How to Set Up a
    Home Network
1
- - Table of Contents - -


               How to use this guide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ....
TCP/IP Basics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23



        If you find ...
Troubleshooting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 279




Don’t we all? Here you...
Disclaimer / Terms / Legal
This guide is copyright 2007 Kelso Consulting Group, LLC. All screenshots are copyrights of the...
How to Use This Guide
In addition to the traditional table of contents occupying the first few pages, you can also make
us...
You can use this guide at all stages of home networking, from the first hardware setup all the way
to troubleshooting an e...
Quick Start
Depending on where you are in your home network, you can skip directly to a section that applies
to what you w...
Components of a Home Network

Modem


Whether you have cable or DSL broadband, satellite
or dialup, a modem is your path t...
Router

This small device will distribute the Internet
connection provided by your modem, and allow all of
your computers ...
A hub is also used in the case of routerless home networks, when you want to connect 3 or more
computers.

If you connect ...
CAT5e and CAT6 are basically the same as CAT5, but offer enhancements in terms of speed
and interference protection. CAT5e...
Crossover cable:



To directly connect two computers, a crossover cable is
used. This is most commonly seen in dialup sit...
Simply connecting 2 computers - wireless


                      If both computers are wireless, you can set up what’s kno...
Simply connecting 3 or more computers - wireless




                         You can also set up an “ad hoc” wireless net...
Enable ICS on one computer on page 61

                              Share files on page 232

                            ...
Enable ICS on one computer on page 61

                                Share files on page 232

                          ...
Configure your router for web access on page 81

                                Share files on page 232

                ...
Using a router to share the web - wireless




                               Most wireless routers have room for 4 wired ...
Configure your wireless access point on page 100

                         Configure your wireless computers on page 90

 ...
Sharing a printer using a print server




                                  Here, a wired print server connects a printer...
Here’s a broadband network shared out through a hub. If you’ve paid for
multiple IP addresses, you can share the Internet,...
TCP/IP Basics
TCP/IP is the language of networks. The Internet, corporate networks, and even your home
network run TCP/IP....
The red line denotes the dividing line between the world of the web, and your home network.




“Inside” versus “outside” ...
Typical IP addresses on the “LAN” (Local Area Network) side of a router:

192.168.1.1
192.168.0.1 (This is also the IP of ...
Check your connections – is the PC connected to something that’s capable of supplying IP
addresses, such as a router? If s...
This means that an IP of 192.168.1.100 with a mask of 255.255.255.0 is on the 192.168.1.0
subnet.

To be perfectly clear, ...
If you find yourself in the above situation, you’ll need to reconfigure the IP on the access point to
agree with your 192....
Computer 2:

IP:                     192.168.0.101
Subnet mask:            255.255.255.0
Default Gateway:        192.168.0...
Computer 2:

IP:                       10.0.0.3
Subnet mask:              255.255.255.0
Default Gateway:          10.0.0.1...
You can find out your computer’s MAC address by getting expanded IP information, covered on
page 32.

Routers will have tw...
In fact, when you contact me for help – most of the time the first thing I’ll
                   ask you is

             ...
In the resulting black command window, type ipconfig and press enter, shown below.




Lots of stuff here – but the import...
For expanded IP information, you
can also run ipconfig /all in the
command window to get your
DNS server values and MAC
ad...
In the resulting black DOS
window, type ipconfig at the
prompt and hit enter.

Your IP, subnet mask, and default
gateway a...
If I ask you for your ipconfig /all output, there’s an easy way to send it to me.


To send the output to a text file that...
Type ipconfig in the
resulting black window.
Your IP address, subnet
mask, and default gateway
are reported.




Expanded ...
Find out your IP: Windows 98



Go to Start > RUN.




In the RUN box, type winipcfg and click OK.




Select your network...
Expanded IP information: Windows 98




Click on the More Info button to access your DNS
and other expanded information.

...
In the Run dialog box, type winipcfg and click OK:




From the dropdown, select your network card. I
happen to have an “I...
Expanded IP information: Windows Millennium




You can click the “More Info” button on the
IP Configuration dialog box to...
1. Find out the IP address of the PC or router you want to ping
2. Open a command window on one of your computers
3. Ping ...
For all other Windows versions,

Go to Start > RUN.




You’ll type in a command here.

XP/2000: cmd

98/ME:      command
...
A ping failure…




“Request timed out”
means that the ping has
failed.




                   Accessing TCP/IP Settings
E...
Remember that if you manually assign your IP and subnet mask – don’t
                   forget about your Default Gateway ...
If you haven’t noticed by now, Vista loves to pop up a “Windows needs your permission to
continue” message - get used to i...
In most cases, the defaults here of “obtain
automatically” will work.




If, and only if, you need to assign settings,
he...
TCP/IP Settings: Windows XP Home/Pro




Go to Start > Control Panel




In Control Panel, I’ve selected the Classic View....
You’ll see your wired network card,
dialup connection, and wireless
connection if you have them
installed.

Note there’s a...
Here’s what you’ll see on most home
networks – everything is “obtained
automatically”.



However, if for some reason you ...
TCP/IP Settings: Windows 2000




Right-click on My Network Places and select Properties.




Right-click on your network
...
Double click on Internet Protocol, or highlight it
and click Properties.




Here are the default settings for most home
n...
If you need to manually assign an IP for
troubleshooting or other reasons, click the
“Use the following IP address” radio ...
In the list, double-click on “TCP/IP -> Your
Network Card”. You can also highlight the entry
then click the Properties but...
Click the “Specify an IP address” radio button, and
fill out the IP and subnet mask.


Don’t forget that we need to also t...
Click the DNS configuration tab. Supply your DNS
server information provided by your ISP, or you can
find out via the setu...
Be sure to click on the text link “view all
Control Panel options” if you don’t see a
Network icon.




Double-click on th...
Double-click on “TCP/IP - > Network adapter”.

In this case, we have an Intel 8255.




As with any home network, automati...
Here, I’ve typed in a typical IP and subnet mask
usually found with home networks.




If you have web access through a ro...
Don’t forget your DNS values. Remember, you
can either put the IP of your router, or the “real”
DNS IP’s found on your rou...
The ICS version on 98 is known to be buggy, so it’s best to run ICS on a newer PC running Vista
or XP.

When ICS is enable...
Click on Manage network connections
on the left.




Right-click on the connection you
want to share out, then click
Prope...
On the Sharing tab, check off “Allow other
network users to connect..”.


If you have more than one available network
inte...
Enabling ICS on Windows XP Home / Pro


To avoid a warning message later, it’s a good idea to enable your dialup propertie...
Go to Start > Control Panel.




This is the “classic” Control Panel view. You can
toggle between Classic and Category vie...
Right-click on the
connection you want to
share, and select
Properties.

We’re sharing a dialup
connection here, but if
yo...
Here’s a zoom of the drop-down, where I need to
select a network interface through which ICS will
work. I’ll choose Local ...
Enabling ICS on Windows 2000




Go to Start > Settings > Network
and Dial-up Connections.




Right-click on the
connecti...
On the Sharing tab, check off “Enable Internet
Connection Sharing”.

By default, on-demand dialing will be enabled,
which ...
Enabling ICS on Windows 98




Go to Start > Settings > Control Panel.




Double click on Add/Remove Programs.




70
On the Windows Setup tab, scroll down and check
off Internet Tools, then click Details.




Check off Internet Connection ...
Uh oh. It looks like we need
the 98 CD. It’s actually looking
for the 98 “.cab” files, which
may be in
c:windowsoptionscab...
Select the type of web access
you’ll be sharing.




A floppy? You’ve got to be kidding
me.

We’ll go through the motions,...
I’ll click Cancel to skip the floppy
creation. There’s absolutely no
need for it.




Click Finish.




Once you reboot, I...
Enabling ICS on Windows ME




Go to Start > Settings > Control
Panel.




In Control Panel, click “view all
Control Panel...
Double click Add/Remove Programs.




On the Windows Setup tab, select
Communications, and then click
Details.




76
Check off Internet
Connection Sharing in
the list, and then click
OK.


You’ll be back to the
Add/Remove
Programs Properti...
Here, I select a direct
connection to the web
using my dialup
account.


Click Next.




Be sure to specify which
network ...
If desired, enable “on
demand” dialing by
providing your account
username and password.




Click Next.




You really don...
Click Finish.




Click Yes to restart your PC.




Once rebooted, you get a congratulatory
message. Click OK and check to...
Router Settings
All routers, wired or wireless, will have the same basic scheme for getting connected, and be able
to perf...
You’ll most likely be confronted with a logon prompt.
Consult your router’s documentation for default
username and passwor...
If you don’t have a cable modem, and have
DSL, you’ll probably need to select another
Internet Connection Type.

By far, t...
Every router will have some
type of Status page, where
you can determine whether
the router is connected to
your modem.


...
Changing your router access password



With any router, wired or wireless,
you’ll want to change the password as
soon as ...
Configuring a DMZ


If directly specifying ports does not seem to work for your application, you can completely expose
one...
Wireless N (as of February 2007 this is actually Pre-N / Draft N)
OK, so you fell for the hype and packaging of a Wireless...
places, this is your best bet. However, if your close neighbor happens to have wireless A as well,
you’re out of luck. Ano...
In theory, anyone with a laptop within range of your wireless signal can surf the web through your
wireless network, and q...
Here on the Basic Wireless Settings
tab, we find that Wireless is enabled.
Our SSID is “linksys” and it’s being
broadcaste...
You’ll see a list of wireless networks in range, below.




If you live in a city or suburban area, it’s highly likely tha...
Security comes later – I’m just trying to establish a wireless network here. I’ll Connect Anyway.




After a moment, I sh...
Basic wireless settings – Windows XP




It’s time to make sure our PC can
“see” this “linksys” wireless network.
Right-cl...
Below, we see that there’s a “linksys” wireless network, and we can click Connect to join it. As
long as encryption is not...
Note that we are now “Connected”.
This PC should now be able to surf
the web wirelessly.




The wireless icon in the lowe...
Double-click Network Connections (Classic
View).




Right-click on Wireless Network Connection and
select Properties.



...
Click the Wireless Networks tab. Note that
“linksys” is in our Preferred Networks section. By
highlighting a preferred net...
Configuring Wireless on a non-Vista / non-XP PC

If you don’t have Vista or XP, you’ll need to rely on the wireless contro...
In a walk-through fashion, I can
set up my wireless PC.

I have a wireless router, so this
will be Infrastructure mode. I
...
The last panel is a “confirm settings” panel that will activate your settings.




