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Re: Connecting an extra computer to Internet



On Thursday 05 Jul 2007, Paul Smith wrote:
> On 7/5/07, Rick Stevens <rstevens internap com> wrote:
>
> Thanks, Rick and all other respondents. Yes, my DSL modem connects to
> my computer by using an RJ45 connector. The shopkeeper where I went to
> buy a switch claims that the switch may not work and that I should
> instead buy a router. So, I would like to ask you whether it is really
> as he claims.
>
> Paul

As I Understand It, a router normally contains a four port Ethernet switch, 
which connects the computers in your private network to each other and the 
router itself.

What the router does that a switch alone cannot, is be configured to know the 
IP address of your private network. Anything you want to do that requires 
access to machines out on the Internet, the data packets will have an IP 
address which does not match your private network address. These packets 
are 'routed' out to the Internet.

The router also provides numerous other services, such as DHCP, NAT, port 
forwarding (if you have a fixed IP address), etc.

So, in short, yes you do need a router, not a switch.

When you want to extend your private network, that is the time to buy 
switches.

Hope that's clear.

Dave

PS you're a lot more secure if you have a router sitting between your computer 
and the Internet. IMHO it's well worth getting a router even it you only have 
one computer.

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