Home LAN - How to share resources

This section is for any issues on setting up or configuring networks at home and small business.

Home LAN - How to share resources

Postby emoreira » Sat 03 May, 2008 7:31 pm

Well, now my two PCs have access to Internet through the Linksys WRT54GC router.
The router has DHCP allowed and each PC has a dynamic private IP address. Also each PC has a default gateway, which is the private IP address of the router.
Now I want to share the printer which is connected to one of the PCs and also share folders of each PC to the other.
If I go to start, run, and I type the private IP address of the other PC \\192.168.1.100, I get a small window asking a password. I've not configured any password in any of the PCs.
Is there a tutorial somewhere to do this ?

Both PCs are running WinXP Proffesional SP2.

Thanks in advance.
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Postby PaulD » Sun 04 May, 2008 4:52 pm

For basic information, read and digest the Help files on the system.
Start > Help and Support > Networking and the Web > Sharing files, printers, and other resources
Look first at the Overviews (lower section of list). Then specific tasks (upper section).
Note that you should-be/are set up as a Workgroup, not as a Domain.
Establishment must be done with Administrative privileges. Usage may be as a Restricted user.

After you've worked through the above, come on back with your questions.
You may run into apparent dead-end alleys, but there are solutions and escapes.
A bit of a challenge initially, but quite satisfying once working. I have 3 XPs and a Win95(!) connectible.
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Postby emoreira » Mon 05 May, 2008 6:28 pm

This is what I did up to now.
In one PC, which is new, with "fresh" WinXP Prof. OS (recently installed) Start, Control Pannel, Network Wizard (sorry, the OS is in Spanish - Asistente para configuración de red - this is the translation that I think fits), the first two windows are just informative, I've selected "use a shared Internet conection (recomended)", sellect equipment´s name, name of the Workgroup, activate the use of shared files and printers, next informative window, next, it worked fine.
In the second PC, which is old (I mean, the same OS but with already 2 years at least), I get an error message of the like : "The network wizard cannot be completed - Error in the equipment during network configuration - You can configure the network manualy or can execute the wizard with other configuration". End

From the second PC (the old one) I can see the shared folders of the new one, but in the new one I cannot see the shared folders of the old one.

I'll try your advice and I'll be back.
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Postby emoreira » Mon 05 May, 2008 6:36 pm

Sorry, but there is no "help and support" in start
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Postby emoreira » Mon 05 May, 2008 6:54 pm

This is what I did (without having this page on hand) :
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/usin ... menet.mspx

However, this page does not show how to troubleshoot if something does not work.

Still trying.
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Postby PaulD » Mon 05 May, 2008 8:53 pm

You are doing a good job of describing your problems and (lack of!) progress.

1. Help and Support -
Right click on Start > Properties > (tab) Start Menu > [make sure you are using the 'Start Menu' not the 'Classic Start Menu] > Customize > (tab) Advanced > (in the list, click) Help and Support.
(And while you are here, review the other selections.)

2. Configuration - You indicate that you have selected Internet Connection Sharing. This means that access to the internet is through one computer. I'm not sure that this is what you intended, given your other thread concerning a router. (The terminology is somewhat misleading.) Quoting from a Help and Support page:
In a home or small office network that has Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) enabled, there are two network connections, one public and one private.

The public network connection is the connection to the Internet. Any type of modem—28.8 or 56 kilobits per second (Kbps), ISDN, DSL, or cable modem—that is connected to the computer can provide and direct network communication to and from the Internet to all the computers on your network. The modem acts as a network adapter.

The private network connections are those that connect the computers together as shown in this illustration. The computers on the network communicate with each other and send Internet requests through the network to the computer with a residential gateway device (or to the ICS host computer).
So what is this saying? With ICS, the internet connects to a 'server' computer (via a modem-function device), and other computer(s) connect to the 'server' computer via a local area network attached to a different adapter on the 'server'.

The error message about 'equipment error' is consistent with the absence of a second adapter.

I think that what you want is LAN definitions. The internet connects to your router, to which also all computers are connected; these connections may be either wired or wireless.

I don't think that you can easily 'convert' your ICS definition to the correct one.

