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HawkFest
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎07-22-2009
Accepted Solution

Very odd Vista glitch when behind a Switch

I bought the WRT610N router along a LINKSYS EG008W 10/100/1000Mbps Gigabit Workgroup Switch. In my small office (4 closed offices and a central area + kitchen + rest room + storage area + a bowl of chocolate for my pregnant lady), we were using our ISP's (Bell) modem/router (Wi-Fi+4 RJ-45 ports) with an old 8 port switch. There are 3 Mackintosh one XP and one Vista workstations, and a D-Link DNS-323 NAS on the LAN, +XP/Vista/Mac Wireless portables now and then. I wanted to upgrade our stuff for a Localized Gigabyte throughput (while still looking around for building up a Xeon server + file server), with Dual N-Band wireless access, and the following setup worked right away without even installing anything software-wise, nor the need to reset-restart any device or computer: every shared folders and Internet connection was available right away, which was very satisfying. I even bought Cisco Network Magic Pro 5.5 and I'm glad I did, it's a really well done and intuitive GUI for efficiently managing small business networks (one license for up to 8 PC stations + 8 Mac stations), if not the best out there for its target market niche and price range.

 

However, there's a confusing glitch regarding Vista: I must attach it directly on one of the WRT610N's ports, it won't work if I try behind a Switch box (although it works for all other OSs), using the following Network layout:

  1. all workstations are attached to the switch, itself is attached to one of WRT610N's port
  2. Bell's DSL modem to WRT610N Internet port
  3. NAS D-Link DNS-323 to WRT610N port 3
  4. EG008W Switch port 4 to WRT610N port 1
  5. Vista Workstation to EG008W Switch port 2
  6. XP Workstation to EG008W Switch port 3
  7. Mac Workstations to EG008W Switch ports 1, 5 and 6

From the XP workstation, I can see the Macs and access the NAS. From a Mac I can see+access the XP and the NAS. The Vista station won't connect at all from behind the EG008W Switch: I *must* plug it on the WRT610N router, something I do not want since the switch is there to serve wall mounted RJ-45 plugs in each office (where those Mac XP and Vista workstations are located)... Any help or link to some relevant reference would be greatly appreciated.

Ricewind
Posts: 3,013
Registered: ‎09-07-2006

Re: Very odd Vista glitch when behind a Switch

Well most of the time Vista OS has some issue while connecting to the Internet. As you have connected your Vista Computer to the Switch, First thing which you need to check, whats the IP address you Vista Computer is getting it from the Router, As your Router is connected to the Switch. On your Vista Computer... Click on Start - Search - CMD and hit enter... Now in the Command Prompt window type "ipconfig" and hit enter, check whats the IP address your Vista Computer is getting from the Router. And the IP address should be in your Routers range. If your Router Default IP address is : 192.168.1.1, Then you Vista Computer should be getting the IP i.e : 192.168.1.xxx...If its an different IP address, might be your Vista computer is set to Static IP. Remove the static IP from your Vista Computer and set it to "Obtain IP address Automatically".Now again in the Command Promt window type "ping Routers Default IP" and hit enter and check if you are getting any replies, If yes, then again in the Command Prompt type "ping yahoo.com" and hit enter, an check if you get the replies. If yes, Now check if you are able to go online from your Vista Computer.

 

Note : Disable Firewall and Antivirus on your Vista Computer. 

HawkFest
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎07-22-2009

Re: Very odd Vista glitch when behind a Switch

Ricewind, you said: First thing which you need to check, whats the IP address you Vista Computer is getting it from the Router, As your Router is connected to the Switch.

 

thanks for your reply. Unfortunately, I think that the problem is even deeper than expected from your approach: I can't even connect the Vista station when trying this behind the switcher, Vista actually says that the adapter is unplugged (!)... I've checked the cable (RJ 45 Cat 5e), it works - the switch is "feeding" a board connecting multiple cables (one on one) towards offices, and if I bypass the switch to connect the port corresponding to the Vista station directly on the DSL modem, it works, however I cannot see the local net as the later cannot see the Vista station (Internet access solely, which is normal): the wires and the hardware are thus ok.

