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Creating an Ethernet

Windows Me

With an Ethernet network, each computer connects to a hub, a small device that accepts either four or eight computer connections. A network cable runs from the Ethernet network adapter in each computer on your network to the hub, by using an RJ-45 connector. An Ethernet network can accommodate transfer rates of between 10 and 100Mbps. For comparison, a 56Kbps modem is about 20 times slower than just 1Mbps.


  • Windows Me is designed to work in conjunction with an Ethernet network based on PCI (peripheral component interconnect) network adapters. Slots for these adapters are found in newer computers. Older computers tend to have slots for ISA network cards. Windows Me supports some ISA cards, but older cards that are not compatible with Plug and Play technology will not work. To see whether your equipment is compatible, check the Tested Hardware list.
  • For maximum performance and reliability, make sure to use Category 5 UTP (Unshielded Twisted Pair) cabling for your Ethernet network. The category refers to the quality of the cable and how well it resists electromagnetic interference (from radio signals, electronic appliances, and so on).

Your computer's documentation contains information about the type of slot your computer has. You'll have to remove your computer cover to install a network card of either type.

Warning   Before removing the cover from your computer, make sure the power to the computer is off and the power cord is removed from the electrical outlet. Failure to do so may result in fatal injury to you or damage to your computer. See the instructions that came with your computer for information about opening the case.

More Tips for Home Networking

Special terms

  • hub: A device used to extend a network by connecting network components at a central location. When data arrives at one port of the hub, it is copied to the other ports so that all connected network devices see the data.
  • PCI: Peripheral component interconnect. It provides a high-speed connection to peripheral devices.
  • ISA: Industry Standard Architecture. ISA is a PC expansion bus. It is used for modems, video displays, speakers, and other peripherals.

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