Networking cable problem

  Legolas 18:36 04 Feb 03

I am in the process of networking two computers together today I bought the two network cards and set up the network with ICS.

The cable I am using was a 2 metre length of cable I already had it has the correct RJ45 connectors but on the host machine I have the internet connection symbol showing in my taskbar with a red cross through it and it says that the LAN connection is disconnected.

Ater a bit of searching in past posts I think this cable may be straight through cable rather than crossover which I think you need if connecting two computers together if you are not using a hub, come to think of it the cable I am using may be the cable I used when I had broadband to connect my modem to my NIC so how do I tell if this cable is crossover or straight through and could this be the source of my problem?

  recap 19:16 04 Feb 03

click here Legolas, and it may give you an idea as to what to look for.

  billyliv 19:18 04 Feb 03

Hi, You have answered your own posting. You will need to buy a 'Crossover cable'. Cheers, Bill

  Legolas 22:59 04 Feb 03


Good evening Legolas, in the absence of a cable tester, the simplest way to check a cable is by looking. However, depending on how well the cable was made, this can sometimes be a problem.

Start off by peeling back the protective boots if possible, then hold the connector with the retaining clip downward and the cable towards you. You should be able to see 8 coloured wires (Green, Green/White, Blue, Blue/White, Orange, Orange/White, Brown, Brown/White). If the cable is a straight through, if you hold both connectors side by side ( but in the same directional manner) the wires will match in sequence on both connectors. If it is a crossover, and has been wired to industry standard, the sequence should be as follows, left to right looking down on the connector held as above. First connector Green/White, Green, Orange/White, Blue, Blue/White, Orange, Brown/White, Brown. The opposite end should be, Orange/White, Orange, Green/White, Blue, Blue/White, Green, Brown/White, Brown.

As already stated, when connecting two computers directly together, you will need a crossover cable.

Hope this info helps. Regards, Mr. Mouse.

  Legolas 23:57 04 Feb 03

Thanks Mr Mouse I had a look earlier and I,m not certain but I think it is straight through cable, if it is would this cause the red cross through the internet icon on the toolbar and the error message "nework cable is unplugged" to appear?

Assuming you are using Win2000 or XP, then yes it will. As far as the os is concerned, if the cable is a straight through, then it will not recieve any return signal, and assume the connection is unplugged.

Mr. M.

  Legolas 00:17 05 Feb 03

Thanks again Mr Mouse I am running Win XP so all the indications point to me having straight through rather than crossover would you recommend I get a hub and use the straight through or get a length of crossover I am going to network 2 machines sharing a printer, Internet and files.

  VoG™ 00:25 05 Feb 03

Shouldn't you be back at college, downloading essays from the internet. Shame on you!

Joke -:)

Hello again Legolas, I guess the answer to the question depends on several factors. If you have a broadband connection, and would like independent internet access, then go for a router (either cable or adsl), if using a modem on one machine and you may expand your network in the future then get a hub or switch, or if on a tight budget and you do not expect to expand your network, then just spend a couple of quid on a crossover cable.

Don't forget, if you just get a cable and expand later, you can always add the extra hardware in the future. As far as simple networking is concerned though, 2 pc's with a crossover is as good as 2 pc's with a hub or switch.

Mr. M.

  Legolas 00:57 05 Feb 03

LOL VOG I am back at college slaving over a hot computer I got an A and a B last year so all that downloading you speak of has paid dividends I am doing HNC Computer Support and Maintainence this term which includes Network Technology hence the sudden interest in networking my two computers.

Mr Mouse thanks again for your responses and advice I as a poor student will go for the cheaper crossover route, so its off to Glasgow in the morning for some cable, watch this space.

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