Set Up Computer Networks and Connections
By Bradley Mitchell, About.com Guide
- Planning a Home Computer Network
- Buying Network Equipment
- Direct Connections Between Computers
- Setting Up Home Broadband Routers
- Sharing Files and Printers
- Configuring Home Internet Access
- Troubleshooting Network Connectivity Problems
- Configuring Mobile Internet Access
- Working with IP Addresses
- Securing Network Devices and Data
Planning a Home Computer Network
Designing a home network includes determining the location of your computers, printer(s) and other devices to connect as well as network equipment needs. Home networks can be built using cables, wireless technology, or a combination of both.
- Wired vs. Wireless Home Networking - Pros and Cons
- Home Network Diagrams
- How Many Computers Can Share One Wi-Fi Network?
- Introduction to Powerline Home Networking and HomePlug
Buying Network Equipment
A confusing array of choices awaits anyone shopping for network gear. Home network equipment is available in both wired and wireless varieties as well as different shapes and sizes. The most common types of products - network routers and adapters - can be purchased separately or sometimes together as a kit. Certain types of routers, adapters and other networking products have been created specially for mobile (traveling) users. Finally, some kinds of gear include manageability, advanced security, and other features designed for use on corporate networks.
- How to Choose a Wireless Router
- 802.11ac Wireless Routers
- 802.11n Wireless N Routers
- HomePlug AV Wireless Network Adapters
Direct Connections Between Computers
The simplest kind of network contains just two computers linked by a point-to-point direct connection. You can use these networks to share files, a printer or another peripheral device. So-called "ad hoc" peer networks allow linking more than two computers.
- How to Connect Two Home Computers
- Direct Connection Network Diagram
- Can a Mac Be Connected to a PC?
- How To Set Up Ad Hoc Wi-Fi Networks
- Ad Hoc Wireless Network Diagram
Setting Up Home Broadband Routers
Broadband routers are designed for convenience in setting up home networks, particularly for homes with high-speed Internet service. A broadband router is a small electronic device that connects to broadband modems or other routers. It simplifies the configuration of file sharing, Internet connection sharing and some network security functions.
- How to Set Up a Home Network Router
- How to Set Up a Linksys Network
- How To Connect To Wireless Routers As An Administrator
- Essential Settings for Home Network Routers
- How to Change the Name (SSID) of a Broadband Router
- How to Connect Two Routers on a Home Network
- Default Passwords for Linksys Routers
- Best Ways to Reset a Home Network Router
Sharing Files and Printers
A local network allows efficient transfer of files without the need to carry disks or keys between computers. With only a small additional effort, a printer can also be set up for sharing among multiple computers across a local network.
- Introduction to Network File Sharing
- How to Network a Printer
- Methods for Network File Transfer Between PCs
- How to Use Windows 7 HomeGroup
- How to Enable/Disable Windows File and Printer Sharing
- How to Share Files in Windows XP
- How to Share a Printer in Windows XP
Configuring Home Internet Access
Many people build a home network with the goal of sharing Internet access among all of their computers. Connecting an Internet modem to the home network is the typical way to set up shared access.
- Introduction to Internet and Network Data Plans
- How to Connect a Computer To the Internet
- Availability of DSL Service
- What Is a Default Gateway?
- Free Internet DNS Servers
- Automatic Wireless Internet Connections (Windows XP)
- Windows Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) Software
- Sharing Two Internet Connections - Multi-Homing
Troubleshooting Network Connectivity Problems
Whether due to a configuration error in the set up, a technical glitch, or some other reason, one or more pieces of a computer network may not function properly or suddenly fail. Fortunately, many networking problems can be recognized and fixed quickly.
- Troubleshooting Wireless Network Installation Issues
- Fixing Wireless Network Connection Drops
- Can't Connect to the Internet?
- Troubleshooting Windows File and Printer Sharing
- How To Resolve "Limited Or No Connectivity" Errors In Windows
- Resolving "Duplicate Name Exists" Errors in Windows
- Ping Tools for Network Troubleshooting
- TCP/IP Administration and Troubleshooting Tools (Windows XP)
Configuring Mobile Internet Access
Increasingly, people rely on Internet connectivity while traveling for business or pleasure. That often entails connecting to a network owned by someone else. The ability to establish safe and reliable connections to new networks is essential in today's always-connected world.
Working with IP Addresses
IP addresses are the fundamental method for computers to identify themselves on home networks, the Internet and many other networks. Computers, routers, games consoles and other devices connected to an Internet Protocol network each possess their own IP address. Certain IP addresses are commonly used on local networks.
- What Is an IP Address?
- How to Find Your IP Address
- What Is The Default IP Address of a Linksys Router?
- What Is an IP Address Conflict?
Securing Network Devices and Data
Various technologies exist to improve the security of data being shared on computer networks. The ability to reliably back up data across the network is also critical to avoid loss.
- Are Wireless Networks Secure?
- Introduction to Wi-Fi Network Security
- Tips for Wireless Home Network Security
- Network Firewalls