WRT54GS - A few networking clarifications needed

Discussion in 'Networking Issues' started by Holmes, Oct 4, 2005.

  1. Holmes

    Holmes Guest


    I could use a little help in understanding some hick-ups with my home network better. I have the following set-up:
    Desktop with WUSB54GS network adapter (IP
    Laptop1 with WPC54GS network adapter (IP
    Wirelessly connected to access point/router WRT54GS
    MAC filtering is enabled.
    This network is working completely fine (access to internet, file sharing, etc.)

    I then wanted to connect Laptop2 to my Desktop via a direct connection (i.e. Ethernet adapters and crossover cable). I was unable to share folders between Desktop and Laptop2 until I turned off Norton Internet Security 2004. Since I want to have my firewall on, I went into Norton to specify the Laptop2 IP address as trusted, however, I note that Laptop2 has an automatic private IP address (APIPA) ( I have the following questions:

    a) Shouldn't Laptop2 be able to obtain an IP address from the Desktop or at least from the router "through" the desktop?
    b) Is my understanding correct that this APIPA address could change from time to time? In which case, I suspect it would be best to specify the range of the APIPA ( - as trusted to ensure that Laptop2 is never blocked by the firewall? Is a security risk to be trusting this range of APIPA instead of a specific IP address?

    I then connected Laptop2 directly to one of the ethernet ports on my router. Everything works fine. Laptop2 shows IP address I'm able to share folders from Laptop2 on all machines without configuring Norton firewall to trust the IP address strangely enough. Is this because IP address is trusted in my firewall and is a subnet of that IP address? Why is it that even though Laptop2 is not in the Wireless Client MAC list, I'm able to get on the local network and share files?

    Sorry for the long message. I'm really eager to truly understand this better. I appreciate any help and clarification.


  2. howardp6

    howardp6 Network Guru Member

    Normally when you network two computers to together you use a crossover cable like you have and setup static IP Addresses for both NICs in the same range for example 192.168.X.X for the first NIC and 192.168..Y for the other or in the 10.x.x.x range. These addresses should not conflict with the address the DHCP server is issuing. The 169.254.X.X addresses you are getting are addresses Windows assigns, when the NIC cannot get a valid address. You have to set print and file sharing on and setup shares on the drives you want to share. The laptop will not get an address from the desktop, unless you are running a version of Windows 2000 or 2003 server and have a DHCP server setup on the desktop, or you a have ICS (i.e. Internet Connection Sharing) on the NIC that is on the desktop connected to the router. The router does not see the other NIC that the the laptop is connected to and does not issue any IP addresses to the laptop,
  3. screwballl

    screwballl Network Guru Member

    Generall MAC filtering only restricts access for thos filters MAC addresses. Others will have free reign to and from the internet until another MAC filter is made for the laptop2.
    When connected to the router, Norton sees it as a local network connection and not an outside or direct (hostile) connection.
    If you have folders/files shared on the network, unless you set them to use Read-Only/Full Access passwords, any computer on your network will be able to read and/or change the files. This is easily fixed, right click the shared folder/file(s), hit Sharing and Security..., then you can check/uncheck "Allow users to change my files" depending on what you want done. One nice thing about Win98SE was the ability to set read-only or full access passwords for shared folders/files.

    As for the firewall comment, the linksys router should have a NAT firewall built in and as Norton programs are all serious memory hogs, I would uninstall them and use AVG. I had to do just that to the wife's computer because of network problems and computer problems with Norton AV and Internet Security settings.
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