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You don't need to be connected to the internet in order to network your home computers. An unconnected network is put together in much the same way.

I have several computers at home. I have Windows XP, Windows 7, and Ice Cream Sandwich as various operating systems. I have Verizon Wireless for my internet service. My devices connect to a Samsung Jet Pack. I want to set up a home network that does not involve internet access. What hardware do I need and how do I set up the network?

In this excerpt from Answercast #39, I look at setting up a home network without connecting it to the internet.

Home network

If we ignore for a moment the Samsung (which I am actually not at all familiar with) and the fact that you're using Verizon Wireless for internet, a home network without internet access is actually very, very simple.

  • All you need to do is get yourself a router or a wireless router, exactly as if you were going to connect your network to the internet.

  • And then you simply don't.

How a router works

The router provides the basics for connecting your network together. It handles things like:

  • Making sure that each machine has an IP address;

  • Assigning the names to the various machines;

  • Or at least allowing machines to communicate using names;

  • And so on.

So all you need to do is follow the same basic recommendation in "How do I set up my home network?" except you just don't connect it to the internet.

Without the internet

My only real concern here is that you do apparently have some kind of internet service.

  • Occasionally, depending on how that works, that could interfere.

I'm going to assume for the moment that the reason you're asking your question is that in fact you literally will not be using the internet when you use your home network. And again, I'm also not familiar with the Samsung Jet Pack.

But in general, it's just a home network (like any other) without being connected to the internet.

Article C5632 - July 28, 2012 « »

Leo Leo A. Notenboom has been playing with computers since he was required to take a programming class in 1976. An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. After "retiring" in 2001, Leo started Ask Leo! in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. More about Leo.

Not what you needed?

Ken B
July 30, 2012 11:57 AM

Reading between the lines, perhaps the "real" question here is how to have a home network where only some (or maybe only one) of the computers are granted internet access? Given the fact that "Verizon Wireless" is the ISP, and wireless carriers often have huge "over the limit" data charges, perhaps what he really wants is to not permit the other computers on the same network access to the internet?

January 6, 2013 7:22 PM

Wouldn't a switch or hub work?

Hubs and switches can be made to work, but Routers don't need any settings changed or new network protocols to be installed - they enable the default configuration of TCP/IP with typically no additional work.

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