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Lesson 4 Configuring Macintosh for the Internet
Objective Describe how to configure a Macintosh to access the Internet.

Configuring Macintosh for the Internet

Configuring a Macintosh computer to access the Internet is a streamlined process, thanks to Apple's intuitive macOS design. The steps outlined below will guide you through the process, allowing you to successfully connect to the Internet. Before we start, ensure that you have the necessary information from your Internet Service Provider (ISP), including your network's SSID (name), password, and any specific configuration details they might provide.
  1. Wi-Fi Configuration: Start at the upper-right corner of your screen where you'll find the Wi-Fi icon, which looks like a fan or a 'pie' symbol. Click on it. If Wi-Fi is off, you will need to turn it on by selecting 'Turn Wi-Fi On.'
    Once your Wi-Fi is on, a list of available networks will appear. Locate the name of your network (SSID) and click on it. If the network is password-protected (as it should be for security reasons), you will be prompted to enter the password. Type it in, then click 'Join.'
  2. Ethernet Configuration: If you are connecting via an Ethernet cable, plug the cable into the Ethernet port on your Mac. The operating system typically detects the Ethernet connection and establishes Internet access automatically. If it doesn't, proceed with the following steps. Click on the Apple icon in the top left corner of the screen and select 'System Preferences.' Once the System Preferences window opens, click on 'Network.' On the left side of the Network window, select 'Ethernet.' Configure the settings as instructed by your ISP. Usually, the 'Configure IPv4' field is set to 'Using DHCP,' which allows the network to assign your computer an IP address automatically. If your ISP requires a manual setup, they will provide you with the specific values to input.
  3. Advanced Configuration: Sometimes, your ISP may provide specific DNS or Proxy settings. To access these, go to 'System Preferences,' select 'Network,' and then choose either 'Wi-Fi' or 'Ethernet,' depending on your connection type. Click on the 'Advanced' button. Here, you can adjust DNS settings in the DNS tab by clicking the '+' sign and adding the DNS servers provided by your ISP. If you need to set a Proxy, you can do so in the Proxies tab by checking the appropriate proxy option and entering the required details.
  4. Troubleshooting: If your Mac doesn't connect to the Internet after following these steps, try restarting your computer and your modem/router. Check all physical connections and ensure you've entered the correct network information. If problems persist, contact your ISP or Apple Support for further assistance.

By following these steps, you should be able to successfully configure your Macintosh to access the Internet, ensuring a stable and secure connection to the digital world.

Configuring desktops

To configure means to set up for operation in a certain way. Desktop machines need to be configured, or set up in a certain way, when you switch your ISP or when you add a new machine to the network. The process is basically the same for each circumstance. If you connect to the Internet through a modem, your system might be configured automatically based on information supplied by your ISP. If you connect to the Internet through a network, you may have to configure your system manually. The system administrator should supply you with the necessary information.
Configuring the desktop involves modifying some or all of the following:
  1. TCP/IP settings
  2. HOSTS files
  3. Browsers
  4. Email
  5. MIME settings

Configuring TCP/IP

TCP/IP is:
  1. A generic name for a suite of protocols used to connect computers and networks
  2. The protocol used to connect to the Internet
The Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) is used to transfer the IP-formatted data packets. The Internet Protocol (IP) is the set of rules used to pass packets of data from one network to another.

Configuring TCP/IP on a Macintosh

To configure TCP/IP on a Macintosh, from the Apple menu, select Control Panels, then select TCP/IP. The settings shown in the table below appear. For information about the settings to use for your system, talk with your system administrator or ISP.
Setting Description
Connection method Choices include Apple Talk, Ethernet
Server configuration Choices include BootP, DHCP, RARP
IP Address
  1. Identifies your computer to the network
  2. Allows you to assign an address or accept automatic assignment
Subnet Mask
  1. Required information
  2. Defines use of address bits and indicates host or network number
Router Address Network address to which messages are sent
Name server address Identifies the network address by name instead of number

In the next lesson, you will learn how to configure a PC to access the Internet.