My local cable company charges an additional $14.95 per month for hooking an additional computer to the internet. However, could I network my PCs so that if the main computer with access is on, then wouldn’t I be able to share the cable connection and avoid extra fees? Thank you for the help.
Run a proxy server or network address translation program on one computer to share a cable modem with all the networked computers simultaneously.
Your easiest option is getting a ethernet swtich/router.
There are a ton of them out there, but the best would have to be linksys.
They can actually improve your speed as well!
If you were to run Proxy server you would need to set up one of your machines to always be on.
It would route all traffic to each computer (using its resources to do this).
With the router you can use each machine independantly of each other.
These routers are around 100-150$, but well worth it. All you do is plug them in and go!
Internet Connection Sharing is included with Windows 98 SE. You will need 2 NICs in the main computer.
I agree with absoul. We have 4 (going on five) networked computers in the house. For the first few months we used my computer (which was connected to a cable modem via an ethernet to USB link) as a proxy server. We recently paid $159 for a four port router that is advertised as providing fire wall protection and the ability to share one cable connection with multiple computers. We now have the cable modem connected directly to the router and the other computers plugged into it directly or through a hub. I like this arrangement better. I can do what I want with my computer without affecting the network and the 4-port router takes up a lot less space than a PC set up as a server. I don’t think it was hard to install although to know for sure I’d have to ask my son who installed it.
When I set up a very crude LAN for a very small Internet startup I was working for, we just took 4 computers, hooked them into an 8 port hub, hooked the cable modem into the hub with a crossover, and poof…internet access for all 4 machines. Of course, I think they might have been sharing 1 IP, but they all worked.
all you need is a splitter
Your solution will depend on two things:
Do you, or plan to, keep your PCs on all the time?
Does your cable provider use DHCP? (most do)
Since your cable connection is always on, you may as well leave your PC on all the time as well. By using the power saving features, leaving it on all the time won’t add any significant charges to your electric bill. However, it will leave you vulnerable to hacking. Sure, you can use firewall software (zonealarm.com has a good free version), and configure one of your PCs to act as a gateway, but you will experience a slowdown in your internet traffic on both (or all) of your computers. I have never heard of a splitter working on an internet cable connection - this only applies to TV.
As absoul and Yeah mentioned, I would highly recommend getting yourself a cable router. I recently picked up a Linksys 4-port router - you can connect up to 4 PCs and you won’t need an additional hub.
buy.com has it for $149.95 - you can check it here:
By handling your routing seperately, you won’t experience any slowdown related to your end of the cable. It will keep out hackers, and is already pre-configured to allow services such as ICQ, Napster, and others to function correctly. It has a very friendly interface as well. The WAN side will have your cable company’s IP address, which is the only address the world (and your cable co) will see. Internally, each PC will have a 192.168.1.xxx address. Windows will take care of the rest. If you do get a router, make sure you change the default password (which is usually “admin”). Check out linksys.com for further info.
If your service provider verifies your connections through the mac address of your ethernet card, you’ll need to call them with the WAN address of whatever router you buy.
If you want your stuff to act as efficiently as possible, with security, trust me - get a router. Linksys is the best currently available for the home user.
If you’d like, you can e-mail me any questions you might have, or just post 'em here.