NIC vs. Ethernet Network ADAPTER



Ok, this may be a stupid question. Up until now I always assumed a NIC card and an Ethernet Network Adapter were the same things. Are they not? I am trying to setup a home network. The main PC is XP and the other is win98. I am connecting with the Cat5 corssover cable.

Now, the problem I am having is on the XP machine first. My Realtek NIC card connects to the modem and everything is fine and dandy as far as getting onto the internet. I switched it and plugged the modem into the SMC EZ Network Interface Card and it doesnt work correctly. I set the TCP/IP setting to automatically receive IP address as I am supposed to and it just keeps giving itself some IP such as or something like that.

This is why I am wondering if these two cards are actually NOT the same thing. And if so, thats fine. I just want to know this so that I know the SMC card is F'd-up or anything.


It sounds like the SMC EZ card cannot see the DHCP server so windows is giving it an APIPA (automatic Private IP addressing) address. First I would try asigning it an IP manually. If it still cannot
see the other comp try another cable.


OSNN Senior Addict
Um, this is a bit off-topic, but:

rettahc, what scene is that on your avatar? Is it a game or something? Its a bit hard to make out details. Just curious :)


Lol, never mind. I was going to save the image and see if I could look at frame by frame in Animation Shop when I noticed the filename :D
that looks like a scene from gta 3... it's taken on the third island of the city (sorry, i can't remember the names... it's too late... or early :D... here) and it looks like a banshee doing a flip off of the freeway into the parking lot of one of the people you get missions from.


ok, i tried assigning IPs and that didnt seem to help. The cable worked a couple days ago. Would it maybe be a different cable than the crossover cable?


Yep the avatar is GTA3. Sorry it so hard to make out, but it was all I could do to get a 2 meg file down to under 52k.;) Now back to the question

first try pinging your loopback address


if that works then try pinging your other computer/modems IP
If neither works its probably your NIC card, but if your loopback address works it may just be the cable.


I did all the pinging and it seemed to ping internally. So then I decided to just break down and try XP's Network wizard and what do you know. It corrected it all for me. Thanks for the help tho!


OSNN Veteran Addict
Just so you know, when you are using a cross over cable with no hub in the system then it is likely that neither computer is set to being a DHCP server.

The easiest way to get them talking is to use an IP like

If you had two machines you could use on one on the other

Then all you need to do is specify the same workgroup for both.

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