I wonder if doing printer and computer sharing via the Verizon Mifi would incur data charges. It would be something to look into.
I'm going to test that. I hope there isn't any data charge. As for the switch, how does this work - does it just pick up the wireless from the mi-fi? The Mi-Fi has nothing for a switch to connect to.
I will mention that without either an ethernet or crossover cable, the computers could not see each other. They did need those cables!
Obviously, you will need to have an available ethernet jack on each of the computers in order to do this. But it sounds like you have that, because you are using a wireless connection on each computer to connect to the mifi.
By connecting them all to the internet through the Mifi, you may already be able to share printers, etc, among the computers. But maybe not. If it is at all complicated to share printers, etc, among the computers via the mifi connection, then the simplest way BY FAR to share them is to plug each computer into a switch using standard ethernet cables. There is absolutely nothing to configure; you literally just plug them in and then share the resources among the computers.
The price is extremely low. You can pick up a basic switch at Wal-mart for around $25.00. You can get CAT-5 or CAT-5e ethernet cable (CAT-5e is the faster of the two) for about $7 per cable at Wal-mart.
Wired is always simpler and faster than wireless; and that's why I go with wired when I can easily go either way. With a switch, you are wired, not wireless.
** Important **
I just reread your original post. You stated that you have five computers. Most switches have five ports, but I believe that you can use only four for the type of sharing I have described above. You may be able to use the fifth port with a crossover cable, thereby connecting all five computers via the switch.
Also, if not all computers are in the same room, you will have difficulties due to the fact that you are connecting them all with wire rather than via wireless.
See Microsoft's white paper "Windows 7 and HomeGroup Downlevel Sharing" for full info on how to do this, at:
You don't need to read the entire document, just the sections applicable to your setup.
I live in the UK and use a '3' network Mi-Fi - a Huawei E586. It's my second Mi-Fi and now my only internet connection, as I've discontinued my expensive land-line.
It can connect up to 5 devices by wi-fi (wireless), although the newer Mi-Fi devices can connect up to 10 devices. They do not require a 'switch'.
I use 2 x Win 7 laptops, an iPad, a Galaxy Note II and my wife also has her laptop. My phone is an iPhone and I also have a connection to my satellite (Sky) TV box.
More recently I bought a RAVPower after I came across this forum:-
It's for those who play hide-and-seek with their GPSrs, but also of interest for more technical users.
Android devices can be difficult to connect with, but iThings are even worse. The 'RAVPower FileHub' could be the answer. I'm so convinced of what I've read about this device that I ordered one from here:-
It costs £30. It is a complex device with Wi-Fi connect-ability. It has an SD Card Reader and USB connector for hard drives or USB sticks. It also has a 3Ah battery - it's prime function, as it's intended to charge a cellphone.
The Amazon page provides plenty of information as does the forum with a few links.
So I can now connect by wi-fi SD cards, USB memory sticks and USB hard drives, to all my devices, without the use of my Mi-Fi. As it has a USB connector, I can plug-in a card reader for CF cards etc. The RAVPower can also connect to my Mi-Fi, so then all devices connected to it, also have internet access.
It has no charger supplied, as it has another USB connector for connecting to any power source. i.e. it has a 'host controller' and a 'device' connector.