Recommendation (on both computers):
1. Delete your existing definition.
2. Network Setup Wizard.
- when you get to the screen 'Select a connection method', choose Other
- on this Other screen, choose the top option
Other notes:
3. The 'Workgroup' name will be the same for all computers on this Local Area Network.
4. Each computer will have an unique name.
5. "This connection uses the following items:" - make sure these are checked:
- Client for Microsoft Networks
- File and Printer Sharing for Microsoft Networks
- AEGIS Protocol [on our XP computers, but may not be required. Don't panic if it is absent.]
- Internet Protocol (TCP/IP)
- QoS --- can safely be unchecked; it is useless on a small network. (But there is no harm either in letting it remain.)
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Postby emoreira » Tue 06 May, 2008 4:22 pm

Hi PaulD
Thanks for the follow-up.
No, I'm connecting my two PCs to a router and the router is connected to Internet via a ADSL connection.
I don't want to make one PC to function as Internet gateway ICS.

I could reach to the help page. I followed it through and as final conclusion "contact technical assistance".
I've also visited the Microsoft support page searching the error message I get and the answer is "contact assistance support with the nsm.log file".

I'm seriously thinking to reinstall WinXP from scratch.
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Postby PaulD » Tue 06 May, 2008 5:26 pm

1. The configuration that you describe matches mine, and is that for which I was giving you instructions to set up.

2. In your [sdp=91458]post[/sdp] you said: "I've selected 'use a shared Internet conection (recomended)'.
Now you say, "I don't want to make one PC to function as Internet gateway ICS."
"I've selected" and "I don't want" are opposites. That is why you need to delete your present network definition and start over. Unless I'm missing something fundamental.

3. "I could reach to the help page." So you are able to look at the information on how to set up a network? There are some good illustrations (graphics) that I found very instructional. I didn't mean to imply that you should go through the diagnostics paths. Until you properly define your network the Help (diagnostics) are meaningless.

4. "I've also visited the Microsoft support page searching the error message I get". Did you understand what I said: "The error message about 'equipment error' is consistent with the absence of a second adapter." ? I believe that the message is because of mis-definition.

5. Reinstalling XP would clear up any malicious or missing software, but then you have to reinstall SP2 (or wait for SP3), applications, etc., etc., etc. What are the indications that you have that you need to reinstall?
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Postby emoreira » Tue 06 May, 2008 6:50 pm

Ok, I've got your point.
I've repeated the steps and I've sellected the second option "connect with a device connected to Internet in the LAN" or some message like that but in spanish.
Finally I got the same error. It seems that the wizard cannot do anything owing to the error found, so I have nothing to undo.

Where is the point now.
Both PCs are conneted to the LAN. I can navigate Internet from both PCs. Each PC receives a dynamic IP address by DHCP in the router. I can ping from each PC to each other and I can ping the router from both.
Connectivity issues were already solved.

What I could not still solve is how to share folders and printers between both PCs.
I could do that with one of the PCs (the fresh one). I cannot achieve that in the second PC (the old one).

This is the microsoft support page :
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/291867/en-us/

This is the nsw.log file contents :

Network Setup Wizard Log
Attempting to set computer name
Old computer name is the same as new computer name - not setting.
Setting server description (comment): Athlon 64
Attempting to set workgroup name
Workgroup name is the same as the old one - not setting.
La configuración de uso compartido no está disponible.
Adapter Configuration for Home Networking failed.
Shared Printer: PrimoPDF
Shared Printer: Microsoft Office Document Image Writer
Shared Printer: HP Deskjet F4100 series
Shared Printer: HP DeskJet 610C

Why to reinstall ?
This PC has been in use for two or more years. OS has been installed by the guy that sold it to me. My son has installed de-installed several games. There are several errors, unexpected beeps, resident programs that cannot be terminated on exit and a lot unexplainable side efects that I cannot fix.
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Postby PaulD » Wed 07 May, 2008 5:59 pm

1. You wrote: "I've repeated the steps and I've sellected the second option 'connect with a device connected to Internet in the LAN' "

I have reread your post [sdp=91458]here[/sdp], and I follow your sequence.
As you note, the third panel is "Select a connection method.
Now, is this where you have selected the "second option"?
For me, the second option is "This computer connects to the Internet through a residential gateway or through another computer on my network."
If this is what you have, I'm not sure that it is correct.

What I suggested is to select the third option, which is "Other". Then the next panel is "Other Internet connection methods ...". Here the first (of three) options is "This computer connects to the Internet directly or through a network hub. Other computers on my network also connect to the Internet directly or through a hub." I think that this is what you want - for both computers. Compare the illustrations for both these options.