A status icon should appear near the cl...
When buying an access point, you need to be aware that the default IP address of the access
point may not agree with your ...
Here on the “AP Mode” panel, there are a
few options as to how I want the unit to
behave.

The Access Point option simply ...
Securing your wireless network



If you’re reading this, I’ll assume you’ve already established a wireless network with t...
Or: Enable WPA Encryption
If your hardware supports it, you can opt for the stronger WPA encryption. You can’t enable WEP
...
These steps alone will make it difficult for your neighbors to use your wireless network.

Once I click “Save Settings”, m...
Configuring the new SSID on Windows Vista



Right-click on the network icon in the lower right,
and select Network and Sh...
Click “Manually
create a
network profile”




Here, type in your
Network name
(the SSID), and
set the security to
“No
auth...
Click “Connect
to”.




It should
automatically
connect. Click the
upper right-hand
corner X.

Note that in my
lab, I’m co...
Configuring the new SSID on Windows XP




In Control Panel, Network Connections, right-click
on Wireless Network Connecti...
With a blank slate, now click Add.




On the Association tab, type in the name of the new
SSID.

Select Open for Network ...
Click OK again to complete the configuration.

You should be able to connect after a few seconds.




How to allow only yo...
wireless computer’s MAC addresses (the last 4 characters are erased here, since these are my
MAC’s).

Enabling WEP at your...
For the Encryption Level, we can use 64
bit or 128 bit.

128 bit is more secure and easier to
implement.




Leave Passphr...
Enabling WEP at your wireless computers


WEP on Windows Vista

Right-click on the network icon in the lower right, and se...
On the Security tab, select No authentication for
the Security type. Select WEP for the Encryption
type, and type in the s...
Right-click on your Wireless Network Connection,
and then select Properties.




You can either alter the existing wireles...
On the Association tab, select Open for Network
Authentication and WEP for Data Encryption.

Type in the WEP key, characte...
Enabling WPA on your wireless router or access point




On the Wireless > Wireless
Security page of the router,
Enable wi...
Enabling WPA on Windows Vista




To get to the panel shown here, right-click the
network icon in the lower right and sele...
Enabling WPA on XP




Go to Start > Control Panel >Network Connections
and right-click Properties on your Wireless Networ...
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Home Network

