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A question about small LAN and Firewalls

Last response: in Networking
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June 5, 2011 12:02:28 PM

Hi guys, let me start off by saying i know very little about networking. Recently i started looking into ways i could connect my 2 computers together, and started reading about firewalls. I know the basic function of a firewall is to block unwanted access, but what is the best thing i can do to connect then AND have firewall protection?

I read that i can use a hardware firewall (router) instead of a software one, but what excactly is a router? Is it like a modem?

My best option is to use a router and connect both my pcs to it? Note that i dont need to control websites and stuff like schools do, i just want some protection since i dont use an anti virus (for various reasons).

Thanks guys!
June 5, 2011 12:57:32 PM

first of all a Firewall will not protect you computer from malware and virus.

The most familiar type of routers are home and small office routers that simply pass data, such as web pages and email, between the home computers and the owner's cable or DSL modem, which connects to the Internet (ISP).

the router receives an IP from your ISP via the modem connected to the WAN side of the router, then it uses routing table to keep track to which device connected to its LAN to direct the data. The router will assign private IPs to the devices connected to its LAN side.

therefore your best option to connect two or more devices to the internet is by using a router
June 5, 2011 1:07:34 PM

Emerald said:
first of all a Firewall will not protect you computer from malware and virus.

The most familiar type of routers are home and small office routers that simply pass data, such as web pages and email, between the home computers and the owner's cable or DSL modem, which connects to the Internet (ISP).

the router receives an IP from your ISP via the modem connected to the WAN side of the router, then it uses routing table to keep track to which device connected to its LAN to direct the data. The router will assign private IPs to the devices connected to its LAN side.

therefore your best option to connect two or more devices to the internet is by using a router


I dont want to connect them to the internet, i want to connect them to each other (like be able to copy files between one pc and another, etc).
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June 5, 2011 1:18:37 PM

the router will also provide you this option since it comes with a build in switch.

there are two other options to satisfy your needs; however, they require some manual TCP/IP address configuration

the simplest version of connecting two computers is by using a Cross-over Network Cable.

the other is by connecting the devices to a network switch
June 6, 2011 5:14:30 PM

Switches are pretty cheap, so all i need is a switch and 2 RJ45 cables?
June 8, 2011 4:54:51 AM

You need a switch not a router. Those SOHO gateway devices people keep calling "routers" are not routers, their FW + switch + NAT router.

If all you need to do is form a LAN, then you can get a cheap 8 port 1Gpbs switch, netgear is particular good but so is D-link. Disable the windows FW and setup your LAN accordingly. If you ever want to connect to the internet then purchase a SOHO gateway device and plug a cable from the SOHO device to the last port on the switch, everything works then.
June 8, 2011 7:29:30 PM

palladin9479 said:
You need a switch not a router. Those SOHO gateway devices people keep calling "routers" are not routers, their FW + switch + NAT router.

If all you need to do is form a LAN, then you can get a cheap 8 port 1Gpbs switch, netgear is particular good but so is D-link. Disable the windows FW and setup your LAN accordingly. If you ever want to connect to the internet then purchase a SOHO gateway device and plug a cable from the SOHO device to the last port on the switch, everything works then.


Is it possible if i create a LAN using a switch, but then use an internet connection on only one pc that isnt shared? Is this done by just plugging the modem into the pc instead of the router (which i would use instead of a switch where i to share my internet).?
June 9, 2011 1:39:57 AM

thegatekeeper said:
Is it possible if i create a LAN using a switch, but then use an internet connection on only one pc that isnt shared? Is this done by just plugging the modem into the pc instead of the router (which i would use instead of a switch where i to share my internet).?


Giving me a headache haha. Split up your requirements into simple statements, makes it easier to deal with.

The answer to your question is yes depending on the kind of modem you have. I'm assuming your using DSL / Cable broadband, in which case you can connect the device via USB or ethernet to the PC you want to have the internet available to. You will then need a second network interface card inside that PC so that it may communicate with your LAN.
June 11, 2011 10:01:31 AM

palladin9479 said:
Giving me a headache haha. Split up your requirements into simple statements, makes it easier to deal with.

The answer to your question is yes depending on the kind of modem you have. I'm assuming your using DSL / Cable broadband, in which case you can connect the device via USB or ethernet to the PC you want to have the internet available to. You will then need a second network interface card inside that PC so that it may communicate with your LAN.


Ok got it, thanks dude!
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