If you're reading this book, the chances are fairly good that you have a computer or two at home and want to figure out how you can link them together so you can do things like use a single printer or share a high-speed Internet connection.
For most people with a regular cable or DSL modem and a couple of computers, a basic network is pretty straightforward to set up. Here's the Cliffs Notes version: you take the network cable out of your modem (the one that used to plug directly into a single PC) and plug it into the modem port on your new router. You make sure each computer you want to connect has an Ethernet network adapter installed or attached. Then you take one network cable for every computer and plug one end into an available port on the back of the router and the other end into the computer's Ethernet port. Then you turn everything on and have a race to see who can be the first one on the new network to order a pizza online.
Let's say you're not the average Josephine and you arrive at the network setup dance wearing a slightly different dress. For example, say you've been assigned (or requested) a static IP address. A static IP address is an Internet address for your computer that never changes; some folks get them when they want to run their own Web server. If you have a static IP address, you will probably have to take a couple extra steps in your network setup adventure.
Similarly, some Internet providers force their subscribers to use an older ...