  1. 1. How to Set Up a Home Network 1
  2. 2. - - Table of Contents - - How to use this guide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Learn how to use this PDF to its fullest potential, taking advantage of the linked table of contents. Also contains a description of features and a general order of topics. Quick Start . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 If you already have an established network, this section provides a quick shortcut to common network tasks throughout the guide. It allows you to skip directly to what you want to know. Home Networking Components . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Detailed descriptions and photos of everything you’ll find on a home network, including routers and cabling. Home Network Diagrams . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 From simple two-computer networks to more complex wired/wireless networks and everything in between, these diagrams allow you to see the “big picture”. Each diagram also has a “Configure” section that lets you skip to specific tasks you can accomplish with that network. 2
  3. 3. TCP/IP Basics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 If you find yourself in a foreign country, you’ll do much better if you know how to speak the language. TCP/IP is the language of home networks, and you’ll get the essentials here. Learn how to find out your IP address and much more. Share your Internet connection . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 With or without a router, learn how to share the Internet among all of your computers. Broadband or dialup, you’ll get up and running quickly with the step by step screenshots in this section. Wireless networking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 86 Covering the basics all the way to actually configuring wireless routers, access points, and computers, this section explains wireless in a straightforward manner. Don’t have a wireless router? Ad-Hoc “peer to peer” networks are covered too, as well as how to secure your wireless network. File and Printer Sharing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 134 Step by step procedures of first sharing out files or printers, then accessing them from another PC, are described visually with screenshots. Print servers are also covered, and you’re shown 3 ways of accessing shared items on your network. 3
  4. 4. Troubleshooting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 279 Don’t we all? Here you’ll find the wisdom of years of experience with actual home networks. Quick tips abound to get at the root of the problem quickly, while examples of real error messages (and how to solve them) punctuate this section. If you need help . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 305 Have any questions about your home network, or what the guide covers? Email me (Ed McAuliffe) at info@pcguidebook.com or emcauliffe@kelsoconsultinggroup.com 4
  5. 5. Disclaimer / Terms / Legal This guide is copyright 2007 Kelso Consulting Group, LLC. All screenshots are copyrights of their respective owners. Kelso Consulting Group, LLC is not responsible for any loss or corruption of data that may arise from the use of this guide. Kelso Consulting Group, LLC is not responsible for lost time, lost revenue or any distress that may occur as the result of using the techniques suggested in the guide. No company mentioned herein has endorsed this guide, nor does Kelso Consulting Group, LLC claim endorsement by any company. User agrees to not distribute or re-sell this document in any way. A CD copy for personal use is acceptable. Windows is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation Microsoft screenshots reprinted with permission from Microsoft Corporation 5
  6. 6. How to Use This Guide In addition to the traditional table of contents occupying the first few pages, you can also make use of the linked “Bookmarks” section in the upper left. Click the Bookmarks tab on the left-hand side of the PDF, shown below. It will expand into a linked, clickable table of contents. Simply click on the link and you’ll skip directly to that section. Chapters with + signs are further divided, so just click on the + sign to view the subheadings under that chapter. Linked Table of Contents: A light bulb denotes a tip or fact that will save you lots of frustration! A caution sign means that you’re in danger of really messing things up. I only use it once, and it deals with bringing home a work computer. 6
  7. 7. You can use this guide at all stages of home networking, from the first hardware setup all the way to troubleshooting an existing home network. The guide follows a logical progression, more or less, of the entire process of setting up a home network: Physical connections Basically, get things plugged in and turned on, and wired/wireless connections established. Establish the Internet at all computers Get all computers to be able to surf the web at the same time. This means to get your router talking to your broadband modem, or sharing out the web with ICS. File and printer sharing Once the Internet in established on each PC, it’s time to move on to file/printer sharing. Don’t forget about your firewalls! Troubleshooting Troubleshoot based on the symptoms you’re seeing. The TCP/IP and firewall information in this guide will be of vital importance in this arena. Feel free to skip over any chapter that does not apply to your networking situation. However, I suggest that you read the TCP/IP basics chapter on page 23. It will make the difference between an average home networker, and a… Home Networking Genius! 7
  8. 8. Quick Start Depending on where you are in your home network, you can skip directly to a section that applies to what you want to do. If you… Want to establish a wireless network, go to page 86. Want to share a dialup connection or a broadband connection without a router, go to page 61. Want to share a broadband connection with a router, go to page 81. Have web access on all computers and want to start sharing files and printers, go to page 134. Want to hook up a wireless PC to an existing wired network, go to page 100. Want to troubleshoot and existing network, read TCP/IP on 23 and the firewall section on page 134. You’ll also want to take a look at Troubleshooting on page 279. 8
  9. 9. Components of a Home Network Modem Whether you have cable or DSL broadband, satellite or dialup, a modem is your path to the Internet. Most of the time, some kind of program on your PC allows you to surf the web through the modem. With most home networks (except for dialup), this program will be eliminated in favor of your router’s connection with the modem. In other words, your router handles the logical connection to your modem. Network adapters These days, most home computers come with a network card. However, you may need to install one or want to convert an existing PC to wireless. You don’t always have to open the case – there are USB network cards that plug into a USB port. These remain outside the PC. You can tell if you have a network card by looking at the back of your PC. If you have what looks like a phone jack, only bigger, then you have a network card. Note the center graphic with the zoomed view of the network port. This is called an RJ-45 port. 9
  10. 10. Router This small device will distribute the Internet connection provided by your modem, and allow all of your computers to surf the web. They usually have browser-based setup pages to manage your Internet connection and other settings. In addition, it also provides a single connection point for your computers, allowing them to be on the same network and share files and printers. Routers are most commonly used for cable and DSL broadband, but they can be found for satellite and dialup as well. In any home network, you can opt to go without a router. In such cases, one of your computers will function as a router by enabling ICS (Internet Connection Sharing). A combination wired/wireless router is an ideal central point from which to create a wireless home network. Ethernet cable would plug into network (RJ-45) ports on the back of a modem or router, shown here at right. Note that there’s a port on the router that’s set aside from the others. This is the “WAN” or “Internet” port where you would plug in your broadband modem. Hub If you’ve run out of ports, a hub is your answer. Hubs are simple devices that merely provide more connections. They lack the logic of a router, and have no setup or configuration – you simply plug them in. You’ll need to be aware of a special “uplink” port on the hub, which is used to connect to a router or modem. Since most routers have 4 ports, you’ll only need a hub for 5 or more computers, or you can just get an 8 port router. You can eliminate the need for a hub if some of your computers are wireless, which won’t take up ports in the router. 10
  11. 11. A hub is also used in the case of routerless home networks, when you want to connect 3 or more computers. If you connect a hub to your broadband modem, your computers may be able to surf the web but they will not be able to share files. This is because a hub does not have the capability of separating the Internet from a home network – that’s what a router does. Switch While a hub simply forwards information to all computers connected to it, a switch will send information to a specific PC, and not broadcast to the other computers. This extra intelligence will cut down traffic on congested networks, and is more or less required in a large office or business setting. Note that the performance difference between a hub and a switch will be unnoticeable on a home network. Most routers will advertise that they have a “built in 4 port switch”. Bridge A bridge looks much the same as a router, switch or hub. Its job is to segment 2 networks, and keep the traffic between them separate, while still allowing common access outside the bridge. This type of device does not belong on a home network for two reasons: 1. A home network does not need to be bridged - it’s a single network. 2. Bridges are less common today because routers take over the bridging function. Cabling The type of cabling you’ll encounter on a home network is CAT5 Ethernet cable. It’s also referred to as Ethernet cable, or simply “patch” cable. This cable will run between your computers and router and from your router to your modem. Even on wireless networks, CAT5 plays a role. You’ll use it to connect a wireless router to your broadband modem, or to connect a wireless access point to a PC, hub or router. 11
  12. 12. CAT5e and CAT6 are basically the same as CAT5, but offer enhancements in terms of speed and interference protection. CAT5e is the most common sold in stores. All three will suffice on a home network. Ethernet cable can be as long as 300 feet (100 meters). The clips at the ends of a CAT5 cable are known as RJ-45. Much like a phone clip (which is RJ-11), a small plastic tab needs to be pressed in order to release the cable. A positive “click” sound is heard as you plug CAT5 into a network port on a PC or router. There are two types of Ethernet cable. One is called “straight-through” or “patch cable”. The other is a “crossover”. It is vital that you know the difference. Crossover cables are only (and must be) used to directly connect one PC to another PC. Patch (straight-through) cables are used to connect routers to computers, routers to modems, or a computer to a modem. If you use a crossover to connect a PC to a router, it will be as if the cable did not exist – there will be no connection. Likewise, if you use a patch cable to directly connect two computers, there will be no connection. How can you tell the difference? Crossover cables are much more expensive, and sometimes brightly colored, such as orange. The way to tell the difference is to look very closely at both ends of the cable. If the order of colored wires is the same, you have a patch or straight-through cable. If it’s different, you have a crossover cable. Let’s take a look at some typical uses of Ethernet cable. Straight-through or “patch” cable: Take a look at the diagram at right. It represents a typical wired/wireless broadband home network, with a cable or DSL modem. The three blue lines represent “straight-through” Ethernet patch cables. Note that the computers are not directly connected. 12
  13. 13. Crossover cable: To directly connect two computers, a crossover cable is used. This is most commonly seen in dialup situations, where one computer shares out the Internet to the other with ICS (Internet Connection Sharing). Again, a crossover cable is only used to connect two computers directly. Home Network Diagrams How do I set up my network? What do I need to buy? Perhaps the best way to explain how a home network can be configured is to show you some diagrams. We’ll start with very simple, two-computer networks without Internet, and work all the way up to wireless routers and print servers. After each diagram description, there’s a “Things you can do with this network” section denoted by a wrench graphic. It describes specific network tasks for that network topology. It’s assumed that for any type of home network, you’ve already gone through the Components section on page 9 and the TCP/IP Basics section on page 23. It will also benefit you greatly to understand how firewalls block file sharing by default, and need to be configured to allow file and printer sharing on your home network. Firewalls are covered in detail on page 134. Simply connecting 2 computers - wired Here’s a home network at its most basic. Two computers are directly connected with a crossover cable, with a network card in each PC. Sharing the Internet is not represented on this simple network, but both computers are perfectly capable of sharing files and printers. It’s a good idea to assign an IP address to each PC for this setup, covered on page 44. Assign an IP and Subnet Mask to each PC on page 44 Share files on page 232 Share a Printer on page 157 13
  14. 14. Simply connecting 2 computers - wireless If both computers are wireless, you can set up what’s known as an “ad hoc” wireless network. Ad-hoc means that there is no central point, such as a router. It’s simply a “peer to peer” wireless network. Of course, each PC would need a wireless network adapter. As with the simple wired network above, assigning static IP’s to each PC would work well. Establish an Ad-hoc wireless network on page 125 Assign an IP and Subnet Mask to each PC on page 44 Share files on page 232 Share a printer on page 157 Simply connecting 3 or more computers - wired A hub is used to join 3 or more computers. Since there are no computers directly connected to each other, crossover cables are not used. Standard, “straight through” CAT5/5e/6 Ethernet cables make the connections to the hub. Assigning IP’s is a good idea here, covered on page 44. You may be wondering, “If I put multiple network cards in my computers, I won’t need a hub”. That may be true, but you’ll spend a lot more money and way more time configuring the network that way. Assign an IP and Subnet Mask to each PC on page 44 Share files on page 232 Share a printer on page 157 14
