This post is very long. Please read only if you are patient enough to help a
newbie. These questions mostly pertain to XP networking, and this seems the
best forum for networking. Referrals and suggestions are very welcome. Even
if you can answer just one or two of my many questions here, that will help
a lot. Just quote the text you are replying to so I know which question you
are answering. I get confused rather easily.
Before beginning the networking questions, in Belarc Advisor under
"Installed Microsoft Hotfixes," SP2 (KB811113) does not have a green
checkmark next to it (lacks the data to allow verification). Is that normal?
All updates after SP2 show up as SP3, and all of them do have green
checkmarks and are verified. Here is a synopsis.
BELARC ADVISOR 6.1f
Unmarked hotfixes lack the data to allow verification.
(C) marks a hotfix that verifies correctly.
(X) marks a hotfix that fails verification (failing hotfixes need to be
Installed Microsoft Hotfixes
S867460 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
M886903 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
Q832483 on 3/6/2005 (details...)
Internet Explorer 6
(C) KB867282-IE6SP1-20050127.163319 on 3/6/2005 (details...)
Outlook Express 6
(C) KB887797-OE6SP1-20041112.131144 on 3/6/2005 (details...)
Windows Media Player
(C) WM817787 (details...)
(C) Q828026 (details...)
Windows Media Player (continued)
(C) Q828026 on 3/6/2005 (details...)
KB811113[SP] on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB867282 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB873333 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB873339 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB885250 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB885835 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB885836 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB886185 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB887472 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB887742 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB887797 on 3/12/2005 (details...)
(C) KB888113 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB888240 on 3/13/2005 (details...)
(C) KB888302 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB890047 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB890175 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
(C) KB891781 on 3/8/2005 (details...)
In another area of Belarc, Local System accounts show "HelpAssistant"
"SUPPORT_388945a0" as disabled accounts. Is that because I disabled Remote
Assistance and Remote Desktop in Control Panel - System - Remote? Could it
also be because I disabled Messenger from starting up with Windows?
Is this a good place to get help with what I
need, or is there an online
forum for newbies you might recommend, because this could take a while. I
basically need instructions that an idiot could understand.
I will also need help determining which of the
numerous Services that start
up in WinXP I need and which I do not. The MSCONFIG in XP sucks. I can't
maximize it, and there is hardly any information in either MSCONFIG or the
Task Manager under Services. Program names and paths are not mentioned, just
names of processes. How do they expect me to find anything? I need a good
third-party Startup Manager/Task Manager in one program that is not very
expensive. WinTasks Pro is too expensive. One option is the Ultimate
Troubleshooter, which is $25. I haven't it tried yet, but I am open to other
options. Their site has a list of Processes (Services). SysInfo has a list
of Startups. Spybot helps me to some extent with Startups but not Processes
Some of those XP background processes might be what is
causing my LAN to cut
out from time to time. When that happens I lose both Internet access and
network access. One of the network icons disappears from my taskbar. Other
times it doesn't, and when I click on it to "repair" it it freezes. When I
try to bring up "Network Connections" it freezes. A reboot brings everything
back to normal. Firewall, antivirus and antispyware are all up-to-date, full
system malware scans are run regularly, including online scans. I really
don't think malware is the problem. I think it's background processes in XP,
but I just don't know enough about them to mess with any of them. XP has
only been installed for a few days on both PCs. Both of us are new to it.
Please assistant with Network Setup and
with Binding/Unbinding TCP/IP from
File and Printer Sharing for better security. I am the "network
administrator" of this home network but new to XP and not a techie or
certified expert. Many web sites and Microsoft articles about networking are
geared toward more advanced users, and I do not understand all that is in
them. Need step-by-step advice. Forgive me if too much information is below.
Better to have too much than not enough.
At present, only two XP Pro SP2 computers are connected, this one and
other desktop. I do not know how to connect the Win95a and Win98se laptops
or if it is even possible since they use 16-bit PCMCIA to connect to the
ethernet hub. The XP network setup wizard does not support Win95. The old
laptops connected fine to the network when this computer and the other
desktop both used Windows Me.
