December 2005 Reader Challenge Winners

Congratulations to the winners of our December 2005 Reader Challenge. First prize, a copy of "Windows Server 2003 Network Administration" (O’Reilly & Associates Publishing ) goes to John Saurer of Kentucky. Second prize, a copy of "Running QuickBooks in Nonprofits" (CPA911 Publishing), goes to Christian E. Devery of Maine.

January 2005 Reader Challenge

Solve this month's Windows Client challenge, and you might win a prize! Email your solution (don't use an attachment) to challenge@windowsitpro.com by January 18, 2006. You must include your full name and street mailing address (without that information, we can't send you a prize if you win, so your answer is eliminated even if it’s correct). I choose winners at random from the pool of correct entries. I’m a sucker for humor and originality, and a cleverly written correct answer gets an extra chance. Because I receive so many entries each month, I can't reply to respondents, and I never respond to a request for a receipt. Look for the solutions to this month's problem here on January 19, 2006.

The Challenge

All columnists and contributing editors at Windows IT Pro magazine receive tons of e-mail from administrators looking for answers. Many of those email messages make good Challenges for this column. Here are two email queries I received recently. Can you answer these readers’ questions?

Question 1:

I’ve been an administrator for many years, managing enterprises that use several network OSs. One consistent problem over the years is that users tend to save all downloads and files they’ve copied from other computers or other drives on the root of the C drive. In my Novell NetWare days, I knew that you couldn’t have more than 512 files on the root drive of a 16-bit OS. What are the file number limits for FAT32 and NTFS systems?

Question 2:

I’m filling out a job application and one of the questions asks whether I have any experience with administering a CAN. What the heck is a CAN?

The Answers

Question 1:

There are no limits to the number of files on the root of a drive formatted with FAT32 or NTFS.

Question 2:

CAN stands for Corporate Area Network, which is a self-contained network that is frequently set up for employees who work with sensitive data. A CAN has no connection to any other network, including the Internet and other corporate network systems.