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Bridge together two network segments


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Bridge together two network segments

Windows XP ships with a feature that allows you to join two or more network segments that use different physical mediums to act like a single network. For example, you can use a bridge to tie an Ethernet LAN segment to a wireless network.

Follow these steps to create a bridge:

1. Install and setup all the network interfaces on your bridge computer. This computer needs to have two or more installed network interface cards (NICs) that will act as a software bridge.

2. Make sure all the NICs work and that there are no errors.

3. Open the Network Connections folder.

4. Hold the [Ctrl] key and select the interfaces that represent the network segments that you want to bridge or join together.

5. Right-click the chosen interfaces and select Bridge Connections.

6. After the configuration is complete, you'll see a Network Bridge icon in the Network Connections folder. This is where you can change the bridge's configuration settings.

Bridging is especially useful in small home and office networks. However, if you have a lot of computers and considerable traffic between them, you'll probably want to use a router. With a router, the networks will act like different segments and won't join with a bridge, but the computers will still be able to communicate.

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