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Using Winsock

  • November 19, 2002
  • By Karl Moore
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A few years ago, I was called in to a hectic call-centre - the head honcho had a problem.

Ironically, it was communication. Even though they had phones coming out of their ears (boom, boom), the people in this company simply couldn't talk to each other.

Half of his staff were constantly on the telephone. The other half were temporary employees that didn't know each other's names and moved chairs quicker than a bunch of seven-years olds at a birthday party.

The problem? When one of the workers had a query on an account and needed to question the last person dealing with it — they didn't know where to start. Who was who?

The solution came as a simple package I very originally christened Talk — essentially a more personalised version of ICQ or MSN Messenger. And it worked.

When an individual started work at a desk, they logged in. When they finished, they logged out. Somewhere in the middle, users could send messages to each other, have a digital chat even send files to and fro.

But how did it all work? By using the Winsock control. And this brief guide will demonstrate how to use it yourself, starting with a quick run-through of the basics, through to tips on setting up a chat session — plus handy links on how to initiate file transfers. We'll even cover how you can play Big Brother, and remotely control computers.

So without further ado, prepare to enter the wonderful world of Winsock...





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