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Two PCs, One Internet Connection

tech.py.303

New member
I would like to have the master PC for Internet security software only and leaving the slave PC for everything else. I am not quite exactly sure whether Windows 10/11 supports such configuration or I would need to install CISCO software, for example. The connection between both PCs will be through either ethernet or USB and not WIFI hotspot.
 

root

Administrator
Staff member
Hello @tech.py.303 - welcome to Computer Forums.

This should be possible to achieve - the way I would go about it would be to add a second network card (perhaps one with several Ethernet ports) and install a dedicated router / firewall OS. One that's well regarded is OPNsense (OPNsense® a true open source security platform and more - OPNsense® is a true open source firewall and more)

The only thing I would say is it's going to be fairly involved technically to achieve this - so its worth thinking about what you're trying to achieve.
To see if it's possible? Yes, absolutely and you can learn a lot from a project like this. It's worth considering that a misconfigured opnsense install could be worse for security than using your bog standard router.

If you're simply after more internet security in general it might be worth thinking about changing your router for a modern/up to date 3rd party one. With that said, most even basic routers provided by ISPs from the past 10 years or so should be secure enough for domestic home use. But if you're a business, or potentially a sensitive target then Opnsense might be a good fit or similar software, or alternatively a hardware firewall.
 

tech.py.303

New member
Hello @tech.py.303 - welcome to Computer Forums.

This should be possible to achieve - the way I would go about it would be to add a second network card (perhaps one with several Ethernet ports) and install a dedicated router / firewall OS. One that's well regarded is OPNsense (OPNsense® a true open source security platform and more - OPNsense® is a true open source firewall and more)

The only thing I would say is it's going to be fairly involved technically to achieve this - so its worth thinking about what you're trying to achieve.
To see if it's possible? Yes, absolutely and you can learn a lot from a project like this. It's worth considering that a misconfigured opnsense install could be worse for security than using your bog standard router.

If you're simply after more internet security in general it might be worth thinking about changing your router for a modern/up to date 3rd party one. With that said, most even basic routers provided by ISPs from the past 10 years or so should be secure enough for domestic home use. But if you're a business, or potentially a sensitive target then Opnsense might be a good fit or similar software, or alternatively a hardware firewall.
Brilliant, thank you very much for the information it certainly has definitely giving much food for thought which I wasn't even aware of.

What I had in mind was having two PCs daisy chaining the internet connection. I have seen online that there are desktop cases which support two motherboards and because I am planning to upgraded to an ATX anyway I thought to myself that I might be able to keep my existing mini-ITX motherboard. What I had in mind was to use the mini-ITX for internet security which would then leave the other motherboard for general purpose use which would save up on resources. I already have Glasswire as my main firewall which runs in conjunction with Windows Firewall and then I can use my Bullguard anti-virus software.
 

root

Administrator
Staff member
Brilliant, thank you very much for the information it certainly has definitely giving much food for thought which I wasn't even aware of.

What I had in mind was having two PCs daisy chaining the internet connection. I have seen online that there are desktop cases which support two motherboards and because I am planning to upgraded to an ATX anyway I thought to myself that I might be able to keep my existing mini-ITX motherboard. What I had in mind was to use the mini-ITX for internet security which would then leave the other motherboard for general purpose use which would save up on resources. I already have Glasswire as my main firewall which runs in conjunction with Windows Firewall and then I can use my Bullguard anti-virus software.
Certainly an interesting idea - you'll have to share some pics of the final build!
Are you planning on using the security for your whole connection i.e any wireless devices, or are you just looking to create a "secure terminal"?

I must say to me the idea of doing all this thru Windows scares me - but then I'm a lot more confortablle with Linux for networking stuff. It should certainly be possible, in theory through Internet Connection Sharing - personally I'd suggest using the "security" PC's motherboard ethernet port as internet in / WAN port, then chuck in a PCI NIC, use an Ethernet cable to loop it through to the 2nd Motherboard (and if motherboard 2 has an Ethernet port perhaps disable that one in BIOS to avoid confusion)
 

markanderson

New member
The hardware protocol implemented doesn’t allow that. You can use a wireless access point for that though. What you describe requires either a hub, or a switch. Or one of the computers needs two network interfaces and that computer has to be configured to act as a router for the second network. Desktop systems have been tending to have two interfaces (not all, but many). The primary interface is the one to use for the internet, then a second network. Many times the ISP box is a router with several network connections (usually something like 5 ports are available). This is an easier way to do it, as any computer with a network connection can use that.
 

tech.py.303

New member
Hi, Just an
Certainly an interesting idea - you'll have to share some pics of the final build!
Are you planning on using the security for your whole connection i.e any wireless devices, or are you just looking to create a "secure terminal"?

I must say to me the idea of doing all this thru Windows scares me - but then I'm a lot more confortablle with Linux for networking stuff. It should certainly be possible, in theory through Internet Connection Sharing - personally I'd suggest using the "security" PC's motherboard ethernet port as internet in / WAN port, then chuck in a PCI NIC, use an Ethernet cable to loop it through to the 2nd Motherboard (and if motherboard 2 has an Ethernet port perhaps disable that one in BIOS to avoid confusion)
Hi, I have decided to put this idea on hold at the moment. I have decided also to be more mobile so I have sold the desktop.
 

root

Administrator
Staff member
That's fair - I must admit I've stopped using my desktop altogether myself as the power draw for it and my 2 large monitors was getting a bit much in today's economy.

It may be worth looking at Raspberry Pis or similar hardware if you want to try this in the future as they can be pretty light on power costs compared to a full blown PC.
 

tech.py.303

New member
To be honest with you and in my opinion of course all this about co2 is a big hoax really. I trade cryptocurrencies so a multi screen set is ideal. With regards to energy costs newer technology will be lower power and so will just compensate for energy bills and also with this new clean and green fission power on the horizon in the future there will be a abundance of energy, anyway, which I imagine will be cheap as chips! The current state of the world is just to create uncertainty and fear into the mass population which I do not go alone with one single bit, I hope for a bright and positive future. I think the choice is yours whether you want to go along with everyone else's thinking or not because this is a trap, The people who think for themselves and who want an alternative world I personal believe this will happen. Those who put on these VR headsets and get mesmerising into this virtual and fantasy world are the ones who are doomed!! I prefer a good old laptop, with keys to press, a mouse to move the cursor around the screen, and graphics which are not out of this world. This is for me!

So, I sold my desktop which had a multi screen setup and have decided not to have a dual motherboard machine. I am not a network guy but I am sure that there must have been a work around with ethernet. I have just purchased a small chrome notebook and I am very happy with the performance. I will keep this laptop for just using it online and I will get myself another laptop and run Linux on it - I think it is about time to learn about Linux.
 
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