Finally, an update on what I'm doing! Right now I'm pretty excited that something I was doing on the computer just worked, so I've decided to blog about it. But enough waffling - what did I actually do?
Recently I inherited an older Windows XP machine from a friend (Pentium4, 512MB, 10GB). Of course, I didn't want to use this as a replacement for my nicer Linux box, but it would be nice to run them both side by side for a while. Unfortunately, my basement computer only has 1 Ethernet link. Big problem.
So, since I had a couple of spare NICs lying around, I thought I'd try to tunnel all my Linux network data through the Windows XP box. This is something I hadn't tried before, but I took the first step - installed the second NIC into the Windows box. After trying a faulty network card, I found one that would work, booted the system and identified the network links. All working fine so far.
The next step was to create a tunnel between the two NICs. I tried pinging some internal IPs on Linux to check access - but got nothing. Since Google is my friend, I tried looking up some info with no success. After fiddling round with ICS on XP, I notice a menu option - "Bridge Connection". "Hey," I thought. "That looks hopeful!" So, disabled ICS, bridged connections, and Voila! both computers have internet access, local and external.