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Help Needed! Network Configuration: Do I need a Switch??
Last post Sat, Nov 10 2018 by cojoncio, 2 replies.
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Posted on Thu, Nov 01 2018 13:09
by GrapeBrotherhood
Joined on Tue, Oct 23 2018, Posts 14

Hey guys,

I have a Mac Pro tower that I want to use as a master, and want to connect to a PC tower to be used as the slave. I have poor networking experience/knowledge, can anybody help me? (I tried to consult some videos on Vienna Networking but couldn't find the ones who replied to my questions below).

So, I have:

The Mac Pro 5,1 (2012) has 2 built in Gigabit Ethernet Ports.
The PC has a built in Gigabit Ethernet port, and a 10G Ethernet Port.
Want to connect these units in master/slave with Vienna Ensemble Pro, for optimal speed and performance.

My questions are:

1 - Do I need a Gigabit Switch? If yes, which one is a good one? Which should be speed/model requirements? How do I use/connect it?
2 - Can I just connect Mac to the home router, and then connect directly Mac to PC with a Cat Cable? Would this guarantee both computers their own static IP and optimal transfer speed?
3 - If both solutions are usable (direct with ethernet cable, or using switch) which one is the best to ensure best data transfer speed?
4 - Do I need normal or cross-over cables? Cat 6 or Cat 7 ?
5- Why can't I (or can I??) just plug the two computers into the ethernet ports of my home router that came with my internet provider? Any disavantages?
6 - If I use my router LAN ports to connect both computers, is 100 Mbps ok as LAN speed? That's what the router provides.

(PS: any solution that would allow me to have internet connection on both machines would be preferred, as I'll sometimes use the slave also to surf internet...)

Thanks a lot in advance!

Posted on Sat, Nov 10 2018 12:47
by cojoncio
Joined on Tue, Apr 20 2010, Spain, Posts 78

I have a similar setup as yours. Just similar. Here's what I do:


I connect my MacPro to my router from one port and connect to my windows slave using the other one. I have static IPs on both computers. Gigabit ethernet is enough. You don't need 10GB.

With this setup I only have internet in my MacPro. Whenever I need to update software on my slave I just plug a wifi usb dongle, since this computer doesn't have wifi built in. If you want to have "cabled" internet on both computers, you need a gigabit switch. Most of the available switches will do the job.

Master: i9 7900x OS X 10.13.6
Slaves: i7 3930k. Windows 7 - i9 10980XE Windows 10
DAW: Digital Performer
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