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Computer networking


wglenn's Avatar
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03-28-01, 08:15 AM   #1  
wglenn
I have two computers running Windows98 and I want to hook them up together to play games and to be able to surf the net at the same time. What is involved? I have a Belkin cable that hooks up to the parallel ports of each computer. Is that enough? I have swapped files through the Direct Cable Connection program on the computers.

 
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03-28-01, 10:48 AM   #2  
What I have done here on our three computers is networked them. Go to Wal-mart and buy a home networking kit for $90. It comes complete with 2 network interface cards (NIC) a Hub and all the Cat-5 cables you need. It also omes with step-by-step instructions.

I added the third machine with just a NIC and a cable. All three are connected to the net and can play games if we wanted to.

 
Marshall Buttrey's Avatar
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03-28-01, 10:18 PM   #3  
Marshall Buttrey
I don't know why you cant go to Circuit City and buy two LAN cards for $10.00 each, and use telephone wire.

I haven't tried it, but it should work.

 
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03-29-01, 06:16 AM   #4  
You don't need a hub when connecting only 2 computers up, if you have more than 2 computers than you must use a hub.
If no hub, you must somewhere between computer A and computer B use a cross patch cord, if have a hub then straight patch is ok, the hub does the rest (read any instructions that comes with the hub should you use one). You can use a hub if so desired if only 2 computers but I'm just saying you can netwrok 2 computers without a hub.

Need a network card in each computer if the motherboard does not have a network LAN connector already on it. I usually use RJ 45 connections.

Use CAT 5 cable not regular telphone wires which sometimes could be any catagory.

I have never tried the direct parrallel connection between computers , so I can;t comment from personal experience with that kind of setup. You may want to reserve the parallel port for the printer and possibly even a scanner, and leave the networking to LAN networkl cards.

[Edited by dkerr on 03-29-01 at 09:22]

 
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03-29-01, 09:09 AM   #5  
Marshall Buttrey
I used parallel port connections in the early 90s, so it is very fuzzy. I think it was called lap link. I know I used it as a way to copy files from my notebook to desk top.

It was usefull, but I agree with dkerr. I would leave the networing to a lan (local area network). They are effective, and economical.

Marshall

 
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03-29-01, 10:12 AM   #6  
you can use the parrellel connection for game play, if the games you are playing supports it, most all that can network support lan connection (cat 5. phone cable will not work) you get better speed with the lan connection. Also with the parrallel connection you cannot share modem connection to the network, (unless there are programs that allow it). If you have 98se you can use modem share from the main system, again requires lan cards in both machines. you should be able to pull up a readme file on how to set it up. Also...if you connect direct pc to pc with cat 5 you (if I remember correctly) will need to get cross-over cables(pins 1&3,2&6 are crossed), and patch (or straight thru) if you intend to use a hub.

 
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03-29-01, 09:11 PM   #7  
I would agree with the previous posters, go with the network interface card (nic) method. Spring for the small office/home networking kit sold in most computer stores. By including the use of a hub you can expand your network by simply plugging the new host into the hub. The reason you do not want to use regular telephone cable in a network is based on bandwidth. Phone cable bandwidth is very low, just enough to carry voice not data. Cat 5 network cable is rated at 100 Mbps which is the maximum speed of 10baseT network interface card. Also be aware that the maximum length of Cat 5 cable is 328 ft.

Good Luck

 
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03-29-01, 10:11 PM   #8  
Marshall Buttrey
I must have missed something. I'm sitting here with a DSL connection that uses a telephone wire. It might be the weakest link in the chain, but it sure ain't voice speed.

Marshall

 
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03-29-01, 11:39 PM   #9  
Hi Marshall,
Yes, your dsl does use exisiting phone line by separating it into 3 bands. The voice calls use the lower frequency band (30hz to 4khz) dsl uses the higher bands for high speed data transmission. This is how you can be on the internet and talk on the phone at the same time. However, dsl bandwidth is at best 1.5 Mbps using regular phone line. The slowest network interface card is 10baseT which is 10 Mbps. If you were to use phone cable to wire the network you would be severly choking the data flow. That is why cat 5 cable (max 100Mbps) is recommended for network use. Hope this helps clear up any confusion I may have caused.

mrfixit

 
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03-30-01, 09:49 PM   #10  
Marshall Buttrey
I understand Cat5, Cat6, and Cat7. I question "Phone cable bandwidth is very low, just enough to carry voice not data."

