hey there,
I have a simple problem... but it seems overwhelming for me.

I have a router, a desktop that runs XP, a laptop that runs Ubuntu 10.10.

I want to make a home network with these devices I have.

I have already managed to connect two computers, both running xp, through a cross-over cable. that's all the experience I have. any help is greatly appreciated.

after I build my network, my intention is to make use of Synergy software (it makes possible using two computers at the same time, with a single mouse and keybord).

thank you.

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It's likely your router already has what you need to get these devices connected. The router is probably also your DHCP server, if you can connect both computers to the router and get to the internet with both, you're basically good to go with connectivity. Do you have anything else that's going on the network, like a printer?

In terms of file sharing, I follow the school of thought to have a central point of file storage that both computers can access as opposed to constantly connecting to various points between the two. You will want to designate some space on either your windows or linux box for this. I know software exists to get linux to read/write NTFS (assuming you're using NTFS), however I don't know what's available for Windows to read linux file systems. This might influence your decision there. You can basically make a Windows share and have ubuntu mount that. Someone more versed in linux (I've limited use of it, not even running it anywhere right now) should be able to help you there, I'll dig something up either way.

I've never used Synergy but it appears to be something different that just VNC software. It actually sounds pretty interesting, I'm going to check that out sometime.

commented: Nice one +5

Thank you for your reply Mike,
I managed to do something about sharing files between my two computers. all I did is installed samba software on my linux machine, and it worked. overall, installing samba is almost the same as changing the workgroup name of a windows machine. just a different way of doing the same. (for anyone that's interested, though, be aware that different versions of ubuntu have diferent ways for installing samba, so when you research, make sure you seek asolution in accordance with the ubuntu/linux version you have).

however, what's weird is that I can't seem to be able to access one machine from the other using remote desktop software although I can ping one from the other. any ideas along these lines?

What remote management software are you using? Is any firewall blocking the remote connection.

well, I'm using the software that comes by default on both systems, Ubuntu and Windows XP. in my Ubuntu machine, I have changed some parameters to allow remote access on it, but windows fails to connect. as far as windows machine goes, I have to check kater as I don't have my machine near. thanks... I wonder though why can't I access (router) from my laptop when connected through a wire. I can only access it through wireless connection.

to connect the two computer directly there is a different lan cable which is not used to connect with the router as you said it is a cross over cable .
i would like to ensure weather that is a cable specified for that purpose

I don't want to connect them directly. I want to build my network using a router. I am effectively sharing folders between my machines, but I can't seem to share screens, unless I access my XP from Ubuntu using LogMeIn, but this is not what I want. I am still struggling to understand why won't my laptop communicate with the router through a cable (straight-through). perhaps after upgrading to Ubuntu 10.10, the nic driver was not installed. who knows...

Spelling error zylog, should be whether. Update all your drivers make sure both laptops are compatible with one another.

Was gone for a few days. First question would (and I'm sure you've done it lots) is to check the IP of your router. If you can get to from XP wired you should definitely be able to do it from ubuntu wired. Also check the wired connection on ubuntu overall. Again, if you can get to the 'net wired on ubuntu, we've eliminated the NIC/drivers.
I'm speculating your router uses a web interface to configure it. Check what protocol it's using (is it regular, HTTP or HTTPS). If it's the latter, be sure you can access HTTPS on ubuntu. Just to clarify, are you able to get to the router wirelessly on ubuntu? What about XP?

I get to my router's web interface with Ubuntu through wireless, and I get access to the interface from my xp through wire (my xp machine is a desktop, so I only use wired connection for it). I can also ping one machine from the other using the following IPs:
I have installed Samba server on my Ubuntu, and can now effectively share files between my machines. However, the remote desktop software from neither machine accesses the other. weird. and the other problem is that I can't seem to connect to router's web interface through wire with my Ubuntu (I turn off wireless, and it fails to work). however, when I plug the straight through cable in my Ubuntu machine, a corresponding light on my router goes on, so I know the router detects it, but it won't allow it any access. I hope this is all clear.

one point worth noting, though, is that I have my default ttl changed on both of machines so that I can enjoy wireless, otherwise I wouldn't be able to because the ISP limits my plan from having wireless. I am more prone to believe that that may not be the cause behind my issue.

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