I am new to networking but want to connect three computers by a wired connection I have all the network adapters, cat 5 cables and a switch. I am struggling to set it up. I can't access the internet or share a printer on the clients through the host. I can't even access the files on the host pc through the client pcs or vice versa. I think it is something to do with IP addresses but am unsure. Thanks in advance.
You've not got the wrong hardware for the job but the main disadvantage with your setup is the internet gateway pc (the one with the modem attached) has to be connected to the internet so the other computers have internet access. An ADSLrouter is the way to go every time!! This frees your network from relying on 1 computer for internet access. The router is the gateway and the modem is built in. Having said that I ran my home network for a year with a switch with no problems whatsoever cause I never switched off my main computer so the network always had internet access.
I use the Linksys BEFSR41 four port wired router with switch for connecting my PC's to the internet for independent use. You haven't stated whether you are using ADSL line or cable. I use NTL cable BB with a separate cable modem. If ADSL you are better using a combined router with modem. Anyway - the Linksys website has much info under the "education" tab click here
First you need an Ethernet Modem, that connects to the WAN Port on the Switch.( if you dont have one none of the Pc's can accsess the internet this way )
Go to each Pc in Turn and set the Workgroup Name on each Pc, they must be the same.
Then Set an IP address start with 192.168.0.1 set Subnet Mask to 255.255.255.0 on the next Pc increase the IP address by one 192.168.0.2 same Subnet Mask as before. Repeat this on each Pc.
Set all harddrives you want to share to share same with the printers.
Go to a Pc where you want to use the printer from, not the one where it is already installed and install a new printer via add a network printer, it will ask where it is ( all Pc's must have individual names ) then type in the location of the printer using backslash not forward slash ie. \\lounge\epson740 OK.
If you do not have an ethernet Modem the a combined router adsl modem with ports will do the same job, install in the manner described.
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