Installing Network Adapters
Before you purchase a network card, be sure to check the Windows XP Hardware Compatibility List (HCL). You should purchase cards that appear on the HCL or that are marked by the manufacturer certifying their compatibility with Windows XP or 2000. You can find the HCL at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314062.
Checking Existing Adapters
If your adapter was already installed when you set up Windows XP, it may already be ready to go, in which case you can skip this section and jump down to "Installing Network Wiring." Follow these steps to see whether the adapter is already set up:
- Right-click My Computer and select Manage.
- Select Device Manager in the left pane, and open the Network Adapters list in the right pane.
- Look for an entry for your network card. If it appears and does not have a yellow exclamation point (!) icon to the left of its name, the card is installed and correctly configured. In this case, you can skip ahead to "Installing Network Wiring."
- If an entry appears but has an exclamation point icon by its name, the card is not correctly installed and you'll have to fix this before proceeding. Most likely the problem is that no driver software was installed.
- If no entry exists for the card, the adapter is not fully plugged into the motherboard, it's broken, or it is not plug and play capable. Be sure the card is installed correctly. If the card is broken or non-plug-and-play, you should replace it; they're very inexpensive.
When you've confirmed that your existing adapter is functioning correctly, you can proceed to the section titled, "Installing Network Wiring."
Installing a New Network Adapter
If you're installing a new network adapter, follow the manufacturer's instructions for installing with Windows XP or Windows 2000. Even if it does not come with specific Windows XP instructions, the installation should be a snap. Just follow these steps:
- If you have purchased an internal card, shut down Windows, shut off the computer, unplug it, open the case, install the card in an empty slot, close the case, and restart Windows.
If you are adding a PCMCIA or USB adapter, be sure you're logged on with a "Computer Administrator" type account, and then just plug it in while Windows is running.
If you're using your computer's IEEE-1394 port, there's nothing to install or configure.
- When you're back at the Windows login screen, log in as a Computer Administrator user. Windows displays the New Hardware Detected dialog when you log in.
- The New Hardware Detected dialog might instruct you to insert your Windows XP CD-ROM. If Windows cannot find a suitable driver for your adapter from this CD, it may ask you to insert a driver disk that your network card's manufacturer should have provided (either a CD-ROM or floppy disk).
If you are asked, insert the manufacturer's disk and click OK. If Windows says that it cannot locate an appropriate device driver, try again, and this time click the Browse button. Locate a folder named WinXP, WindowsXP, Windows2000, W2K, or NT5 (or some variation on these themes) on the CD or floppy, and click OK.
- After Windows has installed the card's driver software, it automatically configures and uses the card. Check the Device Manager as described previously under "Checking Existing Adapters" to see whether the card is installed and functioning. Then you can proceed to "Installing Network Wiring" later in this tutorial.
In this tutorial:
- Building Your Own Network
- Planning Your Network
- Choosing a Network and Cabling System
- Installing Network Adapters
- Installing Multiple Network Adapters
- Installing Network Wiring
- Wiring with Patch Cables
- Installing In-Wall Wiring
- Extending the Network with Multiple Hubs
- Managing Network Security
- Joining an Existing Network
- Joining a Workgroup Network
- Joining a Domain Network
- Setting Up a Routed Network
- Setting Up a Bridged Network
- Adding Network Server Appliances
- Making Internet Services Available
- Obtaining DNS Service
- Advanced Network Options