LAN between Win98 and Linux

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Any comments why you reject my answer.
First of all of this is possible at least for Windows 95. (So it should be the almost the same for Windows 98) but there would be much work to do.
1.) For exchanging files directly you have to install SAMBA.
2.) If you want to use your Linux modem from yur Windows PC you have to install a LAN where you Linux PC is a gateway to the other world. And you have to edit several scripts to handle the autodialing and autohangup of your modem. These scripts depends on your hardware and on your configuration.

If you start with Linux fell free to ask questions. It is a fine OS but a little bit hard to handle. My email is

gorgorAuthor Commented:
I didn't really reject your answer, I appreciate your advice. I was hoping for a little less vague answer to my question.  I realize I need to set up a LAN between my computers.  My question was HOW to do that.  My cable modem doesn't need to be dialed, it is always connected.  How would I setup Win98 (Win95) to read files from my Linux machine?  Do I simply "map a network drive"?  What do I do with Samba?  Do I simply run the "setup" file?  Will it do the rest of the work for me?  Sorry, if i sound a little dumb, but all of my experience is with Windows and I am very very new to the Linux world.  Any help with the Linux aspect would be extrememely apprectiated.  Thank you.
This should not be too hard. Linux will have most, if not all, of the networking components installed by default. The things you will have to set up are, at a minimum:

Ethernet Cards -- Windows is easy since almost all cards will come with drivers for win95/98. For linux compatibility you should get a copy of the ethernet-HOWTO (search the net for linux HOWTOs). To install support in linux you will either need to install a module for your card at boot-up by inserting a line in your /etc/rc.local script, or recompile your kernel and add the support there. I always add the support in the kernel since I figure it is unlikely that I will switch network cards very often. There should be plenty of instructions on recompiling your kernel in your book - I have done this probably 100+ times and not screwed anything up (keep a copy of your old kernel, though)

Tcp/ip on both the win98 and linux machines -- Linux usually has all the tcp/ip protocols installed by default. All networking setup files should be under the /etc directory. For windows, install tcp/ip, give your machine an ip number from a private network (one that is not used on the internet) The standard for this is, with additional machines that you put on the network, etc. Give the linux pc, and assign both pc's the same (made up) domain. When you use the internet connection, the ppp connection will be set up as an additional route on the network.

Cables -- you can use thinnet (10base2 or coax), or use an RJ45 (TP or phone type) crossover cable. If you want to add more machines later, get a hub for the RJ45 and use regular cable. I have used thinnet because I only have 3 machines on the network and the cables and cards were dirt cheap

hosts files on both -- set up a hosts file on both machines, listing the network numbers and names of machines on the network. See /etc/hosts on linux, \windows\hosts.sam for format of the file. The localhost listing in the linux file is a special address for looping back to the local machine.

Try it out by pinging the win95 from linux and vice versa. (Cntl-C to stop it on linux) If it works you can now ftp files from the linux box, telnet, etc. You can't ftp into the win98 machine because there is no server.

To use the internet connection on the linux pc, you will have to set up ip masquerade. This involves setting up the linux machine as your gateway machine on win98, adding the dns numbers of your internet account, then setting ip forwarding on the linux pc. Ipfwadm is the program that does this, see the ip masquerade HOWTO for details. You have to do this because tcp/ip packets are routed to a specific machine address (your static ip). The comp.os.linux.networking newsgroup is full of information about ip masq.

To share files transparently, you will need to use Samba, as rbr said. The linux pc will be a samba server, and win95 will have a samba client installed. I have never set this up, but you can use samba to print from any printer on the network, browse your samba filesystem from win95, map shared directories, etc.

Another option (the one that I use) is to run an X server on your win95 pc. If you have X installed on the linux box, you can display your linux desktop on win95, and thus access all files on both machines at the same time. There is a freeware x server called MI/X that runs on win95. This is not really sharing files, but since there are few applications that are common to linux and win98, I have not found this to be a problem. I can transfer files with ftp if needed. Linux has no problem with downloading and transferring dos/win98 files.

I hope this is all correct, at least it will get you on the right path. I recommend getting the following documents for linux: ethernet-HOWTO, net-3 HOWTO, ip masquerade HOWTO, samba HOWTO. You can post questions about linux on comp.os.linux; comp.os.linux.networking; People there are generally very helpful.

gorgorAuthor Commented:
Thank you very much...I appreciate you taking the time to reply to my question and you supplied me with a wealth of information!  This should get me going in the right direction. Thanks again!
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