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An interesting question came up on the Web4Lib daily-digest today. I replied directly to the author (I think, never understand how listservs work) but I thought I'd share this anyhow as it's not a hugely sought-after solution. Note: there are probably other, better ways to do this. Comments and other solutions are welcome. I am under the assumption you are using Windows XP (if anyone wishes to make alterations for Vista or another OS, you're more than welcome in the comments - if Linux and not using the shell, please specify which distro).

The question:
Has anyone tried to network an internet connection that involves a Verizon PC card in a laptop. Ideally I would like to be able to have 2 or 3 laptops sharing that one connection, but I have no idea where to start!

Hopkins County - Madisonville Public Library

My response:
You would need 2 other components:
- 1 crossover cable (it's a CAT5 cable with slightly different wiring)
- 1 "splitter", so a hub, switch, or router.

If you use a wireless router, you'll only need the one cable. If you use a hub, switch, or regular router you'll need a standard CAT5 cable for the other computers to connect to.

  1. Connect the crossover cable to the LAN port on the back of the laptop.
  2. Connect the other end of the crossover cable either in to a single computer, or the "splitter"'s "INTERNET" port.
  3. In Control Panel, go to "Network Connections".
  4. CTRL+CLICK on the two network connections you want to be sharing (the Verizon, and the Local Area Connection).
  5. Right click on one of the two, choose "Bridge Connections". (I can't verify what to do to finish the bridge as I only have one connection on my PC at the moment. A quick internet search could probably tell you.)
  6. If the "splitter" you were using was powered on, you may have to wait a moment for it to get an IP address, otherwise you can always power cycle it to renew its IP. The same goes for the PCs if you don't know how to force it to get a new IP.

I *think* that should do it. If I missed something from memory of when I did internet sharing, you can just do an internet search for examples or tutorials on "network bridging winxp". Switch out "winxp" for whatever OS you might be using if otherwise.
I hope this can help someone looking for a solution - or at the very least, get them on the right track. I am assuming here that the cell provider is not using the LAN port (either a USB or PCMCIA port).

Update: I believe I've enforced some stricter SPAM filtering on my blog (i.e.: any at all). At the very least, I guess I'm now more popular? ;-) Sorry for any inconvenience. Comments are enabled once again.

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