[ubuntu] Can I transfer data through enthernet cable between two computers?

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http://ubuntuforums.org – Okay, so as the title says, I need to transfer files from computer to computer(laptop-desktop, both have Ubuntu 11.10 installed) without internet. So today I decided to throw away my old desktop computer, but I had a cruel idea; why wouldn't I use it as my external hard drive... That means I want to transfer files from my laptop to this desktop computer, but it would take forever with small USB drives. Is it possible to transfer files over enthernet(RJ45 I suppose) cable, with the other PC(the desktop) having no internet connection? Is there any good software? And yes, of course I do h (Hardware)