In a front end back end format you should open up the front end and check the hide database window. apply. then close and do the same to the back end separately the same way. a front end back end split is actualy 2 different databases linked to each other but the back end has all the real datatables and the front end is just linked to it. which means that a BE can be opened by itself that is probably why you see the db window on the other computers. the BE if a multiuser environment (like mine are) are stored on a public folder (everyone in the domain can access it) on a network server. The frontends are supposed to be stored on each individual desktop computer and the tables are linked to the back end with the linked table manager.
XP has nothing afaik to do w/ it not doing what you say.