Sharing of files/folders disappeared

I'm getting to be a regular here.  I have a laptop (client) computer networked to my desktop (host) computer.
I did have internet sharing as well as files/folders sharing all working just fine until a few days ago.  The internet sharing (laptop shares the desktop cable internet connection) continues to work just fine. However, neither computer recognizes the network. Neither compter can find the other.  Neither computer appears in Network Neighborhood/Places.  As a consequence, I can no longer share files/folders.

I have rerun the Home Networking wizard on both computers and I have reinstalled Client for Microsoft Networks on both computers.  File & Printer sharing are set up. I do not know what else to do.

HOWEVER, I'M WONDERING WHETHER SOMETHING WEIRD THAT STARTED ON THE HOST COMPUTER AT ABOUT THE TIME THAT I LOST THE NETWORK CONNECTIVITY IS RELATED TO THE PROBLEM!
I changed the "background" on the host computer & ever since then, I get these strange black & white pixel images when the computer starts its shutdown/reboot and after the Windows Me screen during boot-up. I have never seen these strange images before & cannot get rid of them (I tried going back to the previous "background".)

Any thoughts are appreciated.


heat_doctorAsked:
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stevenlewisConnect With a Mentor Commented:
heat doctor
I have never had any problem with ZA. Have you configured it to allow specific ip addresses (the LAN) access? You can configure it to allow specific ip addresses of ranges of ip addresses
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ridCommented:
1) Do a virus scan, using a good antivirus utility.

2) How is the network set up, physically?

3) What protocol(s) are being used?

Regards
/RID
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heat_doctorAuthor Commented:
To: rid

1.  No Virus:  did a scan with latest virus definition file
2.  Host has Linksys Phoneline 10M network card;  client has Linksys Phoneline 10M Integrated PC card
3.  Under "Internet Connection Sharing" and "TCP/IP" the following:
a.  Dial-Up Adapter
b.  Internet Connection Sharing
c.  Linksys Phoneline 10M Network Card
d.  NDIS 1394 Net Adapter
e.  Realtek RTL8139(A)-based PCI fast Ethernet Adapter
Of course there is also Client for Microsoft Networks & File & Printer Sharing for MS Networks.

That's it. Remember, everything WAS working fine up until about the time I started getting these weird images during boot-up & boot-down.  

   
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heat_doctorAuthor Commented:
Addition:

The above protocols are for the HOST computer.
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scraig84Commented:
Can you at least ping each device using IP addresses?  What about by using names?  I am assuming ICS still works, the first still works.  I would be more interested to see if the second does.  If it does, go to the "client" and go to the run line and type:

\\server\sharename

where "server" is the name of the workstation and "share" is the name of the share.
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heat_doctorAuthor Commented:
To all:

I have found the problem!  It's my firewall program, Zone Alarm.  If I shut down Zone Alarm, my client (laptop) can detect the host (which is all I care about).  Curiously, my host still cannot detect the client.  I have sent an e-mail to Zone Alarm Tech. Support.  With Zone Alarm's Security setting at Medium, there should be no problem.  We will see what Zone Alarm has to say.

As it turns out, Zone Alarm does not interfer with Internet sharing which fortunately is the principal reason for networking the 2 computers.  

I am still getting the black & white pixeled hexagons upon boot-down & boot-up.  Boy, is that weird!

Unless anyone has any additional insight & depending on Zone Alarm's tech. support response, I will delete this question unless anyone disagrees.
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ridCommented:
Perhaps this is something about the ports used for NetBIOS being "protected" by ZA.
/RID
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heat_doctorAuthor Commented:
To stevenlewis:

You hit the nail on the head.  Thanks.  I was unaware of adding IP addresses in Zone Alarm.  As soon as I added the IP address of the client, the client was able to detect the host.  Currently under ADAPTER SUBNETS, there are:
1.  IC Share Adapter (unchecked)
2.  PPP Adapter (unchecked)
3.  Linksys Phoneline 10M Network Card (I checked this)
Under OTHER COMPUTERS:
1.  IP address of client (I added this)

What is strange is that the host still cannot detect the client computer.  I don't really care, but I am curious!
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stevenlewisCommented:
Is the client ME and the host XP?
try an lmhosts file
http://www.realcomputerguy.com/lmhosts.htm
can you ping the client?
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stevenlewisCommented:
Also on my ZA I added the range of my subnet
192.168.0.1 to 192.168.0.254
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heat_doctorAuthor Commented:
The host is Me & the client is 98.  I can ping the client.

I don't understand about the range of the subnet (I'm new to networking).  I only have the 2 computers.

Anyway, even though I can ping the client I cannot detect the client computer in Network Places.  Is this strange?
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