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Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

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Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

Brief history...

I used to use a USB modem and recently switched to using an Ethernet connected ADSL Router/Modem.

I'm sure that for the first few days I only had a "Local Area Connection" icon on the windows taskbar notification area - I don't remember seeing any "Internet Connection" icon, even though I could use the internet, no problem - also, my router's "Ethernet" and "Internet" LEDs flashed together whenever I used the internet.

More recently, I've noticed that there is now a "Internet Connection" icon in the taskbar notification area, which I hadn't seen before.

Most puzzling of all - the router's "Ethernet" LED is constantly flashing, and clicking on the "Internet Connection" taskbar icon brings up a "status" window which shows that there is continuous send/receive traffic between "My Computer" and "Internet Gateway" even though there is no traffic between "Internet Gateway" and "Internet".

My questions are...

Is this all normal?

Why is there continuous traffic/Ethernet LED flashing, even though there is no Internet traffic?

What is the "Internet Gateway"?

How/why could I have accessed the Internet, when previously there didn't appear to be any "Internet Connection" icon (taskbar or in "Network Connections" folder).

Any informed help/observation would be appreciated.

Mark H.
17 REPLIES
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Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

If you have a router you normally just have the local network icons(as that is what you are using). Do you mean you have a local network connection and another one as well?

Can you post a ipconfig /all so we can see whats going on?

ie start/run type cmd then in the window type ipconfig /all
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Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

What model router/modem are you using?

What O/S are you using?

Have you recently installed any new software? Firewall for example?

What does the "Internet Gateway" icon look like? Is there an entry for "Internet Gateway" under "Network Connections"?

Do you still have your USB modem software on the computer?

If you can post back I'll try to have a look when I'm a bit more awake in the morning.
N/A

Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

The modem is a Speedtouch 585.

Operating system is Win XP SP2.

Here's an image showing the Network Connections folder, the "Status" window that appears when clicking on the "Internet Connection" icon either in the taskbar or the Network Connections folder...

Image

...notice that there are two "double-monitor type icons" on the taskbar notification area - one is the "Local Area Connection", one is the "Internet Connection".

The thing I find peculiar, is that the "Internet Connection" icon usually appears some 5~10 minutes after I've allready been using the internet.

The iritating thing, is the "Ethernet LED" on the router starts to flash continually, after the "Internet Connection" icon appears (but not before) and there is corresponding "traffic" between the "My Computer" and the "Internet Gateway" (but not the "Internet"). ZoneAlarm seems to indicate that the source of this traffic is "svchost.exe" (Generic Host Process for Winn32 Services).

The output of ipconfig /all is...

Windows IP Configuration

Host Name . . . . . . . . . . . . : knb5e
Primary Dns Suffix . . . . . . . :
Node Type . . . . . . . . . . . . : Unknown
IP Routing Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
WINS Proxy Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
DNS Suffix Search List. . . . . . : lan

Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection:

Connection-specific DNS Suffix . : lan
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : 3Com EtherLink XL 10/100 PCI For Com
plete PC Management NIC (3C905C-TX)
Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-04-65-74-13-C8
Dhcp Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : Yes
Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes
IP Address. . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.64
Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . : 255.255.255.0
Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.254
DHCP Server . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.254
DNS Servers . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.254
Lease Obtained. . . . . . . . . . : 25 February 2007 22:27:19
Lease Expires . . . . . . . . . . : 26 February 2007 22:27:19

...any ideas?

P.S. The previous USB modem software/drivers have been uninstalled.
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,216
Thanks: 913
Fixes: 54
Registered: 15-06-2007

Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

What you are seeing is completely normal and exactly the same as me with a Speedtouch 546 except I have a Freeserve dialup (not normally connected), Internet Connection and Local Area Connection (to the other computers connected to the router even if there aren't any) and a 1394 Connection (comes from the Audigy Sound Card which is never connected).
Isitme
Grafter
Posts: 112
Registered: 30-07-2007

Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

Did you use the disk to setup install your router? If you did, this would account for the extra icons. You can remove these by right clicking your LAN connection, select properties, and untick the box at the bottom. It is normal for some routers to flash continuously when connected to the internet, mine a D-Link, does it all the time, even when the PC is off.

Edit -Corrected disk detail
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,216
Thanks: 913
Fixes: 54
Registered: 15-06-2007

Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

Just checked with my Speedtouch and the Ethernet light does flash continuously.
With respect to the Wanadoo connection this is nothing to do with the drivers but is XP remembering the connection details.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 01-08-2007

Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

I have a speedtouch 585, and my ethernet light constantly flashes. I think its due to the system talking to the internet gateway ( the router). Dosnt seem to cause any issues. TO get rid of the internet connection icon:-
1..Click Start and My Network Places
2..Click 'View Network Connections'
3..If you have an active internet connection, there will be an icon sating Internet Connection
4..Right Click on this and select properties
5..untick 'show icon in notification area when connected'
6.. click apply or OK.
This should remove the icon from the taskbar
If the LAN icon bothers you, you can do the same, but right click on the Local Area Connection Icon.
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Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

Thanks for the feedback everyone.

Someone asked whether I installed using a disk - No, I used the router's embedded web setup wizard, which was fairly straight forward (the Speedtouch CD is customised for Tesco's Broadband).

