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Answer from our Guest Expert John Klinger of Call A Techie - page 4

Peer-to Peer in a Nutshell

So in short, with peer-to-peer networking: 1) make sure the physical connection is present and configured; 2) the protocol is present and configured; 3) modem/ Internet sharing is turned on; 4) file/print sharing is enabled; and 5) security is set up.

As new technology comes into play, the rules tend to change a bit. Many small or home offices would like to share a DSL or Cable modem connection between two or three machines. [DSL stands for Digital Subscriber Line. In short, it's a new method of using a phone line to connect to the Internet. A normal dial up account, uses the same 'channel' as your telephone and you're limited pretty much to modem speed (56k). DSL uses the phone line differently and uses a device other than a modem ,which allows connection up to ten times the speed of a modem. ]

I'd like to say these new connections don't present any additional headaches, but unfortunately, a set up like this can make a network engineer cry. I've noticed some new products on the market, which allow a home office to use its existing phone lines to form a small home network. This sounds easy and convenient, but again, the software provided with these machines attempt to "take over" the network configurations and can create havoc on your network.

The bottom line to all of this is to let you know that while all this can be done; anything above simply connecting two PCs together via a LAN cable can easily become a nightmare and will probably require a visit or phone call to your favorite support provider.

Final Thoughts

Even though this was a heavy topic to tackle, Steve, I'm glad you asked this question because I know many others will be attempting to set up home offices soon, and I wanted to point out some of the issues to take into consideration with peer-to-peer networks.

Good luck!

John Klinger -- Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer

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