How to Install an External Modem

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Installing an external modem is easy and takes little time. You don't have to open the computer or install modem cards. This procedure applies to PC and Macintosh computers.

Things You'll Need

  • Modems
  • Unpack the modem and its accessories. You should have the modem, cable, phone cord, power adapter, installation diskette or CD, and instruction manual.

  • Turn off the computer and any attached devices.

  • Attach one end of the modem cable to the serial port (wide, 25-pin connector) on the computer and the other end to the modem. The serial port on the Macintosh is a small, round port marked with a telephone icon.

  • Connect one end of the phone cord to the modem port marked "wall" or "line" and the other end to the wall jack of your phone line. If the modem will be sharing the line with a telephone, connect the cord of the telephone to the modem port marked "phone."

  • Attach the power adapter plug to the modem and the power transformer plug to the power outlet, if this is required for your modem.

  • Turn on the computer and the modem, if it has an on/off switch.

  • When your computer starts up, follow the software installation instructions if prompted by your computer system (e.g., Windows Plug 'n Play feature).

  • Insert the installation diskette or CD (if you do not receive prompts for installing the modem), click the drive, and click (or double-click) the installation program on the diskette or CD.

  • Run any test program that comes with the installation software to ensure that the modem is working correctly.

Tips & Warnings

  • Check the light indicators on the modem that show that it is working. If the light indicators are not on or flashing, check all hardware connections.
  • If you do not have an available serial port and do not want to replace your external modem with an internal modem, consider installing a serial card (or have a computer-savvy friend install it for you).
  • Check the modem specifications to determine whether the modem requires an analog phone line (used in most homes) or a digital phone line (used in most offices). Using the wrong phone line can damage your modem.
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