A Stress-Free Guide To Setting Up An Internet Connection


Those who are setting up a broadband service from scratch will probably need a little advice. All of the jargon involved is sure to be confusing for those who aren’t particulary computer savvy, so we’ve put together this short guide to help you through the process…

Connecting a Line

To actually receive any kind of broadband service you will need a landline connection linked to your home. If there is already one in place then you can usually receive broadband through it. You will need to contact a telecoms company if your property lacks a landline to get one installed.

Installation of a new landline will be handled by an engineer and you may have to wait for an appointment slot to become available as well as potentially having to pay the cost of the set-up.

Choosing a Service

There are two main types of landline broadband connection, each with different positives you should consider. ADSL broadband is the most common type of internet service as it is supplied via traditional copper landline connections. Its ubiquity works to its advantage, with maximum download speeds topping out at a theoretical 24 Mbps.

However, ADSL is hampered by the fact that speeds tend to deteriorate the further away your property is from the local telephone exchange. Carrying out a broadband speed test or checking with your provider before you commit to a service will let you work out how quick your connection will be in real-world conditions. A broadband speed test should establish an accurate estimation of your connection speed, but make sure that no other devices are using your service to avoid skewing the results.

Fibre-optic broadband is the second main landline option and it is delivered by underground cables rather than overhead wires. Fibre-optic cabling is used because it offers faster speeds, better consistency and none of the drop-off associated with ADSL. However, the coverage of fibre-optic networks is far smaller than copper landlines and so you may not have cable as an option in your area. Where fibre is available it is priced competitively with ADSL, although for higher-speed fibre connections you can expect to pay a greater amount each month.

There is a third type of broadband connection which is becoming increasingly popular, albeit in the limited areas in which it is available. FTTC (fibre to the cabinet) is a hybrid service, with fibre-optic cables running to street-level cabinets and then handing over the last few metres of the connection to existing copper landlines. If FTTC is available then it could be a suitable step up from ADSL and the number of locations in which it is available is increasing.

Equipment and Set-up

When you have chosen a broadband service type and picked a provider and package you will usually be sent the equipment you need to get online.

Once your line is activated for broadband, you can use an all-in-one modem and wireless-router device to decode the signal and distribute the connection to all of your devices at home. Some types of connection will have a separate modem and router, but whatever equipment is supplied you can expect to have a relatively painless set-up experience since much of the process is now automated.

Always read the manuals carefully before using your equipment and contact your provider for advice if you encounter any issues.

Once your connection is working, carry out a broadband speed test to check that it is providing you with the advertised speeds. Then you can enjoy the benefits of having a fast, contemporary internet access portal for you and your family.

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