Old PowerBook and Dell laptop - crossover cable woes

Discussion in 'Dell' started by anon, Feb 10, 2005.

  1. anon

    anon Guest

    Got a weird problem.

    Wallstreet Powerbook (233mhz, 30g drive, 384 ram, OSX 10.2.8) and Dell
    Inspiron 4100 (1.13ghz, 30g drive, 256 ram, XP Home), hooking them up
    with a crossover cable, I can get them to barely ping each other, but
    with high packet loss - 25 to 75 percent loss.

    They can see each other in their respective network setups, and if I set
    up the powerbook as a mapped network drive from the XP machine, it tries
    to hook up, but fails 90 percent of the time. Same if I try it from the
    Powerbook's end. If they do manage to negotiate, the connection fails
    anytime you try to transfer a file.

    BTW, when these two machines are on my regular hub as clients
    (straight-thru ethernet cable), they see each other fine, network and
    transfer files beautifully; I even have the Powerbook set up as a mapped
    network drive, working as a file server to the Dell. Can get to the XP
    machine from the Powerbook no problem. They work normally.

    I saw on a show that more modern macs were able to auto-sense when they
    needed a crossover cable, and switched themselves so they do not need it
    somehow, so on an off chance that OSX gave my Powerbook this ability I
    tried a straight-thru cable between the two - no dice. Nothing when I
    tried that.

    What do you suppose is happening?

    Thanks for any help!
    anon, Feb 10, 2005
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  2. anon

    Ben Myers Guest

    Possibly a defective crossover cable? They communicate OK with each other when
    plugged into a regular network, so the cable is the only difference. If you
    need to connect them together outside the confines of your regular network, and
    a different crossover cable doesn't resolve the problem, get yourself a cheap
    4-port 10/100 hub and connect them together thru the hub.

    One other possibility... When connected via crossover cable, how are they
    obtaining their IP addresses? Remember, there is not DHCP server to assign IP
    addresses in a crossover cable setup. If they do not have fixed IP addresses
    and sensible subnet mask when connected via crossover, configure them both with
    fixed IP and subnet, and try again... Ben Myers
    Ben Myers, Feb 10, 2005
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  3. anon

    Joe Heimann Guest

    The PB 233 is old enough that it does not have autosensing on the
    ethernet port that will always negotiate full/half-duplex connections
    properly with more modern ethernet ports. The high packet loss rate
    is an usual symptom of mismatch between the two ends of the cable. I
    would suggest ssticking with using the hub, that forces both laptop
    ethernet ports to the same state. The ability to auto-sense is built
    into the port hardware, upgrading the OS will not add capabilities to
    older hardware that does not support them.

    Joe Heimann, Feb 10, 2005
  4. anon

    Tom Scales Guest

    You could also force 1/2 or full in the settings.

    Tom Scales, Feb 11, 2005
  5. anon

    Howard Shubs Guest

    It's not working well. The Wallstreet doesn't know how to auto-sense
    squat. Remember, it's not even 100Mb. Use a hub or switch. This isn't
    a weird problem; it's just to be expected.
    Howard Shubs, Feb 11, 2005
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