Marshall

 
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04-05-01, 12:19 PM   #11  
DSL works by exploiting excess bandwidth in telephone cables.

That is, the telephone lines that carry voice, have the capacity to carry more. Modems will go up to 56k (in theory only). I think the FCC regulations only allow 52k.

That's neither here nor there, because not all wiring currently in place can manage 52k. Some places can only muster up 33k. I think that has to do with the connection between your phone and the telephone office, the condition of the lines, yadda, yadda, yadda. New fiber systems yield better results.

On to DSL. It uses a different frequency than voice communications do (voice is under 4000 hz I think). So data and voice can share the same two-wire analog telco cable simultaneously. The signal is split for upstream, downstream and voice.

(Yes, I know telephone cable has four wires, but for single phone operation, you only use two.)

However, not everyone can do this - DSL works best when the distance from your house to the DSL provider is not too far. Which is why DSL is not available in all areas. Distance doesn't affect voice (usually!) because the lines already have a repeater of sorts that boosts the voice signals. Doesn't work for DSL signals though, so you're stuck waiting for Bell Atlantic or whoever to start a DSL office in your area. Ironically, I don't think DSL likes fiber (the very thing that makes voice and 56k modems happy).

Bottom line -
The FCC has dictated that DSL communications shall be limited to 1.5 Mb. Even if DSL maxxed out the analog line capacity, I don't believe it approaches 10Mb which is the bottom range of Cat5.

Home networks run through electrical wiring only manage a measly 360Kb. Very sucky. But no additional wiring.

Older home telephone network kits run at 1Mb. Also sucky. I'm told they now run at 10Mb, but I haven't had the urge to try one to see if it's true. I'd be sure you get the latest stuff though. Again, no additional wiring. I don't know what it does for your voice phone usage while your network is active though.

My personal preference is Cat5: 10Mb - 100mb. I've got the hubs already, and this is what we do for a living. I've done short cable runs in my house and have had no problems. But it is additional wiring, that people may not necessarily want to get into.

 
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04-05-01, 02:08 PM   #12  
wglenn
Computer networking

While I am sure you guys know what you are talking about. I am not sure I do. I will buy two NIC cards and a crossover cable and set up my computers with NET/BUIE for the network and still usa TCP/IXP for my internet connection and try that. If it doesn't work, I'll be back. Thanks to all of you.

 
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04-06-01, 12:16 AM   #13  
Marshall Buttrey
Good Luck WGLENN. Sounds like politics and religion doesn't it? Everyone has an opinion.

Marshall

PS: Don't let all this get too confusing. Unless the Telco. has rewired your area, you have telephone wire from your house to their switching station. The weakest link defines the bandwidth for your connection. Telephone wires have carried data for at least the 35 years I've been in the IT Industry. It keeps improving, thank goodness.

[Edited by Marshall Buttrey on 04-06-01 at 03:55]

 
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04-06-01, 05:45 AM   #14  
wglenn:

You will be OK with a NIC in each computer and a crossover cable. If you decide later to use a hub, they can be had for about $30. (Then take the crossover cable, mark it as a crossover and shove it as far into a corner of a drawer as you can). You should not need Netbui, but you may use it to test your connectivity. You will need TCP/IP to network, so get it working next, then you can drop Netbui. You will need IPX/SPX for internet gaming.

 
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04-06-01, 07:23 AM   #15  
we forgot to toss this in the mix....dont forget your ip addresses for the nic's. most use a default of 10.10.10.(what ever) and a default mask of 255.255.255.0. If you use modem share you should not have to worry about default gateway. if you use dsl or cable then you will.

ex. Comp A Comp B
ip 10.10.10.11 ip 10.10.10.12
mask 255.255.255.0 mask 255.255.255.0
both using tcp/ip protocol

we'll worry about default gateway when we come to that bridge, too much too soon is not a good idea.

Brian

 
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