Networking help

I am planning on trying to network my two home computers. Basically I don't know what the hell I'm doing but I'm willing to give it a whirl. Is the basic idea the dsl line into a router and then lines from the router to the two pcs? Does it matter that the two machines are running different operating systems? One is 98se and the other is xp home. What's the difference between a router and a switch? Is there any information I may need from my isp that I should gather ahead of time? I guess I'm just looking for tips to avoid as many beginner's mistakes as possible.

Thanks much for your time!

Kel
2 answers Last reply
More about networking help
  1. You should be fine with the 2 OS. Switch and router work on different level. Switch sends frame to the correct PC in the same LAN. Router sends packets between different network.
  2. Quote:
    Is the basic idea the dsl line into a router and then lines from the router to the two pcs?

    Yes.

    Quote:
    Is there any information I may need from my isp that I should gather ahead of time?

    No.

    I do have one tip for you:
    If you cannot get onto the internet, after getting the network set up, you may have to access the router's online configuration utility (i.e. 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.0.1) and use MAC cloning. Your DSL provider has the MAC address of one of your PCs and once you connect the router, it will see a different MAC address - the router's. You can "change" the router's MAC address to the one your ISP knows.

    Just thought of another tip. Don't mention to your ISP that you are planning to have both computers access the internet. They may try to charge you extra because, I believe, they feel that this is a service that they are providing to you. I'm also guessing that they might be under the impression that you want them (the ISP) to set up networking at your home. The fact is, you don't need them to do it for you.
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