  15. 15. Simply connecting 3 or more computers - wireless You can also set up an “ad hoc” wireless network between 3 or more computers. Establish an Ad-hoc wireless network on page 125 Assign an IP and Subnet Mask to each PC on page 44 Share files on page 232 Share a printer on page 157 At this point, you’re ready to take a look at how to share the web among your computers. We’ll start with using ICS, commonly seen in dialup situations, but it can also be used for broadband as well. Don’t worry – we’ll get to routers and printers soon enough. Sharing the Internet with 2 computers using ICS - wired Let’s add the Internet to a simple 2-computer network. By enabling ICS (page 61) on the PC with web access, the second computer will be able to surf the web. You can use ICS with broadband or dialup, and it’s a built-in feature of Windows. ICS uses its own IP scheme, so you won’t be manually assigning IP addresses here. 15
  16. 16. Enable ICS on one computer on page 61 Share files on page 232 Share a printer on page 157 Sharing the Internet with 2 computers using ICS - wireless You can also use ICS wirelessly. Enabling ICS is the same whether wired or wireless, and is covered on page 61. Establish an Ad-hoc wireless network on page 125 Enable ICS on one computer page 61 Share files on page 232 Share a printer on page 157 Sharing the Internet with 3 or more computers (using ICS) With a wired network, a PC running ICS can service 2 or more other computers via a hub. Keep in mind that sharing dialup between just 2 computers is slow enough. 3 or more computers trying to share a dialup connection will be brutal. This network configuration works better with broadband. 16
  17. 17. Enable ICS on one computer on page 61 Share files on page 232 Share a printer on page 157 Likewise, an ad hoc wireless network can also share the web via ICS. Establish an Ad-hoc wireless network on page 125 Enable ICS on one computer on page 61 Share files on page 232 Share a printer on page 157 Using a router to share the web - wired If you have cable or DSL (and increasingly satellite) broadband, you’ll find that a router has distinct advantages over ICS. Each PC can access the web independently, and expansion to allow more computers is easy – just plug the new PC into the router. A router can serve from 1 to 4 (and even 8) wired computers. You can add a hub for even more computers, but a significant boost in flexibility is to be had when the router is wireless, described next. 17
  18. 18. Configure your router for web access on page 81 Share files on page 232 Share a printer on page 157 What about satellite or “direct wireless”? Depending on your provider, your modem may or may not be compatible with most broadband routers, which are geared towards the cable/DSL crowd. If it is compatible, then your routered network would look exactly like a cable or DSL environment. However, your modem may have a built-in router, which would allow you to use a hub to distribute the web. Otherwise, you can modify a satellite home network by following the same rules as cable/DSL. Note: Having two routers on the same network is a bad idea, since they will be in competition with each other. At times, people have used a wireless router to expand an already routered network, by disabling the routing function on one of the routers. In this way, there is only one functioning router on the network. Configure your router for web access on page 81 Share files on page 232 Share a printer on page 157 18
  19. 19. Using a router to share the web - wireless Most wireless routers have room for 4 wired computers as well, which make for a very flexible network. Adding wireless or wired computers is not a problem here. This is a very common home network setup. Configure your router for web access on page 81 Configure the wireless features of your router on page 89 Configure your wireless computers on page 90 Share files on page 232 Share a printer on page 157 Adding wireless to an existing wired network or expanding wireless range (using a wireless access point) A wireless access point provides a “bridge” between your wired and wireless network. Note that it needs to be physically plugged in to a router or hub. You could also run the access point from a wireless router, to provide wireless coverage on another floor of your house, or where there is poor signal. 19
  20. 20. Configure your wireless access point on page 100 Configure your wireless computers on page 90 Configure your router for web access on page 81 Share files on page 232 Share a printer on page 157 Sharing a printer directly from a PC There are two ways to share printers. The simplest is to share a printer that’s physically attached to a PC, shown here in various sample home networks. As long as the PC that owns the printer is turned on, all of your other computers will be able to print to it. Here, a wireless PC is sharing its printer. A wired PC in an ICS-based network shares out its printer. Share a printer directly from a PC on page 157 20
  21. 21. Sharing a printer using a print server Here, a wired print server connects a printer to the router, accessible by all computers. Increasingly, printers are equipped with network ports, allowing them to be “on the network” directly, and not tethered to any single PC. As long as the printer is on, all computers will be able to print to it. This is just about that same as using a print server, which is used to convert a standard USB or Parallel printer to a network printer. Likewise, a wireless print server can be used to attach a printer to a wireless network. Configure a print server on page 193 Examples of how not to set up a home network So far, you’ve seen diagrams of home networks that are connected properly. By showing you what’s wrong with the following networks and why, you’ll be better able to deal with configuration issues. 21
  22. 22. Here’s a broadband network shared out through a hub. If you’ve paid for multiple IP addresses, you can share the Internet, but don’t expect to share files or printers on this network. Hubs lack the intelligence to separate your internal network from the external network of the Internet. A router in place of the hub would make things work here. When directly connecting two computers, a crossover Ethernet cable must be used. Using a patch cable here would be like there was no cable at all; you simply will not have a connection. Using a crossover cable here will solve the issue. Where do I begin here? A single PC is connected both to the modem and the router. If you have a router, no PC directly connects to the modem. All computers connect to the router only. Modems that have USB-only connections (and thus can not connect to a router, only to a PC) are pretty much useless on a home network. You’re stuck with running ICS on the PC that has the modem. It’s probably worth trashing the USB-only modem in favor of one that has a network port. 22
  23. 23. TCP/IP Basics TCP/IP is the language of networks. The Internet, corporate networks, and even your home network run TCP/IP. It stands for Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol. This may seem like a tedious, complicated subject -- indeed it is – but a bit of targeted, basic knowledge will leave you worlds ahead in your understanding of your home network. Your IP address Each computer and device on a network has a unique IP address. 4 numbers separated by three dots represent an IP address. Here are some example IP addresses: 212.34.65.7 45.132.89.5 192.168.1.4 10.0.0.4 121.4.67.5 Quick note: the numbers between the periods are called “octets”, so an IP address is made up of four octets. If two computers on the same network have the same IP address, an IP conflict will occur and one or both of them will not be able to communicate. There are mathematical reasons why each octet cannot exceed 254. Therefore, an IP of 192.345.43.54 is invalid. How your Internet access works All Internet access, regardless of type, works when your ISP supplies you with an IP address that’s compatible with “the rest of the world”. You take your place among millions of other computers that are “on the web”. Those with a single PC that dials up to the web, or with a broadband modem directly connected to your PC, will find that your PC is directly on the web. When a router (or a PC that functions as a router) comes into the picture, things get a bit different. Those computers connected to the router will have a completely separate set of IP addresses from the outside world. Your router acts as a bridge between your local network and the web. Take a look at the two diagrams below. One is a home network with a router, and the other shares out the web via ICS. Even though a PC runs ICS, it functions as a router. 23
  24. 24. The red line denotes the dividing line between the world of the web, and your home network. “Inside” versus “outside” IP addresses This is a huge concept. Your home network will have a different “class” of IP addresses from the Internet. A router (or a PC acting as a router by running ICS) acts as the dividing line between the outside world, and the inside world of your home network. From the diagram, it looks like the router is in both worlds at the same time – indeed it is. It will have two separate IP addresses, one for the web, and one for your home network. Here are some examples of “outside” IP addresses, typical of what you would see at your broadband or dialup modem, as well as the “WAN” interface of your router or PC running ICS: 212.34.76.34 9.123.5.67 100.94.56.3 167.85.44.6 Notice how the above IP addresses are all over the map. They have to be – the Internet is a very big place. When it comes to your local network, there are certain ranges of IP addresses that are “reserved” for your personal, local use. Here are the most common: 192.168.x.x 10.0.0.x 172.16.x.x Note “X” can be any number from 1 to 254 (the last octet will not be zero – more on that later). Here are some devices with typical IP values: 24
  25. 25. Typical IP addresses on the “LAN” (Local Area Network) side of a router: 192.168.1.1 192.168.0.1 (This is also the IP of a PC running ICS) 192.168.2.1 10.0.0.1 Why do router IP addresses typically end in 1? Routers are thought of as the “beginning” of the network, and that could be one explanation. There’s nothing preventing a router IP from ending in something other than 1, but why mess with what’s already working? Typical IP addresses of computers connected to a router: 192.168.1.100 192.168.1.101 192.168.0.100 192.168.0.101 192.168.2.100 192.168.2.101 10.0.0.2 10.0.0.3 172.16.x.x, although a valid internal network scheme, is quite rare. How IP addresses are obtained – Dynamic versus Static Dynamic IP’s Most likely, your ISP dynamically assigns you an IP address for your modem from an available pool of free IP’s. Internal home network IP’s are usually dynamically assigned from your router (or your PC functioning as a router via ICS), from an available pool of IP’s. For a PC to be able to receive an IP from a router, the PC needs to be set to “Obtain an IP automatically”. This is the default setting on network cards. As the PC boots up, it broadcasts a request for an IP address. The router answers, and dynamically assigns an IP via DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol). The router is acting as a DHCP server, “serving up” an IP address when requested. It’s likely that when you reboot your computer, or turn it on the next morning, it will obtain a different IP address. What happens when a computer requests an IP address, but can’t get one due to connectivity or configuration issues? It’s simple – the PC self-assigns a “bogus” 169.254.x.x IP address. If you find your computer has an IP beginning with 169.254, it’s configured to obtain an IP automatically, and has attempted to do so, but failed. You won’t be getting anywhere with this IP. 25
  26. 26. Check your connections – is the PC connected to something that’s capable of supplying IP addresses, such as a router? If so, is that device configured to act as a DHCP server to give out IP addresses? Try rebooting your PC. More in the Troubleshooting section on page 279. Static IP’s When it comes to your Internet connection, “static” or permanent IP addresses are expensive, and are primarily used if you host a web site on your computer. You can also choose to manually configure and permanently assign an IP address to your computers. A manual assignment may also be needed for certain Internet connections, check with your ISP. A static IP comes in handy in the following situations: a. You’re just connecting two computers together without web access and you want to transfer files. b. You’re having trouble “browsing” the network for computer names and find that directly accessing your other computers via their IP address is better. For this to work conveniently, you want to be sure that the computer you want access to has the same IP day after day. c. The DHCP functionality of your router doesn’t seem to like your PC, and refuses to give you an IP. There is no harm in setting one or all computers to a static IP, even when there’s a router set to give out IP addresses, as long as you’re not conflicting with other devices. When assigning static IP’s, you’ll need to be acutely aware of the two other major components of IP addressing: subnet masks and default gateways. Subnet Masks and Subnets: Simply put, this is probably the subnet mask on all of your computers: 255.255.255.0 Each IP has a subnet mask. The subnet mask, when applied to the IP address, determines the “subnet” your computer is on. Here’s an easy way to think of this: Note there are three “255’s”. Watch what happens when we “mask” the three 255’s over our IP address: In the diagram at right, I have a typical subnet mask matched up with a typical home network IP address. Note the thin box around the first three blocks (“octets”) of numbers. The three 255’s “mask over” the first three octets in the IP address. This means that if an IP of 192.168.1.100 has a subnet mask of 255.255.255.0, the IP is on the “192.168.1” network. 26
