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PC Hardware Annoyances by Stephen J. Bigelow

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GENERAL NETWORKING ANNOYANCES

LINK LED ON AND OFF

The Annoyance:

Why does my Internet connection keep cutting in and out?

The Fix:

You’ve probably got a bad Ethernet cable that is wreaking havoc with your network connection. If you watch the link LED at your Ethernet port, I’ll bet that you see the light flicker on and off. Simply replace the damaged Ethernet cable. You could also try connecting the NIC to a different port on the switch or hub.

DIAL-UP AND BROADBAND TOGETHER

The Annoyance:

Why can’t I receive faxes or voice mail over my new broadband connection? I don’t have trouble with either when I use dial-up.

The Fix:

Although ordinary DSL should continue to provide your current phone services, broadband cable connections do not include phone services. Once you establish a broadband connection, you should not require a dial-up modem. However, if you intend to continue faxing and receiving messages at your PC, you’ll need to keep your existing analog modem in place. You’ve merely transferred the Internet-related tasks (such as email, web surfing, and file downloading) to the high-speed connection.

HARDWARE SHARING REQUIREMENTS

The Annoyance:

I connected several PCs in my home to a hub, and then connected the hub to my cable modem. Why can’t I get the PCs to share Internet access?

The Fix:

You can’t just plug a hub into your cable/DSL modem and expect to give the networked PCs Internet access. To do that, you need a router, which is a device that connects networks together. The router replaces ...

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