seeking all info on VNC and samba for new 'remote management' doc

Attempts to set up a server on openSuSE 13.1 have been frustrating. Have spent two weeks (not full time) without VNC or samba working. Have searched these forums and found some useful information, but so far the best explanation for setting up samba for Windows networks is
That was written for openSuSE 12.1 but still seems relevant. Contains MUCH more detail helpful to first-timers (like me, I’ve run only Linux for 10 years and need some help with Windows configuration). Even the official SuSE manuals (books for SLES) are pathetically short on detail. For example, the only method for setting up shares from a Windows computer explained in the manual is for FTP–nothing about Windows networking.
As a tech writer for almost 50 years I feel I can say with some authority that the documentation could be better–and I want to do it. I’m collecting info for samba and VNC with the goal of assembling a more useful document. Please send me (post here) pointers to other sources, suggestions, hints, and your experiences setting up remote management of mixed (linux+MS) networks. In particular I’d appreciate anything on topics often considered too obvious to mention, for example the form of an entry in a field to identify a remote server (name? NAME? port? session number? how many colons? how many slashes or backslashes?).
Thanks in advance.

I’ve always found

a good place to get a basic samba going.

And I never understood why it does not work out of the box. At least for simple peer to peer networks. I’ve always had to make the configs simpler to get them to work. Should only need to add the share name and maybe the shared folders and it should fire right off. But every install I have to nurse it to make it work.

Specific problem with swat, the interface to configuring samba. Existing docs say you start swat in yast/network services/network services configuration (xinetd). In 13.1, swat appears in the list of network services, originally with a “–” mark indicating it is locked or inactive but installed (according to the help window). Highlighting the swat line and clicking on “Toggle Status (on or off)” pops up a dialog box that says samba was successfully installed, but swat remains locked (-- in status column). Clicking on the edit button brings up a blank form, what looks like a way to add a service–doesn’t seem helpful. Choosing Activate All Services under Status for All Services has no effect on the swat line, still “–” status. Again clicking on Toggle Status produces the same confirmation that samba was installed. It is no surprise that entering localhost:901 in Firefox fails to connect to swat.
So there seems to be some detail that I fail to understand. Can you tell me what it is?
FYI: server is Dell 2970 (AMD CPUs, latest BIOS update), connecting over Wi-Fi N, openSuse 13.1, KDE 4.11.4.

Never had any luck with any of the GUI set up stuff. I always just edit the configs by hand.

Thank you for the link. Exactly what I’m looking for. Can you offer any details on what your own “nursing” looks like?

I just follow swerdna’s advice