routing problem for a simple network

I just install redhat linux 6.0 on a sony Z505RX laptop and have connected the laptop to our LAN at work on subnet A (network address, netmask 0xffff0000).    The subnet has a DHCP server and a DNS name server.    I successfully configured my laptap as a DCHP client using "control-panel" and am able to do DNS name resolution.    I can ping any other host on subnet A.   However, when I attempt to ping host banzai ( on subnet B (address, netmask 0xffff0000) or anything on the Internet, I get the following error:

    PING banzai ( 56 data bytes
    Ping: sindto: Network is unreachable
    Ping: wrote banzai 64 chars, ret=-1

I set the default route using

   "Route add default netmask 0xffff0000 gw eth0"

The netstat -r command shows the routing table as

Destination  Gateway   Genmask              flags   metric  Ref Use Ifac     *        UH     0           0    0     lo
default          UG     0          0     0    eth0       *                U        0          0     0    eth0     *                    U        0          0     0     lo

The gateway interconnects subnet A, subnet B and the Internet.   It has the following NIC installed and UP., netmask 0xffff0000   on subnet A, netmask 0xffff0000   on subnet B
    some other IP address for the Internet

I know that the gateway is working because I can ping banzai using any other host on subnet A.   What is peculiar is that "ifconfig -a" shows packets received and transmitted in response to ping commands.   Yet, "netstat -r" always shows '0' for the "Use" statistic for the destination.   I know the route for distination is used to ping other host on sybnet A, yet the route "Use" statistics remains 0 after pinging hosts on subnet A.     What could possible be the problem?   Do I need to load some other module to get packets forwarded to the router as required?    Also, "traceroute" gave me the same error as ping.

Thank for your help.

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  On the laptop, try changing your command of:
"Route add default netmask 0xffff0000 gw eth0"
to the following:
"Route add default netmask 0xffffffff gw eth0"
and see if that works.  I don't think the default gateway needs a 16 bit subnet mask, I think you would specifiy it as if it were a direct host (IOW use a 32-bit subnet mask).

   --- Joel

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Also, try not using the netmask parameter at all so that the command would become:
"Route add default gw eth0"

Good luck,

   --- Joel
donpulkAuthor Commented:

Thanks a MILLION!!!   It was your second suggestion of not specifying the netmask at all that worked.

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