Can I make an old PC wireless ?

  Dezbo 14:19 18 May 2009


I have a perfectly good PC, (for what I need), which previously had dial up connection. I haven't used it for some time since getting a laptop - but now it could be used by my son. The problem is that it is a few years old and doesn't have ethernet connection to use broadband or wireless connection, (only has the telephone dial up connection). I have a wireless router. Is there a way I can connect it to get broadband - will a wireless dongle of some description work ?

Advice or options appreciated.

  Graphicool1 14:24 18 May 2009

It will need to have either an internal modem card, an ethernet port or USB ports.

  Graphicool1 14:28 18 May 2009

Being as you have wireless if the PC in question has USB all it needs is a USB wireless adapter. That's what I've got, my PC is over 6 years old WinXP SP3. My wife has a Vista laptop so we went from dial-up to Broadband Wireless.

  Dezbo 14:30 18 May 2009

It has a moden which was used for dial up via telephone. And it has USB v1.0.

Old isn't it compared to the ones today. Got it approx 2003.

  Graphicool1 14:44 18 May 2009

USB 1.0. would be fine and can easily be updated if needed.
New doesn't always mean better. You only have to trawl this site to see the controversies between say WinXP & Vista or IE7 & IE8.

There could be however a slight problem regarding fitting the adapter. My PC doesn't have an ethernet port - being old! All the Belkin instructions involve initial connection using the ethernet cable. I was - for obvious reasons - unable to do that.

My wife had no trouble, her laptop has a built in adapter. All we needed to do with that, was sort out the router, switch on the laptop and away it went.

When you come to connecting the adapter to the desktop PC and in turn to the router, you may want to inquire as to how to do it, by opening a thread in the networking forum. I know I did mine but I can't remeber enough about how I did it to tell you. :¬]

  keef66 15:13 18 May 2009

Our 7 year old pc had a modem but no network port. When we got broadband I took out the modem card and installed a simple network card instead (just a push fit into one of the PCI slots on the motherboard) Now it is connected by a network cable to the wireless router. If the pc is some distance from the router you could instead buy a wireless network card.

Similarly, it came with usb 1.1 I bought a usb 2.0 PCI card which added two usb 2.0 ports at the back of the pc.

Spookily just 2 days ago I had to replace the motherboard, and the new one has networking and usb 2.0 built in. So I have a network card and a usb 2.0 card going spare; a tenner and they are yours! Proper Netgear stuff complete with CD's. PM me if interested

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 15:21 18 May 2009

A cheap network card
click here and ethernet cable will allow you to connect by wire if the machine is near the router.

A wireless network card click here or USB dongle if you dont want to open the box. click here

Your wireless router is already setup so you could go straight wireless all you need to input in the machine is the security key for your router.

  keef66 15:22 18 May 2009

sorry, the network card's Netgear, the usb card is Belkin

  Dezbo 15:31 18 May 2009

Would this do the trick...

click here

...even though USB is 1.1

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 15:34 18 May 2009


I use a wireless dongle on an old HP compaq laptop with USB 1 ports.

  nutta106 15:40 18 May 2009

Did this with our PC. All you need to do is get a Wireless network card and plug it in the back, can be quite daunting opening your pc and installing hardware if your not used to doing it, but it really is simple, most cards come with step by step guides aswell.

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

Elsewhere on IDG sites

Dell XPS 13 9370 (2018) review

The art of 'British' pulp fiction

Best password managers for Mac

TV & streaming : comment regarder le Tournoi des Six Nations 2018 ?