Chapter 18. Internet Setup

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Chapter 18. Internet Setup

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Chapter 18. Internet Setup As Apple's programmers slogged away for months on the massive Mac OS X project, there were areas where they must have felt like they were happily gliding on ice: networking and the Internet.

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  1. Chapter 18. Internet Setup As Apple's programmers slogged away for months on the massive Mac OS X project, there were areas where they must have felt like they were happily gliding on ice: networking and the Internet. For the most part, the Internet already runs on Unix, and hundreds of extremely polished tools and software chunks were already available. Plenty of people still connect to the Internet using a modem that dials out over ordinary phone lines. But their numbers are shrinking; over half of the U.S. Internet population connects over higher-speed wires, using broadband connections that are always on: cable modems, DSL, or corporate networks. This chapter explains how to set up each one (and how to use each with a wireless AirPort system). This chapter also describes some of Mac OS X's offbeat Internet featurettes: the iDisk, a backup or transfer disk that resides on the Internet; the other Apple .Mac account features, including HomePage, which lets you publish your own Web pages; Internet Connection Sharing, which lets several computers in the same household share a single broadband connection; the system-wide Internet bookmarks known as Internet location files; and iSync, the software that keeps data on your cellphone, Palm organizer, and multiple Macs all in sync. 18.1. The Best News You've Heard All Day If you upgraded to Mac OS X 10.5 from an earlier version of the Mac OS, breathe easy. Mac OS X was kind enough to pick up your networking and Internet settings from that earlier installation. The moment you first see the Mac OS X desktop, you're ready to use the Internet (and skip the next two pages). Read on, however, if you need to plug in the Internet settings manually. If you're setting up a new Mac, or if you've just used Mac OS X's "clean install" option (Appendix A), or if you simply want to create a new Internet account, you definitely have some typing to look forward to. Tip: If you haven't yet set up an Internet connection, reading the next few pages will guide you through plugging the proper settings into System Preferences.If you're more of a doer than a reader, however, you may prefer the "Assist me" button at the bottom of the Network pane of System Preferences. It asks how you want to connect to the Internet (by dial-up modem, DSL, cable modem, and so on), and then walks you through the process of typing in the settings, if necessary.
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