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I need some help figuring out something that I'm sure is completely basic for any of your network gurus. I have 2 computers and a laptop. I am looking at getting a cable internet connection and want to network the 3 computers, sharing this connection. The laptop and 1 of the desktops have ethernet already. The third I'll need to buy an ethernet card for.

So far I believe I need to buy a cable modem, a router, and 1 ethernet card. Does this sound right? Is it better to rent the modem from the cable company? Sounds cheaper in the long run to buy one. I want to have a wired network for the 2 computers and possibly wireless for the laptop. However I would like to get the laptop working on a wired network at first so I would at least always have that option.

Any tips for a network newbie would be appreciated.
 

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You probably don't want your "network" directly connected to the cable modem anyway. Get a router to use as a firewall. If you get one wireless, be sure and spend the time to read the manual, and at least set up a basic security configuration, SSID Broadcast disabled, WEP Key set, and Mac Address Filtering enabled. I am using a Linksys WRT54G, and it has 4 10/100mbit ports on the back for networking.
Fig
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So basically I would have a cable modem, connected to a router (which would have a firewall) and then the 2 computers and laptop connected to the router through ethernet. Right?
 

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EatnAsphalt said:
So far I believe I need to buy a cable modem, a router, and 1 ethernet card. Does this sound right? Is it better to rent the modem from the cable company? Sounds cheaper in the long run to buy one. I want to have a wired network for the 2 computers and possibly wireless for the laptop. However I would like to get the laptop working on a wired network at first so I would at least always have that option.

Any tips for a network newbie would be appreciated.
Sounds like you have a good handle on it. I got my modem for free from MSN when I signed up, there are deals like that out there. Behind that is a wireless router with built-in 10/100 switch. Works great.

I have 4 computers on it. 3 wireless and one hard-wired (in case something nukes the wireless network).

Simplest thing is to setup DHCP and let the computers do the work for you. But if you go wireless make sure you enable your 128-bit WEP *AND* configure the MAC address filters. It's not fool-proof but if you monitor your network you'll see if anyone else is using you bandwidth.

Plus if you have some space around your house you are safer yet from roving sniffers (I have about a 300' radius around my house and the closes public road is almost 500' feet away) .
 

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EatnAsphalt said:
Sounds easy enough. I guess first step would be to find out what modems are compatible with the local cable company, Comcast.

Thanks for the tips!

i am no genius but, if i can do it, you can too. good luck. :thumb:
 

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EatnAsphalt said:
Sounds easy enough. I guess first step would be to find out what modems are compatible with the local cable company, Comcast.
Thanks for the tips!
I have on right in front of me:

Made by 3COM. Looks like something organic, the fin of a shark.

Model number 3CR29223
HomeConnect Cable Modem

There was also another modem they used to distribute with the service but it toally SUCKS. Thing is, you should get the modem for free from ComCrap. I did.
 

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EatNA, have you considered putting the cable modem and router in the basement or closet and running some Cat 5 from your desktop PC's to that location? That's my setup and that is why I asked. The cable modem and router and all Cat 5 is out of sight.
 

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Fig said:
You probably don't want your "network" directly connected to the cable modem anyway. Get a router to use as a firewall. If you get one wireless, be sure and spend the time to read the manual, and at least set up a basic security configuration, SSID Broadcast disabled, WEP Key set, and Mac Address Filtering enabled. I am using a Linksys WRT54G, and it has 4 10/100mbit ports on the back for networking.
Fig

I also have a Linksys WRT45G and my laptop is CONSTANTLY dropping the connection from 15 feet away. Drives me nuts. I have walked painstakingly through my config, and everything is consistent. I guess I just live in a noisy area... Anyone else have this problem?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Holeshot said:
I have on right in front of me:

Made by 3COM. Looks like something organic, the fin of a shark.

Model number 3CR29223
HomeConnect Cable Modem

There was also another modem they used to distribute with the service but it toally SUCKS. Thing is, you should get the modem for free from ComCrap. I did.
Comcast lists a 3CR29220 as one that is approved for their service. I wonder if that is the the other one you mention that sucks. :)

How is Comcast's service? Have you had any problems with them? I dropped my cable from them as they were too expensive, so I'll pay a little more each month for the cable internet since I don't have cable TV too.

On a side note. Looks like all the wireless routers use 2.4 ghz, which would have a conflict with my cordless phones. Probably stick with wired for now.

Freq: I am considering doing just that. The wiring is no problem for me (electrician). I do this stuff for customers but I'm not usually around when they hook up the modems and routers.
 

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spillover said:
I also have a Linksys WRT45G and my laptop is CONSTANTLY dropping the connection from 15 feet away. Drives me nuts. I have walked painstakingly through my config, and everything is consistent. I guess I just live in a noisy area... Anyone else have this problem?
No. I was having a problem with the entire router losing connection, and it seemed to just be occurring with the previous firmware. Now it could have been heat related, or just my dsl, I never figured out the culprit. It would be fine for a couple of days, then lose connection, and it would take a hard reboot of the router and dsl modem to re-establish.

I think I had the problem you are describing, but haven't lately. I have my laptop, a bridge for my xbox, my son's xbox wireless modem, and another laptop all connecting just fine.

I would check your firmware and make sure you have the latest. You might also want to do the same with your wireless card. Make sure it and the drivers are up to date. If not, maybe you got a defective router.
Fig
 

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EatnAsphalt said:
Freq: I am considering doing just that. The wiring is no problem for me (electrician). I do this stuff for customers but I'm not usually around when they hook up the modems and routers.
Cool, that was my background before moving to Tele-Com. So in addition to the Cat 5 for Lan you'll be running RG6Quad for Cable and another Cat 5 or 3 for Phone, correct?
It's nice when you can do all that stuff for yourself, material availability is never a problem :eyebrows: and finding time is the only hard part. Again, good luck. :thumb:
 
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