advice please - wired network can I unplug cable?

  teee7 19:59 16 Aug 2006

Hi - hope someone can advice a network novice.
I want to set up a wired network for broadband.
I have 2 PCs - one on XP with network port, one win98 without.
Main PC will need internet access daily, 2nd PC maybe once a week or less.
I know I need a router and the main PC will be connected to this at all times.
My question is can I unplug the 2nd PC from the router when not in use, and only plug it in when needed?
I don't want cables cluttering the house. I know I could go for a wireless network, but want to explore this option first.

  ade.h 20:02 16 Aug 2006

Yes. In fact, Ethernet cables are hot-pluggable, the only slight risk being that some adapter/router combinations can fail to get an IP when hot-plugged.

  dms05 20:09 16 Aug 2006

I have a part cabled and part WiFi network and connect various laptops to the router by LAN cable as well as by WiFi without problem. As ade.h says 'hot-pluggable'.

  Strawballs 22:54 16 Aug 2006

If when the 98 machine is connected the XP will also be why not do away with the router and link the 2 with a crossover cable and use the XP machine as a gateway then all you will need is a ethernet card for the 98 machine and crossover cable.

  ade.h 22:56 16 Aug 2006

Routers work a lot better than ICS.

  Strawballs 00:17 17 Aug 2006

ade.h I know but he said he only wanted to use the second machine on the net once a week on the net the rest of the time it will be unplugged, normally yes I would agree with you but for such light useage is it really woryh it.

  Strawballs 00:18 17 Aug 2006

must be getting tired!!

  teee7 11:51 18 Aug 2006

thanks for the replies folks!

  teee7 16:47 19 Aug 2006

2nd question:-
Would the modem/router offered free by my ISP that has 1 ethernet port and 1 USB port be ideal for me? (As the older computer doesn't have ethernet port)
Can I unplug the USB cable when not in use (like you said I could the ethernet cable)?
Tina (I'm a she not a he!)

  ade.h 17:04 19 Aug 2006

You can hot-plug USB cables, yes. But they are not a network format; Ethernet is the only network cable format that you will find in a conventional domestic network.

"Would the modem/router offered free by my ideal for me?"

Possibly... (he says with trepidation!) Depends what it is, but free routers can be a bit variable. The best that I have seen offered is a DG834G, though you don't normally get anything so mainstream and if I was buying it, I would prefer one of the better alternatives that are available.

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