All the support you need to connect to the Internet is built into Windows 95, including a fast, robust, 32-bit implementation of TCP/IP, which is the language of the Internet. Windows 95 also provides the Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP) for dial-in support. This means that Windows 95 is Internet-ready, whether you dial into a commercial Internet provider or you have access to the Internet using your corporate network with TCP/IP.

Windows 95 supports public domain tools such as Mosaic, Wide Area Information Servers (WAIS), and Gopher that use the Windows Sockets application programming interface (API). Windows 95 also includes utilities such as Telnet and File Transfer Protocol (FTP) to help you take advantage of the Internet.

This chapter describes how to configure Windows 95 to access the Internet, and also offers some basic tips for browsing and accessing information on the Internet.

See Also

Chapter 7, "Network Technical Issues," for information about configuring Microsoft TCP/IP, for definitions of common Internet terms such as IP addresses, gateways, and DNS, and for information about Windows Sockets

Chapter 18, "Modems and Communications Tools," for specific information on how to set up the modem

What You Need to Access the Internet

Windows 95 provides out-of-the-box support for the Internet by providing the basic protocols and utilities to connect you directly from your computer. In all, you must have the following:

Tip For more information on accessing and using the Internet, see these books:

Falk, B. The Internet Roadmap. Alameda, CA: SYBEC Inc., 1994.

Gaffin, A. Big Dummy's Guide to the Internet. Boston, MA: MIT Press. 1994.

The following sections summarize steps for configuring the hardware and protocols to support access to the Internet.

Configuring Hardware for Internet Access

Most users access the Internet by dialing into a computer connection provided by an Internet access provider, which is a company or institution that provides this service. In this case, the user needs a modem and a phone line for the dial-in process. Windows 95 supports a wide variety of modems for dial-in access. Nothing special is required to set up a modem for Internet access. For information about setting up modems, see Chapter 18, "Modems and Communications Tools."

Alternately, if you are part of a large organization, and can afford a direct connection, you will use a network adapter card that allows a dedicated computer to plug directly into the Internet. Your site may be configured for this option.

If you are using a network adapter card and dialing into an Internet access provider, you need to set up Remote Access services on your computer. This involves adding support for the PPP driver. For information on how to set up Remote Access, see Chapter 22, "Remote Access."

After you have set up the Remote Access driver, you need to ensure that it is bound to the TCP/IP protocol.

To bind PPP to TCP/IP

1.In Network Control Panel, make sure that you can see both the Remote Access Driver entry and the TCP/IP protocol listed in the Configuration property sheet.

If either one is missing, see Chapter 22, "Remote Access," for information on how to set up Remote Access services.

2. Select the Remote Access driver entry, and click Properties.

3. Click the Bindings tab, and ensure that the TCP/IP protocol is checked. If not, click the related check box.

Configuring TCP/IP for Internet Access

The language of the Internet is TCP/IP and thus you will need to add support for this protocol to connect to the Internet. For information about how to add and configure the TCP/IP protocol, see Chapter 7, "Network Technical Issues."

After you install TCP/IP, you can configure your Internet Protocol (IP) address. To do so, you need to set the Domain Name System (DNS) value for your network or Internet access provider, and then add an IP address for your computer, as described in the following procedure.

Before you begin, you need the following information from your Internet access provider:

For information about IP addresses and TCP/IP protocol, see Chapter 7, "Network Technical Issues."

The following procedures assume that your computer has Microsoft TCP/IP installed as a network protocol. If your site uses another version of TCP/IP, you must configure the protocol as recommended by the protocol vendor.

To set the DNS value and IP address if your site has a DHCP server

To set the DNS value and IP address if your site does not have a DHCP server

1.In Network Control Panel, select TCP/IP, and click Properties.

2.Click the DNS tab, and complete the options to specify the DNS gateway server. Then click the IP Address tab, and complete the options for specifying your computer's IP address and subnet mask. For information, see Chapter 7, "Network Technical Issues."

If you need to know what value to enter for the DNS server:

If you want to establish a direct Internet connection for your network, to become an Internet access provider, see "Configuring a Gateway Server" later in this section.

Accessing the Internet

To access the Internet, you need the following:

More information about these topics is provided in this section.

Finding Internet Access Providers

Internet access providers charge a fee for the connection services. The list of providers is long and growing.

To find information about other Internet access providers

Connecting to the Internet

The following procedures summarize the steps for connecting to the Internet.

To dial the Internet shell account using a modem

To dial the Internet using remote access to your Corporate Network

1.Click the Network Neighborhood icon.

2.Double-click the Remote Access folder.

3.If you haven't set up a connection before, double-click New Connection. Otherwise, double-click the appropriate connection.

4.Click Continue after you've read the Welcome screen, and then type the Telephone Number of the Internet access provider and any other relevant information.

5.Click Close, or click Connect if you are ready to begin working on the Internet.

Tip Using an Internet access provider by way of remote access is a fairly cost-effective way to reach the Internet, but is limited by the speed of the connection and the modem. For a good modem and a normal phone line, this speed tends to be roughly 14.4K baud.

Using Microsoft Internet Mail System for Internet Access

You can use the Microsoft Internet Mail System to send and receive Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) messages by way of the Internet.

