A cable modem is a device with two connections that assists with connecting your PC to your cable television line for the purpose of gaining broadband Internet access. It does not involve the use of a telephone line and works similar to a standard modem, only it capable of supplying more bandwidth than a dial-up modem.
Although it is possible to install a cable modem yourself, you will need to contact your local cable television provider to purchase a subscription for Internet access.
The cable modem involves two connections that lead to the cable wall jack and to your PC. The actual modem is more complex than a telephone modem and can serve as an external device or it can be configured into your computer via Ethernet card.
You may choose to purchase your own cable modem or rent one from your cable television provider. Either way, it is necessary to test the cable modem for compatibility with the cable company network system. For instance, if the company only uses the Motorola brand, you will need to obtain that brand if you are considering purchasing your own cable modem. Cable modems can be found in electronic stores at a cost beginning around $130.00.
The cable modem attaches to the coaxial cable provided by your cable company which communicates with a Cable Modem Termination System at the local cable television office. The modem produces a faster data transfer rate and will provide you with a continuous Internet connection.
You will need to have your cable company provider install a splitter box which will separate your television connection from your cable modem connection. This will prevent your television connection from interfering with your Internet connection and vice versa.
Before connecting the cable modem, always shut down your computer and unplug it. You connect the cable modem to your computer by using an Ethernet connection that uses 10baseT cables. These cables are often referred to as a twisted pair and attach to your cable modem and to your Ethernet card in your computer. The process of connecting to your computer’s Ethernet card is called “Category 5 Cabling.”
If you have a USB modem which functions in the same manner as an Ethernet connection, the USB modem will connect to your computer with a USB cable. Once you have accomplished this, plug the other end of the USB cable into the back of the cable modem.
Proceed to plug in the cable modem to the wall outlet and check your cable modem for four blinking lights signifying connection to your Internet service. You will need to give the cable modem time to synch with the new service before you see the lights blinking. Once the lights are solid and no longer blinking, your cable modem is working and you are connected to the Internet.
Lastly, you will need to turn on your computer and install the browser and email software that is provided by your cable company.