF over a network.

To manually open a port:

  1. Click Start, point to All Programs, then Accessories, then Communications then Network Connections. (Or you can right click My Network Places on the desktop and choose Properties).
  2. Right-click the Local Area Network or the connection you are using, then click Properties.
  3. Click the Advanced tab, and then click Settings.
  4. Click Add to open a new port. The Service Settings dialog box should now appear as shown in the picture below.

  5. In the Description box, type a name. For example, type: File & Printer 1.
  6. In the Name or IP address of the computer hosting this service on your network box, type
  7. In both the External and Internal port boxes, type the port number.
  8. Click either TCP or UDP, and then click Ok.
  9. Repeat steps 4 - 8 and allow the appropriate ports to be open for file and printer sharing. To allow file and print sharing traffic, create and enable the following service definitions. In the External and Internal Ports, allow these ports: UDP 137, UDP 138, UDP 445, and TCP 139, and TCP 445.


  • The Settings button is unavailable in Step 3 when ICF is disabled and all ports are already open.

Last Modified: 2015-04-28.