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Hardware needed for a wireless Internet connection

By: Austin Luna


Why setup a wireless Internet connection?

If you're wondering why you should setup a wirelss Internet connection, continue reading throught this page for information about why you should upgrade to wireless Internet. Tired of wires running from room to room to connect your computers to the network hub? It doesn't matter if you have a brand new Linksys router or and old one, or even a Belkin 5 or 8 port switch, setting up a wireless network and wireless Internet connection for your home network is far easier than it was a few years ago. The advent of the wireless USB adapter and companies like Dlink and Linksys has made setting up wireless Internet for a desktop computer almost as easy as plugging in a laptop or a notebook card. The kind of Internet connection you have will determine what you actually need in terms of wireless networking products to set up a wireless Internet connection for your desktop PC. You can setup a wireless Internet connection very easy, proably easier than you think.

Wireless Internet connection for desktop computers

Turning your wired connection to a wireless connection used to mean you had to open up your machine and prepare for a little work under the hood. While you still can opt for internal wireless, it is far easier to use a wireless USB adapter. Linksys wireless networking products work very well and are super easy to set up. Once you get going you'll probably have all your close neighboors that don't have a wireless Internet connection stealing your bandwidth. Just make sure to follow the proper steps when securing a wireless network for the first time.

Next your desktop computer will need either a spare PCI slot for an internal PCI wireless internet adapter card or an available USB port for a wireless USB adapter that simply plugs into any available USB port. This method is by far the easiest way to make any desktop computer a wireless one. Try some wireless printing when you get some practice with home wireless networks.

Cable modem for a wireless Internet connection

You may have a cable or DSL modem that was provided by your internet service provider. I know that the Internet service provider where I live used to give out the Motorola Surfboard series but I think they've changed now. There's no reason that you can't use that basic cable modem to provide internet access for your wireless network. If you choose to use your existing modem, or to buy a cable modem without a router, you'll need to purchase a separate router. The modem will be connected to either your phone or cable line to bring an internet connection into your house.

Obtain a wireless router for wireless networking

The wireless router is sometimes also called a wireless access point. Many companies are in the home wireless networking game. Linksys, Netgear, Dlink, and Belkin are the biggest and those brands are usaully readily available at most retail outlets.

When you do get a wireless router installed it will be connected to your cable modem by a cable. If you've chosen a modem/router combination, it will connect directly to your internet access point or either phone or cable. The job of the wireless router is to coordinate communications among your computer(s) and the cable modem, relaying data to and from your desktop PCs and the internet via the modem. One important note is that a wireless router is the only way I know of to connect multiple computers to the Internet. There's no ethernet cable splitter...or at least I haven't seen one.

Wireless USB Adapter

The USB wireless adapter plugs into a USB port on your desktop PC. Depending on the brand and model that you choose, you may have to install software on your PC before plugging it in or you may be able to simply plug it in and it will automatically install its own needed software. Its job is to communicate with the wireless network router, sending data to and from your desktop PC.

In most cases, you can set up a wireless internet connection for your desktop PC in less than an hour from box to surfing the net.

More information about wireless Internet connections

In the future I will most likely go into further detail about each networking component. If you have any further question regarding this page on making a desktop PC wireless or any wireless networking questions please check out the making desktop PC wireless page here at this site or the Linksys community forums.

This page features information about what is needed for a wireless Internet connection.