  27. 27. This means that an IP of 192.168.1.100 with a mask of 255.255.255.0 is on the 192.168.1.0 subnet. To be perfectly clear, 192.168.1.0 is not an IP address, because it ends in 0. 192.168.1.0 is a subnet and can be translated as “all computers that range from 192.168.1.1 to 192.168.1.254”. Any IP’s that are not on the same subnet will not be able to directly communicate. Long story short, your subnet mask on all computers will probably be 255.255.255.0, and the first three octets of all of your IP addresses on all of your network devices (computers, routers, etc) must be the same. Don’t confuse the term “subnet mask” with “subnet”. A subnet is a grouping of IP addresses that are on the same network. For instance, the following IP’s would be on the 192.168.1.0 subnet: 192.168.1.100 192.168.1.1 192.168.1.45 Knowing your subnet, and the ability to define it with an expression such as 192.168.1.0, is helpful in configuring firewalls to allow your network access to itself in order to share files and printers. Ready for some IP fun? I thought so! Try to pick out the one IP address that will not be able to communicate on the sample network below. The first three octets have been highlighted to make it easier for you: Router: 192.168.1.1 PC 1: 192.168.1.100 PC 2: 192.168.1.101 PC 3: 192.168.1.101 Wireless access point: 192.168.0.250 PC 4: 192.168.1.105 Indeed, that wireless access point you’ve just bought isn’t the same brand as your router, and it uses a different IP scheme. Although they may look quite similar, IP’s beginning with 192.168.1 and 192.168.0 are not on the same network, and will not be able to communicate. 27
  28. 28. If you find yourself in the above situation, you’ll need to reconfigure the IP on the access point to agree with your 192.168.1 network. Of course, you’ll have to access it first, most likely via a browser-based setup page. To do that, you’ll need to communicate with the access point, but how? Your computers aren’t on the same subnet as the access point and will not be able to communicate with it. No problem – just assign an IP to one of your computers, such as 192.168.0.10, and a mask of 255.255.255.0. That PC will be able to communicate with the access point, enough so that you can change it’s IP to one that fits on your network, such as 192.168.1.250. An excellent tutorial of how to get a new network device to conform to your current network is found in the print server section on page 193. Did you notice something else? PC 2 and PC 3 have the same IP address – conflict here! Reboot one of them to see if it takes a different IP. Default Gateway Default Gateway = the IP I look to for web access This is the IP of the device the computer looks to for web access. In other words, this will be the IP of your router, or the IP of a computer that functions as a router, as with ICS. Typical default gateway (or just “gateway”) values are: 192.168.1.1 192.168.0.1 192.168.2.1 10.0.0.1 Note that router IP addresses tend to end in 1. This is because a router is traditionally at the “beginning” of a network, although this is not mandatory. Let’s look at the whole picture, looking at typical values: Example A: Typical network with router Computer 1: IP: 192.168.0.100 Subnet mask: 255.255.255.0 Default Gateway: 192.168.0.1 28
  29. 29. Computer 2: IP: 192.168.0.101 Subnet mask: 255.255.255.0 Default Gateway: 192.168.0.1 Router: IP: 192.168.0.1 Subnet Mask: 255.255.255.0 This network is on the 192.168.0.0 subnet. Example B: Typical network with router Computer 1: IP: 192.168.1.100 Subnet mask: 255.255.255.0 Default Gateway: 192.168.1.1 Computer 2: IP: 192.168.1.101 Subnet mask: 255.255.255.0 Default Gateway: 192.168.1.1 Router: IP: 192.168.1.1 Subnet Mask: 255.255.255.0 This network is on the 192.168.1.0 subnet. Example C: Typical network with router Computer 1: IP: 10.0.0.2 Subnet mask: 255.255.255.0 Default Gateway: 10.0.0.1 29
  30. 30. Computer 2: IP: 10.0.0.3 Subnet mask: 255.255.255.0 Default Gateway: 10.0.0.1 Router: IP: 10.0.0.1 Subnet Mask: 255.255.255.0 This network is on the 10.0.0.0 subnet. Example D: 2 Computers without web access directly connected These values are assigned manually Computer 1: IP: 192.168.1.100 Subnet mask: 255.255.255.0 Default Gateway: <leave blank> Computer 2: IP: 192.168.1.101 Subnet mask: 255.255.255.0 Default Gateway: <leave blank> MAC Addresses No, I’m not talking about Apple’s Mac line of computers. MAC stands for Media Access Control. Each network card on your PC (wired or wireless) will have a unique MAC address assigned to it. It’s a hex value that looks like this: 00-0D-56-12-4B-AA. It’s a hard-assigned value that is built in to the network card. The first 6 characters represent the manufacturer. The last 6 represent the individual network card from that manufacturer. Therefore, no two MAC addresses are alike, and a MAC address singly identifies a particular network card, regardless of its IP address. 30
  31. 31. You can find out your computer’s MAC address by getting expanded IP information, covered on page 32. Routers will have two MAC addresses, one associated with the LAN (internal) side, and one associated with the WAN (Internet) side. You can find out both by exploring the setup pages of the router. You can use MAC addresses to lock down your network, by only allowing your MAC addresses web access. An overview of this is on page 111, where I only allow my specific wireless cards (as identified by their MAC address) wireless access. DNS Servers DNS stands for Domain Name System. Without this, you would not be able to type in a web address, such as www.google.com, and get to a web site. DNS translates IP addresses into ‘domain names’ such as www.pcguidebook.com. Without DNS, you would be typing in the following to get to Google: http://216.239.37.99 As far as TCP/IP settings go, there is a place to specify your DNS server IP address, where your PC would look to in order to surf the web using names rather than IP addresses. This information is usually obtained automatically, but you’ll need to be aware of your DNS server IP addresses (there are usually 2) if you choose to go with manual IP assignment. A quick look at your router’s setup pages, or an expanded IP command on your web surfing PC will reveal your DNS servers, covered on page 32. What’s my IP address? I love this question – the answer can tell you a world of information, such as: - Will that new wireless access point I bought fit into my existing network? - Do I have at least basic connectivity to my router? - Does the router have a connection to my Internet service? - Are all my computers on the same network? In addition, knowing the IP addresses of your computers can help out tremendously in all aspects of home network troubleshooting. Take IP addresses very seriously. They are at the very core of your home network. 31
  32. 32. In fact, when you contact me for help – most of the time the first thing I’ll ask you is “What are your IP addresses?” When finding out your IP address, there are two levels of information. The basic level includes: IP address Subnet Mask Default Gateway This basic information is usually enough for most troubleshooting. However, there is also a way to get the following additional information: DNS servers MAC Address DHCP status (enabled or not?) For each operating system, I’ll show you how to get both basic and expanded IP information. Find out your IP: Windows Vista Click the Windows icon in the lower left, then type cmd in the search box and press enter. 32
  33. 33. In the resulting black command window, type ipconfig and press enter, shown below. Lots of stuff here – but the important information is right up top. It’s the “IPv4” address, and in the above example it’s 192.168.2.103. IPv4 is the worldwide standard for TCP/IP. Windows Vista also has IPv6 enabled by default, and this is why you’re also going to see lots of “Tunnel” adapters, and long hex addresses. IPv6, and the values it spits out at you, can be safely ignored. It’s IPv4 you want. 33
  34. 34. For expanded IP information, you can also run ipconfig /all in the command window to get your DNS server values and MAC address, shown here. The MAC address is labeled as a “physical address”. Find out your IP: Windows XP Home/Pro Go to Start > Run: In the Run dialog box, type cmd and click OK: 34
  35. 35. In the resulting black DOS window, type ipconfig at the prompt and hit enter. Your IP, subnet mask, and default gateway are reported. Expanded IP information with XP Home/Pro: Sometimes you need a bit more information, such as the MAC address of your network card, or the DNS server addresses. Type ipconfig /all in the command window, and you’ll get lots of additional information about your network connection and settings. Your MAC address is reported as the Physical Address, which is partially blurred here. 35
  36. 36. If I ask you for your ipconfig /all output, there’s an easy way to send it to me. To send the output to a text file that you can email to me, just run ipconfig /all > pc1.txt Nothing will appear to happen, but a text file named “pc1.txt” will be in the directory you were in when you ran the command. In this case, we’ll find pc1.txt in My Computer, C:Documents and SettingsEd. With multiple PC’s, name the files “pc1.txt”, “pc2.txt”, etc. At right is the text file ready to be attached to an email. Find out your IP: Windows 2000 Go to Start > RUN. Type cmd and click OK. 36
  37. 37. Type ipconfig in the resulting black window. Your IP address, subnet mask, and default gateway are reported. Expanded IP information: Windows 2000 If you need to know a little bit more about your network, run ipconfig /all instead of just ipconfig. In addition to standard information, your MAC address (Physical address) is reported along with DNS and DHCP information. 37
  38. 38. Find out your IP: Windows 98 Go to Start > RUN. In the RUN box, type winipcfg and click OK. Select your network card from the dropdown. I have a Netgear card in this case. PPP and AOL adapters are not network cards. Once you select your network card, your MAC address, (called Adapter Address), IP, subnet mask, and default gateway are reported. 38
  39. 39. Expanded IP information: Windows 98 Click on the More Info button to access your DNS and other expanded information. Find out your IP: Windows Millennium You’ll find that Windows ME is quite similar to 98. Go to Start > Run: 39
  40. 40. In the Run dialog box, type winipcfg and click OK: From the dropdown, select your network card. I happen to have an “Intel 8255”. Note: PPP and AOL adapters are NOT network cards. In addition to your IP, subnet mask, and default gateway, your MAC address is also reported. Windows ME refers to the MAC address as the “Adapter Address”. 40
  41. 41. Expanded IP information: Windows Millennium You can click the “More Info” button on the IP Configuration dialog box to get additional information such as your MAC address. Windows ME refers to the MAC address as your “Adapter Address”. Ping – A basic test of connectivity No matter which version of Windows you have, you can run a utility called “ping” to determine if you have basic connectivity to another device on your network. You can choose to ping your router, a network printer, or another PC on your network. Although you can ping a computer name, it’s best to try to ping the IP address. Here are the general steps: 41
  42. 42. 1. Find out the IP address of the PC or router you want to ping 2. Open a command window on one of your computers 3. Ping the IP address of the target device Interpreting the results of ping Success: If you can successfully ping the target device, it means you have at least basic network connectivity. TCP/IP is configured properly at both your PC and the target. The network connection is sound. File sharing or web access is not guaranteed, but a successful ping certainly means that the foundation is there. It’s possible a firewall could still be in the way. Failure: There is no connectivity – you’ll get absolutely nowhere trying further communications until you fix the underlying issue. Check for bad cables (remember the proper usage of a crossover cable, page 12). A firewall could be blocking everything – page 134. Be sure that the IP information is correct at each device. For example: Be sure that the two devices are on the same subnet Be sure that they have the same subnet mask If applicable, be sure they have the same default gateway Now that you have some background on ping, let’s try it out. You’ll see what success and failure look like. The key is to get to a command prompt, then do the ping. With Vista, go to the Windows logo in the lower left, type cmd in the search area, then press enter. 42
  43. 43. For all other Windows versions, Go to Start > RUN. You’ll type in a command here. XP/2000: cmd 98/ME: command Click OK. A successful ping... In the resulting command window, type ping 192.168.1.100 and then hit enter. Of course, change the sample IP address to reflect your target PC or device. “Reply from” means that you have successfully pinged the device. 43
  44. 44. A ping failure… “Request timed out” means that the ping has failed. Accessing TCP/IP Settings Essentially, most of you with or without routers, or whether you’re on broadband or dialup, won’t need to touch your TCP/IP settings. This is because most home networks are geared to give the computers the network information they need automatically. This works well, because by default, all network cards (wired or wireless) are set to “obtain an IP automatically”. Along with the IP, other information such as the Default Gateway and DNS servers are also given to the PC automatically. That being said, there are a few reasons why one may want to access their TCP/IP settings: - Temporarily change the IP on one PC in order to communicate with a certain device, like a newly bought print server that is not on the same IP scheme (subnet) as your other computers. Once you can access the new device, you can change its IP to be “in line” with your existing network, then set your PC back to its previous IP settings. - Confirm your settings for troubleshooting purposes - Permanently assign specific IP addresses to your computers. Usually, you are not guaranteed the same IP address each time you boot your PC. Assigning an IP overrides this so you’ll know, for instance, that the PC upstairs will always be 192.168.1.102. This is useful if you want to map network drives via IP address, which is much more likely than a network browse to be successful when sharing folders. - Simply assign an IP address to two computers (not on the web) to get them to share files. 44
  45. 45. Remember that if you manually assign your IP and subnet mask – don’t forget about your Default Gateway and DNS settings if you are surfing the web via a router or ICS! Two computers connected via a crossover cable without web access do not need a Default Gateway – just leave it blank. They still need an IP and subnet mask. You never need to change TCP/IP settings on a dialup adapter. Ready? Let’s take a look at how to access TCP/IP settings. TCP/IP Settings: Windows Vista Right-click on the network icon in the lower right, near the clock, and select Network and Sharing Center. Click on “Manage network connections” on the left. 45
