How to connect 2 computers via ethernet

Level of difficulty: Easy

Domestic computer users often need to connect their standalone workstations/computers to a wider network for a multitude of reasons. Of them, LAN gaming, internet, local server hosting and others are pretty common fixtures. While trying to configure these connection protocols, most would come across the word ‘Ethernet’. Ethernet is a regularized communications protocol inherently embedded in software and hardware components that facilitate the establishment of Local Area Networks (LAN). To establish this LAN, one requires at least two participant computers within the system gamut, which are to be connected/networked.

Materials Needed:
- Computer with Ethernet Card
Step 1
The basic LAN system consists of these two (or more) computers, a NIC (network interface card) in each computer and Ethernet cables to physically connect the computers. The system also requires networking switch installations, or a networking hub to direct and regulate network traffic, and standard networking software. During installation of a LAN network, each NIC that is installed in a computer is allotted an individualized address. Ethernet cables link each NIC to the central network switch set-up, also called the hub. The switch and the hub is meant to receive, interpret and direct data packets across LAN, through the Ethernet set-up. Thus, Ethernet conduits establish a communications system that allows sharing of data and digital resources over an established LAN network. Ethernet can connect two computers, printers, fax machines, scanners and even game controllers.
Step 2
Modern technology has made installing Ethernet connections extremely easy and user-friendly even for the novice computer user. Presently, Crossover cables are used to establish Ethernet connections between two PCs, simply owing to ease and increased economy and accuracy of use. For beginners, Crossover cables, in nature, function as null modems that are appropriated for Ethernet ports (instead of serial ports). It connects the output pins of singular Ethernet ports to input pins of other Ethernet ports, and vice versa.
Step 3
To connect computers via the Ethernet crossover cable, one must first check for the availability and status of network ports in PCs (N/A for PCs with Windows Vista). Once the Local Area Connection validates the ‘Enabled’ status, the Ethernet crossover cable should be connected between the available Ethernet ports of the computers. The PCs should then be rebooted for the connection to initialize. For PCs running Windows XP, the My Network Places menu should be expanded .Click on the Computer availability status. Check for the name of opposite PC being displayed. For Vista, open Network. If you don't see the new PC, click Network, and then Sharing Center and enable 'discovery'. The computers are linked perfectly, via Ethernet.