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Thread: Mixing a wireless router and an ethernet switch. How?

  1. #1
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    Mixing a wireless router and an ethernet switch. How?

    Hi all: This is my first post on this forum. Please redirect me if I am in the wrong place. Thanks for your patience, in advance.

    I have a peer to peer network with an XP Home desktop, XP Pro Desktop, Win 98se desktop (I used an XP created network disk to connect this computer), an XP Pro notebook, a Laserjet 4050N network printer, an HP 6980 DT network injet printer, and a Netgear SC101 network attached storage device. All of the computers except the Win 98se computer have wireless adapters installed. The network is setup to a Netgear 16 port switch. There is a Linksys WRT54GC wireless router that is attached by a 12" CAT5 cable, linking the uplink ports in both the wireless router and the switch. The Netgear SC101 networked attached storage device is connected to the wireless router via network cable. Everything else is attached to the switch. The router sets the IP for the SC101 using DCHP, as this is the only way that this device can connect, according to the instructions. There is an HP 2710 inkjet all in one wireless printer that is wirelessly connected to the wireless router. This is my network. By the way, there is not an internet connection in my office.

    A bit of history is important. I formerly had the wireless router Linksys WRT 54GC attached to a four port netgear switch via the short CAT5 cable. When I added the fourth desktop computer (XP Pro) I started having multiple IP conflicts and the computers could not find or access each other on the network. I set up static IPs on the computers to avoid this problem (192.1.100, 101, 102,103, 104, etc). The computers can now find each other in My Network Places.

    The problem is how do I get the router and the switch to play together nicely? I would like to be able to use the Network attached storage device for all all of the computers; as it stands now, the only way I can access the network attached storage device is to get on the wireless network. The computers that are not logged on to the wireless network (SSID=OFFICE on both the wireless and ethernet networks) cannot see either the network attached storage device or the HP 2710 all in one wireless printer. How do I get the wireless and wired ethernet to work as one? I hope that I am making my question clear. I appreciate any feedback as I am a relative novice in the area of networking. Thanks so much, Jerry.

  2. #2
    Moderator YeOldeStonecat's Avatar
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    For static IPs....assign devices an IP address that is outside of the DHCP pool. Meaning..for example, Linksys routers will hand out IP addresses, by default, starting at 192.168.1.100, next is 192.168.1.101, .102, .103..etc etc.

    The router itself takes 192.168.1.1 by default.

    That leaves you 192.168.1.2 ==> 192.168.1.99 and...depending upon how many devices you have on your network taking DHCP.....from where it leaves off assigning IP....up to 192.168.1.254.

    With most wireless routers....wireless and wired clients are not separated. So anything plugged in with ethernet...will be able to communicated with wireless clients...and visa versa. Assuming software firewalls are allowing local traffic (file and print sharing allowed for this IP range)

    Same holds when you uplink another switch to the router.
    MORNING WOOD Lumber Company
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  3. #3
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    Response to YeOldeStonecat

    Thank you for your suggestion about using a different range of IPs. I will try that this coming weekend when no one is in the office.

    Is there a chance that there is a compatibility issue between the Linksys WRT54GC and the Netgear 16 port switch? Do I need a wireless Netgear Router, if the different range of IPs doesnt solve the issue? Also, do I need a crossover cable, rather than the CAT5 cable I am using to link the router and the switch?

    Thank you again for your capable help. Jerry

  4. #4
    Moderator YeOldeStonecat's Avatar
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    There should not be any conflicts between brands..they all strive to follow standards, which generally makes them compatible.

    Whether to use a crossover cable or not...depends on your switch. Older styles usually had 1x port which was labeled for uplink...in which you'd plug in a standard cable..and plug it into a standard port on the other device. However most newer switches are all "auto direction"...they'll auto configure whether to be uplink or straight. Bottom line...if you get link lights..you're good..if you link light..look for that uplink port or button.
    MORNING WOOD Lumber Company
    Guinness for Strength!!!

  5. #5
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    Response2 to YeOldeStonecat

    Hi: Thank you again for the valuable information. I went in to the office (before other staff came in) today and changed the IPs on the four computers. I immediately got IP conflicts and one of the printers would not print. I used the IPs 192.168.1, then .2, then .3, then .4, etc. So, I had to change back to the old IPs 192.168.1.101, then 102, etc. The conflicts were resolved and people are happy again. But, I havent succeeded in solving the mystery.

    My switch is a recently purchased Netgear FS 116. I plugged the conventional CAT5 cable in the uplink port on the Linksys WRT54GC into the uplink port of the Netgear FS116. According to your information, is this a possible cause of my problems, or at least part of them? I will be able to try to reconfigure the cable on Friday. Thanks again for your time and info. I hope that I am not being a pest. I am working to learn this networking process in an inefficient way on my own and I appreciate your tutorage. Jerry
    Last edited by jb22; 03-06-07 at 10:33 PM.

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