With XP, it is all user-level rather than share-level access, and I don't
know how to configure Win9x for user-level access. Let's do that later after
we get things configured properly for the two XP machines. Also, I need to
password protect the shared folders, the access to each computer, and each
network printer. Can't see how to do that with XP. With 9x, it was easy to
password-protect a shared printer or a shared drive.
SBC Yahoo! DSL Technical Support and 2Wire Technical Support
state that the
2Wire Home Portal 1000HW is both a DSL Modem and a Router. I do not know if
it is a gateway, but I suspect it is for three reasons: (1) Windows uses the
word "gateway" in the name for the connection, (2) Windows preselects the
"residential gateway" option in the network setup wizard, and (3) the 2wire
people say that I cannot connect a separate "residential gateway" to the
10BaseT Ethernet Network
One Workgroup, No Domain
4 Computers (only 3 can connect at a time)
This computer is the Network Administrator
This computer is XP Pro SP2 (3 local users)
DSL modem/router uses DNS/DHCP/NAT (functions as a gateway?)
DSL modem/router has a hardware firewall
DSL modem/router is wired to this PC by USB 2.0 (10Mbps)
DSL modem/router is wired to a 10BaseT 4-port ethernet hub (10Mbps)
Other computers connect to this PC and the Internet by ethernet hub
This computer has no cable directly to the hub (or there would be conflicts)
PCs CONNECTED: (1) XP Pro SP2 PC (same 3 local users)
PCs DISCONNECTED: (1) Win95a PC and (1) Win98se PC
FILE & PRINTER SHARING: Enabled
INTERNET cONNECTION SHARING: Disabled (incompatible with DHCP modem/router)
WINDOWS FIREWALL: Off (because ZoneAlarm firewall is On)
THIRD-PARTY FIREWALL: On (Zone Alarm Pro 5.5)
IP ADDRESSES: Obtained automatically by DHCP
BINDINGS: Default settings (insecure)
** Is my current network peer-to-peer or client/server? **
TRANSPORT PROTOCOL LAYER
Internet Protocol (TCP/IP)..............Properties available
Aegis Protocol (IEEE 802.1x) v188.8.131.52...Properties grayed out
NWLink IPX/SPX/NetBIOS Compatible Transport Protocol...Properties available
NWLink NetBIOS..........................Properties grayed out
All protocols were automatically installed and
configured by Windows except
for IPX/SPX, which I added after reading that that protocol (or NetBEUI) is
the key to separating File and Printer Sharing from TCP/IP. I just don't
know how to do it. On the options for each network connection in XP, I see
nothing about bindings. In Win9x, the bindings options are easier to find.
HARDWARE ADAPTER LAYER
1394 Net Adapter
2Wire Gateway USB
MAC Bridge Miniport (Network Bridge)
Realtek RTL8139/810x Family Fast Ethernet NIC (Disabled)
HSP56 Micromodem (COM3) (56k Dial-up Fax Modem)
- Realtek is disabled, nothing is plugged into my ethernet port. A
network printer will go there later to replace my existing Z42 parallel port
printer. We don't have a cartridge for the Z65n. That's the only reason
we're not using it.
- The Network Bridge connects 1394 and Realtek, so that the new Z65n
printer, once installed, will be available to the existing network.
- The 1394 Net Adapter is used with my network
and/or the Internet, but I am
not exactly how or what it does. Windows automatically configured it. The
1394 sounds like firewire, but I don't have any firewire devices installed.
Firewire is enabled on the mainboard, but I'm not using it. Or am I using it
through this adapter? Is this just an internal connection needed for Windows
to set up the Internet and the network? Windows needs at least two adapters
for that, according to the XP Help and Support.
