Help concerning Lap tops...

Discussion in 'Computers & Website Forum' started by D28guy, Jan 31, 2007.

  1. D28guy

    D28guy
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    OK, I'm thinking about getting a lap top, but I have a several questions:

    1) How do I acess the internet since there is no cord for the modem/DSL?

    A friend at work said something about being "close to any building that has internet" but what exactly does that mean? How close? Surely it doesnt mean you are stealing internet access without paying for it, which brings me to...

    2) How DO I pay for it? Just call my internet provider and tell them I have a lap top?

    3) How much will the internet connection...however its done...cost?

    Thanks,

    Mike
     
  2. ccrobinson

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    1) I don't know how other ISPs deliver DSL, but here's what I have. I have an ADSL router that I plug my phone line into using a standard 2-pair, RJ-11, phone cable. I installed a filter, supplied by my ISP, so that voice calls can come over the same phone line. I installed a NIC (Network Interface Controller) card in my desktop computer and connected to the ADSL router using a standard 4-pair, RJ-45 cable.

    A few months ago, I bought a wireless router that the ADSL router plugs into, and our laptop connects to that router, sans cable of course, for Internet access. I haven't accessed the Net via dial-up for several years now, but I doubt that it's changed much. We bought our laptop last June and a modem was standard equipment. I'd be surprised if they're not included on new ones.

    I think stealing internet access without paying, what some people call "war driving", is what your friend is referring to. Home users who aren't technically savvy don't secure their wireless networks, and some don't know they need to, and anybody can hop on to their unsecured network and access the Net. I've never done it and don't know what the range of wireless routers are.

    2) You will need to call up your ISP and ask for their help, especially if you're going wireless.

    3) I pay $29.95/month for near T3 line download speeds, about 1.544 Mbps.

    Hope this helps!
     
  3. exscentric

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    Some businesses offer free internet access to those that have wireless when you are out and around. Many coffee houses and here in OR all Burger Kings offer it and it works pretty great.

    Some stores sell little detectors so you can detect these wireless spots.

    The above post mentioned ethics of it, and using someones network isn't right unless they offer it to you as in a business.

    I have a wired/wireless network in the house and my wireless laptop card connects nicely.
     
  4. Dale-c

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    Laptop

    You can use any connection with a laptop that you can with a desktop.
    Once thing to consider though is that many new computers do not have dial up modems so if that is your method of getting online, then you will need to make sure it has one.

    I would suggest a MacBook, you can get them for about $800 if you look for a bit form this site:
    http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore.woa/wa/RSLID?mco=245F1283&nclm=CertifiedMac

    Now, if you get DSL or cable you can also get an Airport Base station to use with it so you can go all over your house.

    I hope this was helpful.
     
  5. D28guy

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    Whoa! :eek:

    Well, thanks everyone for the advice and info.

    Based on what I've read, I'm just going to forget the whole idea. All of this...

    ...is like speaking a foreign language. All this buisiness about "cards" and "routers" and "filters", and what not...I have no idea what any of that stuff means. I was thinking I would be able to buy the thing, call Time Warner and tell them what I have, and they would just flip a switch somewhere and...Voila!...I can access the internet in the park, at work, on the beach, etc etc etc, for a $10 extra charge per month. :thumbs:

    When in fact all of this computer geekdom gobbledegoop would have me doing this...:BangHead: :BangHead: ...all night long trying to get the idiot box to work.

    What would happen is I would just take it back to Wally World the next day and tell them..."It doesnt work, I want my $400 back."

    Thanks all!

    Mike
     
    #5 D28guy, Feb 1, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 1, 2007
  6. exscentric

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    I don't think it is as hard as you think. Your post had a lot of unknowns in it so I suspect the answers were a lot more broad than you needed.

    If you know the model and make of the unit it would help. Or if you know that it has wireless built in it would help a lot.

    Assuming it has wireless built in, you just turn it on and it will probably search for a connection. If one or more is there it will tell you.

    Do you already have a home network set up? Do you have a wireless router? I assume you already have dsl. If you don't have the router, call your dsl supplier and tell them what you want to do and they will tell you what you need in the way of equipment.

    Basically dsl comes into a modem which you have if you have dsl and a wire goes to your computer, then to have more than one computer you will need a wireless router.

    If you don't want to go through all that you could unplug your other computer and plug the wire into your laptop. (To use the laptop somewhere beside where the wire is would require another wire run to where you want to use it or a router.)

