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Connecting XP and OS X machines via FireWire

May 01, 20062 mins

Can I build an IP network that connects a Windows XP machine to a Mac OS X machine using a FireWire (IEEE 1394) connection?

Yes, because the most recent versions of Mac OS X and Windows XP support TCP/IP networking via FireWire connections.

Simply establish a physical connection, then configure the FireWire ports on each computer with an IP address. On a Macintosh, open the System Preferences applet and double-click on the Network icon. Double-click on the Built-in FireWire entry in the interface list. On the Built-in FireWire screen, change the Configure IPv4 setting to Manually.

Enter the IP address you want to use, then click on Apply Now. When you return to the Network Status screen, you should see that the Built-in FireWire port is active and has the IP address you just assigned.

On a Windows machine, open the Network Connections applet in the Control Panel, double-click on the icon labeled 1394 Connection and click on the Properties button in the pop-up dialog box.

Choose the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) entry and click Properties. Enter the IP address you want to use. Do not enter an address for the default gateway on the Windows FireWire port, or your Ethernet connection will try to use that gateway. After saving your settings you will have a point-to-point TCP/IP network connection over the FireWire cable connecting the two machines.