Anyway, at what point in the sequence is it that you receive the error message?

2. You raise a good question as to whether or not to reinstall XP before continuing.
Reinstall now - cleans up the system, getting rid of malicious programs, allows you to get the computer to the current level on a 'clean' system (including SP3?).
Reinstall later - if you can get file sharing to work, it is vastly easier, by using the network, to copy over to the other computer those files that need to be saved for later copying back.
You will have to weigh the advantages against the disadvantages for each.

3. But, setting aside all this, we will go on to Sharing.
To review: Old can see files on New. New cannot see files on Old.
But: network definition fails on Old, therefore processing didn't get to the point where Sharing is established. Is this reasonable?

It is not completely clear to which computer your printers are connected, but I think that they are on the Old computer. Is this correct?

To activate sharing for a folder across computers, there are two things that must be done:
Select 'Share this folder'; and, authorize access by 'Everyone'.
(Just a comment here on a couple of Group names: 'Users' means 'all user log-ons on this computer'. 'Everyone' means 'all users on the network(s)'; it is a superset (includes) Users.)
How to establish sharing? This must be done with Administrative rights.
In Explorer, right-click on the folder desired. Click on 'Sharing and Security'.
On the 'Sharing' tab, select 'Shared', and fill in the name by which this folder is to be identified. (On our home computers the folder which I have set for sharing is the "Shared Documents" folder on each XP machine. The name that I use is just 'Shared'. These are differentiated by the computer names (which must be unique on the network).)

There is also a button on this panel labeled 'Permissions'. Click that, and set up the Group 'Everyone'.

Then, on tab 'Security, also set that 'Everyone' has authorization. You can profile what rights each group has - Full Control, Modify, Read & Execute, etc.

To activate sharing for a printer across computers, again there are two things that must be done (these are similar to the procedure used for folders):
In the Printers and Faxes window, right-click on the printer icon and click on Sharing.
On the Sharing tab, turn on Sharing and give it a name.
On the Security tab, ensure that group Everyone is listed. And set the rights as desired.

After changing my sharing profiles I sometimes find it necessary to reboot the 'other' (unchanged) computer. But sometimes not.
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Postby emoreira » Wed 07 May, 2008 7:21 pm

Hi PaulD
This is very nice !!!
Start, All programs, Accesories, Communications, Network setup wizard.
Here, on the third screen I've selected the second option "No, let me choose another way to connect to Internet", Next.
Now I select the third option "Others", Next.
Now I select the first option "This computer connects to the Internet directly or through a network hub. Other computers on my network also connect to the Internet directly or through a hub.", Next.
Now I verify the name of the PC (the old one), Next.
Now I write the name of the workgroup which must be the same than the one I've sellected in the other PC (the new one). The name I've selected is "FAMILIA", Next.
Now I have the window "Share files and printers" where I select the second option "Do not activate the shared use of files and printers". This is because if I select the first option I get a message that those files and printers can be used from internet, Next.
The next window is just informative, Next
There is a new window saying "Wait" and a nice drawing moving, and finaly I get the error message "The Network Setup Wizard cannot be completed" - "Error in the equipment during the Network configuration".

If I repeat the steps until the window "Share files and printers" and I select the first option, I finaly get the same error message.

I think that I've gone through every possible combination and as result I always get the same error message.

As I mentioned you I could achieve the necessary funtions in the network to work.
Reinstalling is something I want to do since long. I have a huge USB external HD to copy all way I need.

Thanks for your valuable help. As soon as I have reinstalled and tried again I will let you, and all the members of the forum, know.
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Postby PaulD » Wed 07 May, 2008 11:34 pm

Thank you, that is a very informative reply.

One idea to try, since you intend to reinstall the OS anyway.
The error seems to center on the network adapter - or the interaction of Windows with it. Go into the Device Manager and Uninstall the Adapter. Then reboot and let the system rediscover it. If that doesn't help then I don't know what else can be tried before an XP rebuild.

Concerning the fact that sharing implies access from the Internet - yes, that is true. But: remember that the router is doing Network Address Translation, so it would take a skilled and determined 'outside' user who has the resources to build specialized network packets in order for there to be much real danger. In my opinion, anyway.

Look also at the control offered by the Windows Firewall. If you dig deeply enough you will find that you can fully control the Ports that are open to network traffic.

I look forward to hearing of your success after rebuilding the system.
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