Connecting to 2 networks - wired/wireless

Microsoft Windows 7 home premium
June 23, 2010 at 07:58:51
Specs: Windows 7
I have a question related to connecting a computer to more than one network.

The computers in our office all connect wirelessly to a Cisco router for Internet use. We have 3 new PCs upstairs - all running Windows 7 Home Premium. These PCs are for financial software use and we would like to host the software program on one of the upstairs PCs and connect the other 2 upstairs PCs to that host computer.

However, all 3 computers still need to connect wirelessly to the router downstairs for internet use.

Basically, what I thought would work would be to set up a "hardwired" network upstairs for just the 3 PCs using a standard LAN router that would not be connected to the Internet at all.

My question is, I've never tried this before, and I'm wondering if it's possible for the 3 upstairs PCs to connect to both networks. They have built in wireless cards, of course that connect to the router downstairs for Internet. If I plug each PC into the upstairs router using Ethernet cable, will the 3 upstairs PCs be able to connect to that network for sharing the financial software AND to the wireless router downstairs for Internet?

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June 23, 2010 at 08:23:03
financial software should have a tightly controlled access to the internet. I would not have it on the internet by default.

Your present plan has no connectivity between the routers.

If you wire router to router the pcs attached to the cisco will not see the pcs attached to the other router if the second router is connected by its wan port.

You would be better off just wiring a switch from the cisco to connect the other three pcs.

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June 23, 2010 at 08:31:12
Thanks for the info. I don't really need the other PCs on the Cisco router to see or have access to the 3PCs wired to the LAN. However, the 3PCs connected to the LAN router need to "see" each other.

I'm not familiar with switches. Can you explain how that would work?

Basically, what I ideally "want" is for the 3PCs upstairs to get their Internet connection via the downstairs wireless router, but be able to communicate only with each other and share the financial software via a hardwired "upstairs" router. Right now, the financial software is shared via the downstairs wireless router, but connectivity is an issue due to our building setup. That's why we want to hardwire the the PCs that share the financial software.

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June 23, 2010 at 08:47:18
given the above criteria just put a router in wired from the cisco lan port to the new routers wan port. Assuming you have dhcp server running on the cisco just set the new routers wan port to dhcp client. Make sure the new routers lan subnet is different than the cisco lan and you are done.

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June 23, 2010 at 08:53:34
That makes sense. Thanks. Not sure what the Cisco is running or even what kind of router it is since I didn't set it up, but I can find out.

One final question - what do you think would happen if I tried it the way I originally thought? Will Windows recognize and allow a PC to be connected to two networks simultaneously - one via wireless and one via Ethernet, or do the wireless card and Ethernet port share the same NIC?

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June 23, 2010 at 09:21:38
that will work as long as you do not have a gateway entry on one of the interfaces and you have disable netbios over tcp on one of the interfaces.

Dual homed pcs are more trouble then they are worth imho

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June 23, 2010 at 09:25:41
Thanks for your help - much appreciated.

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