a new home network - advice..

  SWJ 13:05 04 Mar 2003

I have two pc's an brand new 2.8GHZ 8250 Dell Dimension - with network card installed and running XP Home, and an older 300mhz P111 running Windows 2000 (upgraded from 98.

I have a Freeserve ADSL connection in box with alcatel ADSL modem and when the new line is installed and the ADSL is working nxt week, I want to be able to network the machines and share the broadband connection

I need advice on the best route for a home network
Cabled.. cheaper but more mess !
Wireless - worth the money ? security issues?

For fixed line route..What exactly will I need in addition to a second network card for the older machine.. do I need router and switch, or can you buy them combined..

Any experiences with this type of kit - which are most reliable and crucially easy to set-up..

Any impartial help very gratefully received


Steve WJ

  billyliv 13:21 04 Mar 2003

Hi, I run NTL cable broadband and attempted for ages to set up a network. I only had success when I opted for a D-Link DI-604 router. Modem connects to the router (Wan port), computers connect to the router. All cables are Cat 5 straight through. All computers can use the internet at the same time. Cheers, bill

  SWJ 13:33 04 Mar 2003

any likely differences with non-cable broadband
NTL are now too poor to cable our street !

  medwards 22:19 04 Mar 2003

No need for that router, Use XPs network setup wizard with your XP machine and at the end it asks if you want a disk for another pc. So yes and it gives you the setup disk ready to put into the windows 2000 machine.

Make sure you have your internet connection set to shared and when you run the wizard it asks if you want other computers to connect via your connection.

When all network settings done you may need to go into your internet explorer settings on the win 2000 pc and set up the bit that says LAN Settings. allow auto detect - and it should all work fine.

Mine does.

I have just bought two netgear wireless cards, one for the laptop (which Im typng this on) and a usb one for the desktop (sending this to you via internet connection), It took 30 mins to set up BEWARE if you go wireless - read the instruction first - I didnt and it did cause me a few probs.

( two wireless usb adapters from ebuyer were £70 inc vat)

Good luck

  SWJ 10:23 05 Mar 2003

thanks Medwards

clear and concise answers, but (and I may be being dim here) are you suggesting simply connecting the XP and 2000 computers via direct cable connections to each network card - with the modem connected to host (XP) via its USB ?
Sounds too easy !!

everything I have read so far says that I need a switch or router..

  vinnyT 11:54 05 Mar 2003

The prob with medwards method (it will work), is that you will have to have the pc connected with the modem switched on if you wish to connect to the net with the other pc. With the router, you can use either machine to connect at any time.

  Legolas 12:20 05 Mar 2003

medwards way is the most straightforward way, I have my two computers networked exactly as medwards describes, it is very easy when everything goes as it should of course but as vinnyT says the host machine must be switched on
to access the Internet from your client machine.

To be able to access the Internet from the client machine regardless of the host machine being switched on or off you must go through a switch or router. Just one more thing medway says that it asks if you want a disk for another pc, it is only nesseccary to make this floppy for the client machine if you do not have a copy of the XP disk, if you have the XP disk you just pop it in your client machine and when it loads up you choose "carry out additional tasks" and then "install small home network" this will set up your client machine for file,printer and Internet sharing. Setting up a home network is not as hard as I was led to believe especially with xp although perhaps I was just lucky and had no snags.

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