Category

Training

How to Connect to Your Wireless Internet

By | Training | One Comment

A wireless network at work or home lets you access the internet from more places. This article describes the basic steps for setting up a wireless network and how to start using it.

Get the right equipment

Before you can set up a new network and connect to the internet, here is what you’ll need.

Broadband Internet connection and modem. A broadband Internet connection is a high-speed Internet connection. Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) and cable are two of the most common broadband connections. You can get a broadband connection by contacting an Internet service provider (ISP). Typically, ISPs that provide DSL are telephone companies and ISPs that provide cable are cable TV companies. ISPs frequently offer broadband modems. Some ISPs also offer combination modem/wireless routers. You can also find these at computer or electronics stores, and online.

Wireless router. A router sends information between your network and the Internet. With a wireless router, you can connect PCs to your network using radio signals instead of wires. There are several different kinds of wireless network technologies, which include 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n, and 802.11ac.

Wireless network adapter. A wireless network adapter is a device that connects your PC to a wireless network. To connect your portable or desktop PC to your wireless network, the PC must have a wireless network adapter. Most portable PCs and tablets—and some desktop PCs—come with a wireless network adapter already installed.

To check whether your PC has a wireless network adapter:

  1. Select the Start Button windows 10 icon  type in the search bar Device Manager, and then select it.
  2. Double select Network adapters.
  3. Look for a network adapter the might include “wireless” in the name

Setting up the internet connection and modem

After you have all the equipment, you’ll need to set up your modem and Internet connection. If your modem wasn’t set up for you by your Internet service provider (ISP), follow the instructions that came with your modem to connect it to your PC and the Internet. If you’re using Digital Subscriber Line (DSL), connect your modem to a phone jack. If you’re using cable, connect your modem to a cable jack.

Positioning the wireless router

Place your wireless router in a place that it will receive the strongest signal with the least amount of interference. For the best results, follow these instructions.

 

Place your wireless router in a central location. Place the router as close to the center of your home as possible to increase the strength of the wireless signal throughout your home.

Position the wireless router off the floor and away from walls and metal objects, such as metal file cabinets. The fewer physical obstructions between your PC and the router’s signal, the more likely that you’ll be using the router’s full signal strength.

Reduce interference. 802.11g networking equipment uses a 2.4 gigahertz (GHz) radio frequency. This is the same frequency as most microwaves and many cordless phones. If you turn on the microwave or get a call on a cordless phone, your wireless signal might be temporarily interrupted. You can avoid most of these issues by using a cordless phone with a higher frequency, such as 5.8 GHz.

 

Securing your wireless network

Your wireless signal could go beyond the boundaries of your home, so security is even more important with a wireless network. If you don’t help secure your network, people with PCs nearby could access information stored on your network PCs and use your Internet connection.

To help make your network more secure:

Protect your router by changing the default username and password. Most router manufacturers have a default username and password on the router and a default network name (also known as the SSID). Someone could use this information to access your router without you knowing it. To help avoid that, change the default username and password for your router. See the information that was included with your device for instructions.

 

Set up a security key (password) for your network. Wireless networks have a network security key to help protect them from unauthorized access. To set up a network security key, follow these steps:

    1. Select the Start Button  windows 10 icon  , start typing Network and Sharing Center, and then choose it in the list.
    2. Select Set up a new connection or network.
    3. Select Set up a new network, then choose Next.

The wizard will walk you through creating a network name and a security key. If your router will support it, the wizard will default to Wi‑Fi Protected Access (WPA or WPA2) security. We recommend that you use WPA2, because it offers better security than WPA or Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) security. With WPA2 or WPA you can also use a passphrase, so you don’t have to remember a cryptic sequence of letters and numbers.

Write down your security key and keep it in a safe place. You can also save your security key on a USB flash drive by following the instructions in the wizard.

Use a firewall. A firewall is hardware or software that can help protect your PC from unauthorized users or malicious software. Running a firewall on each PC on your network can help control the spread of malicious software on your network, and help protect your PCs when you’re accessing the Internet. Windows Firewall is included with this version of Windows.

 

Connect a PC to your wireless network

  1. Select the Network wifi barswifi bars 2   icon in the notification area.
  2. In the list of networks, choose the network that you want to connect to, and then select Connect.
  3. Type the security key (often called the password).
  4. Follow additional instructions if there are any.

If you have any questions on how to setup your wireless network, setup a new modem or router, change internet settings, what equipment to buy or where to buy it, then contact your Box Support technician today.

