Sorry for the long wait.
I expect that the time required to establish the LAN connection to the 8163B and 8164B is normal, but possibly it can be set up to connect faster depending on the type of network connection.
If the unit is configured with DHCP enabled, but there is no DHCP server in the network connection, then there is a standard wait for the server before this times out and the AutoIP procedure is followed. This would be the case if you are using a simple point-to-point connection between the unit and the computer. Is that your case? Then it might be faster to configure a fixed IP address with DHCP disabled.
I think you should be able to check the status of the connection from the "Current LAN Settings" entry of the Configuration menu, accessed from the "Config" button on the front panel.
Maybe the PC is not configured with a fixed IP address compatible to the instrument's address? If this is a point to point connection for example, then you'll need the first 3 parts of the IP address to be the same for the PC and the instrument.
Just a couple first things to check:
Is the LAN interface of the PC working ok for other connections? It sounds unusual if it does not light up. Or maybe the cable is bad?
Also, are you using the sockets connection to the instrument? There have been issues with reconnecting in a point-to-point connection with cross-over cable, when using the VXI rather than sockets connection, like I think you've seen before. (That issue may be helped by using a LAN switch or router rather than the direct connection to the PC.
So I check the connection before to post the message : the computer can connect to the network by the LAN interface, with the same cable. I tryed to connect the equipment to the computer with other cables and none works. And I tryed to connect the equipment to the network, with different cables, and that no works. When I configure the mainframe, I restart the network in the config menu, and the menu "Current LAN settings" says "Network disconnected".
Another thing : I use the USB-LAN adaptator to connect the equipment to the computer, the only thing which works. I want to connect with the mainframe configured to DHCP off, but if I do that, the equipment can't be found by the Agilent Expert Connection. So to have a connection, I must configure DHCP to on and use socket connection (adress TCPIP0::xx.xx.x.x::5025::SOCKET) because the other connection mode (adress TCPIP0::xx.xx.x.x::inst0::INSTR) don't works too.
Thanks in advance to help us to resolve these recurrent troubles.
Are you sure that the cable is a cross-over LAN cable? That is what should be used for a direct connection between the PC and 8164B, but would not have been the right cable to use for the connection between the PC and the network that you made.
For the direct connection, you probably want to disable the DHCP and assign an IP address. But then the same should be done for the PC LAN interface, as mentioned above using a similar address.
For the network connection, you probably need to enable DHCP so that an address can be assigned. I suppose that your building LAN might have some kind of security that prevents a connection. Has it worked ok with your earlier 8164B units?
I really don't have any experience with how a USB/LAN adapter might be supported by the Connection Expert. Possibly it also has some configuration settings that are needed.
Finally, instead of using a USB/LAN adapter and solving the LAN setup, it may be simpler and more robust for you to use a USB/GPIB adapter to connect directly to the instrument, like using the Agilent 82357B. That is definitely supported by IO Suites and the Connection Expert.