 

Since the DSL modem act as some kind of router itself, also being a Wi-Fi access point with IP addresses bieng assigned by the ISP's DHCP server (or having that server located on the DSL-router itself which I don't know but it's a detail in regards to the context as long as we know that there's already a DHCP srerver acting on my WAN access), can this be related to the problem? XP and Mackintosh computers don't have any problem with this: their IP is assigned by the WRT610N DHCP server since they stand behind that router, and the ISP is still able to give access to those (their IP corresponds to the router's DHCP address allocation pool). However, the Vista station seems to get confused and just "snob" the network in its entirety, even lying about its lack of intelligence by stating that "the cable is unplugged" (lol)...

kevj
Posts: 689
Registered: ‎07-16-2006

Re: Very odd Vista glitch when behind a Switch

Normally the "Cable Unplugged" message is an indication of a hardware issue. If you can connect the Vista box to the router directly using the same patch cable, you have eliminated the patch cable and the vista box hardware. all that is left is the cabling from the wall jack back to the switch, and the port on the switch itself. Try connecting the vista box to a diffeent port on the switch. Move one of the XP machines that works while connected to the switch to the port that the Vista machine is supposed to be connected to. If it loses connectivity, then you have a bad switch port.
-------------------------------------
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D-Link DSM-320 (Wired)
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HawkFest
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎07-22-2009

Re: Very odd Vista glitch when behind a Switch

[ Edited ]

kevj, thanks for you reply, I came back here to close the topic since I pinpointed the problem and resolved it: the problem lies somewhere else, it's not the calbling nor some other hardware issue. I replace the Vista box by an XP mobile, using the exact same wiring, and all worked fine so it was not a cabling issue... Note that the workstation is a Dell Studio box which comes with a Realteck Gigabit controller (thus I assume that many other models/brands also provide that same controller, meaning that many other users can experience that problem).

 

Here's what I did:

  • I got rid of Vista by installing Windows 7, and all worked fine!
  • I then issued a Windows Update from Microsoft site, which offered a patch for the Realteck GBE familly controller (amongst other patches)
  • After restarting the computer, the network was not accessible anymore while the Win7 box was behind the Swithcher: it behaved exactly as when it was Vista (stating that the adapter was unplugged when behind the switcher, and then giving access while behind the WRT router)!
  • So I restored the latest restore point just before the controller update, and all got back to normal; I then did another MS Windows Update session without the Realteck driver patch, and all was still working fine.

 

Conclusion: DO NOT update your Realteck GBE controller driver from Microsoft, either for Vista or Windows 7, it has a bug taking place whenever your Vista/Win7 box is behind a LAN sub-segment DMZ using a switcher (switcher-router-router/DSL-ISP).

 

Note: the WRT610N works like a charm! It's plugged with a DNS-323 RAID0 1Tb NAS, an 8 port Gigabit Switcher feeding 3 macs, 1 XP and 1 Windows 7, Wi-FI works pretty well (G mode, while the n band is opened - I don't have a 5GHz device yet so I can't say for that frequecy range), and I left the DSL's own Access Point available. Which means that there are 3 Access Points: one directly on the DSL router which leaves the LAN in a DMZ (cannot be seen nor accessed from the mobile), and 2 others on the dual band WRT610N giving access not only to the Internet but also to local shared resources). Blue color for the port connected to the dwitcher, meaning a Gigabit local LAN, and green port color for the DNS-323 whitch runs at 100Mb (unfortunately they still don't have a Gigabit NAS). I'm very happy with the product, more over when combined with Network Magic Pro.

Message Edited by HawkFest on 08-01-2009 10:16 PM