Win98 Direct Cable Connection . Only one way share...

Lo there! :)

   I have two machines with fresh builds of Win98 from the same source. I installed Direct Cable Sharing identically on both. The problem is that I can only share in one direction.

More specifically, one of the machines cannot see anything in the Network Neighbourhood (not even itself), and refuses to find the host machine when I run the DCC wizard.

Before this, I had to sort out problems with missing files; dfs.vxd, vredir.vxd and msnp32.dll but I did the same fix on both machines, again using the same sources.

I've tried from scratch twice now and keep hitting this problem. The only thing I can think of is that there might be other missing or corrupted files which windows won't warn me about?

Any ideas would be gratefully recieved!

~Jabberwokki.
jabberwokkiAsked:
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cooleditCommented:
are the in the same workgroup ????
jabberwokkiAuthor Commented:
They are (I think). On both machines I set the
Control-Panel>Network>Identification-Tab>Workgroup
to the same name.

I forgot to mention, I am able to ping one machine from another. Everythings good except for Network Neighbourhood and DCC.
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jabberwokkiAuthor Commented:
Hi Stephen!

Thanks for the links!

    The first refers to the cable itself. The cable I'm using is an off the shelf jobbie and I've tested it both ways round to make sure it's wired up right.

   The second link can be found from Google and it helped me solve the original missing files problem, but not this one sadly.

   I gave the trial of the commercial software in the third link a bit of a go but again I have no joy. I seem to have a deeper system problem on my hands. :(

~Jabberwokki.
swittstrCommented:
Jabberwokki,

A couple points:
1) I might be wrong on this but, I believe you said you're able to transfer files from one to the other computer, but not in the reverse direction.  I.e., A can receive/take B's files, but B can't receive/take A's files.  If this is true, you don't have an network or cable problem, i.e. both PC's are on the network just fine.  It appears to be a Share configuration problem.  If A can receive B's files, then B is correctly configured for sharing it's files.  But, if B can't receive A's files, than A has a Share configuration problem.  Doublecheck A's Share configuration, making sure it's setup exactly as B's.
2) I don't think you need to have MS Network (Workgroups) installed or configured to use DCC, i.e. parallel port to parallel port file transfers.  But, you do need new technology parallel ports, i.e. the older parallel ports didn't support 2 way communications.  How old/new are your PC's?  You probably need parallel ports that are at ECP or EPP hardware level.

Steve


Steve
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jabberwokkiAuthor Commented:
Hiya Steve!

   You summarised the problem to a tee there. But both machines have the same share settings (I just double checked to be sure). The same VPN, network and serial port settings also.

   I mentioned the workgroups thing as I find it relative that it's _also_ not functioning. I installed that as (once I've fixed the current woe) I plan to lan all my boxes together with 10/100 cards.

   Unfortunately that's not an option for the problem machine as it's a laptop.

   Given that I'm following the setup proceedure identically on both machines I'm starting to wonder if it _could_ be some kind of bizarre hardware issue after all.

   The machine in question is a Toshiba Tecra 730 laptop (released 1997). Could the technology age thing apply to the serial ports?

~Jabberwokki
jabberwokkiAuthor Commented:
PS:

   The Host computer (A) has an Elitegroup K7S5A Mainboard that wouldn't be more than a year or two old.

(The other boxes have *nix operating systems so I can't try a DCC from them, afaik)

Thanks for everybodys input so far! :)
rogue_phoenixCommented:
might check the parallel port settings in the BIOS. it might not be set to ECP or EPP, and you should find out from there if it supports it.

it's been forever since I worked on DCC. Other than that I'm drawing a blank.

I'm assuming you've set up shares on both machines.
does it work if you go start\run \\<ip address>?
humptydumptyCommented:
Try enabling 1 PC as Browse Master, and the other disabled;
=>
ControlPanel/Network/Configuration/File&PrinterSharing/Properties/Browse Master
.

jabberwokkiAuthor Commented:
:) If it turns out to be something simple after all this I'm going to be _well_ red in the face!


