If you are reading file from other machine,standalone agent configuration is recommended.
If FDMEE agent is not configured on the machine where file exists,it cannot read the file.
you have other ways to do this activity , using ftp or sftp provided you have network configurations in place.
hope this answers your question
That was the approach that we have followed! We have installed a standallone agent on the machine where our file was and we've setup the ODI package to run on that ODI agent.