home networking problem


Act your wage.
Political Access
27 Dec 2001
I was trying to help out my friend today with his home network. He has a Netgear wireless router with a 4-port switch, and he is sending the wireless signal to his laptop and using a patch cable from the router's port to his desktop. The wireless part is fine and he can get online with his laptop, but we're having a strange problem with the desktop.

Basically, the router doesn't recognize that a cable is connected. The port number LED (1-4) is supposed to be lit when a cable is connected, but none of the LEDs will light up regardless of which port I try, and Windows XP doesn't recognize that a cable is connected either. I tested the cable by connecting it directly from the desktop to the broadband modem, and Windows recognizes the connection and everything works. Other things I did was reset the router and the broadband modem.

I appreciate any suggestions, it would be nice to get this solved. :)
It sounds like you have a crossover cable instead of a straight through cable. My modem requires a crossover to the router or NIC, but the router to PC connections need to be straighthrough.
I know for a fact that the router-to-PC cable is a patch cable, and that is only works when I go from modem-to-PC. I'm not absolutely certain about the modem-to-router cable but I'm pretty sure it is patch as well. If I needed a crossover for the modem-to-router, then why would the wireless be working fine?
A patch cable is a crossover, anyways, if you are certain the cable is correct, then check the NIC drivers and the NIC itself.
have you check the router's web admin page from the wireless connection to make sure you don't need to "turn on" the wired part of the router? seems like that would be odd, but I suppose stranger things are possible.

usually the admin page is at
Have you tried the cable he was using to connect his desktop to the router?
Patch cables are straight cables and usually a switch -> pc needs straight, check out what cable your mate is using...
Whether your PC is on the correct network or not, you should still get lights... so basically I reckon the cable you are using is wrong.

Check the cable, the colours should line up..
I'm a bit confused about patch vs. crossover, because I always read what is written on the cable itself, and I'm sure I've seen "crossover" and "patch" written on different types of cable. Hmm... anyhow, I'll try and get my hands on a different cable to try out.

Ded Morozh, I did check the admin page before, just forgot to post that I did.

Thanks for the help everyone. :)
Cross cable is used when you want to connect 2 pcs together directly. Patch is for when you have a hub/switch to link the two machines together.

(Dont know why, but my cross-over cable works perfectly when I plug it into my router) :)
Right, I have used a crossover before to connect two PCs together. This is why I'm confused, because I'm reading that a patch is a crossover and I've never heard that before.

j79zlr said:
A patch cable is a crossover...

They are two different types of cable, correct?

In my experience, this should work: patch (straight) cable from modem to router, patch (straight) cable from router to PC's NIC. Is there any reason why I would need a crossover cable from the router to PC?... because I'm positive that I'm using a patch cable now.
sorry I always call a ptch cable a crossover, I guess it isn't.

It depends on the modem, but mine requires a crossover cable from the modem to either the NIC or to the WAN port of the router. All a crossover is, is a straighthrough CAT5 cable with some of the wires switched so that input on one end is output on the other and vice versa. The router/switch/hub performs this for you and is why you need a straightthrough cable from router/switch/hub to PC. Go to best buy and buy a regular CAT5 cable, they're only a couple bucks and I would bet this solves your problem.
Well, I know that I've got CAT5 patch cables going from both modem to router and router to PC. As I stated initially, the modem to router connection works fine because I get good lights on the router and the wireless signal works fine to the laptop. All I know left to troubleshoot is trying a different cable from the router to PC, even though the same cable works fine when I go modem to PC directly.
The fact that the cable works modem to PC/router, but doesn't from router to PC make me think its a crossover cable, seriously, just go and pick up a 3 or 6ft straight-through cable, they're less than 5 bucks.
I'll get my buddy to pick one up next Monday when he's back in town. I'll have to wait until then to work on it more.
Always call it a straight through cable or a cross over cable. Patch can mean anything.

So make sure your buddy calls it a straight through cable when he asks for one at the store.
The cables you should have should be:

From hub/switch/router --> PC = TIA 568B X 568B (a.k.a. Straight) or TIA 568A X 568A (a.k.a. Patch).

Crossover cables are TIA 568A X 568B. The difference here is that the transmit and receive wires are switched so that they correspond to the correct ports. This kind of cable is used to connect two PC's together, to connect a PC to an uplink port (switch/hub/router), or to connect a port on a switch/hub/router to an uplink port of another switch/hub/router.

Rollover cables are the third type of cable. This is a TIA 568B X Reversed 568B cable. This cable is also called a console cable and is used to connect to console ports (commonly found on older ethernet printers and ALL commercial routers and a few managed switches. Console ports are not found on SOHO routers.).

The difference between the straight and the patch is that straight cables (568B x 568B) can handle both voice and data (voice meaning telecommunications, not VoIP) on the same line. Patch (568A X 568A) can only handle data (although it does so more efficiently).
I don't know if this matters since I have only done wired. But which did you configure first on the router's admin site, the laptop (wireless)?

Do you have to config. the hard wired one (PC) first?

Ummm, is it the NETGEAR MR814 4-port Wireless Router with 10/100 Mbps Switch?

There is a firmware upgrade to version 4.13.
---> upgrade <---

It is supposed to deal with a problem similar to yours but in reverse.


Internet Access Using an Ethernet Cable Connected to MR814 Works, But Not Browsing Using a Wireless Router Connection (DNS Fails)

1.) If the problem persists, power off your network in this order: all computers, the router, then your cable or DSL modem.
2.) Restart the network by powering on the cable or DSL modem. Wait for the modem lights to stop blinking.
3.) Restart the router and wait for its lights to stop blinking.
4.) Restart your computers.
5.) If the wireless adapter does not get the DNS configuration information from the router, using the button below identifying: the problem, the brand and model of computer, operating system version, the type of wireless adapter, and the adapter's configuration settings.

Maybe it's just the cable.
I don't know the model number, I'll have to check it when my friend gets back in town. I know that he setup the wireless side first, but I'm not sure what he did on the Admin site. I looked at it for a moment, but didn't see any needed configuration for the wired.

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