I've got the following setup:

  • PC running Windows 8.1 with a Wifi card connected to the local network and an ethernet cable running to a laptop. Wifi and Ethernet connections are bridged.
  • Laptop running Windows 7 with the ethernet port connected to the above PC (Wifi card disabled). The wired network connection is recognised as a "Home" connection in Windows 7.

I can't ping the laptop from the PC and vice versa, neither can I access any of the shared network folders on either machine. The bridge network connection otherwise seems to be working fine, as the laptop is able to connect to the internet (which can only be via the wired ethernet connection to the PC, as the built in wifi card is disabled).

Any thoughts on why the two machines can't access each other's network folders?

  • Why are you running a bridged connection? Is there any reason you can't just use the WiFi as a simple Access Point? That would prevent the need for 2 subnets, which the 'not really an answer' below partly explains
    – Tetsujin
    May 3, 2015 at 16:17
  • @Tetsujin the reason why I'm doing this is because the laptop backs up to a USB hard disk that is connected to the PC and shared over the network. I want to take advantage of ethernet transfer speeds, hence why I've connected the two computers together via the ethernet port.
    – Amr Bekhit
    May 3, 2015 at 16:29
  • ah - I didn't get that you'd actually wired the PCs back to back. That's an ugly workaround, leading to the issues you're facing. For the price of an ethernet switch, you could fix all that & not have to bridge.
    – Tetsujin
    May 3, 2015 at 16:31

2 Answers 2


There could be a number of reasons for your problems, and it's hard to say which. My advice when setting something like this up would be:

Don't bridge. That is principally for paralleled connections to the same LAN.

Use a cheap switch/hub instead of an X-over cable, which is not always reliable.

Buy an Ethernet wireless access point and connect this to a third hub socket. (or get a combined hub/AP) Configure it as a client of the WiFi network.

When wired, turn off the WiFi on the Win8 Computer. It will also get its Internet connenction via the hub/AP.

Share a folder on the serving computer, and if necessary create a user account to access it with, and assign share and filesystem permissions.

To avoid IP changes, either give the serving computer a static IP, or else give it a secured lease on the Internet router's DHCP.

Ensure that port 445 is open to LAN destinations on the serving computer's firewall.

On the client, create a batch file containing net use h: \\sharename /user:username password

(where the ip is that of the serving computer) Run this batch file to connect to the share. Drive H: should then become the share on the client.


Basically there are many ways to do these things, but experience shows that some work reliably, others less so. Often it's the old ways that work reliably ;)


You have different subnet mask.

  • First: Check your both computers if they have the same subnetmask

  • Second: Be sure you first pc not provide DHCP make it forward the IP to the main router. Or give both PCs static IP subnetmask and DNS.

In your case you will not find the IP for the second PC at your router, becuse your router see that PC as 1 Device, if you forward it then the first pc will work like a cable to your router or you can solve this by tricky DNS. On your second PC, put the first DNS as the first PC IP, then the second DNS as the main router IP. That will send a handshake to your router.

That’s the right configuration to your network, now for the second chapter

Firewall: sometimes your firewall will make 2 different networks, for no reason, like two public networks at the same-time, to solve that go to your first PC delete old setting and don’t forget what type you chose public/private/workplace. Now go to your second PC and make the same thing but this time by choosing a specific password you can find from your first PC at network and sharing center, no duplicate network now, make the same setting at all your other PC’s.


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