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Windows 7: Wifi hotspot and wired router?


30 Jul 2011   #1
Riggers

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 
Wifi hotspot and wired router?

I'm pretty much a novice when it comes to networking so I'd really appreciate some help here. I run a pool tour out of hotel venues and we're building a system to allow a laptop at each pool table (running win XP) to feed scores back to the laptop on the tournament desk (running Win7).

I've had no problems connecting these together and sharing folders using a Workgroup and an old Linksys wireless router. The Win7 laptop is connected via ethernet cable and the XP laptops are all connected to the linksys via wireless. At this point nothing has an internet connection as the linksys router has no connection to an ISP and this is fine - so far so good.

The problem I have is that the Win7 laptop on the tournament desk (not the XP laptops at the pool tables) also needs an internet connection. So my idea for this is to connect to the hotels wireless hotspot, whilst keeping the connection to the linksys via the ethernet cable.

I need to test all this before getting to the hotel so to try and mimic the set up I've simply tried to connect to my own ISP's wireless router (I use SKY Broadband in the UK). I can connect to my wireless router but cannot get any internet pages (maybe the linksys is telling my laptop I have no internet connection?).

I read about bridging the connections so tried this. I then got an internet connection but lost the connection to the other laptops via the linksys. I rebooted and it switched the other way round - no internet but access to the linksys.

I'm not sure if what I'm doing is a valid thing to be able to do or even if my home wireless network will behave in the same way as the hotels wireless hotspot. As I'm a novice when it comes to networking I'd really appreciate it if someone could offer some advice.

The attachedd PDF has a diagram showing what I'm trying to do.




Attached Files
File Type: pdf MyNetbook.pdf (37.1 KB, 89 views)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Jul 2011   #2
fafhrd

Win 7 Ult + Starter, XP Pro +Home, 2kAS, Linux Mint 8, SuperOS
 
 

If you open a command prompt and type ipconfig /all you will get information on all the active ethernet adapters on the windows 7 laptop - wireless and wired. Only the IPv4 addresses need to be considered.

In all probability, your ISP's router will give you an IP address (as a DHCP server) in the range 192.168.0.2 - 192.168.0.255 - usually reserving 192.168.0.1 for the router itself.

The linksys may also be giving out addresses by DHCP in the same range.

You need to set up the linksys to use addresses in a different range, for example 192.168.35.2 -192.168.35.255 with the linksys itself as 192.168.35.1 (the '35' can be anything between 1 and 255).

This way it will be unlikely that there will be any conflict between IP addresses that the linksys gives your XP and Win7 laptops network and the internet connection IP address. (but check with the hotel first what their IP range/ranges are, just in case!)

You will need to set up another work network (not homegroup - it would be best disabled since XP cannot use this type of network) for the wired connection on the Windows 7 laptop from the network and sharing centre - set up a new connection or network.

You will need to make all laptops members of the same workgroup - you could call this "Tournament" or some other relevant name other than the default "MSHOME" on XP or "WORKGROUP" on Windows 7.

Make a shared folder e.g. shared as "Pool" on each of the XP machines, and make sure that network file sharing is enabled on the XP machines.

You should not share anything on your windows 7 machine since it will be connected to a public network and the internet.

The linksys probably has a MAC address filter, which can be set to deny access to any PC except the laptops themselves. The MAC address also appears in the output of ipconfig /all ( it works the same in XP as in Windows 7) when run on each laptop.

Make sure that each of the \\XP-PC-name\Pool shares is visible by the windows 7 explorer and you should be ready to go.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Jul 2011   #3
Riggers

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Thanks for helping Fafhrd. I've followed your advice - much of it I was doing already - and unfortunately it's still the same. I have access to the XP Laptops but no internet (I just try and launch google) even though network and sharing centre reports that my wireless network is connected and has internet. If I disable the ethernet adapter to the linksys I immediately get internet access and if I enable it I lose internet. Here's what I've got now:

The sky router was set up as follows:
IP - 192.168.0.1
Subnet - 255.255.255.0
DHCP server - yes
IP range - 192.168.0.2 to 200 (I changed it to end at 34)

The linksys was set up as follows:
IP - 192.168.1.1 (I changed it to 192.168.35.1)
Subnet - 255.255.255.0
DHCP server - yes
IP range - 192.168.1.64 to 191 (changed to 192.168.35.64 - 191)

Homegroup was already disabled and I had set up a workgroup, which is not the default name. I've got a shared folder on each of the XP laptops and I can see it from Win7.