** Which adapter is the one that connects to the Internet, 1394 or
** Which adapter should be used for File & Printer Sharing? **
NETWORK SERVICES LAYER
Client for Microsoft Networks.....Properties available
File and Printer Sharing for Microsoft Networks...Properties grayed out
QoS Packet Scheduler..............Properties grayed out
Network Bridge................Connected, 400Mbps
LAN (Realtek Ethernet)........Disabled, Bridged (nothing plugged in there
LAN (2Wire Gateway USB) DSL...Connected, 10Mbps
Dial-up Connection............Disabled (backup connection method)
1394 Connection...............Connected, 400Mbps, Bridged
- The Realtek Ethernet NIC is disabled at my choice
because nothing is
plugged into that port. Since I'm already connected to the network via USB
(or 1394), I cannot also be connected to the hub or there would be
- I plan to connect an ethernet cable to my open ethernet port at some
point. The cable will go from my ethernet port directly to the ethernet port
of a Lexmark Z65n printer (when we get a print cartridge for it) without
going through the ethernet hub.
- When I re-enable that Realtek ethernet port for the Z65n printer, that
printer will automatically become part of the existing network through the
Network Bridge, theoretically.
- The dial-up connection is only used when the LAN is not available.
When dialing in with the dial-up connection, TCP/IP completes the
connection successfully, but a connection to the remote computer cannot be
established with IPX/SPX (error 733). A dialog box asks me if I want to
"Accept" the connection as is and if I want to check the box "Do not
request the failed protocols next time". I click "Accept", but I'm afraid to
check the other box about failed protocols because I don't know how
difficult it will be to reverse that decision if things change.
- I wonder why the 2Wire Gateway USB connection is
only 10Mbps (rather than
400Mbps) for USB 2.0, unless it's because the router connects to an ethernet
hub which can only support 10Mbps.
NETWORK SETUP WIZARD
Option #1: "This computer connects directly to the Internet. The other
computers on the network connect through this computer."
(This is the option I thought was correct, but Windows did not preselect
Option #2: "This computer connects to the Internet through a residential
gateway or through another computer on the network"
(This option came up by default in the network setup wizard when Windows
searched for a shared connection. Maybe this one is correct. This is the
option I am presently using on this computer.)
Option #3: "Other"
(This option is not used, but it was set up this way originally. At that
time, there was no USB cable between the router and my computer. My computer
was connected directly to the ethernet hub. Then we heard that the USB
direct connection method would be more secure, so we switched the wiring to
the current configuration as recommended by the 2Wire people and my ISP.)
1. Which option for the network setup wizard (see 1, 2 or 3 above) is
correct for this computer?
2. Would option 2 be correct for all the other computers on the network?
That was used for the other XP machine.
3. Since the modem/router connects to my machine with USB, there is no power
to that USB connection when my computer is turned off, right?
4. So the other computers can't connect when my machine is turned off,
5. Does my machine need to be turned on all the time in order for the others
to connect to the Internet?
6. Is my current network peer-to-peer or client/server?
7. Which adapter is the one that connects to the Internet, 1394 or 2Wire?
8. Which adapter should be used for File & Printer Sharing, 1394 or 2Wire?
9. Network Bindings need to be reconfigured to isolate File & Printer
Sharing from the Internet without losing my ability to connect either to the
Internet or to the other computers (and the other computers to me). I need
step-by-step instructions, not too technical.
10. Password protection needs to be added to each network printer and each
shared drive/folder. I need step-by-step instructions, not too technical.
11. The network access and Internet connection through are sometimes lost
for no apparent reason. Any idea why? Sometimes the 2Wire Gateway USB icon
disappears from the taskbar when this happens. When it doesn't disappear, I
can't right-click on it because it freezes. Sometimes Start -- Network
Connections will not open. I suspect it may be some background process
running in XP. The only way to get the connection back is to reboot the PC.
12. Remote Desktop and Remote assistance are both disabled. Do they need to
After the two XP machines are configured, I will need assistance setting up
the two Win9x laptops. Looking forward to hearing from the experts.