I am not an expert on PCs but have been playing with something similar to what you are trying to do.
My approach would be
To get yourself a Cross-Over cable (A CAT5 cable used to connect between two PCs directly, unlike the regular CAT5 cable used to connect a PC to a Hub).
Goto ‘Start’, ‘Run’, and type ‘Command’ to get to the DOS Prompt (Do this on both PCs)
At the DOS Prompt, type in ‘ipconfig’ and press enter
This should display your IP Address on the PC. Do this on both PCs to obtain both of their addresses.
At the DOS Prompt, type ‘ping’ followed by a space and the IP Address of the other PC and press enter.
If the PCs can see one another the response will be: ‘Reply from : etc etc’, otherwise it will come back with a message ‘Request time out’
If you get a successful reply between the two PCs then goto ‘My Network Places’, and select ‘Set up a home or small office network’
Follow the wizard step by step, ensure that the PCs have different names and the SAME workgroup name.
Create a Network Disk at the end of the process for the first machine and reboot the machine when it prompts you to do so.
Take the disk created in the first machine and insert it into the second machine.
Run the file on the disk and follow the instructions in the wizard.
Reboot the machine when prompted and leave the disk inserted.
When both machines have been rebooted go into Windows Explorer.
Select ‘My Network Places’,
Select ‘Entire Network’
Select ‘Microsoft Windows Network’
Your network should be visible with the name you used for the Workgroup Name
Double Click on the Network with your Workgroup Name
You should now see your two PCs with the Computer Names you used in the Network Wizard
If you want to share your printer between two PCs then go into ‘Settings’
Select “Printers and Faxes’
Right click on your printer and select ‘Sharing’
Click on ‘Share this printer’ and give it a name and click on ‘OK’
Your network should be complete, test the printing from one PC to the other to ensure it operates fine
If your network is functioning properly, you will be able to share printers, scanners, modems (dial up only), and directories on your Hard Disk. If you have a cable modem you will need a gateway and hub (hardware) to share your connection.