I've attached a copy of my ipconfig /all results and screen pics of network and sharing centre and my network adapters.

Can you think of anything else I can try?


Attached Thumbnails
-networkconnections.jpg   -networkandsharing.jpg  
Attached Files
File Type: txt IPConfig.txt (3.8 KB, 59 views)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Aug 2011   #4
fafhrd

Win 7 Ult + Starter, XP Pro +Home, 2kAS, Linux Mint 8, SuperOS
 
 

Everything appears correct, I think, with a couple of minor caveats, and the work network seems to be working properly, which is the bit I would worry about, mixing XP and 7, which can be difficult, so, congratulations so far...

The couple of minor caveats are that you can disable NetBIOS over TCP/IP for your wireless adapter - you do not need network sharing features over the internet connection - and that the wireless internet connection should be set to a PUBLIC network - both of these for security reasons. This probably does not apply at home, where you are behind your SKY router, but may be advisable on hotel hotspots.

Your local area connection shows a second default gateway address of 0.0.0.0 - a loopback address -is this a remnant from your bridging attempt? Best to remove it.


Which leaves the question of why the local wired network is overriding the wireless internet. There are a few things to try.

IPv6:

In all likelihood, the only features using IPv6 are the network discovery and Link-Layer Topology Discovery features of Windows 7 - they are probably not used for either internet (checkout Test your IPv6. and IPv6 test - IPv6/4 connectivity and speed test) and certainly not for your wired network, so step-by-step try disabling them, first from the wired network, then from your wireless. You could run ipconfig /all at each step to see what is going on. (Generally with Windows 7 you do not have to restart the network each time since the changes register immediately, I don't think XP was like that.)

That is, on the local area connections properties, uncheck all except Client for Microsoft Networks, File and Printer Sharing for Microsoft Networks (if present), and Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4). On the wireless connection, just leave Client for Microsoft Networks, and Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4). This gives you "barebones" TCP/IPv4 networking, which may be rather faster in operation. (you could also prune the TCP/IP properties on the XP laptops)

There are also the "virtual ethernet adapters" - probably best to leave them alone - although they have "Chocolate Teapot" status in my opinion.

Quote:
Wireless LAN adapter Wireless Network Connection 2:

Media State . . . . . . . . . . . : Media disconnected
Connection-specific DNS Suffix . :
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : Microsoft Virtual WiFi Miniport Adapter
Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-24-D6-5C-B3-1F
DHCP Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : Yes
Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes

Tunnel adapter isatap.{71ADD60F-35F8-4186-B63D-D5FF04DC827E}:

Media State . . . . . . . . . . . : Media disconnected
Connection-specific DNS Suffix . :
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : Microsoft ISATAP Adapter
Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-00-00-00-00-00-00-E0
DHCP Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : No
Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes

Tunnel adapter Teredo Tunneling Pseudo-Interface:

Media State . . . . . . . . . . . : Media disconnected
Connection-specific DNS Suffix . :
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : Teredo Tunneling Pseudo-Interface
Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-00-00-00-00-00-00-E0
DHCP Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : No
Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes

Tunnel adapter isatap.domain_not_set.invalid:

Media State . . . . . . . . . . . : Media disconnected
Connection-specific DNS Suffix . : domain_not_set.invalid
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : Microsoft ISATAP Adapter #2
These are present as hidden devices in device manager and would only be used for VPNs or remote connections.

Encryption:

Temporarily, try to disable the encryption on the SKY broadband router - so the internet is unsecured, like a public hotspot, and see if there is any difference. I guess that you probably use WPA2-Personal at home. Windows 7 handles this differently from other OSs, I think, to the extent that some older routers can only use WEP to connect, whereas i-pad, i-phones etc and XP and linux have no problem with WPA2 on these devices.

The reason is that the encryption presents a delay to your system so that the wired network always connects first. It may be necessary to disable then re-enable your wired local connection after the internet connection has been made.