  46. 46. If you haven’t noticed by now, Vista loves to pop up a “Windows needs your permission to continue” message - get used to it! Here, you’ll see all of your network adapters – wired, wireless, dialup, and any directly-connected broadband modems. Usually, TCP only need to be looked at on the Local Area Connection (your wired adapter) or Wireless Network Connection. Right-click on the connection you want to take a look at, and select Properties. Lots of stuff. For TCP/IP settings – you’re only after one thing: IPv4. Highlight it and click Properties, shown here. Note that IPv6 is here - ignore it. See the two “Link-Layer Topology” items at the bottom? Those are installed by default on the adapter, and they are responsible for allowing Vista to “see” other Vista machines on your network, via the Network Map. More on that when we get to file/printer sharing. 46
  47. 47. In most cases, the defaults here of “obtain automatically” will work. If, and only if, you need to assign settings, here are some typical values that would work on a network that has a router IP of 192.168.2.1. No need to click Advanced. Note my alternate DNS server is an “outside” address, and I got this from my broadband modem settings. 47
  48. 48. TCP/IP Settings: Windows XP Home/Pro Go to Start > Control Panel In Control Panel, I’ve selected the Classic View. I can toggle back to Category View on the left if I want to. Double-click on Network Connections. 48
  49. 49. You’ll see your wired network card, dialup connection, and wireless connection if you have them installed. Note there’s a “1394 Connection”. This is present on most newer PC’s, and simply means you have a FireWire port. Why Microsoft decided to put it here is beyond me. My Local Area Connection, which is my wired network card, is the one I want to access. Right-click and select Properties on Local Area Connection. If you had a wireless connection instead, you would right- click on it rather than Local Area Connection. Double-click on Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) in the list. Alternatively, you can highlight Internet Protocol and click Properties. A quick note here – the Advanced tab will let you configure the Windows firewall (more on that later). 49
  50. 50. Here’s what you’ll see on most home networks – everything is “obtained automatically”. However, if for some reason you want to manually assign IP information, read on. Only if you want to manually assign settings, click the “Use the following IP address” radio button. You’ll notice that the bottom section for DNS servers also becomes editable. I’ve inserted typical values that would be on a home network. Note my Default Gateway and one of my DNS addresses is 192.168.1.1 – the router, since I look to the router for both values anyway. The Alternate DNS server is optional. I’ve found that sometimes it’s not enough to put the IP of the router (or the PC functioning as a router, in the case of ICS), and you need a “real” DNS server address to get things going. I got the value from my router setup pages. Again, static values like this are kind of a pain unless you have a special reason for doing so. 50
  51. 51. TCP/IP Settings: Windows 2000 Right-click on My Network Places and select Properties. Right-click on your network connection and Select Properties. Local Area Connection refers to a wired network adapter. If we had a wireless card, it would be here and we would be right-clicking on that instead. 51
  52. 52. Double click on Internet Protocol, or highlight it and click Properties. Here are the default settings for most home networks – everything is obtained automatically. These settings are perfect for most all home networks. 52
  53. 53. If you need to manually assign an IP for troubleshooting or other reasons, click the “Use the following IP address” radio button and fill in your values. Don’t forget that you may need DNS server addresses if this is a shared Internet connection behind a router or attached to another PC. TCP/IP Settings: Windows 98 On your desktop, right-click on the Network Neighborhood icon and select Properties. 53
  54. 54. In the list, double-click on “TCP/IP -> Your Network Card”. You can also highlight the entry then click the Properties button. Here, it’s TCP/IP on the Netgear FA310TX. Note there is another entry for the Netgear, represented by a green circuit board. You don’t want that – you need “TCP/IP > (your network card)". Again, dialup adapters need not be messed with. Quick note – The File and Print Sharing button here will become important once we want to share files from 98. Obtain an IP automatically is what one normally sees on a home network. If you need to manually assign an IP for a special reason, read on. 54
  55. 55. Click the “Specify an IP address” radio button, and fill out the IP and subnet mask. Don’t forget that we need to also tell the PC what its Gateway is, as well as DNS. Click the Gateway tab. Shown is the typical setting on a home network – the setting is blank, and will be assigned automatically by a router or ICS. If you are manually assigning, type your gateway in the space provided and click Add. It will appear below in the Installed gateway section. I’ve never really heard of multiple gateways, but it appears there’s room for lots of them here. Just one will do. 55
  56. 56. Click the DNS configuration tab. Supply your DNS server information provided by your ISP, or you can find out via the setup pages on your router. TCP/IP Settings: Windows ME Go to Start > Settings > Control Panel. 56
  57. 57. Be sure to click on the text link “view all Control Panel options” if you don’t see a Network icon. Double-click on the Network icon. 57
  58. 58. Double-click on “TCP/IP - > Network adapter”. In this case, we have an Intel 8255. As with any home network, automatic settings are usually best, shown here. Should you need to manually assign an IP, click on the ”Specify an IP address” radio button. 58
  59. 59. Here, I’ve typed in a typical IP and subnet mask usually found with home networks. If you have web access through a router or other PC, be sure to add your gateway IP address on the Gateway tab. Once I click on Add, the gateway IP will appear in the “Installed gateways” section. 59
  60. 60. Don’t forget your DNS values. Remember, you can either put the IP of your router, or the “real” DNS IP’s found on your router’s setup pages. Here, I’ve added both the router and a “real” DNS server IP. You’ll need a host name as well, be sure to enter the same name as your computer name. You can leave the domain blank. Sharing the Internet One a home network, there are two ways to share your Internet connection. Essentially, one method entails using a router, the other does not. Without a router – Internet Connection Sharing Internet Connection Sharing, or ICS, is a built-in feature of Windows since Windows 98. Mostly seen with dialup connections, it enables you to share out the web from one PC to your other computers. It can also be used with broadband connections such as DSL, cable or satellite. In addition to your physical Internet connection on the PC, you’ll need an available network connection, wired or wireless, to be able to “transmit” the web to your other computer. Since your other computer(s) will be surfing the web “through” your web-connected PC, it will have to remain turned on in order for the other computer to surf the web. Your PC is functioning as a router when ICS is enabled. 60
  61. 61. The ICS version on 98 is known to be buggy, so it’s best to run ICS on a newer PC running Vista or XP. When ICS is enabled, it assigns an IP of 192.168.0.1 to the network card. That card then becomes capable of automatically assigning an IP (like a DHCP server) to another computer that’s connected to it. The ‘connected’ computer should be set to “obtain an IP automatically” and come up with an IP beginning with 192.168.0.x. With a router For most broadband connections, a router is the best option. It connects to your modem and manages your Internet connection through browser-based setup pages. Wireless routers also provide your wireless computers with web access. Each PC, wired or wireless, can access the web independently. The router always stays on and maintains the connection with your modem. Very few routers are compatible with dialup, since it doesn’t make much sense to share a dialup connection among 3 or more computers. Basic router setup to connect to your broadband modem and share the web begins on page 81. Enabling ICS Enabling ICS on Windows Vista Right-click on the network icon in the lower right, near the clock, and select Network and Sharing Center. 61
  62. 62. Click on Manage network connections on the left. Right-click on the connection you want to share out, then click Properties. In this example, I’m right-clicking on one of my ‘standard’ network interfaces, since I don’t have a direct web connection on this Vista machine. You would actually be right-clicking on the connection named “dialup” or “charter broadband”, etc. 62
  63. 63. On the Sharing tab, check off “Allow other network users to connect..”. If you have more than one available network interface (wired or wireless), you’ll get a choice as to which one you want ICS to be offered through. I only have one other adapter, so I don’t get a choice. Once I click OK, I’ll check my other adapter to see if ICS has applied the proper IP. Indeed, ICS has properly assigned an IP, and any computers connected to this interface should be able to surf the web. 63
  64. 64. Enabling ICS on Windows XP Home / Pro To avoid a warning message later, it’s a good idea to enable your dialup properties to be for “all users”. Go to Start > Control Panel, Network Connections. Right-click on your dialup connection (or high-speed connection), and select Connect. Under “Save this username and password”, check the “Anyone who uses this computer” radio button. This will ensure a minimum of fuss when trying to surf the web through this PC, no matter who’s logged on. Now for the actual enabling of ICS. 64
  65. 65. Go to Start > Control Panel. This is the “classic” Control Panel view. You can toggle between Classic and Category views by the text link on the left. Double click on Network Connections. 65
  66. 66. Right-click on the connection you want to share, and select Properties. We’re sharing a dialup connection here, but if you have a “high speed” connection, you’ll be right- clicking on that instead. You’ll notice a wireless and a Local Area Connection here, but these are not Internet connections, they are simply network cards. One of them will be used to “deliver” the shared Internet connection to another PC. Again, the 1394 connection is simply FireWire and has nothing to do with networking. On the Advanced tab of your chosen Internet connection (most likely dialup), check off “Allow other network users to connect through this computer’s Internet connection” under Internet Connection Sharing. The other checkboxes below it will be checked by default, so you can keep them checked if desired. We happen to have more than one network interface on this PC, a wired and wireless one, so we need to select which one we want to use to “broadcast” ICS. Note the “Select a private network connection” drop- down box. 66
  67. 67. Here’s a zoom of the drop-down, where I need to select a network interface through which ICS will work. I’ll choose Local Area Connection, which is my wired network card. Click OK to enable ICS. If your Internet connection isn’t set up for “all users”, described previously, you’ll get a rather nasty message: This doesn’t mean much, but you may have to manually connect to the web in order for the second PC to surf the web. No big deal, since you do it every day anyway. How do I know ICS is running? No matter what your previous TCP/IP settings were on the network card, ICS should have changed it to 192.168.0.1 with a subnet mask of 255.255.255.0, and a blank default gateway. A quick look confirms this: Note that simply assigning these values manually does not enable ICS – you need to actually enable ICS. 67
  68. 68. Enabling ICS on Windows 2000 Go to Start > Settings > Network and Dial-up Connections. Right-click on the connection you want to share out and select Properties. In this case, it’s our dialup connection. 68
  69. 69. On the Sharing tab, check off “Enable Internet Connection Sharing”. By default, on-demand dialing will be enabled, which is fine. Click OK. Windows 2000 is nice enough to let you know that the IP will be changed to 192.168.0.1, shown below. Click Yes to enable ICS. 69
  70. 70. Enabling ICS on Windows 98 Go to Start > Settings > Control Panel. Double click on Add/Remove Programs. 70
  71. 71. On the Windows Setup tab, scroll down and check off Internet Tools, then click Details. Check off Internet Connection Sharing, and then click OK to get back to the previous dialog box. Click OK again. 71
  72. 72. Uh oh. It looks like we need the 98 CD. It’s actually looking for the 98 “.cab” files, which may be in c:windowsoptionscabs if you’re lucky. We happen to have the CD, so there’s no problem here. If you’re unable to point Windows to where the 98 cab files are, you won’t be able to use ICS. While it was copying files from the CD, it asked about which file version we wanted to keep. Always keep the existing file, so we’ll say Yes every time this message appears. The wizard will launch. Click Next. 72
  73. 73. Select the type of web access you’ll be sharing. A floppy? You’ve got to be kidding me. We’ll go through the motions, click Next. 73
  74. 74. I’ll click Cancel to skip the floppy creation. There’s absolutely no need for it. Click Finish. Once you reboot, ICS should be enabled. 74
  75. 75. Enabling ICS on Windows ME Go to Start > Settings > Control Panel. In Control Panel, click “view all Control Panel options” on the left if you haven’t already done so in the past. This allows you to see all the control panel items at once without having to guess which category they may fit in. 75
  76. 76. Double click Add/Remove Programs. On the Windows Setup tab, select Communications, and then click Details. 76
  77. 77. Check off Internet Connection Sharing in the list, and then click OK. You’ll be back to the Add/Remove Programs Properties box above. Click OK out of there as well. The Wizard starts. Click Next. 77
  78. 78. Here, I select a direct connection to the web using my dialup account. Click Next. Be sure to specify which network interface the web will be shared out from. Here, it’s my wired network card. Click Next 78
  79. 79. If desired, enable “on demand” dialing by providing your account username and password. Click Next. You really don’t want to create a floppy here. Don’t worry – everything works without it. Click Next. 79