    Post what your laptop is going to be, exactly what you want to do and whether you already have dsl and modem and/or a router and I'd guess we can talk you through it, or your dsl provider can also do that for you over the phone.
     
  7. ccrobinson

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    Yes, exactly. Plus, I didn't know what level of technical expertise you have, D28, so I apologize for making it sound more complicated than it is. It's a limitation of this medium, because I'm usually very good at explaining technical stuff to non-technical people.

    Regardless, your ISP can still help you, and they won't overwhelm you with technical information.
     
  8. Pastor Larry

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    Perhaps this might make sense (there's always a first for me).

    You can connect to the internet two ways:

    1. Wireless access -- Most recent laptops have wireless cards built in. You need no cords to your computer. But you do need the internet access to your house and a wireless router. Most places like Best Buy or Circuit City can help you set this up. You typically cannot use this with dial up access. YOu need DSL or Cable modem access.

    2. Wired access -- Here you have a wire from your computer's network port or modem port. If you have dsl or cable modem, you run the wire from your network port directly to your cable modem, or to your router. Again, most electronics stores can show you how to do this. It is easy. You can also have dial up access with this, where you have a modem in your computer with a phone line cord to the phone jack on the wall.

    It's not that different from a desktop in hooking it up. It is a lot more convenient.
     
  9. Sularis

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    Simple Answers

    Ok you can buy a laptop that will do anything a desktop will do

    the laptop I have - I made sure I had all three options

    Network - Modem - wireless

    It should be you just simply take the cord out of the desktop computer and plug it into the laptop - and you are half done

    the second step is you telling the laptop what number - and yer account name and password - whoever did it for you on your desktop will be able to do it for you on your laptop

    Or it is possible for me to type a step by step list for you to follow - and I mean baby steps

    Or if yer willing to throw cash - your ISP will send someone and install everything in your house and make sure it works

    If you desire to go wireless and with a laptop that is best - I fully suggest having the ISP come in and do it.
     
  10. D28guy

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    Oh boy! Now I'm getting hopeful again. :thumbs:

    It was asked if I had a home network. No. I just have this one computer here in the den, and I dont need any more for here.

    The reason I have been thinking about getting a lap top is because I thought it would be neat to just be able to take it with me in the car and be able to access the internet from work during breaks, if I go to Myrtle Beach on vacation I can surf the net from the Holiday Inn room, etc.

    So I assume that means I am wanting to go "wireless".

    From the more recent posts it appears I can just call Time Warner and they can send someone out to set it up for me, with this "router" thing being the only other expense for computer gadjets? (Time Warner does not charge for home calls)

    Is that correct?

    Thanks everyone,

    Mike
     
  11. StefanM

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    If you're looking to get a wireless connection while you travel, you'll need to get a wireless card from a cell-phone provider.

    It will be pricey (probably $60+ a month).

    If you are just looking to connect wherever a "hot-spot" (meaning a place with an open wireless network) is, then all you'll need is a wireless LAN adapter, which usually comes internally with laptops now.
     
  12. Trotter

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    Look at a laptop as a portable desktop.

    Almost all laptops come with a built-in modem, and all newer ones have an ethernet jack as well as wireless capability.

    When I bought my daughter her lappy, I also bought a wireless router (as I was buying/building my computer at the time, so we were going to have three computers on one connection. I run ethernet cables from the router to my old computer (which my wife has now claimed as her own) and my new computer. I set up the wireless for my daughter's lappy, but she could hook it up via ethernet if she so chose. I had Linksys tech support walk me through it, as it was unknown territory. I also activated the security on the wireless signal so no one can piggyback on it (use my access for free).

    All of this sounds like Greek, but it ain't. Just take it one step at a time.
     
  13. D28guy

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    Oh oh. A "card". Gobbledegoop meter starts rising...:confused:

    :eek:

    So much for the "card" :)

    (gobbldegoop meter "zeros out" again)

    Well, I guess that eliminates the beach, at a Bluegrass music festival somewhere, etc. And that of course brings up the issue of whether or not its "stealing" to just hop onto someone elses connection because I'm close enough to that building. Guess that would be for the other boards rather than this one.

    Y'all have been a big help. I've actually learned a few things about these things as a result, so its been profitable. :thumbs:

    Mike
     
  14. kubel

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    Most laptops these days come with 3 ways to get online. Wireless. 56K. Broadband.

