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Upgrading and Fixing Computers: Do-it-Yourself For Dummies® by Andy Rathbone

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Chapter 14. Adding or Replacing a Modem

Topics and tasks in this chapter

  • Choosing a modem

  • Installing an external dialup modem

  • Installing an internal dialup modem

  • Helping Windows 7 find a dialup modem

  • Installing a broadband (cable/DSL) modem

Windows keeps a constant finger on the Internet's pulse, so the Internet is no longer a luxury but a necessity. As soon as you turn on your computer, Windows eagerly downloads security patches, as well as updated drivers and help menus. Windows even drops by Microsoft's Web site occasionally to make sure you've paid for your copy of Windows.

Because Windows clings to the Internet so tightly, it's understandable that nearly every computer sold in the past few years includes some type of modem — a gadget that sends and receives digital information.

Dialup Internet subscribers are no strangers to modems. Subscribers to speedy broadband Internet service providers (ISPs), both cable and DSL, need slightly different types of modems.

This chapter explains how to choose and install a modem that's compatible with your type of Internet service. As a bonus, it tackles the modern-day survival issue: How to fire up your computer's old dialup modem in times of desperate Internet need.

Choosing a Compatible Modem

Internet service providers — the companies you pay for the privilege of connecting to the Internet — come rated largely by how quickly they spew information to and from your computer. Unfortunately, you can't simply pick the fastest: You're stuck with whatever ...

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