One other point about encryption -Windows 7 uses 128-bit encryption for file sharing connections as standard:

Control Panel\All Control Panel Items\Network and Sharing Center\Advanced sharing settings - File sharing connections

You could reduce the encryption from the recommended 128-bit to 40- or 56-bit, although this is probably not an issue.

netsh:

You may like to run the command to show the full wireless information from the command prompt, when the internet is connected and when there is no internet connection:

netsh wlan show all


Perhaps someone else has some further suggestions to try?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Aug 2011   #5
Riggers

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Thanks - I'll take a look at that later today. However, looking at this thread I suspect the problem lies in the fact windows cannot cope with having 2 gateways and will default to whichever DHCP server responds first.

It looks like I need to configure each router to use the same IP range and prevent conflicts by ensuring they use a different pool of IPs. I would also switch off DHCP on the linksys and manually set the IP and gateway on all of the XP laptops to point at the linksys. Similarly I'd set the Win 7 laptop to use the Sky router as the gateway so it has internet access. Then with all laptops using the same IP range and subnet mask they should all see each other right?

If that works at home then great but it begs the question as to how I could do it when I get to the hotel and make all this work with their wifi hotspot.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Aug 2011   #6
Riggers

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Ok further update is the following advice I have from a networking expert at work which is similar to above but simpler:

Quote:

After a quick look at your problem, it appears at first glance to be default gateway related.

Basically, the Windows 7 is straddling two networks (no need to bridge the two together). If you need Internet access, set the Windows 7 laptops default gateway to the hotel ISP address (192.168.0.1). As the other XP machines (along with the Windows 7's Linksys connection) don't need Internet access, they won't need a default gateway as they are all on the same network subnet.

You may need to set the IP addresses manually, as it looks like DHCP is giving out addresses automatically and confusing the issue. You should only have one default gateway, which points to the hotel ISP address.

I'll give this a try tonight and update with how I get on.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Aug 2011   #7
fafhrd

Win 7 Ult + Starter, XP Pro +Home, 2kAS, Linux Mint 8, SuperOS
 
 

Sounds like good advice from the expert colleague.

OK Windows 7 is dumber than I thought possible. I don't really understand why it can't handle 2 separate networks, on different interfaces if there are different IP address ranges supplied by different DHCP servers. Perhaps it is another "security" feature.

One way I know it can have 2 networks is when Internet Connection Sharing is enabled:

Here is Severedsolo's tutorial Internet Connection Sharing - Enable

You could utilize ICS - basically by using your windows 7 as a NAT router, and just setting the linksys as a dumb switch.

This way your wireless internet connection would be routed to the wired interface, which would itself act as the default gateway and DHCP server for the network.

On your linksys, you would need to disable the DHCP server and probably the firewall and NAT features.

It's ages since I've done this and then it was only XP, so I'm a bit rusty here, but considering what you are doing I don't think it should hit performance on any of the machines.

There might be a Virtual PC solution:

Another way could be to run XP Mode on the windows 7 laptop with exclusive pass through on the wired internet interface to the virtual machine. I described this for someone else here - the bottom right hand window of the second image I posted shows the virtual PC networking:

XPMode-App in seamless mode doesn't find path to mapped drive

Thus the linksys would talk only to XP machines real and virtual, and your Windows 7 would effectively be the sandbox, with the internet on the outside, and the XP lan in the virtual machine. It should still be possible to pass data between the VM and the host.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Aug 2011   #8
Riggers

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Well I tried getting rid of the gateway info for the linksys and manually setting the IP and, whilst I then get an internet connection to the sky router i cannot get a connection to the linksys
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Aug 2011   #9
Riggers

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Solved!

After a lot of perseverance and help from my work colleague I finally got it working. I switched off DHCP on my router then manually assigned IPs to every machine on the network whilst leaving default gateway blank. Windows 7 in it's wisdom then picks it up as an unidentified public network and won't let you change the profile from public to Work. This is a known problem and will reveal quite a lot of google results.

With things in this state I had internet from my Win7 pc via the wireless adapter but I couldn't see the shares on the XP laptops via the linksys (unidentified) router. Interestingly I could see shares the other way from XP to WIN7. Anyway the solution was to run a powershell script to change this unidentified network from public to work using the script here: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/dimeby8/arch...windows-7.aspx

Now all is well.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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