I suspected that I wouldn't be alone in the way the systems seem to behave.

I'm still very curious though, to know...

How/why does the internet access work even before XP's "Internet Connection/Gateway" service appears?

Since there is internet access even without the "Internet Connection/Gateway" - why is the "Connection/Gateway" even neccesary?

Why/what is the continous Computer~Gateway traffic (the Ethernet LED flashing) all the time, even when there is no internet traffic?

...if there are any "experts" out there that know, and could explain, I'd be very interested.

Thanks again.

Mark.

P.S. The icons themselves don't bother me - it's mostly the continuous Ethernet~Router traffic/LED flashing that I'm curious to understand.
Isitme
Grafter
Posts: 112
Registered: 30-07-2007

Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

Is it the wireless version you have? If it is and you are not using wireless, you would be wise to disable it.

One thing I find curious is that your PC seems to have been allocated address '64'. This may be normal for the model of router, but most I have experience with will allocate the lowest vacant address, which in your case would be '1'! This might suggest that several connections are being made. As I suggest above, if you have a wireless function, turn it off, make sure you save, then reboot your PC and see what address your PC is allocated.

I may be causing you unnecessary trouble, even worry, but better that than be hit with a vast amount of bandwidth you have not used. I have a friend in Wigan who exceeded her allowance three months in a row and later found out that her next door neighbour unknown to him, was tuned into her router instead of his own. :shock:
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Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

Hi Tom,

Although the router has a wireless connection, I am not using it, and was carefull to disable it from within the router's embedded setup pages from day one (it's WLAN LED is off).

The "64" address is the address of the PC's 3Com Etherlink PCI card - the "254" address is the address of the Speedtouch router/modem. I'm not sure if the router has any say in whatever the PC's ethernet address is (or does it?) - I would have thought that the router/switch would take care of routing to the appropriate physical connection (plug/socket) irrespective of the actual addresses used (NAT of sorts?) - but I'm no expert.

Thanks for your continuing interest - it's interesting to discuss these things - and hopefully, bit by bit, knowledge slowly rubs off.

Mark.
Isitme
Grafter
Posts: 112
Registered: 30-07-2007

Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

Quote
The "64" address is the address of the PC's 3Com Etherlink PCI card - the "254" address is the address of the Speedtouch router/modem. I'm not sure if the router has any say in whatever the PC's ethernet address is (or does it?)


If your PC is set to obtain an address automatically, the address is allocated by the router. For instance, I have 3 PCs connected to my router at the moment, the address of my router is-
192.168.1.1
My main PC address-
192.168.1.2
my second PC-
192.168.1.3
I don't have the 3rd one on at the moment, but if I did it would be-
192.168.1.4
These can change depending on the order they are switched on. This does not help you much I know, but I was, as I said, curious as to how high an address had been allocated. Maybe someone else could contibute?
decomplexity
Rising Star
Posts: 490
Thanks: 26
Registered: 30-07-2007

Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

I would guess you have UPnP (universal plug and play – roughly the 'local network' version of Windows hardware plug and play) enabled. You can check by listing started/stopped services from Control Panel / Administrative Tools / Services. UPnP’s role is to chat with local devices such as routers and, in response to commands from Windows programs, open specific ports and (for routers) give the external to internal IP address mapping done by the router's NAT service.

UPnP actually uses another 'protocol' service – SSDP (which must also be enabled) – to query the router over port 1900. When Windows starts up and finds an active local network connection, it tries to discover (using SSDP broadcasts) what devices such as routers are attached. If it finds one, Windows displays the two-screens icon in the system tray, and icon in the Network Connections folder and (sometimes) an icon in My Network Places.

The system tray icon may not appear immediately after Windows start-up for two reasons:
a. the router UPnP typically chats with only one Windows client and gets confused if there is more than one Windows on the local network
b. routers also do SSDP broadcasts when they start up ("any clients around?"). This broadcast can conflict with Windows’ own SSDP broadcast if the router and Windows are both started at roughly the same time

When Windows and a router have located each other via SSDP, the router is regularly polled (about once a second) to ask it how many IP packets it has sent over the WAN. It displays this packet count in the Control Panel / Network Connections / Internet Gateway. And it is probably this traffic you have seen flashing away on your Local Area Connection 'two screen' icon in the System Tray.
Zen from May 17. PN Business account from 2004 - 2017
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Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

Thanks decomplexity,

What you describe cetainly sounds very plausible, although, I had a look at the "Services" as you directed, and I found that the "UPnP" service isn't actually started, whilst "SSDP Discovery Service" is.

There are certainly a lot of other background services, several others of which relate to networking and internet connectivity.

Interesting stuff - thanks for your input.

Mark.
decomplexity
Rising Star
Posts: 490
Thanks: 26
Registered: 30-07-2007

Questions: Router and Win XP LAN & Internet connections.

If you switch off the SSDP Discovery Service (press the Stop button and set the startup type to 'Manual' or 'Disabled'), does the traffic go away?

If you don't use UPnP (and you must use it if you have a NATing firewall/router also use e.g. MSN Messenger whiteboard or remote assistance), it is safer to leave it switched off.
Zen from May 17. PN Business account from 2004 - 2017