Problem networking two computers

As briefly as possible; have a desktop w/Win XP home and laptop w/Win XP Pro. Have broadband cable with a wired router after the modem.

Used the Network Wiz on both computers, rebooted, and when use Win Explorer, go to My Network Places, Entire Network, MS Windows Network, Home. Here, on the desktop see both computers listed, but when click on the laptop, long wait and message that it’s not connected.

On the laptop when click on Home, there is nothing listed and get same message.

Yet when I check Network Connections, each computeer shows that Local Area Connection is “connected.”

Obviously they are not, and the fault seems to be on the laptop. I used the XP CD to pick “additional tasks” and went through the entire wiz, but no luck. Did it again just to see, same negative result.

Both computers connect to the Internet OK. The host computer just isn’t recognizing the laptop.

Is there a way to undo the setup on the laptop and start all over again, or would that help?

I’m obviously missing something, probably ridiculously simple, but am baffled.

The help files and Troubleshooters don’t really seem to provide any help.

Any suggestions?

Do you have file sharing turned on for both computers?

Yup, File and Printer sharing.

Oh, I see you are mixing XP Home and Pro. That has given me some big fits from time to time although I usually got it to work after several weeks of trying.

Do you have a workgroup setup?

Only “several weeks?” Gee, only been at it a day. :smiley:

Do I have a workgroup setup? Beats me, gotta go see if can figure that out.

More to come, I’m sure.

When you right-click the network connection (in Control Panel>Network) and view the properties, is the NetBIOS protocol installed? You’re not supposed to need it, but in my experience, its absence can cause exactly the kid of problem you’re describing.

Could be something else though; maybe something really simple, like a software firewall on one or more of the machines; do you have any of these installed? (including Windows firewall)

Do you have Norton Internet Security installed on either of the computers? I have yet to see a network that wasn’t fubar’ed by Norton products.

In addition, check for IPX protocol. IN theory, it’s not needed either, but I was once on a large LAN (~30 computers) and for some reason about half of them couldn’t see the other half. After they all had IPX installed, probelm solved.

I’ll second that; I won’t allow Norton products on my network; they’re the work of Satan.

Oh, for Pete’s sake, you got it! I had turned off MS firewall on both, but forgot had Zonealarm running on the laptop.

Turned it off, rebooted both,and by golly, they not only talk to each other, transfer files, but after a bit more frustration, even got the laptop to find my printer and it actually works.

Miracle of miracle, only wasted about five hours on this.
However, without you guys, it probably would have been two weeks too.

A agree completely about Norton (years ago Norton Utilities was great) and wouldn’t touch McAfee either. I use PC-cillian on the desktop and AVG on the laptop, both pretty good.

If the firewall thing hadn’t worked, next step would be to disable the antivirus programs, but didn’t need to.

It does feel good to beat M$ at it’s own game now and then, with the help of some good friends. :slight_smile:

Don’t feel too bad about it; the only reason I suggested this possibility is that I have been through the exact same headbanging process as you, ending only when someone tentatively enquired whether I had a firewall installed…

I don’t know what your problem was, but there is no good reason to do this. IPX/SPX is Novell’s protocol stack, but it has fallen out of favor even in Novell environments. Versions of Novell Netware above 5.0 support TCP/IP natively.

Networks without Novell servers have never needed IPX, in theory or in practice.