@Rogue.

   The bios already had the parralel set to ECP. When I do a RUN \\ME or a RUN \\HOST I get the same error dialogue as I do in Network Neighbourhood. Windows screams that I'm not logged in to the network, that I can't browse the network and that I should run the Network Troubleshooter (whichI've done to no avail).

@Humpty

   I'll try that when I finish work this evening. I'd set both machines to Browse Master 'Automatic' and LM 'Off'.


   I can live without MS Networking here but I _need_ to be able log my laptop onto the DCC host for drive sharing and internet connection sharing.

~Jabberwokki.
jabberwokkiAuthor Commented:
Sorry, the Browse Master settings seem to have no effect.

   I'll try another reinstall on Sunday just to be _completely_ sure I haven't left something silly out. Who was it who cliamed the efinition of insanity is continually repeating the same process and expecting a different result... :p
swittstrCommented:
Jabberwokki,

Sorry to hear you're still plugging away at this one.

It sounds like you're trying DCC with either serial or parallel cabling.  I'm curious which one you were able to get working in the one direction (only), serial or parallel?  I'm sure you know parallel would be much faster.

Have you tried turning the cable around, between computers A and B?  It's possible that the cable is pinned such that DCC communications would only work in one direction, this is true mostly for parallel cabling, not serial.  If it is a uni-directional cable, i.e. A->B worked but not B->A, then turning it around would have B->A working (but not A->B.)

Where did you get your (parallel?) cable?  If you're not certain about it (quality, pin outs, etc.), it might be wise to go out an buy a IEEE 1284 parallel cable.

I'll keep scratching my head on this one, for you, and let you know if I think of any more possibilities.

Steve
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jabberwokkiAuthor Commented:
Hi Steve.

   I'm using a serial connection. The cable does have parallel conectors but they're both male for some reason. I take it I'd need adapters to change the sex but I'm not keen on spending any more money until I'l 100% sure I can get it working!

   I'm only getting started in networking and didn't realise parralel would be faster.

   I got the cable from a Maplin store, (Irish version of radioshack I suppose).It _should_  a general datalink serial cable.

   There's wiring diagrams on one of the links above so I guess I can check it with a voltmeter later. I did try reversing the cable with no noticable effect...

   Well, I'll keep poking at it until Saturday. If I don't have any joy by then, I'll close this question and spend some money after all   :p


   Thanks for all your advice!

~Jabberwokki.
swittstrCommented:
Jabberwokki,

Ok, so you're trying to use a Serial to Serial DCC connection, but your cable has parallel connectors too.  It sounds like you're using a multi-head cable, both Serial and Parallel heads - this really is at least 2 seperate cables bundled together.  I have one of those.

I'd definitely go with the Parallel to Parallel DCC connection.  It will be much faster than Serial to Serial, though considerably slower than an Ethernet connection (more on this below.)  The parallel cable connectors should both be males since the parallel ports on the computers are female (computer parallel ports are always female and computer serial ports are always male.)

By the way, do you have Ethernet NIC's (Network Interface Cards) in both of your PC's.  If you do, it would be cheaper and much faster to use the Ethernet ports (these ports look like large telephone jacks - they're called RJ45's vs RJ11's for the phone plugs.)  If you wanted to network directly between 2 computer Ethernet NICs, you would need an Ethernet crossover cable, which would be cheaper than a new IEE 1284 parallel cable.  The Ethernet configurations on the computers are a little more involved than a DCC configuration, but not terribly hard.  The speed difference between DCC and Ethernet would make it worthwhile.

Good Luck,
Steve
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jabberwokkiAuthor Commented:
Ack! It was the meda.

   The Win98 CD had a nasty scratch which was getting progressively worse. The problems occurring on the main machine now too.

   It showed up first on the laptop as it has a quirky old single speed CD drive in it.

   I've left the CD in for a re-grind so that will fix me up.


I'm accepting Steves answer as he's right about the LPT thing. It looks to be _much_ faster.

Thank you everybody! :D
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