View Full Version : Computers First experience with a lap top comp., need some tips.

03-07-2010, 10:35 AM
Got my first laptop computer and would like some pointers, especially on internet services and tips. I have wifi built in and haven't actually signed up for a ISP...as long as I can piggy back, should I? Is there a way to boost the signal I am receiving? Are the network cards that most cellphone companies offer worth it? Any and all suggestions are appreciated.

03-07-2010, 10:49 AM
I have charter 10 MB broadband,and love it.I have an Apple time capsule dual band wifi base station.I tried the AT&T U Verse with DSL and hated it.We have 5 laptops in the house (mainly Macs) and love the wireless ability of the laptops.I have a desktop out in my garage with a wireless card as well and it works fine.Not sure about boosting your signal,and I have never jumped/piggybacked off my neighbors.The network cards from At&T work fine in my area (STL area) but I have no info on Sprint or any other provider.

03-07-2010, 10:54 AM
If you're referring to using a neighbor's unsecured connection as "piggybacking," it's technically illegal. However, the chances of that ever coming back to bite you are incredibly small. A more likely possibility is that they eventually wise up and secure the network or move away, leaving you without internet access all the sudden. I wouldn't do it because I like to have control over my connection, and I like having a pretty high speed, but it's your choice.

No, there's not really any way to boost the signal. At least not on your end.

Cell phone ISP's work fine and are, of course, incredibly portable. The speeds you'll get on such a connection, however, are pretty slow by today's standards. I can't tell you exactly what you'd get, but a base-level cable or DSL connection would be 1.5 Mbps, while I've only seen speeds about one-third of that on a cell connection. It still works fine for browsing. Stuff like youtube videos will work, but will be slower to load. Stuff like gaming and watching full movies online through Netflix and the like is probably a no-go.

Hope that helps.

03-07-2010, 11:24 AM
Thanks for the tips guys. Yes, the signal I am getting now is unsecured but its not a neighbors per se, it's from a hotspot down the street. Sprint (the only one I could check on on a Sunday) offers the network card and its about 60 bucks a month. I could probably get DSL or something like that and a wireless router and be just fine I'm guessing. I don't need or plan on taking my laptop with me on the road so totally mobile internet through a network card is not necessary. Thanks again guys.

03-07-2010, 11:33 AM
Or do like I do and I have the wireless broadband router at my place & charge my neighbor to use it. Standard connection is $35 a month but I only pay $19.99 for mine. got in on a good deal Bresnan offered awhile back. I charge my Neighbor $15/month for using mine so I only end up paying $5 :p

Seriously you're much better getting your own service.

03-07-2010, 02:34 PM
If this is your first laptop, my reccomendation is to sit up straight. Seriously.

If you're piggybacking, I would probably quit. What you might do is find the neihbor and offer to split the cost with him. He'll probably be unhappy with you freeloading.
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