By Matthew Wade
If you’re keen on squeezing value for money from your one internet connection, read on as we explain how.
If you run a wireless network |~|Wireless-network---m.gif|~||~|The benefits of internet connection sharing are plentiful, the main one being that everyone in your home can surf the web whilst you, the owner, only pays for one internet connection.
If you and a family member need to use the internet simultaneously and you have two machines at home then, this effectively frees you up to work – or play - without worrying about sharing one internet-connected computer.
If you run a wireless network
First off, if you don’t currently run a wireless local area network (WLAN), check out the link on page 45 to track down our WLAN builder guide on itp.net.
If you are using a wireless access point (usually the central product of any wireless home network) and this has router functionality built-in, you simply need to configure its DSL settings so that all the computers on your network will be able to access your internet via this central network device.
First, find out the default IP address of your router/gateway (this is either given in the product’s manual or, often as not, written under the product itself) and type this into Internet Explorer’s address bar. This brings up a screen of router settings, such as your DSL and wireless security settings.
Click on the DSL connection settings section, put in the username and password applicable to your ISP internet account, then hunt out VCI and VPI settings (these determine what your router does with your internet line). VCI should be set to 0 and VPI should be 50.
Finally, again in DSL settings, look for a protocol setting and make sure this is set to PPPoA (this tells the modem part of your gateway how to connect to your ISP over the DSL line). When done, click the Connect option in the same DSL settings section (otherwise, your Connect option might be over on the main status page).
Now you have the internet set-up, so to share it you need to change the TCP/IP settings on each client PC. On each machine, do this: go to Control Panel/Network Connections, double-click the relevant connection (in this case Wireless Connection) and head for Properties. Then double-click Internet Protocol and under the General tab choose Advanced. Under Default Gateway, click Add and input the router’s IP address. This tells the PC you’re on to use the router’s DSL internet signal.
If you have an access point that doesn’t include DSL modem functions, you have two options: the first is to spend roughly $150 or thereabouts on a new all-in-one wireless gateway product (see itp.net/reviews to read about our favourites). The second option is to buy a network-ready cable or DSL modem, and connect this via CAT5 Ethernet cable to your access point. Then just follow the steps above, replacing the router’s IP address with your standalone modem’s address.
||**||If you run a wired network (LAN)|~|Wired-network---m.gif|~||~|How you set-up your shared net connection varies, in this case, upon how you receive this connection from your ISP. Let’s talk through the possibilities…
Firstly, if your home or office receives its internet connection via a simple built-in Ethernet port in the wall, which you just link to your PC with a CAT5 cable (as is the case with many of this region’s brand new buildings ), then you must connect this cable instead to your network hub or switch.
Next, if you don’t know them already, you’ll need to find out your internet connection settings, probably by calling your ISP (you’ll need the standard IP and DNS IP addresses).
From there, simply follow step 4 in the wireless set-up section above, only make sure you double click the Local Area Connection icon – instead of Wireless Connection - in Network Connections.
Should your internet connection still only work on one PC, it could be that you need to pay your ISP extra to give each of your machines internet access (in other words, pay for the right to share your internet connection). This is sometimes the case when internet comes ‘through the wall’ in this fashion, in that the modem does exist, only it’s at the ISP’s end. (Properties in the UAE that use DIC Telecom (‘du’) connections for instance are in this situation, whereas Etisalat’s broadband customers have modems at home and so can share their connection with any number of PCs.
If however, to get the internet at home, your ISP had to set-up a dedicated DSL line to your house, then you should already have a wired DSL modem. Your job is then simply to connect the modem to your network hub or switch (again with CAT5 cable), and then work through the client settings outlined in step 4 (above).