Peer to peer LAN on WinNT
Small isolated PC setups consisting of a few PC's may be run as
peer to peer LAN. There is no central server, neither a domain
controller. There are resources to be shared such as drives,
directories and printers. This page is based on the experience with
a couple WinNT workstations.
Chaning something usually requires booting.
Each PC requires a Network card. Nowadays 10/100 MBit Ethernet cards
are sufficiently cheap to be the preferred solution. They have a PCI
interface and are busmasters. For an older PC, when there were problems
with the PCI disk controllers, I've choosen an Adaptec 10/100MBit card,
as the disk controller was also from Adaptec (2940). I never had a problem
with either of them.
Newer PC's may already have an Ethernet card built in.
When the card is inserted and the PC is able to boot up, then there seems
to be no hardware problem.
WinNT may or may not automatically recognize the new card. Anyway,
a driver needs to be installed. Whether the card is known to WinNT,
or not, the driver on the CD coming together with the network card
may be newer. When there are problems try the other if possible.
A rightclick on the network icon let us select the network properties.
- Identification - choose a computername with some foresight, the name
will be harder to change, than is obvious. When no one will have to know
the speed, P_333 is the wrong choice. Also FRED is a bad choice, as
he may get a new one in half a year, and this one will be standing
workgroup - the workgroup is the same for all PC's, even for
consultants or other externals, so the default WORKGROUP seems ok
- Services - don't forget to install Remote Access Services for
- Protocols - required is TCP/IP, add it if necessary.
- IP adress - select the adapter if there is more than one.
Specify an IP adress such as 192.168.0.x where x is counting up from 1
So LAB_1 is 192.168.0.1, LAB_2 is 192.168.0.2 and so on.
This group is defined as private, a router will not pass them.
Subnet mask - set 255.255.255.0
Default gateway - leave empty unless connected to a router
- DNS - leave blank
- WINS - leave blank
- Routing - leave blank
- Adapters - your adapter has to appear there, otherwise add it
- Bindings - should be right, do nothing
Getting it to run
the network seems to run on the lowest level now
- Selfcheck : in a CMD window (start, run, CMD) type :
ping 192.168.0.x // x= the own number
If there is a reply, the internal TCP/IP stack is working.
- Connect the cable : a cross-over cable between 2 PC's or
straight cables between PC's and hub/switch
- from one PC ping the other :
ping 192.168.0.x // x= the other number
If there is a reply, the connection seems to work.
If there is no reply, there is a problem with the cable :
-does the LED blink ?
-is there signal on the cable (if you happen to have a scope)?
drives, directories and printers may be shared. In order to make these
resources accessible from other PC's, they have to be prepared.
Rightclick on the appropriate icon in the WinNT explorer or in the list
of printers. Select sharing.
Drives have a default share C$ and so on, which are for the OS and cannot be
removed. Add a new share, give it a name, and think about the permissions.
Only a shared resource can be accessed, provided the access rights are
Accessing a shared resource
WinNT explorer should now list 'Network Neighborhood' below the local system
on the left side.
If not, rightclick the network icon, find computer or
leftclick on the network icon to explore the network.
A rightclick also allows to map a network drive.
the following newsgroups are discussing problems :
feedback about this page is welcome
last updated: 26.nov.99
Copyright (99,2000) Ing.Büro R.Tschaggelar