Wanting to setup wireless networking but don't have a clue!

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Shaun.P, Jan 4, 2006.

  1. macrumors 68000

    Shaun.P

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2003
    Location:
    Omicron Persei 8
    #1
    Hi everyone,

    My Dad and I bought laptops each yesterday. I got a 14 inch iBook and he got a Compaq one (I think).

    I have 2mb/s broadband. A cable comes from the ground outside, through my ceiling, and into a cable tv box (like the boxes you get when u get sky etc, except i get internet through this and no tv). A cable then runs from this box into my iBook (it is an ethernet cable).

    I want to be able to share my internet connection wirelessly with my dads computer. But I don't know what I need to buy etc - I am completely clueless!

    Do I need a wired router - which I plug the cable (which originally plugs right into my iBook) into the router and then connect to the router using my iBook with it's wireless stuff? And would my dad do the same with his laptop?

    I am completely confused and don't have a large budget. Any help would be great, especially any recommendations on things that will work on both my iBook and my Dads Windows XP laptop.
     
  2. macrumors G4

    Applespider

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2004
    Location:
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    #2
    You can share your connection by enabling internet sharing and creating a network but it's not going to help if your iBook isn't on or you've taken it elsewhere.

    Simplest option will be to buy a wireless router (if your signal is coming into via cable rather than phoneline, then you won't need the ADSL modem part that many include). Most brands will work easily enough; if you only want to have one printer though, and use it wirelessly, the Airport Express is a reasonable option.

    You'll plug the ethernet cable into the router, set up some basic security on it and then you'll both be able to connect wirelessly.
     
  3. thread starter macrumors 68000

    Shaun.P

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2003
    Location:
    Omicron Persei 8
    #3
    So my Dad can connect to my computer wirelessly when my computer is directly connected to the internet (i,e, wire from cable box to my iBook?). This would be good as it would mean I wouldn't need to buy anything.

    But what if I wanted to access the internet without any cables in my Mac? Do I just connect the cable box to a router, and my iBook will connect to the router with Airport? i,e, if I switched my computer off, the network would still exist, right?
     
  4. Gee
    macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2004
    Location:
    London, UK
    #4
    The simplest solution (though not necessarily the cheapest) would be to get an Airport Express, which you would then plug into the cable box using an ethernet cable (the same as you're doing at the mo with your ibook) - you and your dad (assuming his laptop has wireless) then connect to the Airport and through to the internet wirelessly.

    There's a few cheaper options - the airport is I think £90 - so check out dabs.com or pcworld for products from dlink, linksys, netgear, etc. You'll be able to get a cheap wireless router for less than £50. Might not be easily to configure, and you might have to configure it using an install disk and your dad's laptop, but once it's going you shoul be fine.

    Personally though, the extra for the airport express is worth it, especially because it lets you stream music to your stereo as well.
     
  5. macrumors 68040

    trainguy77

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2003
    #5
    Yes that's correct.
    Yes you have got a wireless router then you could turn off you computer and your dad would still have internet.
     
  6. macrumors 65816

    prostuff1

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2005
    Location:
    Don't step into the kawoosh...
    #6
    What you need is a wireless router. Does not really matter which one. I have a linksys one and it works really well and in generall linksys make very good routers. I have the WRT54G version 3.1 and it works really well, just had to do a firmware update.

    If you need more info search the forums for it. There are plenty of threads on wireless routers.
     
  7. thread starter macrumors 68000

    Shaun.P

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2003
    Location:
    Omicron Persei 8
    #7
    When I buy a new computer - I have to setup the account by going through a series of webpages (typing in my account number with my ISP and password etc) before my internet will work how would this work if my computer is connecting to a router? Argh this is so complicated!
     
  8. macrumors G4

    Applespider

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2004
    Location:
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    #8
    When you buy the router, you access the router's setup system - usually through your internet browser with an internal IP address - you enter your account number/password etc in there so that your router can talk to your ISP. Then you set up your security (WPA etc) on the wireless network and then you tell the computers that want to use the wireless network what the network's name and WPA password are.
     
  9. macrumors 6502

    ScubaDuc

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2003
    Location:
    Europe
    #9
    When I had to do it with a netgear routers a few years back, I had Applecare on the line to help me configure the router but they didn't succeed...I had to get a win XP laptop to run the setup wizard. :eek: Took five minutes., noted the IP address for the Mac and the rest was a breeze. Now, Safari should be able to run the setup wizard...I hope! :rolleyes:
     
  10. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago (by way of SF)
    #10
    I have a Netgear router. I configured the system through my Mac with no trouble. But a warning concerning Netgear: they outsourced their customer service overseas a long time ago and now have a terrible reputation (long hold times, poor product knowledge, limited or heavily accented English).

    Early on I had some troubles getting a PC to work wirelessly and had to work with the support people -- total waste of time. Eventually I took care of it myself. I like the Netgear router, though there have been drop out problems when wireless (the ethernet connections are always fine). I think this is not unusual considering that we have some phones that may be interferring occasionally. (The fact that the dog chewed on the antenna is not good either, but not Netgear's fault -- unless they coat their antennas in beef juice.)

    If you can handle the system yourself Netgear is fine. If you are worried that you may need customer support at some time I would recommend not using Netgear.
     

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