  80. 80. Click Finish. Click Yes to restart your PC. Once rebooted, you get a congratulatory message. Click OK and check to see if your network card is now set to 192.168.0.1. 80
  81. 81. Router Settings All routers, wired or wireless, will have the same basic scheme for getting connected, and be able to perform the following: 1. Accessing its setup pages via your browser 2. Telling the router how to connect to your broadband modem 3. Confirming that the router is connected to the modem 4. Change passwords, enable security, and other advanced features such as port forwarding In addition to all of the above, wireless routers will have the additional responsibility of managing wireless connectivity, discussed on page 89. Connect the router’s WAN or Internet port to your broadband modem, and connect at least one PC to the router’s remaining ports. Now that you’ve connected the router to at least one PC and the modem, it’s time to access its setup pages by typing in the IP address of the router in your browser. Keep in mind that almost all routers give out IP addresses to computers automatically, so you’ll be in good shape if your PC is set to “obtain an IP automatically” (page 44). Here, I’ve typed in the IP address of the router in my browser, which I found out by reading the router’s instructions. Other common IP addresses would be 192.168.0.1, 192.168.2.1 and 10.0.0.1. 81
  82. 82. You’ll most likely be confronted with a logon prompt. Consult your router’s documentation for default username and password values. You’ll probably want to change the default password later on, to protect against unauthorized access to your router. Click OK. First step: Connect the router to broadband By default, the first page you’ll see, Internet Setup, will probably have “Obtain an IP automatically” as its Internet connection type. This actually works quite well for cable modems, and you may find you’ll be able to surf the web without any settings changes at the router. 82
  83. 83. If you don’t have a cable modem, and have DSL, you’ll probably need to select another Internet Connection Type. By far, the most common alternative to the default of “obtain automatically” is PPPoE (PPPoA in Europe and elsewhere). It’s used for most DSL modems. A typical router configuration for a DSL modem In this example, we’re using PPPoE as our connection type, which is common with DSL. Note for DSL users: Most, but not all DSL uses PPPoE. It could be that your DSL uses the same connection scheme as cable broadband. The only way to be sure is to contact your DSL provider. We also need a user name and password, which were provided by the DSL company. This is not the information we log into the router setup pages with – this is the information our DSL company needs so we can surf the web. Whenever you change settings, be sure to click “Save settings” (or similar) at the bottom. 83
  84. 84. Every router will have some type of Status page, where you can determine whether the router is connected to your modem. On the Status > Local Network page, there’s a DHCP client table button, where you can see who’s attached to the router. I have two computers, one wired, and one wireless, that are currently turned on, so I expect to see two computers here. I recognize their computer names. If I see another wireless PC here, that can only mean one thing – my neighbor is connected to my networ 84
  85. 85. Changing your router access password With any router, wired or wireless, you’ll want to change the password as soon as possible. This is the password you use to initially access the router’s setup pages through your browser – this password has nothing to do with your Internet provider. This Linksys has an “Administration” setup tab where I can change the password. The username is always blank for this particular router, but feel free to change that as well if applicable. If you lock yourself out of the router by forgetting the password, you can always reset the router to factory defaults by pressing a button somewhere on the unit itself. Be aware that the router will behave exactly like it did when you first bought it, so you’ll need to configure it again from scratch. Advanced Router Settings Port Forwarding Routers limit Internet traffic somewhat by only allowing “common” web activity to take place. Web surfing takes place on port 80 (there are more than 65,000 ports). Other programs that use the web will use different ports. For example, FTP, a simple file transfer program, uses ports 20 and 21. On a Linksys router, I wasn’t able to use FTP until I forwarded ports 20 and 21 to my computers. 85
  86. 86. Configuring a DMZ If directly specifying ports does not seem to work for your application, you can completely expose one of your PC’s to the web, effectively opening “everything”. On the Linksys, this is known as “putting the PC in the DMZ”, and you can specify a PC by its IP address: Here, the DMZ is disabled. However, if I wanted to open things up for a single PC on my network, I would specify its IP address here. You may want to statically assign an IP to the DMZ PC, so it does not change with a reboot. Wireless Overview What is wireless? Essentially, a wireless network behaves in exactly the same way as a wired network – except there are no wires. Radio waves are used instead of wires to transmit network data. There are two frequencies that wireless networks can use, 2.4GHz and 5GHz. Both of these frequencies are in the public domain, along with lots of other devices, which can lead to… Interference! Let’s put the interference issue aside for now and review the three (almost 4) wireless standards available. Keep in mind that your wireless router and wireless cards must use the same standard – not all are compatible with each other. 86
  87. 87. Wireless N (as of February 2007 this is actually Pre-N / Draft N) OK, so you fell for the hype and packaging of a Wireless N router that touts superfast speeds and ultra-long range. Sorry to disappoint, but it’s not really Wireless N. It’s based on a draft standard – read the fine print of the unit. Perhaps a firmware update on the router or wireless card will bring a Draft-N device up to true N when the final version is available, but there’s no guarantee. Wireless N runs at 2.4GHz and is supposed to be fully compatible with G and B. Wireless G or 802.11G: This is the most common standard. Operating at 2.4GHz, it has a transmission speed of 54MBps, or about 20 to 50 times faster than a standard broadband Internet connection. Like all wireless standards, you’ll lose speed the further away from the router you get. One router should be able to cover a typical home. Wireless B or 802.11B: Operates at the same frequency as G, 2.4 GHz. Its transmission speed is slower than G, being 11MBps, or about 5 to 15 times faster than a broadband Internet connection. With G about the same price, there’s really no reason to opt for this standard. Wireless G and B are compatible. You can have a wireless G router, and wireless B computers, however the data transfer speed will be limited to 11 MBps. You can also use a B router with G computers, but again you’ll be limited to the slower B standard. Interference issues: Both G and B run at 2.4GHz, which is a public domain frequency. Some cordless phones, baby video monitors, and even microwave ovens run at the same frequency. Turn the microwave on, and you’ll be bumped off the web. If you have nearby neighbors, and they also have a B or G wireless network, there might be trouble. Everything from being able to see your neighbors’ wireless network to a total lack of connectivity is possible when you have two overlapping clouds of wireless signal. There are ways to minimize interference, including changing the channel, SSID and other settings. However, nothing will eliminate the fact that 2.4GHz signal will interfere with other 2.4GHz sources. There is a more powerful way to avoid interference, and it’s done by opting for another standard that uses a completely different frequency: Wireless A or 802.11A: Wireless A runs at 5GHz, has less range, and is a bit more expensive then G or B. However, it will not be interrupted by a microwave oven, your neighbors aren’t as likely to have it (they will probably be on G or B), and you’ll only have to worry about 5GHz cordless phones. In crowded 87
  88. 88. places, this is your best bet. However, if your close neighbor happens to have wireless A as well, you’re out of luck. Another drawback is that laptops with built-in wireless capability tend to be G. You’ll need to disable the built-in G wireless on the laptop and buy a wireless A card. Wireless A is less common and rarely built-in to wireless laptops. Even if your neighbor uses B/G, you can still successfully use B/G. In fact, this has happened in my office, where I can see a neighbor’s wireless network, but function fine with my own. “Ad-hoc” versus Infrastructure mode There are two ways of organizing a wireless network. Ad hoc: Ad hoc is a “peer to peer” wireless network without a central point. Each PC simply has a wireless card that directly communicates with your other wireless computers. Infrastructure: A wireless network based on a central point, such as a wireless router. Your wireless computers will want to know if they are to connect to an Ad- hoc or Infrastructure wireless network. SSID (Service Set IDentifier) Also known as the ESSID, this is the “friendly name” for your wireless network. All computers must have the same SSID in order to communicate. Here are some example SSID’s: linksys default homewireless d5gr92s How the Windows versions handle wireless Windows 98, ME, 2000, XP and Vista can all accept wireless cards, check with the wireless card manufacturer for compatibility. Windows Vista and XP has the built-in ability to configure wireless settings. Windows 2000, ME and 98 will need to be configured through the wireless adapter’s own setup program. However, once you learn the basics, there’s not much difference between them – wireless is wireless. Wireless Security Overview Besides the ever-present scourge of viruses, scams and spyware plying their way around the web, wireless adds its own vulnerabilities. Since it’s only radio waves, the signal can carry out into the street or into the next house or apartment. 88
  89. 89. In theory, anyone with a laptop within range of your wireless signal can surf the web through your wireless network, and quite possibly gain access to your computers. To combat this, you can employ security measures such as changing and hiding the SSID. By default, routers usually broadcast the SSID and wireless PC’s can pick this up and automatically connect. By hiding the SSID, you force each PC to require the SSID to be physically typed in. By changing the SSID, you also further protect yourself from the throngs of hackers that know the most popular default (or factory-set) SSID’s. Another option which can be in addition to the SSID method is to encrypt your wireless communications. This is done by enabling WEP (Wired Equivalent Privacy) or WPA (Wi-Fi Protected Access) at the router and at your wireless computers. Of the two, WPA is stronger but more difficult to configure. WEP WEP has been around for a while. While it will protect you against the average neighbor trying to get into your network, readily available tools on the web have cracked WEP wide open. Essentially, this encryption standard just won’t do for business applications. WPA A newer standard, WPA is also stronger against snooping. You can only enable WEP or WPA, not both. If you’re paranoid about your neighbors, WPA is the way to go. Be aware that WPA is not supported on some wireless devices even to this day. In addition, you can permit only your wireless computers to access the router, which is explained on page 111. WPA2 comes with Windows Vista, and has been released for XP SP2 in April 2005. Other devices such as routers and access points will take some time before they implement it fully. Wireless Router Settings By default, your wireless router will have settings geared toward letting you connect easily. This also makes it easy for your neighbors to connect to your wireless network. It’s a good idea to initially connect with default settings to establish a “known working” condition, and then gradually lock your wireless network down with the methods described above. Just like any router, we access the wireless router via its IP address typed in a web browser. 89
  90. 90. Here on the Basic Wireless Settings tab, we find that Wireless is enabled. Our SSID is “linksys” and it’s being broadcasted. The wireless channel is 6. With these default settings, our computers should be able to automatically detect a “linksys” wireless network. These default settings make it ridiculously easy for your neighbor to connect to your network, but you’re trying to establish an initial connection here. Basic wireless settings – Windows Vista Right-click on the network icon in the lower right, near the clock, and select Connect to a network. 90
  91. 91. You’ll see a list of wireless networks in range, below. If you live in a city or suburban area, it’s highly likely that you’ll be seeing you neighbors’ wireless networks. In this case, it looks like my neighbor is also using a Linksys router. I see multiple wireless networks. How do I know which one is mine? Long story short, the one with the strongest signal is probably yours. Above, I also know that the default SSID of a Linksys router is “linksys”. My neighbor, although he’s enabled encryption on his network, has failed to change his SSID from the default, and he’s also failed to prevent the broadcast of his network. I’ll highlight my network and click Connect. 91
  92. 92. Security comes later – I’m just trying to establish a wireless network here. I’ll Connect Anyway. After a moment, I should be connected, shown below. Check off Save this Network and Start this connection automatically, and then click Close. 92
  93. 93. Basic wireless settings – Windows XP It’s time to make sure our PC can “see” this “linksys” wireless network. Right-click on the wireless icon in the lower right, near the clock. Select View Available Wireless Networks. 93
  94. 94. Below, we see that there’s a “linksys” wireless network, and we can click Connect to join it. As long as encryption is not enabled, XP will complain it’s an “unsecured” network. This is not an issue when you’re initially trying to establish a connection. We’ll “Connect Anyway” here. 94
  95. 95. Note that we are now “Connected”. This PC should now be able to surf the web wirelessly. The wireless icon in the lower right no longer has an X on it, meaning that we are connected. It bears mentioning that there’s a wireless control center for XP, which is helpful when changing or confirming settings. Here’s how to access it. XP’s Wireless Control Center Go to Start > Control Panel. 95
