How to Connect Two Computers to a Network Switch

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The two main types of networking devices used in home networks are routers and switches. While routers allow for the possibility of the creation of a home network, switches make it happen--allowing a home network to spring into existence by just attaching the computers successfully to the physical switch. Connecting a pair of computers to a switch is a basic procedure that can quickly be performed by even the novice computer user.

Things You'll Need

  • Switch
  • Ethernet Cable
  • Plug one end of the Ethernet cable into the network card or network port on your computer. If your computer uses onboard networking (through the motherboard), the port will be located on the upper half of the back of your case. If your computer uses a separate network card (which is slightly faster), the port will be located on the lower half of the back of your case, beneath the connection for the monitor. In either event, the Ethernet connection will look like an oversized phone jack.

  • Connect the other end of the Ethernet cable into the ports located on either the front or the rear of your particular network switch. While you can theoretically use any of the ports on the switch for networking purposes, you should stick to using the ports labeled "1" and "2" to make organization easier if you ever want to add additional computers to your home network.

  • Reset the switch. Accomplish this by either disconnecting the plug at the wall or by pulling the AC adapter out of the base of the switch. Plug the switch back in after 30 seconds, then give it a minute or two to boot up fully before taking the next step.

  • Reboot both computers. The computers will automatically detect that they are attached to the switch, which can be seen by the two flashing lights located next to their network cards on the rear of the machine.

References

  • Photo Credit Aidon/Digital Vision/Getty Images
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