Odd home network conundrum

Greetings, earthlings.

A weird problemo has reared its ugly head here on this gloomy Sunday in Berkeley California. I recently upgraded two items in my wireless home network: I now have a D-Link DGL-4300 Router (the “Gaming Router”), and I also have a new Dell XPS M140 laptop, from which I am composing this missive.

I don’t know where/why/how the problem originated, but here’s teh deal: Though I can connect to the router through this laptop, and thus out to the Internet, I cannot connect to anything on my LAN itself–not the printer, not the shared folders, etc.

I’ve run the Network Setup Wizard and ensured that the workgroup name is the same. My kid’s desktop PC is hooked up wirelessly, and she has no problem seeing the printer/folders. I’ve even basically “started over” and created a new network, renamed the printer, re-ran the wizards–same deal.
If I try to view the workgroup printers from my laptop, I get an error message saying I’m being denied access.

So does anyone know what’s up? Thanks in advance…


Windows peer-to-peer networking is notoriously fragile. Different machines can be the master browser, and when one goes away, the whole network sort of falls apart.

Try accessing the machine using a browser by typing “\machinename” in the address bar. (As in, if your machine is called FILES on the GREEN workgroup, type


Whatever shared resources are available should pop up. That’s one way around it. The other is to shut down and restart every machine that’s networked.

Okay, cool–will give all that a go. Thanks, Steve…

UPDATE: yeah, no. Just not giving me access to shared resources at all. myh laptop can see the workgroup (and it is supposedly ON the same workgroup, which i’ve triple-checked), but if i try to connect I just get an error message or nothing at all…

Can you ping the other computers from the laptop?

Also, check the firewall settings on XP.

I’ve had my share of problems with Windows networking as well.

Is SP2 installed on all machines? I assume it is, but SP1 and SP2 have a very difficult time speaking to one another.

Are you sharing the printer?

By the way, can you ping the home machine from the laptop and vice versa?

Bingo!! That was it. I had high firewall settings up on my laptop through my anti-virus software. Turned that off, and now my network printer/folders are available. Thanks Mark!


Glad I could help.

I had the same problem when I got my Macbook and turned all the security options on.