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Chapter 8. Step-by-Step with Windows XP > Using the Network Setup Wizard

Using the Network Setup Wizard

If you don't want to handle your computer's network settings manually, you don't have to. The Windows XP Network Setup Wizard will tackle the job of putting your XP computer on the network in just a few minutes. No fuss, no muss. Here's how to get started.

Open My Network Places from the Start menu (or desktop) and, under Network Tasks, choose “Set up a home or small office network” (Figure 8.14). Alternatively, you can choose Start, All Programs, Accessories, Communications, Network Setup Wizard.

Figure 8.14. Start the Home Networking Wizard.

The wizard opens. If you want to share your Internet connection, choose “This computer connects directly to the Internet” (Figure 8.15).

Figure 8.15. To share your connection, choose the first option.

If you were using a router, you'd choose the second option, “This computer connects to the Internet through another computer on my network or through a residential gateway.” Click Next.

Choose the Internet connection you want to share (Figure 8.16). In my case, I want to share a dial-up modem connection to my ISP. Keep in mind, the Internet connection you share is probably not your wireless connection. More likely you will connect to the Internet using a wired device (a modem). You share the connection wirelessly, in the next steps. For now, click Next.

Figure 8.16. Choose the Internet connection you want to share.

The wizard can determine which network connections to share (Figure 8.17). This typically works just fine. If you want to choose the connection to share, select “Let me choose the connections to my network.”

Figure 8.17. The wizard can determine the network connections on your machine that should be shared.

Choose your computer name (should be one word) and description (can be several words) (Figure 8.18). Click Next and you'll be prompted to enter a workgroup name. The default workgroup name is MSHOME (Figure 8.19). You can choose whatever name you want, just make sure it's the same on all your computers. Then click Next.

Figure 8.18. Choose a computer name and description.

Figure 8.19. Choose a workgroup name.

The wizard shows you the settings you've selected. Make sure that everything is set the way you want. If you see a problem, click the Back button and change the setting. If you're looking good, click Next and the wizard takes care of business (Figure 8.20).

Figure 8.20. Verify the network settings.



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