Because setting up a wireless network requires an understanding of the systems that will make up that network. While it’s not overly difficult to manually inventory each computer, computer diagnostic software can do it for you automatically with just a click of a button. Once an inventory has been generated for each computer, you can then print your inventories out and quickly see potential problems.
For example, you might realize that some of the computers run Windows XP while others run Windows Vista, Windows 7, or even Macintosh. You may also notice that some computers have wireless network adapters while others do not. You may even discover that some of the older network adapters do not support the wireless standard that your new wireless network will be running on.
Armed with this knowledge, you can prepare for the network set up. You may need to run down to the computer shop and buy a few wireless adapters. You may want to upgrade the operating systems of a few of the PCs to ensure compatibility. By running computer repair software beforehand, you can make these decisions and adjustments before setting up the network.
You’ll need a wireless network router and compatible wireless network adapters for each computer. The router physically connects to your broadband Internet connection, so place it near your cable modem or DSL outlet. Initially, you will need to connect a computer to the router using a cable in order to configure the network. This is temporary. Once the network is set up, you can untether the computer and work wirelessly from that point forward.
During the configuration process, you’ll use Internet Explorer to access the router. Use the documentation that came with your router for the specific address and password. For example, if you have a Linksys router, you’ll enter “http://192.168.1.1” into Internet Express’s address bar and use the username of “admin” and the password of “admin” in order to access the router’s configuration interface.
While the specific steps will vary, the process is similar. You’ll need to give your wireless network a name in the SSID field, choose an encryption type and passphrase, and set an administrative password.
Once the basic configuration has been set up, the next step is to connect the computers to the network. Assuming the network adapters have been installed and are turned on, turn on each computer and connect each one to the network individually. Do this by going to Start > Connect To and then selecting the network from the list. You’ll be prompted to enter the passphrase you specified earlier. That’s it. Your network has been set up.
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