ICS for Win98SE   

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ICS Installation [Win98SE]

If you don't have your computers connected together into a network, you'd better start here for a cable modem/DSL/broadband connection or here for a dialup connection.  Come back here when you get to the Choose Sharing Method page by choosing the Use ICS option.

Before you can install ICS, you first need to install Win98 SE, because ICS is part of the operating system.

NOTE! You need to install Win SE only on the computer that you want to install ICS on.   The other computers on your network do not need to be upgraded to Win98 SE, and can run on any operating system, as long as it supports the TCP/IP protocol.

WARNING #1! If you already have another sharing application like Sygate or Wingate installed, UNINSTALL IT before installing ICS.  Some sharing programs (ICS included) take control of one or more of your Network adapters and/or Protocols.  The last thing you need is a fight among these programs for control of your Network!

WARNING #2! If any of your client computers are set to "Obtain an IP address automatically" (from a DHCP server), SHUT DOWN those computers before you install ICS.

The reason for this is to make sure that the IP information assigned by the old DHCP server doesn't interfere with the information assigned by the ICS DHCP server.

If you do get conflicts, you'll probably get a popup message on the two machines that are conflicting.  Reboot BOTH machines that are conflicting and you should be all set.

WARNING #2a! Some users report better results by setting all NICs (including the second NIC in the computer that you are installing ICS on) to "Obtain an IP address automatically".  My install worked with a manually assigned IP address in the second NIC, but setting all NICs to "Obtain an IP address automatically" gives ICS maximum flexibility in setting itself up.

WARNING #3! If you're going to share a broadband connection with ICS, you'll need two Network Adapters in the computer that you install ICS on.  (The ICS installer will check for the proper network configuration and won't let the install proceed if it's incorrect.) 

Tip: With the many alternatives in Network adapters and broadband "modems" today, the "two Network Adapters" requirement can be a little confusing.  See this page for help!

Tip:If your computer has USB ports, you can use a USB to Ethernet adapter to easily add a second NIC.  Check this page for more information.

WARNING #4! Install ICS only on the computer that is connected directly to the Internet.  This will be the computer that is connected to your cable, DSL or dialup modem.

Let's get started with your ICS installation!

Follow the steps below to install ICS.

  • After you install WIN98SE, go to Start > Settings > Control Panels > Add/Remove Programs. 

  • Click on the Windows Setup tab, let Windows find the installed components.

  • Double click on the Internet Tools icon, check the Internet Connection Sharing box and click OK to close the Internet Tools window and OK to close the Add/Remove Programs window.

ICS will install and then launch its setup wizard.

ICS Wizard - Step 1

Make sure you select the correct choice for your setup.  In this example, I'm setting up for a cable modem connection

ICS Wizard - Step 2

This window asks you to select a Network adapter.  Be sure you choose the Network adapter (NIC) that  provides your Internet connection.  If you don't choose the correct NIC, ICS won't install correctly and you'll probably have to remove and reinstall it and try again.  (In my case, things got so confused that I had to reinstall WIN98SE to get things straightened out!)

You can also see the benefit to having two different NICs.  In the example below, you see that the Wizard nicely numbers the NICs #1 and #2, but there's no clue as to which is connected to the cable modem and which is connected to your LAN.   You have to guess, and if you guess wrong, you get to go through the whole process over again!

ICS Wizard - Step 3

In my opinion, you can skip this next step.  Just make sure your browser is set to connect directly to the Internet or via a LAN.

ICS Wizard - Step 4

The next window will just finish the installation.  Click Finish and let the system reboot.

If you've done everything right, upon reboot, ICS should be installed and running.  

Let's go see what ICS looks like when it's installed:

ICS Server Check [Win98SE]

If you've done everything correctly, ICS should be ready to go.   Unfortunately, it doesn't really announce itself or give you much information on how to work with it.

Where is this thing?
You access ICS' controls via the Internet Control panel.  When ICS is installed, you'll see the addition of a new Sharing button on this Control Panel as shown below

Internet Control Panel w/ICS installed

Clicking on the Sharing button brings up the ICS Control Panel.   As you can see below, there's not a lot you can do.  No control of logging, no ability to open special ports, no control over Client network access (other than to shut off ICS), no control over ICS' DHCP server.  (I suggest checking the "Show Icon in Taskbar" box so that you'll be reminded that ICS is running and be able to easily access its Control Panel.)

ICS Control Panel

Note the HELP button in the above screenshot.  Clicking on it will bring up ICS help.  You may find some useful information there, but I thought that most of it wasn't much help. The Client machine setup information wasn't much help and was confusing because it referred to the LINKLOCAL 169.254.X.X addresses, when ICS uses the 192.168.0.X series of address for the LAN.

Fortunately, Microsoft has a few helpful articles in its Knowledge Base that can help you figure out whether ICS has installed correctly.  In particular, Q236465 - Description of How ICS Appears in Network Properties tells you what your Network Control Panel should look like after you install ICS.  For links to other MS Knowledge Base articles, check the ICS Troubleshooting page.  SOHOinter.net also has a ICS debugging page that tells you how to check ICS' install logs.

Is this thing on?

I know you're excited to get started sharing, so go ahead and try your browser on your sharing Client computers.  If, however, things don't work, you may want to see if ICS installed properly. Check for the following things on the computer where you installed ICS.

  1. If you check out the Network Control Panel, you'll see some new additions:

    • a new Internet Connection Sharing adapter

    • copies of a new Internet Connection Sharing protocol installed and bound to each of your Network adapters

ICS Protocols
ICS protocols Added

    • a copy of TCP/IP installed and bound to the new Internet Connection Sharing adapter 

    • the copy of TCP/IP that is bound to the adapter that you selected to Connect to the Internet in the ICS setup wizard will be marked with (Shared).

    • the copy of TCP/IP that is bound to the adapter that you selected to Connect to your home network in the ICS setup wizard will be marked with (Home).

ICS TCP/IP properties
TCP/IP modifications by ICS

  1. Run winipcfg and you should find an ICSHARE adapter replacing your cable modem NIC as shown below. You should see the information assigned by your ISPs DHCP server.  If you don't, ICS isn't set up properly.   You can try clicking the Release then the Renew button to see if you can get a DHCP lease, but you'll probably have to reinstall ICS to get things working.winipcfg with ICS installed

  2. Finally, bring up the Network Control Panel and check the Properties for the copy of TCP/IP that is bound to your LAN NIC.  It should be assigned an IP of or, with subnet mask

If your network settings don't look like what is described above, try uninstalling and reinstalling ICSMake sure you uninstall ICS via the Add/Remove Control Panel and not just by deleting the ICS adapters in the Network Control panel. If ICS still doesn't work, you can try this procedure if you're comfortable editing the Registry, or you can try reinstalling Win98SE, then reinstalling ICS.

If after checking all this, you still can't access the Internet from your other computers, you probably will need to check the TCP/IP and Internet application settings for your Client computers.  Go to this next page to do this.


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Copyright © 2002 Øyvind Haugland
Sist endret:  13 januar 2019

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