Accessing two separate networks with one XP client

Posted on 2005-04-06
Last Modified: 2010-04-10
I have a client who is running two seperate networks. One is running through a 10MPS hub and handles automotive parts and billing. It has it's own set of defined IP addresses and Subnet.

The other network is running over a 10/100 hub. This network will soon have Windows Server 2003 on it with specific automotive software installed.

Both networks terminate in one room with both hubs on a rack

All machines throughout the network are Windows XP Professional.

What I need to be able to do is access both networks from any machine so that the accounting department can run the software that is installed on either network.
Question by:DougJonsen
    LVL 25

    Expert Comment

    are the networks connected phyically at all?
    what is the IP address scheme of each network?
    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    You could run a crossover cable (or patch cable via an uplink port on either hub) and connect the 2 hubs together, then give the accounting department computers multiple IP addresses (one address & netmask for each network TCP/IP properties, advanced, then add).

    This may generate too much traffic on the 10mbit hub, depending on your specific environment but other than that I can't think offhand of a reason this wouldn't work.  

    I've done something similar on an XP box at home for about a month when I had overlapping service during an upgrade from SDSL to a T1...had to send an .iso to a friend on 3mbit cable so I plugged the T1 router and SDSL router both to the same 10mbit hub, gave doze an IP/netmask on each subnet, and had him ftp in twice simultaneously...once through it's SDSL IP and once through it's T1 IP, he was able to suck the whole 1.1 + 1.544 mbit upstream I could dish out.  I've also done quick-n-dirty hardware protection using this method...needed to protect our phone system on the LAN since it had a tendency to drop calls when things like an NMAP scan was run locally and it hit the phone system...I just couldn't get people to remember to exclude it's IP from their playing around so I put the phone sys on a different subnet then added (in addition to their original ip/mask) an IP on the phone system's subnet to the 2 computers that needed occasional access to the phone sys.
    LVL 6

    Accepted Solution

    "What I need to be able to do is access both networks from any machine"

    Then you should probably just take the time to make a single network.  If you say both networks are each on their own hub, that can't be a huge network.  So long as you have fewer than 254 computers, just join one subnet to the other.

    My guess is that each network is on a different 192.168 subnet right? Just put one network's worth of machines on the other subnet (by changing their IP address) and join your hubs with a crossover cable.  Done deal.

    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    True subnet for all would work, although  I interpreted "..from any machine so that the accounting department can run the software that is installed on either network." as implying that the two existing networks were separated for other reasons, hence the suggestion for multiple IP's on the accounting machines (which could be scattered accross both networks).

    Bernie interpreted the question literally, I made an assumption based on the ebb & flow of the rest of the message.  

    Meanwhile, Mike simply asked for clarification first (prolly the safest route!)

    Gotta love seeing in action different methods to approach problem solving...what a boring planet this would be if we all thought the same way :).
    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    One (probably obvious) sidenote...if the two physically separated networks are using the same subnet, then either one of them would have to be changed (to maintain separation of the two networks) or individual conflicting IP's changed (if any) if making one big subnet for everything was appropriate once the two hubs were linked together.
    LVL 1

    Expert Comment

    well..this is a windows network...Do you have a domain controller (Directory server) or a workgroup?

    Eitherway you could route...put a common machine in the middle (windows 2003 server will do it).......and use it to route...

    off course, besides the Ip routing issue, you will also have the security issues.

    Provide more details, as far as network topology.

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