Question about Dell Computers & Internet
I am not familliar with that brand, so I do not know if it is a cable/dsl modem, a router, or a combination of the 2. I will assume it is the cable or dsl modem since you said modem.
The thing we need to do first is give you a basic understanding of whats what, and how it works.
Imagine a 3 tier water fountain. Water flows from the top, to the center, to the bottom.
Your home network is the same way. Signal flows from the MODEM to the ROUTER to the COMPUTER CLIENTS in that order. Keep this in mind. Also, remember you never, NEVER setup a router from a wireless computer client. you ALWAYS use an ethernet connected client in port 1 2 3 or 4.
Quick education about Firewalls: They are programs and devices that are designed SPECIFICALLY to BLOCK TRAFFIC. Think of them like Toll Roads. YOU have to open each virtual port for inbound, outbound, or both. Since that is such a painstaking thing, most firewalls come with default port settings, blocking the most typically unused traffic ports and monitoring the common ones, such as port 80 (the internet port) port 110 (the sending mail POP port) and port 25 (the receiving mail SMTP port). That is why typically, people who can get online (but cant send or receive email) have to disable their firewall or antivirus (security) suite, because the program is closing the ports making them useless. IF you have a router, theres a 99.9% chance that YOU WILL NOT need a firewall. Routers are firewalls by nature.
Quick education about LAN (LAN means Local Area Network, meaning a router inside your house or inside your office or a series of switches and ports setup in your apartment, your "local area") settings: Most lans are DHCP, which means nothing to you, but, in lamens terms it means that you hook it up, turn it on, and it auto configures itself. In the olden days, you had to tell your computer its address, and tell the router its address and the address of each computer, and so forth. Thanks to dhcp, they can now negotiate a lease and assign that info automatically. SO, make sure DHCP is ENABLED. and make sure your lan settings are set to "Obtain ip address and dns server automatically".
Quick education about drivers. you DO need drivers for the wireless devices, you DO need drivers for the ethernet devices, but you DO NOT need drivers for the router, and YOU DO NOT need drivers for the modem. DO NOT HOOK THE MODEM TO THE COMPUTER THRU USB! USB is never to be used unless you do not have ethernet capability, it's like a spare tire. Remove any USB wires from the modem and put them away please! The ONLY wires you want in the modem are POWER and ETHERNET. (they dont make USB routers because USB is not a networking device, USB is a peripheral device)
You will be using Ethernet connection. An ethernet connection requires that you only have the ethernet drivers. So:
YES you need to make sure your ethernet drivers are installed and that your ethernet ports are enabled and working, and:
YES you need to make sure that your wireless card is enabled and functioning, and radio is switched to ON.
Now, remember the fountain? We are going to build it here. The trick is that we have to reset the DHCP list. (if we dont, then it wont work because DHCP will be stubborn and try to talk to the other items, not knowing they were removed). So, we will need to unplug power to the modem and router and shut down each pc client... after you print these directions of course.
While everything is off, hook the main computer into PORT 1 on the router. Make sure that PORTS 2 3 and 4 are empty. (fyi, you can use those for xbox, ps2/3 or wii, or any extra computers). Now, look for a port that says "LAN" or "ETHERNET" or UPLINK on the router. (it will be an ethernet port that doesnt have a number). hook that to the cable/dsl modem. You should now have the modem, hooked to the router, the router hooked to the main pc. Lets start the water flow.
plug power into the modem and wait 1 minute for DHCP synch with the company. (usually you see a sync light or a ready light).
once the modem is synched with the ISp, plug power to the router and wait 1 minute. (so the router can get the dhcp from the modem)
If your modem and router are combined in 1 device, then just wait for synch with isp.
Now start the main computer and try the internet. If you can get online, you have a good network connection. The rest will have to be done by the wireless router mfr, but it isnt hard. In fact, by default, you should be able to start your wireless and get online through it now, but you may want to consider wireless security, (WEP WPA) settings. Call the rtr mfr for those. (its not hard, just tedious and this post is long enough already).. lol. Quick note about wifi: its flaky. If you have a 2.4 ghz phone in your area you may drop connection (wireless only). try different wifi channels to resolve the issue, (call router mfr).
Posted on Nov 11, 2009
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
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