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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Splitting internet access

My roommate just brought his computer and we are having a slight problem. Our university's wireless connection is really bad and often times going down and disconnecting randomly. So we are planning on trying to split my hardline ethernet cable so that we both get wired internet connection because it hardly ever drops and it is obviously much faster than the wireless connection in our university.

So my question is what hardware would we need, if any, so that we can "split" my internet since both ethernet outlets are being taken up. Would we need a switch? If so, how would we set it up? I've done some research and I think what we need is a switch, but I'm not too sure and I would rather not buy something that we might not need, use, or solve our problem.

Thanks in advance for the advice.
 

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You can purchase a switch or a router.

You will find setup instructions with the switch. It is very simple. Your main line coming in will go in the uplink port and then you will need 2 more Cat 5 cables to connect the two PCs (one should be included when you buy the switch).

You will be looking at about 50 dollars or so to make this happen. Check out Staples or your local bookstore, perhaps they will sell you one at a discount?
 

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You may only need a switch, depending on what's behind the hard wired connection. I'd ask the university IT folks. If you can get multiple IP addresses assigned directly, a switch will do. If not, you need that router previously mentioned.
 

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I hesitate to make a blanket recommendation for the router, since open incoming ports may be an issue. I don't know what the situation is. If they could get two addresses on one single connection, the switch would be the more transparent solution.
 

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But if we are simply looking at port 80.. it's open. I don't see what would keep the router from obtaining and IP address and then using the natural NAT to create an additional network. Unless I am missing something. Please, fill me in.
 

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Suppose you want to run a WEB server on each machine? Or, for that matter, any similar service like an FTP server?

With a router, only one machine can have access to the port for the service, however if you have two addresses, each machine is independent.

There is a downside to not using a router, you lose the protection of the NAT layer firewall of the router, so this is a double-edged sword. :smile:
 

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Hmm.. I guess I never really considered port forwarding as a weakness to a router, but I see what you are saying now.

Cheers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the help guys. Since my roommate had an extra router laying around at home, we decided to use the router instead. So far it works, and we aren't having any trouble with it right now. Thanks for the help.
 
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