Solved: Connecting 2 computers and 2 printers to a wireless network

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ladybon

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I have 2 computers, a Dell Inspiron laptop and a Dell 745 desktop, both running Windows XP, Service Pak 3. I also have 2 printers; an Epson Stylus Photo R200 and an HP: Officejet 6500 wireless. I have a Speedstream 5100 modem and a D-Link 802.11g/2.4 GHz wireless router.

Is it possible to connect the 2 printers and 2 computers to the modem and router? Are there splitter cords available that would allow me to make the proper connections?

I don't have my wireless connected at the moment because there were problems in the past with security. Could someone tell me what I would need in order to connect everything wirelessly?

I would also like to get a larger hard drive for my Dell 745 desktop. Right now I only have 1 GB memory and 80 GB hard drive, with 3.4 GHz processor (Pentium D). What brand of hard drive should I look for, and how many GB? Can I leave the 80GB in the tower along with the new, larger one? I have no idea what would be compatible with my system.

Thanks for any help you can give me.
 

etaf

Wayne
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Is it possible to connect the 2 printers and 2 computers to the modem and router?
No
the Epson Stylus Photo R200 is not networked enabled - so you will need to connect to a PC and share that way or buy a print server and its probably cheaper to buy a new wireless printer

I don't have my wireless connected at the moment because there were problems in the past with security. Could someone tell me what I would need in order to connect everything wirelessly?
Yes you should be able to implement WPA or WPA2 or WEP as a wireless security on the router , just depends if the PCs have a wireless adapter and support the security methods

Are there splitter cords available that would allow me to make the proper connections?
you dont need splitter cables

So the Modem ==> internet /WAN /Modem connection of the router
PC(s) ==> cable to the LAN port of the router or via wireless

I would also like to get a larger hard drive for my Dell 745 desktop. Right now I only have 1 GB memory and 80 GB hard drive, with 3.4 GHz processor (Pentium D). What brand of hard drive should I look for, and how many GB? Can I leave the 80GB in the tower along with the new, larger one? I have no idea what would be compatible with my system.
Whats the harddrive to be used for - the easiest way would be to buy a USB external 1TB harddrive and archive all documents to that ?
 

ladybon

Thread Starter
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36
Thanks for your expert advice. One of the printers is wireless. And, of course, my desktop computer can't be used anywhere else other than my desktop, unless I disconnect and reconnect in another location, which I won't be doing. Therefore, my Epson printer can be connected to my desktop. Since my laptop IS portable, and I would like to be able to use it in other areas of the house, is it only necessary that I connect the laptop and wireless printer to the wireless network?

Since I may want to retrieve files from my desktop pc while using my laptop, is it necessary for it to be connected to my wireless network also? I do have an external drive that I've transferred all my photo onto. I'll take your advice and also transfer my documents, etc. onto it.

Regarding the WPA or WPA2 or WEP as a wireless security on the router, I'm assuming the wireless network wizard would walk me through that?

Did I interpret your connection instructions correctly: INTERNET: modem to router; PCs: Cable from the pc to the LAN port of the router? How would I include the 2nd computer (my desktop)?

Thanks for being so patient with a clueless computer user.
 

etaf

Wayne
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the desktop does not have wireless - so is it near the router so you can connect a cable between the PC and router ( i assume the desktop has ethernet connection)

anything connected to the router by cable and by wireless should be able to share documents - so you can have the desktop connected by a cable to the router
and
the printer connected by usb to the desktop
NOW
all wireless devices will see the desktop and the desktop will see all wireless devices
when the sharing is all setup correctly

so now its a physical thing about the modem and distance of cable to router and distance for a cable from router to desktop


on the desktop lets see what network capability it has

------------------------------------------------------------------------
{Device Manager}
Post back the results in device manager
If you cannot access the internet with this PC, then you will need to copy the program across to the faulty PC
Start > control Panel {Vista set to classic view}> system > {Vista, device manager on left hand side} {XP hardware Tab, device manager button} >
windows 7
start > control panel> System and Security> Device Manager

network adaptors, click on the + > post back the devices listed there

post a screen shot of the device manager - network adapters

To post a screen shot of the active window, hold the Alt key and press the PrtScn key. Open the Windows PAINT application and Paste the screen shot. You can then use PAINT to trim to suit, and save it as a JPG format file.
To upload it to the forum, open the full reply window and use the Manage Attachments button to upload it here
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 

ladybon

Thread Starter
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Apr 21, 2010
Messages
36
OMG! You guys are way too advanced for me. I was able to open the device manager and copy it into Open Office Draw, which must be their version of Microsoft Paint. Anyway, it wouldn't upload as a .jpeg file, so I put it into a zip file. I hope this works! Sorry it's taken so long to respond, I haven't had time to get to my computer work. Thanks again for your expertise.

device mgr.zip
 

Attachments

ladybon

Thread Starter
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Apr 21, 2010
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OOPS! Sorry, I forgot to answer your question as to the distance of the desktop from the router. It's not more than 3 ft. away from the router.
 