(support.microsoft.com was used a a reference for this post.)

 

Potentially Unwanted Programs

Puppies are cute but PUPs aren’t so much fun

By | Security, Support, Training | No Comments

What are PUPs?

Potentially Unwanted Programs, or PUPs, are small pieces of software that are installed onto your system, usually by piggybacking onto other legitimate software, or by other similarly circuitous means. This occurs most often without your knowledge or consent.

While most PUPs are considered highly suspect, they are not always considered malware in the strictest sense. The primary reason for this is because their installation is acknowledged in the agreement of the original program you intended to install, even if such an acknowledgement is buried deep in the fine print. Most of the time you won’t even realize that you’ve installed additional programs until you notice new icons on your desktop or system tray or a new toolbar in your browser. A general rule, Box Support considers any software that is designed to install itself onto your system without your explicit knowledge and consent as likely malware.

What do PUPs look like?

PUPs (potentially unwanted software) come in many forms and varieties, often masquerading as other, more benign types of software. Some of the most common varieties are the following:

PUPs Toolbars

Unwanted Toolbars

Toolbars

Many PUPs appear as toolbars, attached to your favorite browser. Typically the toolbar might come under the guise of a helpful translator bar, a time saving coupon-clipper, a recipe catalog, or even as a philanthropic software accessory. Most of the time toolbars aren’t intentionally malicious, instead, they simply provide functionality that is already included in your browser or search engine and are needlessly taking up space on your screen and your system. Often times toolbars stack on top of each other until there is precious little space for the actual browser window.

Pop-ups

PUPs sometimes take the form of anti-virus or similar software. Typically the software will produce a pop-up alerting you to a “serious threat”. These threats are almost always fictitious. It warns that without immediate intervention, your system will suffer a catastrophic error. The message will encourage you to click a button typically labeled “Clean Now” or “Fix”, which will then direct you to a website which promises to remove said errors for a fee.

How do PUPs harm my system?

There are a number of ways in which PUPs can cause harm and hinder the proper function of the computer. Below we have detailed a few such methods.

Doggy Pile

PUPs (much like their cuddly namesake) tend to doggy pile. This means that they have a cumulative affect on your system’s performance. While one PUP might go unnoticed, as they accumulate, your system will begin to respond more sluggishly and begin producing more errors. This is because they begin leeching your system’s resources, leaving less for the software you actually want. Like barnacles on a the hull of a ship, they need to be scraped off for smooth sailing.

Foot In The Door

Having one pup on your system is like a foot in the door to your computer. Incrementally, that door will be pushed further and further open, making it possible for bigger, more malicious threats to enter; threats like viruses, trojans, bots and other malware.

Spyware and Adware

PUPs aren’t limited to hogging your system resources and making your computer more vulnerable to attack. Some PUPs will randomly display ads, redirect internet searches to unsafe websites and some can even skim your personal and financial information. Fraud and identity theft have become extremely pervasive in the digital age, ranking as the fastest growing crime according to the Federal Trade Commission.

How do I avoid PUPs?

Your risk of being affected by PUPs can be mitigated by being careful about the software you install, the links and ads you click on and the emails you open. With the prevalence of PUPs, even being the most cautious user is likely to find them on their system eventually. As long as your computer is connected to the internet, it is ultimately at risk which is why it’s so critical that you have the right security services and software to protect your computer and your sensitive information.

Check out our security plans by clicking HERE! Box Support protects you and your computer from PUPs, malware, viruses, spyware and more.

What do I do if I suspect PUPs may be on my system?

Although many PUPs parade themselves about your desktop with obtrusive pop-ups and toolbars, some PUPs run silently in the background and can only be detected and removed with specialized software.

While uninstalling them and cleaning them with anti-malware programs can help, inevitably PUPs and other more malicious software will end up on  your system again. Just as you need professional assistance in maintaining proper health, so too does your computer.

If your computer seems sluggish, unresponsive or is simply manifesting strange symptoms, DO NOT simply wait for these symptoms to go away. Address them early before they have a chance to cause real problems, such as damage to your machine or compromising your sensitive information. The internet can be a frustrating and at times a frightening place. But you don’t have to do it alone.

Help is close at hand

Box Support is the leader in providing enterprise level computer security and support for home users and small businesses.  We keep your computer running smoothly and your sensitive information secure. Box Support will clean and optimize your system, install enterprise level security software and guard against future threats. Try us out today by taking advantage of our robust protection plans.