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  • Wireless Laptop Q:

    1st new laptop in quite a while, and I am wondering about connecting wireless to the Internet. Not that that's a big deal, I'm on the Internet right now wireless as I type this .... but my Q:

    With a wireless laptop do you actually have to subscribe to an Internet provider??? I'm connected, but I don't ever remember setting anything up in the computer with my information??? I don't have a router, I just pull in someone else's signal.

    Stupid Q I know ... I'm really pretty smart, I promise !!! Ha!! Ha!!


    Russ
    Nashville
    "In Order To Predict The Future .... Create It"

  • #2
    1st new laptop in quite a while, and I am wondering about connecting wireless to the Internet. Not that that's a big deal, I'm on the Internet right now wireless as I type this .... but my Q:

    With a wireless laptop do you actually have to subscribe to an Internet provider??? I'm connected, but I don't ever remember setting anything up in the computer with my information??? I don't have a router, I just pull in someone else's signal.

    Stupid Q I know ... I'm really pretty smart, I promise !!! Ha!! Ha!!


    Russ
    Nashville


    If your computer is working on the Internet without you doing any setup, it is getting that information from however you connect to the internet. On a wired computer that would be your ISP. With a wireless, if you don't have a wireless router or access point, then you are getting onto someone else's wireless connection, either legally or illegally. Note - if you are getting onto a neighbors wireless connection, whether they have it protected or not, and you don't have their permission, you are breaking the law.... now if you are doing it someplace with free access (cafe, bookstore, etc.), you are good.
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    • #3
      With a wireless laptop do you actually have to subscribe to an Internet provider??? I'm connected, but I don't ever remember setting anything up in the computer with my information???
      There are a lot of free wireless access points - a lot of coffee shop/bakeries have them and even some cities even have them. You can connect to the Internet with those just for the taking. There are also a lot of people with wireless routers in their home who haven't taken the steps to secure them, so you might be poaching on a neighbor's connection.

      On a PC, if you click on the network icon it'll tell you where you're connected. If is says something like "Linksys" that's a neighbor (who has an unsecured Linksys router).
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      • #4
        Some airports and hotels have free wireless, others charge. The free stuff is good!

        You can also buy a wireless card that connects to a particular provider, like Sprint or Qwest. It's conceptually like having a cell phone with internet access wired into your laptop. But both the card and the service will cost you.
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        • #5
          There are several web sites that will tell you where the wi-fi hotspots are in a particular area. Here one: http://www.wififreespot.com/
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          • #6
            if you have an internet connection at home via cable/dsl, just get a WAP for it.

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            • #7
              WAP = Wireless Access Point aka wireless gateway/router

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              • #8
                sorry, lazy typing that out. and secure it. change default SSID. i choose not to broadcast it, but i dont have to deal with other people coming to my house needing internet on their laptops, if they do... i can set them up.

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                • #9
                  Hey thanks guys .. your all soooooooo smart.
                  I've been a paid Internet subscriber since 1996, so I'm not trying to beat the system. I was just curious why I could pick it up without any of my info. Yea my neighbor has a Linsky, I found it the other day when I was hooking up a scanner for him. He's such a good neighbor and I'm really good to him too. I'll have to tell you his story sometime, he's a real music lover.


                  Russ
                  Nashville
                  "In Order To Predict The Future .... Create It"

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