etaf

Wayne
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I have changed the ZIP file to the PNG image , just for anyone viewing to see the image ok

so you do have a ethernet network connection available on the desktop and the router is close enough to connect

so you are set

Router ==> <cable> Desktop ==> <USB> Printer
Router ==> <wireless> Laptop
Router ==> <wireless> printer

If the sharing is all setup correctly the desktop will see the wireless printer and the laptop OK and the USB printer
and the Laptop will see the wireless printer , the desktop and the USB printer
 

ladybon

Thread Starter
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Apr 21, 2010
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Thanks for checking that for me. I have a question regarding my router. It has a WAN port, and other ports marked 1, 2, 3 and 4. The cord to the pc would be connected to the WAN port. Do the other ports have to be used for anything specific? Also, you mentioned WPA, WPA2 or WEP as a wireless security on the router. I don't see these on the router itself. Are these something I would find on the wireless wizard during the wireless connection process?

I'm very security conscious because there was a security breach on my laptop several months back. Once I have the pc and laptop connected wirelessly, and, heaven forbid, there is another security breach on the laptop, will the pc also be compromised?

When I start doing my connections, should I connect the pc to the router first, then go to the wireless wizard to connect the other devices?

All of this is pretty foreign to me, so I'm very thankful that I have you guys to turn to. Thanks so much.
 

etaf

Wayne
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It has a WAN port, and other ports marked 1, 2, 3 and 4. The cord to the pc would be connected to the WAN port.
NO - the modem connects to the WAN port
The ports marked 1,2,3,4 are for connecting PC

so you connect the PC to 1,2,3,or 4 doesn't matter which , the loginto the router - and setup with the wizard or manually

use wpa or wpa2 security - then when you connect to the wireless it will ask you for the code you setup - some older devices may not work with WPA/WPA2 in that case you may need to use WEP

and, heaven forbid, there is another security breach on the laptop, will the pc also be compromised?
that will depend on a number of things and how you have the desktop and pc setup for sharing info
 

ladybon

Thread Starter
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Apr 21, 2010
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OK! I think I've finally "got it", and I can't thank you enough for taking your time to explain all this to me in an easy to understand way. I appreciate your help. I've printed your instructions, so I anticipate no problems. Many thanks.
 

ladybon

Thread Starter
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Apr 21, 2010
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As soon as I find someone to completely go over my laptop to make sure there's nothing lurking there, such as a key logger. Someone hacked into my system, more than once, and several root kits were uncovered by AVG Deluxe version. I want to make absolutely sure the laptop is totally secure before I reconnect the router. I'm not taking any chances. I had a lot of help from you guys, and your tips helped me a lot, but, it was suggested that I have a computer expert, someone I can trust, inspect the laptop and possibly wipe it clean and reload the software. That's something I'm just not qualified to do, so I'm leaving it to the experts.
 

ladybon

Thread Starter
Joined
Apr 21, 2010
Messages
36
This is a question for etaf, who was so helpful in explaining how to connect all my devices to a wireless network. I hope you are out there.

I finally had a computer repairman clean my hard drive yesterday. He was also going to set up my network while he was here, but we found that my router isn't functioning, so I now have to purchase another router. Could you recommend a good brand, and also advise me of anything else I should know before purchasing the router? I did hear something about the new "N" type??

Thanks again for your help.
 

etaf

Wayne
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Quite a few available on the market - depends on what you want to do and how much to spend

1) Most will be N - But you will need N adapters in all the devices to be able to use
2) Some a dual band and also use 5Ghz as well as the 2,4ghz - but again you need the adapter to support that frequency - some broadcast at both the 5 and 2.4ghz frequency - other you have choose one or the other - which is not so good unless everything you use can support 5ghz
3) Some will have a USB port on where you can attach a USB harddrive and copy data on the network - and may also include a DLNA server which will allow you to stream music / video from the harddrive - Also the USB may support USB only printers and allow you to connect a USB printer to the network - print server
4) Some will have removable aerials so you can add additional high-gain aerials

so a few choices out there
D-link you already have
Linksys
Netgear
Belkin
are probably the main makes

I'm UK based so do not know the US market well, but looking at newegg.com quite a choice

personally I have experiance of D-link, linksys - both of which i have owned and then worked on netgear routers

Have a look at some sites in US - and post back any your thinking of and from the specs we may be able to tell your the advantages / disadvantages -
 

ladybon

Thread Starter
Joined
Apr 21, 2010
Messages
36
WOW!! ALL devices have to be compatible with the N technology? How do I find that out? Also, 5 ghz and 2.4 gzh? I believe I should find one that supports both the 5 and the 2.4 ghz to be on safe side.

I have an exterior hard drive. Is that what you are referring to when you say that some devices will have a USB port to which you can attach a hard drive and copy data on the network? My D-Link doesn't have that. I believe that would be a nice feature because I think my Epson Photo R200 has a USB connection. If not, I can connect my exterior drive to that USB.

I don't believe I'll ever have a need to add different aerials. Just need something that will accommodate my devices and get my network up and running, and that's not too expensive.

I was planning on looking on Newegg.com, so I will do that asap and get back to you with a few routers that look as if they might be what you think will work with my system. Thanks for being out there and helping me AGAIN!
 
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