new to broadband and confused

  [DELETED] 15:57 12 Mar 2006

I am about to upgrade my dial up connection to broadband. I have the modem from Virgin Net which will connect to my PC by USB and then connect with a filter to the phone socket using my existing phone extension cable. That I understand, however I want to also connect my laptop and for that I need a router but I am unsure exactly what bits of kit I need. Someone mentioned 'ethernet' cables around the house but I don't want to create a network - that is to say I don't want to share files, printers etc between the two computers just share the broadband connection. My understanding is that you buy a router then connect the two computers to it using standard phone cables and then connect that to your phone socket or is there more to it than that - and what do I need to go wireless ? Totally confused, any guidance appreciated.

  Forum Editor 19:03 12 Mar 2006

but once you get involved you'll soon realise that wireless technology actually does a very simple job.

I recommend that you buy a wireless router with an ADSL modem built in - there are dozens of them out there, but if you stick to a well-known brand you won't go far wrong. Take a look at routers by Netgear, Linksys and Belkin - they all do the same job, and are all pretty easy to set up.

If your PC is sited near to where the router will be you can run it with a cable connected to the router, so you'll only need a wireless adapter for the laptop. Most modern laptops have wireless adapters built in, but if your doesn't I suggest that you buy a PCMCIA card type from any of the three companies I mentioned above. Don't worry too much about compatibility - most manufacturers' wireless adapters and routers can be mixed and matched.

You'll connect the router to your broadband phone line via the normal ADSL filter. It will be powered up by its own transformed power supply, so you'll need a spare socket nearby.

For initial setup you must then connect a computer (it doesn't matter which one) to the router with an ethernet cable - that will be supplied with the router, and it connects between any of the four network ports on the back and the computer's own LAN port.

You then launch your web browser and type an IP address into the address bar - the address will be supplied in the router manual, and connects you to the router's internal configuration pages (NOT to the internet at this stage).

Once the router is set up with your ISP login details you can disconnect the ethernet cable (if you want to) and share the connection with any computer that has a wireless adapter.

There are some steps which you should take to secure the connection so your neighbours can't surf on your connection, but you can come back for more help on those later.

  [DELETED] 19:51 12 Mar 2006

Great - that is all much clearer now, many thanks

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