Computer Question!

A friend of mine wants to share his dialup connection (56k modem) with 2 computers. he has a program called wingate and a hub but he is not able to get it to work. any suggestions ?

(platform is win 98)

Could be any one of a dozen things. Connection sharing foulups typically center on incorrect shared network parameters. Make sure sharing, password and installed protocols are the same on both machines.

Ugh, I tried like mad to split my friend’s cable modem connection between two computers to no avail. I tried WinProxy, WinGate, SyGate, and software that came with the network cards. (He bought a pack of two with a hub.) I had everything configured exactly as I was supposed to, but it still wouldn’t work. Good luck.

If I’m not wrong, you must dial-up with one computer, and install NICs on each computer. Enable the peer networking functions of each computer, assign inside IP addresses. No hub necessary.


Gawd, it is possible to hook two computers together with Ethernet with no hub, but you must use a “crossover” Ethernet cable to make each computer think the other is a hub. It’s exactly analogous to a null modem cable for a serial connection.

However, hubs are cheap, and if you’ve got one already, it’s probably best to use it.

chief, Wingate is a good one of several possible ways for your friend to achieve the desired end. Wingate 4.0 (very recently released) is much better than 3.x for ease of use, but 4.0 is much pickier about having the really latest drivers for your network cards.

Before installing WIngate, he/she will have to have a Network Interface Card (NIC) in each computer and install the TCP/IP protocol (listed under “Microsoft” in protocols) in both. Then, on the computer that has the modem he must assign a fixed IP address (usually in the Properties of the NIC in Networking in Control Panel (I think he should set the DNS on and the DNS servers to his ISP’s DNS servers, but I may be wrong). On the other computer, the TCP/IP settings should be set to obtain an IP from a DHCP server, with everything else disabled. Rebooting the second computer at this point may lead to an error, 'cause there’s no DHCP yet.

Then WIngate may be installed on the first computer. If you’re using 4.0, install Enhanced Networking Support (a separate installation). Usually, everything on the internal network works immediately (after you reboot the second computer to get its IP address from WIngate). If you’re using 3.x, then you need to install Wngate on the second computer (which automatically installs a client program becasue it can see the server running already on the other computer). Then, on the first computer, he has to open WIngate’s Gatekeeper and double-click on the dialer and set it to dial on demand and give it the phone number and what-not.

Wingate’s web site,, has a pretty good tecnical support section.

I believe WIN98SE includes this feature

Dude, a X-over cable costs $5, and using Win98’s peer networking software, it’d be easier than wasting his time and money, and pulling out his hair on a hub and Wongate or any other proxy program.


Its really not for 56k modems Chief because they are cheaper to buy another one then to network the way you are doing.

Its basically for DSL.

So, spend $30 for a cheap PCI 57k modem :slight_smile:

If you have Win98 SE it is very easy to get it to work, just go to the add/remove progrmas control panel (on the pc with the modem). Under the windows setup tab click on internet options (or something like that) and check the box for connection sharing. There is a “wizard” that setes it up for you and makes a disk that will configure the other computer. The Win 98 SE connection sharing is not costomizable at all, but it is easy to set up. This also works if the other PC is running Win 95 or Linux.

3com also makes a home networking kit for less than $100. Circuit City and Best Buy should carry it.

You seem to be a little confused about what does what … The hub and cabling are at a lower level than the logical direction of packets. Connection sharing and networking software are independent of each other and of the physical connection method.

I have yet to see anybody having a problem connecting two or more computers through a hub, given working cables. I’ve never seen a problem with establishing a connection between two computers with a crossover cable … until, as always seems to happen, something else is wanted, and it’s usually wanted immediately. With a hub, all you need is an extra cable. Witha straight-through connection; you’re stuck.

The OP stated that his friend has a hub. If he has a hub, there’s absolutely no reason not to use it.

Once the computers are connected, peer-to-peer networking can be used to transmit data between the computers no matter how the computers are connected. To connect both computers to the Internet through one connection, some kind of further software or hardware will be needed, again no matter how the physical connection between the computers is established.

handy, Wingate or equivalent is often used on dial-ups. I used WIngate on a two-computer setup for a couple of years, and I already owned an extra USR Courier v.everything modem. But I only had two phone lines, and wanted to tie only one up with internetting; my ISP wouldn’t accept a second connection when a connection was already active; and for most web browsing, two computers sharing a 56K connection isn’t much slower than just one computer using that connection (downloading big files is, of course, different). That is, another modem is pretty cheap; another Internet account and another phone line start adding cost real quick.

My wife has an office with her partner, and they share one modem with WIngate. Until about a year ago, the office where I work shared one connection among 10 people using a router; and that connection was nominally 28.8K and seldom that good. Yeah, it was painful, but it worked.

sailor and mblackwell: Yeah, Win98SE has Network Address Translation (NAT). So does Wingate 4.0 (and several other programs). NAT is much more convenient than proxies or client software.

I happen to live in the same town as the company that developed Win98’s NAT as an add-on (Microsoft bought it from them). I beta tested it, as did several of my acquaintances. It worked very well. When Microsoft put it into Win98, they tried to make it foolproof. Now it is indeed foolproof; often it works, some noticable percentage of the time it doesn’t work, and either way there’s not much you can do to change it. Win98SE’s NAT is worth a try, because the price is right. But, if it doesn’t work out-of-the-box, my personal recommendation is to give up on it and try something else.

Actually, Jon, I’m not. If the OP can’t figure out how to network straight through, what makes you think that adding an extra point of failure to a networking newbie would be better then simply using X-over cables?

Like it or not, he will need his dial-up, 2 nics, Microsoft’s networking software, and cabling, be it X-over or straight through with a hub. The hub is overkill for 2 computers.

No matter what level of the stack we’re talking about, you still need all of the above to properly share a connection.

FYI, I have DSL on my home network with about 7 nodes. I use a hub, and a router, so there’s definitely no confusion on my end, I understand very well how to network and configure the components.


It’s hard to tell from the OP where the problem is. Can the computer with the modem connect to the ISP correctly? Is the network between the two computers working correctly - i.e. can you share files between the two systems, etc.? Do you have the proper protocols installed? (I think you just need TCP/IP, but I’m not sure).

In theory including a hub adds an extra point of failure. In practice this extra probability of failure is infinitesimal and ignorable. There is also a probability of wanting to add another computer or a networked printer, or move one of the computers, or do something that requires the hub; in my experience this probability is near one. If he doesn’t use the hub, he needs a crossover cable; and there’s a probability of failure in the future if he uses the crossover cable where he should use a regular cable. IMHO it’s worthwhile to start with the hub, expecially if he has it already.

Some networking software will be needed, and there’s obviously no reason to use anything otehr than Microsoft’s in this case. He will also need some software or hadrware to share the connection, which is another level than the networking software. Assuming he has Win98SE, it makes sense to try Microsoft’s NAT; but if it doesn’t work, then it makes sense to try something else. Microsoft doesn’t offer much tech support for a newbie.

scr4, yes, it’s difficult to tell where the problem might lie form the OP.

TCP/IP is all that’s needed for connection sharing. For a newbie, it’s probably best to just use TCP/IP.

“If you have Win98 SE it is very easy to get it to work”

Oh no it isn’t. Ive read dozens of people say that in the windows98 forums. Plus, SE doesn’t quite tell you this, but you need two network cards to get it to work for DSL.

WinProxy is supposed to be the easiest net sharing program to get to work. They might have a free trial.