Solved: Networking bridge with 2 NICs in 1 computer

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ozegirl

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Hypothetical Situation:

Computer 1 (XP) has on-board LAN and is connected to Home network through router - therefore has dynamic IP address assigned.

Computer 1 also has an additional NIC card in separate slot.

Computer 2 (WIN98SE) has an NIC card, but is not connected to home network. (All ports on router full).

I'd like to join these 2 computers together using the spare NIC's - and then hopefully have computer 2 recognised on the LAN via network bridging.

Is this possible & how would it be done?
 

TerryNet

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You would go into Network Connections on the XP and create a bridge between the two NICs.

I think you use a straight (patch, regular) cable between the two computers, but it may be a cross-over. Of course, if one of the NICs is auto-sensing you don't have to worry about that part.
 

ozegirl

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Yep I know that part - I was wondering more whether if Computer 1 has an IP address dynamically assigned by the router (which could therefore change) and I assign it (Comp 1) an arbitrary IP address on the other NIC to connect to Computer 2 (also with an arbitrary IP address - these 2 computers on same subnet, etc) - does the bridge just automatically work & handle the fact that Computer 1 has 2 IP addresses? Or do you have to give Computer 1 the same IP address on each of the 2 cards....how do you handle this if the LAN address is dynamically assigned?
 

TerryNet

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"Yep I know that part ..."

Then why ask?

I would just let the router assign a dynamic address to Computer 2; thought that was the idea behind doing the bridge of the two XP NICs.

Don't know what would happen if you assign an IP to the second XP NIC. If you assign an IP to Computer 2 it should be in the same subnet as the router but outside of its Dhcp range.

By the way, you could solve this problem much easier and better by buying an ethernet switch.
 

ozegirl

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I actually found this excellent article on the subject, but the bridging link is a USB one, not ethernet....so I'm supposing it would work in the same way...

http://www.windowsnetworking.com/j_helmig/wxpbrdge.htm

I can't "test" it out yet as I said in the original post this is a Hypothetical situation....

I have an older computer with 2 NIC's
Planning to buy a new computer with on-board NIC.
Thought I might take out one of the cards from the old comp & put it in the new comp - that way I can then connect the older comp to the new comp & use it as a backup & also use other older software & hardware installed with the older comp.

So...just planning ahead at this stage.

Also, if anyone uses VNC, I assume I would be able to access the older computer as a server as long as I have TCP/IP installed over the bridge?
 

ozegirl

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This message was meant to be posted earlier but the website crashed when I was uploading & consequently it didn't go on...

Just to remind you....the older computer is WIN98SE.

I didn't realise that the router which is on the LAN and not directly connected to the second computer would assign an IP address over the bridge.....I thought that the secondary Comp 1 - Comp 2 network was independent from the LAN and that the "Bridging" function in network connections just allowed you to see the two separate networks together in My Network places.

Yes I could buy an ethernet switch for over $100 which can combine 4 or 5 computers but I only want to connect these 2 computers together.

I have the rest of the household LAN on a router + switch and there are no more ports left and physical location of the computers with respect to the existing switch is also a problem.
 

TerryNet

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I realize that you are in Australia, and I know nothing about your currency, but, being in the US, I was thinking of rather inexpensive switches, for example http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicat...u=N100-1452 P&SRCCODE=GOOPROD&CMP=OTC-FROOGLE

My understanding of XP's "Bridging" is that the two connections are "spliced" together. In effect logically there is one cable from router to the XP machine, and another cable from the router to the 98SE machine.
 

ozegirl

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Golly gosh - I checked out current prices for that thing on ebay and it has come down in price!

I bought my switch probably about 2 years ago & it was just over $100.

I have a router with 3 comps + the switch plugged in - then plugged in to the switch are 4 other computers.

I gave the example of wanting to add on one of those existing computers to a new computer via a direct computer-computer connection as I had no ports left on either the router or switch.

In fact I am replacing 2 old computers with 2 new computers and in each case I was going to connect the older computer to the newer one directly as a backup.

Ideally I would have gone for another switch, but it's the logistics of where these computers are in the house that is the pain.

The idea is to have in each case the 2 companion computers together, but each set of 2 is in a vastly different area of the house (different boy's bedrooms).

At that price though & for the convenience, it might be worth getting the switch and hauling some cable through the house to the other set of computers.

I think the fact that the Win XP bridging function can splice the other network in to the router, effectively making it appear to be on the same network is pretty cool.

I fear there may have been some issues with this though, particularly with one computer being Win 98SE - trying to configure TCP/IP on 2 different adapters in the same computer can sometimes make the network whinge.
 

TerryNet

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No doubt there may be issues with Win 98SE and "fancy" stuff like bridging! Of course if the main idea is to just file share between the paired computers (no internet on the old computer) you could fall back on just a separate ad-hoc network between the old and new computers (don't use bridging).

Or maybe you can find two rather cheap small switches and put one by each of the paired computers.

Hope you post later to let us know what you've done and how it has worked. Good luck.
 

ozegirl

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Thanks for your help. I'll post back if we go through with it - have talked to one of my sons & he doubts he would use the other comp much as a backup anyway - kids are so fickle!
You're right I don't need internet on the older computers but using a switch might be a neater way of doing it anyway....if need be......

We're just in the throes at the moment of deciding on specs for the new computers & deciding what we can live without - hence if the old computer can come to the party for extra storage, etc it helps.
 
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What I have done is configured the second computer manually. I give it a Static Ip from a reserved range of IPs, and all other data (Default gateway, subnet, DNS servers) are set the same as the rest of the network. The difference between what you are doing and what I have, is that I am bridging a Wired internal and USB wireless card, then allowing my laptop to connect through the wireless card to my network in ad hoc mode.
 

ozegirl

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I have actually had a situation before where I had a laptop configured to work in the home LAN on cable and when it went to the office I did similar to you "Jack" - except that I simply had the work computer (which was not on the internet) configured manually to a static IP and the laptop was plugged in by ethernet cable (using the one and same network card), the work computer assigned an IP to the laptop as it was already configured to use a dynamic IP. When I took it home I just had to restart & flush out the old IP address & let it find the new one again.

This is a little different in that I wanted to simultaneously have one computer on ethernet to the LAN & Internet, while at the same time do as you have done configuring the second computer to the first on it's own network, & imagined to do so I would use a static IP - but then I found out about bridging & the possibility of linking it all together.

Anyway it might all be academic for now (see my last post) ...but this info might be useful for someone else that comes along.
 

ozegirl

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It seems that neither of the boys are bothered about having the spare computer, so I'm not going to do anything for now.....thanks for all the input though...I've learnt a bit & hopefully others may also learn from the thread...
 
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