HELP!! home network with external access

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Toby Goodbar, Nov 21, 2008.

  1. Toby Goodbar macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2006
    inside my parents house, there is broadband internet, netgear router, PCs, a mac, and a ps3. i have a mac at MY house. what i want to do is setup some sort of network so that any pc/mac/ps3 can access files,media, printers, etc. In addition to this,i want to be able to "dial in/ log in" from across the internet and thru the router connection at my house or from someones laptop.

    my understanding of how this stuff works isn't zero but, i'm not exactly sure of everything i need 2 do in order 2 get this working the way i want....

    also would BOTH routers need ports forwarded, or jus the parents router with the network?

    btw, the host machine thats on all the time would be an XP machine, unless theres someway to host a network somewhere on the internet or something... but that sounds like a whole nother ball of wax

    plenty of input would be GREAT! TIA

  2. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    Unless you have a static IP for your Internet connection (highly unlikely), you'll need to set yourself up a dynamic DNS account. I use; it's free.

    Then you run an updater client on your Windows box, and it will keep your new Internet-accessible hostname available and updated.

    Then, forward your ports back to your machine on your router(s).

    Several scenarios here:

    If the 1st router is say a DSL router, and does not have a firewall on it (or one you manage), you should only need to forward ports on your NetGear router.


    If the routers are on the same subnet (Internet router connected to 2nd router, both on LAN ports), then you only need to forward on the Internet router.

    If your second router is connected from its WAN port to your Internet router's LAN port, then you need to forward on both (unless your 2nd router is in router-only mode and the firewall is disabled).
  3. Toby Goodbar thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2006
    ok i am registered there now, i knew i needed a static ip i jus wasn't sure how to accomplish it. thanx for that link!

    ok, there is only ONE router. the second would be from MY house. (i live out of state, and come to visit) i want to tap into any computers on the network i wish to create, from there. but any computers there, i want to access each other.mostly for printer access and media purposes.

    no, no firewall in use

    what is the next step? is there certain software i should be using? obviously this project needs to be cross platform compatible
  4. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    Well depends on what you want to do. If all you want to do is Remote Desktop to the PC, then open TCP 3389 and pass it back to the IP of the XP machine. If you want to share your documents, I recommend thinking more about that. If you still want to do it, think some more.
  5. Toby Goodbar thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2006
    remote desktop is definately desired. but we need to be able to copy/transfer files, and print as well. i was looking at hamachi since its cross platform, free, and looks pretty easy to use. maybe im making vnc more complicated than it really is.

    any software you recommend?
  6. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    I use UltraVNC ( and use it to transfer files and such. Also, you can have Remote Desktop show your local drives when connected as well. It's much faster than VNC plus you can copy files through Windows Explorer.
  7. Toby Goodbar thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2006
    i took your suggestion and set it up. ports 5800 and 5900; i assume now i need to go into the router and forward them?

    once thats done any computer accessing the router should be visible? or does uvnc need 2 be installed on ALL ?

    btw thanx for your time and patience with all this. i know i'm asking alot of questions
  8. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    You need to install the VNC server on the system you want to access, and the VNC client on any machine that needs to access the system.

    Once you forward the ports you should be good to go. Just be sure to forward TCP 5800 and TCP 5900 to the IP of the VNC server.
  9. Toby Goodbar thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2006
    so would the server need to be installed on each computer for 2 way access?

    in other words. lets say pc1 has uvnc server. pc2 could access files on pc1 but not pc3. pc1 could access files on all 3. right? we want to have each pc be able to freely access any other pc in the network. (i use pc here as a generic term, as there will be 1 mac and then of course i will be using the mac at my home out of state to access the network....)
  10. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    Yes install the server and client on all of them then.
  11. Toby Goodbar thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2006
    ok coolcool.

    so far i have gotten two windows macines to talk to each other. the mac isn't home right now.

    is there a way to setup uvnc to come on whenever the computer is turned on and preferably run invisibly?

    does uvnc come in a mac version?

    can my dyndns settings be tested from inside the home network?
  12. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    I've used OSXVnc:

    to serve up a MAC. When you install UVnc on Windows, you should select install as a service and to start that service. That will start it in the background automatically for you.

    You may be able to test from the inside, but it can be flaky, and it's best to test on the outside.
  13. Toby Goodbar thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2006
    thanx, i did it on one but wasn't sure if that was its function. ill have to try osxvnc when i get a chance with the mac or see if one of my frie3nds wants 2 try. once again thanx for all the help its really appreciated. i couldnt find much in the way of tutorials or anything.

    once i find a location ill try and see if i can access from across the internet. im not sure if i have the dyndns stuff setup right or not. basically all i need 2 do is type in the dns name i was given and itwill connect from there? if i use a web browser, the java function of uvnc should kick in right? i doubt i'll need it but it might come in handy someday
  14. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    You're welcome. To access the web browser piece, use the URL:
  15. Toby Goodbar thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2006
    everything worked great, including the http/java function. i even figured out how to forward different ports on different servers so i could access seperate computers.

    one thing i'm not sure how to do is get the computers to recognize the other drives. for example, lets say i have a music folder on pc1, but i'm on pc2 and i want to use itunes, winamp, wmp etc to listen to the music in that folder WITHOUT doing a file transfer, how do i direct the program to that computer and drive?

    i hope i haven't misguided myself and shouldve been setting up a VPN instead...
  16. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    Well if PC1 is outside and controlling PC2, I think you either need a VPN or share those documents over the Internet (not recommended). In essence, you need to map a drive to that system.
  17. Toby Goodbar thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2006
    the more ive been reading since i posted, the more i've come to the same conclusion.however, as of right now i'm talking within the shared router environment. the native windows/mac home network features always seem to have glitches, especially when it comes to recognizing other computers or of different varietys. that is the biggest reason for wanting something else to map the drives and set up the network.

    once again i'm not sure where the next step is. i know mac has seems to have something built in. or at least for access. during my search i found remobo

    but i'm not sure if its the best option. so once again, lol, what do you recommend?
  18. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    Well, the ultimate solution is to VPN into your home network. If you are using something like the Linksys WRT54GL, you could install OpenWRT (, has list of supported devices to), and VPN right back to your home, and use SMB to share the devices. Of course, file sharing over a home Internet line is going to be slow, slow, slow.

    Without VPN, I'd say you could use Remote Desktop for the PCs and see each other's files, but that leaves the Mac out (but you could always share your files using SMB on it too, but it doesn't have Remote Desktop support).

    You're finding that an ultimate solution is a tough one to find. I'd do a VPN if at all possible. It's best and easiest all the way around.

    To note, I've never used the software you mention, so I cannot comment on that.
  19. Toby Goodbar thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2006
    nah, they have a netgear router. so i guess i'll need to find another solution for the VPN. i will keep trying to research, unless you have any other suggestions for VPN software, or i can find something more utilitarian, i'll jus try the above mentioned remobo. its just something about it, it seems, well, "kiddie". Like its more eye candy than normal VPN functionality.
  20. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    Unfortunately, for your needs, I cannot think of a better solution.

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