WiFi connectivity used to be limited to top-of-the line laptop computers. Today, though, WiFi is a standard on virtually all portable computers, from the cheapest of netbooks to the most expensive of high-performance desktop replacements. If your laptop computer supports wireless networking, you can easily connect it to your broadband service through a router. If you subscribe to Qwest, chances are you can ask for a router to share your home connection.
Setting up your Qwest router will involve a few tweaks on your laptop and the router itself.
- First, you will need to setup the router to connect to the Internet. Using an Ethernet cable, connect your laptop to the router using the LAN port.
- Open a web browser and access 192.168.0.1 (or 192.168.1.1, whichever works). Under the Advanced Setup tab, click “Wireless Settings.” Turn on wireless by clicking the radio button next to “Wireless.”
- Under the Security tab, choose the appropriate WiFi security. Most modern wireless cards will support up to WPA. Enter your desired passphrase or password.
- Click on the “Save and Restart” link. You will need to wait a few seconds while your Qwest router restarts.
- Disconnect your computer from the Ethernet connection.
Make sure that your Qwest router is connected to your line using the Ethernet cable through the “Line” port. You will now need to connect your laptop using the wireless settings.
- Turn on your laptops’ wireless radio. This can usually be done by pressing a button or sliding a switch. Some laptops don’t have a hardware switch, though, so you will have to check your computer’s taskbar system tray for the wireless icon.
- Most Windows installation will automatically notify you of new networks discovered. If not, you will need to click on the wireless icon on the system tray. On Windows Vista and Windows 7, you can select the network from here. On Windows XP, you will have to right click on the networking icon and select “Network Connections” to choose a network.
- When you try to connect to your wireless connection, you will be prompted for the password. Enter the password on the prompt. Note that the passphrase is usually case-sensitive.
- If you are using an Apple computer, you will need to enable Mac OS for wireless connectivity. In most cases, this is enabled by default. Look for the Airport logo on your menu bar. Otherwise, you will have to enable Airport by accessing System Preference and “Network.” Click the option to show the Airport status on the menu bar.
- To connect to your Qwest router, simply click on the airport icon on the menu bar, and then select the name of your network.
- You will then be asked for the WPA or WEP key. Type it in, and press OK to connect.
Once you have successfully connected, open a web browser and try connecting to your favorite websites. Wireless networking gives you flexibility, in terms of being able to connect multiple computers to share a single Internet connection. You also have the freedom to connect from anywhere within the range of your router.