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Home » Forums » Forum Archives » Networking and Internet Sharing » Topic # 685

Problems networking two W98SE computers
Reb Dovid Feb-21-01 03:13 AM
On Presidents' Day, a friend and I tried to create a home LAN to share cable modem, file, and printer access. We intended to use a Linksys 5-port 10/100 switch and a Linux box (running Red Hat Linux 7.0--within my friend's professional expertise)to network my existing internet-connected computer (also attached to our only printer) with computers in our two daughters' rooms.

After drilling holes through walls and laying cable, we set to work on the network. Unfortunately, we never got to try the Linux box because it would not run with both my existing Internet NIC (a 21041 based PCI card) and a Netgear FA 311 PCI card installed. (My friend suggests trying an ISA NIC, which he thinks he has.)

We then tried connecting the computer in the study with the one in my daughter Rachel's room. My friend had assigned IP addresses to each computer. Each computer purportedly could see itself and the network, but not the other computer. We checked and rechecked to make sure the workgroup name was identical, etc.

I then tried using the included Sygate 3.5 software. It did no better, except that, for a brief time, Rachel's computer appeared on the study computer when I clicked on Network Neighborhood within Windows Explorer (but not directly from Network Neighborhood itself). When I clicked on Rachel's computer, however, it returned a "network error" message.

Yesterday evening, I found your most informative site. After perusing the forum and your networking guides, I decided to start over this evening with the basics. Once again, however, although each computer purported can see the network and itself, it cannot see the other computer. Here's the setup:

the Study computer is a 300a Celeron with 128 megs on an Abit BH6 motherboard. It is connected to the cable modem with the 21041-based NIC and to the Linksys switch with a Linksys LNE100TX NIC. Here's the network configuration:

Client for Microsoft Networks
Dial-Up Adapter
Intel 21041 based Ethernet Controller
Linksys LNE100TX Fast Ethernet Adapter (v. 4)
NetBEUI -> Linksys LNE100TX etc.
TCP/IP -> Dial-Up Adapter
TCP/IP -> Intel 21041 based etc.
File and printer sharing for Microsoft Networks

The Primary Network Logon is Microsoft Networks.
The computer has a unique name--Study--and the workgroup name is our last name (all in small letters). Other properties correspond to those in your guides.

Rachel's computer is an old P-120 clone. It also is connected to the Linksys switch with the same Linksys NIC. BTW, the patch cable is Cat 5 from a reputable dealer--PCs for Everyone in Cambridge, MA. Here's this computer's network configuration:

Client for Microsoft Networks
Linksys LNE100TX NIC
NetBEUI (N.B., this line does not include a reference to the Linksys NIC)
TCP/IP (N.B., when I remove this line, the Client for Microsoft Networks also disappears)
File and printer sharing for Microsoft Networks

Again, Rachel's computer has a unique name, the workgroup name is identical to that in the Study computer, and other properties correspond to your guides.

The lights on the Linksys switch are (for both connections) solid amber, indicating operation in full duplex mode, and solid green, indicating port operation at 100Mbps. The Study connection is flashing green, indicating an active network connection and that the port is sending/receiving data. Rachel's connection is solid green, indicating an active network connection, but not the sending or receiving of data.

Finally, I ran the Linksys diagnositics on both cards. Both passed.

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance.


1. RE: Problems networking two W98SE computers
lbyard Feb-21-01 04:13 PM
In response to message 0
I would suggest using the KISS principle in designing your network and implementing Internet sharing! I would not use Linux to share an Internet connection. It involves far more complexity, and user involvement and knowledge than is needed for the function and the computer running it has to be on to share the Internet. The best choice is a hardware router, such as the SMC Barricade (http://duxcw.com/digest/Reviews/Network/smc/smc7004br/smc7004br.htm). The Barricade also has a built-in printer server, but the printer server does not work with all printers. Second, I would get the local area network working first. Get it working with NetBEUI (http://duxcw.com/digest/Howto/network/net2pc/intro.htm) before installing TCP/IP. If you have a Intel 21041 based Ethernet Controller in the first machine, pull it and delete the driver until the local network is working first. The second machine isnít configure/working properly. I would uninstall and reinstall everything network. If Windows still comes-up with the same configuration, run the Linksys diagnostics on the adapter. The loopback test will fail because you do not have a loopback connector. If the diagnostics fail, try moving the adapter to another slot. If they fail again and if they show all Fís for the MAC address, try one of the other adapters. I hope this came out OK, I have a terrible cold. Larry

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