How do I install my modem?
Assuming you have a modem of the external type, the first steps are to connect the modem to your computer's serial port and then power it up. From the Control Panel, double-click on Phone and Modem Options and then go to the Modems tab. The screen should show that you have no modems installed, so to get your modem up and running under Windows 2000, click on the Add button. On our Peripherals Plus AMD 550 test platform, Windows 2000 found our NetComm Roadster II modem within a few seconds and immediately prompted us to install the drivers for it. The diskette located in the floppy drive contained the driver we needed so we let Windows 2000 try to find it by selecting "Search for a suitable driver for my device", clicking on the Next button, and telling it to look in the floppy drive. The next screen we received told us that our software had not been tested by Microsoft and, therefore, did not contain a digital signature. We proceeded, though, and successfully completed the driver installation.
Once installed, we needed to find out if our modem was working properly, so from the Modems tab in Phone and Modem Options, we clicked on Properties, went to the Diagnostics tab and then clicked Query Modem. Success!
How do I get on the Internet?
So you've just installed your modem, have an ISP account ready, and now you want to connect to the Internet. You will need to create a dial-up networking connection with your ISP's details, and to do this in Windows 2000, click on the Start button on your taskbar, go to Settings and click on Network and Dial-Up Connections (alternatively, you could access this folder through Control Panel). The next screen brings up the familiar Make New Connection icon.
Double-clicking on this icon will bring up the Network Connection Wizard, and the next step is to select the type of connection you want to create. The Wizard shows the various options that are available, and they include "Dial-up to a private network", "Dial-up to the Internet", "Connect to a private network through the Internet", "Accept incoming connections" and "Connect directly to another computer". As our connection to the Internet will be through a modem, the next step is to select "Dial-up to the Internet" and click on the Next button.
The next screen to present itself to you is the Internet Connection Wizard. This screen will present you with three somewhat badly worded choices, which include "I want to sign up for a new Internet account", "I want to transfer an existing account to this computer", and "I want to set up my Internet connection manually". The first two options will attempt to connect you to a Microsoft Internet Referral service. We selected the third option and click Next. Tell Windows 2000 you will be connecting through a phone line and modem and then enter the dial-in number for your ISP. If your ISP requires you to manually enter an IP address and DNS server settings, you will need to click on the "Advanced" button and complete all the details. On the next screen you will need to enter your user name and password, and then the connection must be given a name.
After the connection has been named, the Wizard will ask you if you want to set up your Internet mail account. If you wish to do this at this time, you will need to enter your e-mail address and incoming and outgoing mail server details, as well as username and password details on the following screens. You should, by now, have completed your dial-up connection to your ISP.
To make the connection a little easier to access, create a short cut to it from the Network and Dial-up Connections folder. Right-click on the connection and drag it to a convenient spot, such as the Desktop, where it is more easily accessible.