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ideas/advice and solutions for combining several computers


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#1 dontbesojumpy

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Posted 16 August 2009 - 05:00 AM

hi all. i'm ignorant about networking...
i have around 3 computers (more but i think 3 that i would like to join up)...
one is a few-year-old hp pavillion desk top that i mostly use for light internet duty and as a media pc to watch movies and shows on.
the second is my old laptop that would work fine other than the screen broke on it. i sometimes run a normal monitor through it and use it.

the last is my new laptop which works great and is new.

i would like to 'store' the computers and use one monitor if that's a possibility, but still be able to acess the data on each one.

i think i read about a type of cross-over ethernet cord that will allow you to access the attached computer from another, as well as types of networks that allow you to access all computer from one main unit, which is ideal. like in the case of the dead-screen laptop--i'd love to have it turned on and stored someplace out of the way, yet still be able to use it via another machine. is that possible?

i know so little about it. i have a wireless hub modem...
any advice or ideas would be swell. thanks.

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#2 CaveDweller2

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Posted 16 August 2009 - 11:46 AM

There might be a lot of options but I can think of two just off the top of my head: VNC or a KVM switch.

VNC - is a program that you install on all the PCs and then from almost any computer(if its set up correctly) can access the PCs. This site has tons of info. There are a few flavors of VNCs out there.

KVM switch - is a small box that you plug your mouse, keyboard and monitor into and has a number of wire bundles to plug into the PCs you want to switch to. Here is a picture of a 2 port KVM switch.

I am not sure how "away" you to want to put the boxes but either will do the job. VNC will allow you to get into the boxes over the internet, if you set it all up for that. The KVM switch gives you an actual physical connection to each of the boxes but they can only be put "away" as far as the wires.

Hope this helps thumbup.gif

Associate in Applied Science - Network Systems Management - Trident Technical College


#3 dontbesojumpy

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Posted 16 August 2009 - 11:46 PM

as for the amount of 'away'--i have an antique roll top desk that my computer goes on, i just dont want two more on there cluttering up the place. it'd be nice to have one central monitor...

i thought networking might be a solution because at my old apartment, in the main house, there was an older gentleman who was some kind of computer networking guy for a living and he connected all the computers (pcs, laptops, a media pc and 2 macs) onto one network, and with each computer's 'permission' he could access files and data on all computers. he showed me how all computers on the shared local network could be asked for permission to be viewed (and showed me MY computer on the list). apparently there'd be a prompt (on my computer) asking if it was ok for him to access my stuff, if i agreed, he could play my music or read my files from his central main computer.

that's the sort of thing i'd like to set up...
but i'm also game for any other solutions such as the control center type set up...

#4 CaveDweller2

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Posted 17 August 2009 - 12:47 AM

Oh the way you phrased it I thought you wanted full control of them not just access to the data on each.

You just want to hook them all to a router and share the hard drives on each one.

Just do a search for file sharing with the OS: File sharing with XP, 98, 2000 whatever. Its fairly simple to set up. Just start with no security and add it as needed.

Hope this helps thumbup.gif

Associate in Applied Science - Network Systems Management - Trident Technical College





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