  96. 96. Double-click Network Connections (Classic View). Right-click on Wireless Network Connection and select Properties. 96
  97. 97. Click the Wireless Networks tab. Note that “linksys” is in our Preferred Networks section. By highlighting a preferred network and clicking Properties, you can adjust its settings. You can’t change the SSID (note that it’s grayed out), but you can add encryption such as WEP or WPA. Actually, if you need to alter the settings of an existing wireless network, it’s usually best to just ‘Remove’ the old one and start from scratch with a new one. This tends to be cleaner, as you’ll see when we delve further into wireless security. 97
  98. 98. Configuring Wireless on a non-Vista / non-XP PC If you don’t have Vista or XP, you’ll need to rely on the wireless control program provided by your wireless adapter. It’s probably in your Start > Programs list, and you may have a little icon in the lower right, near the clock. I’ll use Windows 2000 as an example. Go to Start > Programs, and find your wireless setup program. Alternatively, I can right-click on the wireless icon near the clock, and Open the setup program. Your interface may vary, but the rules are the same as far as the SSID, channel and encryption settings. I can choose to make a New wireless connection, or Edit my existing one. 98
  99. 99. In a walk-through fashion, I can set up my wireless PC. I have a wireless router, so this will be Infrastructure mode. I would use Ad-hoc if there were no wireless router. You usually don’t have to hard- code the channel on a PC, and Auto will be fine here. Mixed mode refers to both B and G capability. It lets me choose my TCP/IP settings, which I can also access through Network Connections. Note that WPA is not supported, only WEP. If I had WPA enabled on my wireless network, I would need to “dumb it down” to WEP so this PC can join the wireless network. 99
  100. 100. The last panel is a “confirm settings” panel that will activate your settings. A status icon should appear near the clock. I can only access wireless settings via the program, but I still can change TCP/IP information on the wireless card in the traditional manner. Note that Windows 2000 calls my wireless connection “Local Area Connection 2”, but does identify it as a Wireless-G PCI Adapter. Using a wireless access point The best way to describe a wireless access point would be to compare it to a wireless router. It’s like a wireless router, except it does not have any logic to connect to a broadband modem. You would connect a wireless access point to a router just like you would a PC. You can also directly connect a wireless access point to a PC – but that begs the question of “Why not just install a wireless card in the PC?” Access points need to follow the same rules as wireless routers. They also have browser-based setup pages, accessed by IP address, just like routers. You’ll notice that instead of IP’s ending in 1, access points tend to end in higher numbers, such as 245 or 254. This keeps them well above the range of most computers on a routered network, which will tend to end in 100 to 105. This assures that the access point won’t conflict with your existing network. 100
  101. 101. When buying an access point, you need to be aware that the default IP address of the access point may not agree with your current network. In other words, if the access point is 192.168.1.245 and your computers begin with 192.168.0, there’s going to be trouble. If you don’t understand why, review the TCP/IP section on page 23. To rectify a situation like this, when a network device is not on the same subnet as your network, see the print server exercise on page 193. Access points are commonly used to provide wireless access in an established wired network. You can also use a wireless access point to extend the range of your existing wireless network (“repeater” mode), but this may require that the hardware be from the same manufacturer. With a wireless router downstairs and an access point upstairs, you can effectively cover your entire house – even if you have to create two separate wireless networks. What about those plug in “range extender” things? Well, it didn’t work for me. There are no setup pages, so how could I input wireless information such as my SSID - not to mention encryption? Anything without configuration options leaves you without a troubleshooting avenue. Let’s take a look at how I added a wireless access point to my existing network. First, I made sure it was powered on and connected to one of the ports in the back of my router, just like a PC would be. Much like a router, I got to the access point’s setup pages by typing in its IP address into my browser. Here’s the main configuration page. Note that the Gateway is set to 192.168.1.1, which is the IP of my router. Under the Wireless section, “Mixed” mode refers to the ability of this access point to do B and G at the same time. The other choices are just B or just G. The other wireless settings (and then actually connecting to the access point wirelessly) are covered in detail in the wireless router section on page 89, since they are identical. Wireless Security (encryption) is identical to a wireless router, and is covered on page 103. 101
  102. 102. Here on the “AP Mode” panel, there are a few options as to how I want the unit to behave. The Access Point option simply provides a wireless network. The others connect to other wireless devices to form a chain in some form or another. Note that all the other options require the MAC address of the other device; you can review MAC addresses on page 30. Careful reading of the note at the bottom reveals that my wireless router (which is a slightly older Linksys) will not be able to play along nicely with the access point. Even if you can’t get the fancy options to work, you can still establish a different wireless network for each area of your house – they all point to the same gateway. For example, I have a wireless network called “kcg” in the basement provided by my main router, and one called “access” on the first floor provided by the access point. KCG runs on channel 11 and “access” runs on channel 1, to minimize interference. 102
  103. 103. Securing your wireless network If you’re reading this, I’ll assume you’ve already established a wireless network with the default settings. The steps below will secure your network, but it will also make it more difficult for you to create a wireless network. Be sure you’ve already established a wireless network before attempting to secure it! The following steps are the same for wireless routers or wireless access points. Do this first: Change and hide the SSID Offers a minimum of protection, but it will be enough to keep most neighbors out. It involves changing and hiding the SSID at the router, then specifying the new SSID at each of your computers. You can also specify that only certain MAC addresses have wireless access (namely the MAC addresses of your own wireless computers). Then: Enable WEP Encryption In addition to the SSID method, you can enable WEP. It’s old and overcome by readily available tools on the web, but it’s better than not having it at all. When WEP is enabled on one device, it must be enabled on all devices. 103
  104. 104. Or: Enable WPA Encryption If your hardware supports it, you can opt for the stronger WPA encryption. You can’t enable WEP and WPA at the same time – it’s one or the other. When WPA is enabled on one device, it must be enabled on all devices. Or: Enable WPA2 Encryption Included with Windows Vista and released as a downloadable enhancement to XP SP2, this is stronger than WPA. This begins the first of a series of ever-increasing wireless lockdown procedures that will make your wireless network more secure, but also have a distinct side effect: By securing your wireless network, you’ll make it more difficult for your wireless computers to connect. How to change and hide your SSID Access the router’s setup pages, and change the SSID. Also, set the SSID broadcast to “Disabled”. 104
  105. 105. These steps alone will make it difficult for your neighbors to use your wireless network. Once I click “Save Settings”, my wireless computers will be bumped off until I configure the new settings at each wireless PC. Now it’s time to go to each wireless PC and tell each one what the new SSID is. Since we’ve changed the SSID, we’ve essentially created a new wireless network. The old one no longer exists, and since the SSID broadcast is disabled, your computers will not be able to automatically detect the new wireless network. 105
  106. 106. Configuring the new SSID on Windows Vista Right-click on the network icon in the lower right, and select Network and Sharing Center. Click Manage wireless networks on the left. Feel free to highlight your old network and click Remove. I’ll leave my old one for now, and Add the new SSID. 106
  107. 107. Click “Manually create a network profile” Here, type in your Network name (the SSID), and set the security to “No authentication (Open). Check off the two bottom boxes, then click Next. 107
  108. 108. Click “Connect to”. It should automatically connect. Click the upper right-hand corner X. Note that in my lab, I’m constantly messing with the wireless settings to make this guide, so my wireless connections will be a bit messy. 108
  109. 109. Configuring the new SSID on Windows XP In Control Panel, Network Connections, right-click on Wireless Network Connection and select Properties. It’s a good idea to keep things clean. On the Wireless Networks tab, highlight your old Preferred Network and click Remove. 109
  110. 110. With a blank slate, now click Add. On the Association tab, type in the name of the new SSID. Select Open for Network Authentication, and be sure that Data Encryption is set to Disabled. If this was a peer to peer wireless network without a router, check off “This is a computer-to-computer network” at the bottom. Click OK. 110
  111. 111. Click OK again to complete the configuration. You should be able to connect after a few seconds. How to allow only your wireless computers access (via MAC address) At any time during wireless security setup, you can enable MAC filtering at the router. This entails Your wireless router should have an area where you can restrict wireless access based on MAC address. Be aware that you’ll need to view expanded IP address information in order to obtain your wireless MAC addresses, such as using the ipconfig /all command, covered in the “What’s My IP?” section on page 32. Computers with multiple network cards will have multiple MAC addresses, so make sure you’re looking at the wireless card MAC address. I’ve supplied my two 111
  112. 112. wireless computer’s MAC addresses (the last 4 characters are erased here, since these are my MAC’s). Enabling WEP at your router or access point WEP is an older standard, but you’ll find it’s easier to implement than WPA. At the router, under Wireless Security, it’s disabled by default. By clicking Enable under Wireless Security, we’re able to select WEP from the drop-down. “RADIUS” has to do with remote access, so we won’t be using it. 112
  113. 113. For the Encryption Level, we can use 64 bit or 128 bit. 128 bit is more secure and easier to implement. Leave Passphrase blank, and supply a 26 character WEP key, using 0-9 and A- F. Remember the exact sequence, since you’ll need to input that key at each of your wireless computers. Once Save Settings is clicked, all wireless computers will be bumped off until you physically type in the WEP key at each wireless PC. Note: an easy key to remember is 1234567890abcdef1234567890. 113
  114. 114. Enabling WEP at your wireless computers WEP on Windows Vista Right-click on the network icon in the lower right, and select Network and Sharing Center, then click Manage Wireless Networks on the left. Double-click on your wireless network. 114
  115. 115. On the Security tab, select No authentication for the Security type. Select WEP for the Encryption type, and type in the same WEP key you did at the router. Yes, the key I’ve typed here is different than the one I’ve type at the router in this guide – but these are only examples. Be sure to type in the exact same WEP key at your router and wireless computers. Click OK and you should connect in a few moments. Enabling WEP on Windows XP At your XP PC, right-click the wireless icon near the clock and select Open Network Connections. 115
  116. 116. Right-click on your Wireless Network Connection, and then select Properties. You can either alter the existing wireless network to include the WEP key, or Remove it and start from scratch by clicking Add. Here, we’ll just alter the current network by highlighting it and clicking Properties. 116
  117. 117. On the Association tab, select Open for Network Authentication and WEP for Data Encryption. Type in the WEP key, character for character, twice. Click OK out of all dialog boxes and you should be able to connect. If not, Remove the wireless network and start from scratch to add WEP, as on page 112. If you still can’t get WEP to work, disable WEP at the router and restore your “known working” condition. 117
  118. 118. Enabling WPA on your wireless router or access point On the Wireless > Wireless Security page of the router, Enable wirless security and select WPA – Pre-Shared Key (WPA-PSK). For the algorithm, TKIP and AES are your choices. TKIP is available on more devices. I’ve typed in an 8 character key – it can be any combination of letters and digits. Once I click Save Settings, all wireless computers will be bumped off until I configure WPA at each of them. 118
  119. 119. Enabling WPA on Windows Vista To get to the panel shown here, right-click the network icon in the lower right and select Sharing and Security Center, then click on Manage Wireless Networks on the left. Finally, double-click your wireless network. On your wireless network properties Security tab, select WPA-Personal, TKIP as the encryption, and type in the same key that you did at the router. Click OK, and you should soon be connecting to the WPA-enabled network. 119
  120. 120. Enabling WPA on XP Go to Start > Control Panel >Network Connections and right-click Properties on your Wireless Network Connection. On the Wireless Networks tab under Preffered Networks, highlight your current network and click Properties. Select WPA-PSK for Network Authentication, and TKIP for encryption. Type the WPA key in both the Network key and Confirm network key boxes. Click OK out of all dialog boxes, and you should soon connect automatically. 120

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