    1] Wireless (you will need a wireless router or access point. You can usually ask your ISP to hook you up with one if you have DSL or cable. AT&T Yahoo DSL gave us one for free when we signed up).
    2] 56K Modem (dialup over phone line, plugs in to the jack that looks like a phone jack).
    3] DSL/Cable (your DSL/cable modem connects to the wall, and a cable from that modem plugs into a jack on your laptop that looks like an oversized phone jack. Alternatively, some DSL/cable modems let you plug the modem into your laptop via a USB cable. USB is the small rectangle port).

    Wireless can be free if you live near areas with public access. It can also be free if your neighbor leaves their wireless connection open (although this is usually considered stealing unless you have their permission).

    Generally you pay for broadband (DSL or cable), and then you can connect this wireless router to give yourself wireless Internet. You can purchase or rent wireless routers or wireless gateways from your ISP and they will configure everything for you. Or you can buy a wireless router/access point separately and install it yourself. Whichever you feel more comfortable doing. Generally you won't pay anything extra for the wireless signals themselves, but you may pay more for installation, rental of equipment, etc...

    We have AT&T Yahoo DSL. When we signed up, we got a free wireless gateway (modem and wireless router in one) and a nice 3Mpbs connection for something like $21.50/month. A few days ago, our wireless gateway gave up the ghost. The cost to replace it was $79.99. We also did all our installation ourselves. I'm not sure how much that would cost (probably $100).

    So... for me:

    $21.50/month for the Internet connection.
    $79.99 (one time) for a wireless gateway. OR $5.00/month if you rent your equipment. OR $0.00 if you are lucky to get into a deal like we originally were.
    $100.00 (one time) if you want them to install stuff. OR $0.00 if you feel comfortable installing everything yourself (they usually send instructions).
     
  15. kmichael

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    Just thought I would throw this out there incase anyone has the answer off the top of their head.

    In 3 weeks my student loan refund comes back and I have to (want to but it is almost a necessity on my campus; as crazy as that sounds) get a laptop.

    Here is the rough config I want (fyi--I am fairly computer savy....I have rebuild my PC, and made some minor mods to it. But I am not up on laptops and what is good and bad etc. I will use this only for the Internet, Word, PPT, EXL and some minor downloads.....that is it)

    I am not going to look up all the proper lingo so bare with me.

    1.66 processor
    1 gig ram
    40-80gb harddrive
    DVD rewrite
    rather portable (the dell inspiron is too bulky)
    MS Office pro
    XP Media Center
    9 or 12 battery pack with ac adaptor (i think the standard is 6....i have no clue other than battery size.
    1 gig jump drive (free hehe)
    media remote
    mini mouse
    carrying case

    That is pretty much it. I have priced this on dell, IBM, HP and it seems to range from 12-14 hundred (I am looking/hoping to keep it under 1200.00.....I like the config of the Dell the best.....my dad just got nearly the same thing from dell.....but I hate the size and weight of it.


    Any suggestions????? Other brands? I have been to best buy and circut city but the compaqs and hp's they had looked and felt like junk. might hve been my mind....they looked ratty and over used.

    anyway.......don't go out of your way....but if yur an expert in this sorta thing and want to respond I would check out your recommentation.

    K


    PS.......I only want a wireless card to use at, school, and St louis Bread Company, starbucks and boarders (all have wifi;) :) I am not paying 60/mnth for the internet. :)



    thank you
     
  16. StefanM

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    It is "stealing" to get on someone's network without permission, but encryption measures are beginning to block that option anyway. The "hot-spots" are open to the public, generally provided as a free service to people nearby the store.

    Using wireless is kind of like using a restroom. You don't just walk into someone's house to use their restroom without permission, but public restrooms are fair game. So it goes with "hot spots"--they are the "public restrooms" of wireless internet.
     
  17. Brother Bob

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    People are wising up to "hot spots" and setting their routers on security so people can't use their band width. You can set what ever IP you want to be able to use your internet connection. That way, someone in the next room can't use it.
     
  18. kubel

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    How about the U205?

    I don't know how much you would like ultra-portables. But the more I use my laptop the more I wish it was lighter and smaller (especially when lugging it around campus). I have a v2000z (cheapest laptop available at the time, about $350), but for how cheap it was, I'm actually pretty satisfied with it.

    Also, check out notebookreviews.com. That's where I went to find reviews for the v2000z and links to coupons and other stuff before I made my decision. Very helpful site and forums.
     

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