In many cases, connecting your Mac to the Internet is straightforward. The vast majority of Macs (and all new Macs) are configured right of out of the box to access an Internet connection shared over a network. So if your network already has an Internet connection through a router (such as an Apple AirPort), all you have to do is connect your Mac to the network—either using a wired or wireless (Wi-Fi) connection—and your Mac will have Internet access within seconds.
Sometimes, however, you need to configure your network settings manually to match what your Internet service provider (ISP) or workplace has provided. This chapter goes into the details of configuring your network settings manually.