With the SMTP capabilities in Windows 95, you can use Microsoft Mail to send mail messages over the Internet containing text, binary files, multimedia objects, and directory updates. This gateway automatically encapsulates all binary file attachments and messages with extended characters.

To use Internet Mail System for Internet access

To be provided.

Using Microsoft TCP/IP Utilities

Windows 95 provides a variety of TCP/IP utilities for copying files, initiating host sessions with other servers, and checking the status of your IP configuration. For detailed information about these tools, see Appendix A, "Summary of Command-Line Commands." The troubleshooting section of Chapter 7, "Network Technical Issues," includes specific steps for using TCP/IP utilities such as PING to verify your connection.

FTP is a file-sharing protocol that allows transfer of text and binary files between a host computer and your PC. FTP requires that you log onto the remote host for user authentication, but anonymous FTP can be used to acquire various free software and documentation through the Internet. Some FTP servers have a limit to the number of anonymous users they can handle at any one time, so you may need to attempt the dial-in more than once to get a connection.

You can use FTP to access the Microsoft FTP server to get troubleshooting help and other information. This support service uses anonymous FTP to provide documentation, utilities, updated drivers, and other information for many Microsoft systems products.

To get support from Microsoft using the Internet

1.Make sure you are connected to your Internet provider as described earlier in this chapter.

2.Start FTP and connect to ftp.microsoft.com

3.When you are asked for a User Name, type anonymous

4.Type your Internet account name (your electronic mail name) as your password, using the format userid@hostname.domain.

Don't worry if you don't see any characters appear on the screen as you type in this information. This is a security measure to protect your password.

You are now connected to the root directory of the Microsoft FTP site. After typing your password, you will see a short logon message, and then the following appears:

ftp>

For information about navigating and downloading files, see the following section.

Navigating the Internet

This section provides some tips to help you find and access information on the Internet, including the following topics:

Navigating the Internet with FTP

This section describes how to see a listing of directories and files at an FTP site, with specific information about how to change directories and download files.

Most FTP sites are organized into a series of directories and files.

To see what is available at an FTP site

At the ftp> prompt, type:

ls

This command gives you a simple listing of directory and folder names.

To get more details on the current directory

At the ftp> prompt, type:

ls -l

Changing Directories with FTP

Before you start downloading files, you need to know how to change directories, but if you have ever used MS-DOS, this shouldn't be a problem.

To move inside a directory

At the ftp> prompt, type:

cd directory_name

For example, to get more information about Microsoft desktop applications, type:

cd deskapps

A Welcome message from the FTP server is displayed, followed by another ftp> prompt. At this point, you can type ls or ls -l again to see what resides in this directory.

To go back to the previous directory

At the ftp> prompt, type:

cd ..

If you have navigated through many directories and realize that you want to go back to the beginning, instead of typing cd .. again and again, you can type cd / to return to the root directory of this host.

Tip Notice that the forward slash "/" is used (as opposed to the backslash "\" that MS_DOS and Windows users are accustomed to). On most UNIX computers, the way to change directories is with the forward slash. Currently, most FTP servers you access only understand that particular command, so the forward slash will always work. However, if you dial into a Windows NT computer, such as ftp.microsoft.com, it understands both the forward slash and the backslash.

Downloading Files with FTP

To get files from the Internet, you first must tell your software what type of file it is that you want to download. There are two types of files:

By default, when you begin using FTP, you are working in ASCII mode. Anything you transfer that is a text file will work perfectly. If you attempt to transfer a binary file while you are in ASCII mode, the transfer will take place, but you will be unable to view or execute the file.

Tip Most text-based FTP clients are case-sensitive, so be sure to use the correct case when you attempt to transfer resources from these FTP sites.

To switch from ASCII to binary transfer mode

At the ftp> prompt, type:

binary

You then see something similar to the following:

200 Type set to I.

This indicates that you successfully changed to binary transfer mode.

To switch back to ASCII

At the ftp> prompt, type:

ASCII

You then see the following:

200 Type set to A.

Most FTP servers have text files that describe the layout of their entire directory structure so that you don't have to go wandering blindly. For example, the file on ftp.microsoft.com is DIRMAP.TXT. You will see that file if you are in the root directory and type ls.

To transfer a file to your PC

At the ftp> prompt, type:

get filename

For example, type get dirmap.txt to get the directory map on the Microsoft FTP server.

The actual syntax for the get command is the following:

get filename newname

The second parameter is optional, and if you don't include a new name for the file, you will see it on your computer with the same name it had on the FTP server.

As the file is being downloaded, you see something similar to the following (the actual numbers may be different):

200 PORT command successful.

150 Opening ASCII mode data connection for dirmap.txt.

226 Transfer complete.

4161 bytes received in 0.32 seconds (13.21 Kbytes/sec)

If there is an error, remember that you are using software that is case-sensitive, so make sure you typed in the word dirmap.txt exactly.

When you see the ftp> prompt again, you can look in Windows Explorer for the DIRMAP.TXT file and open it using any text processor such as WordPad.

To disconnect from your host

At the ftp> prompt, type:

disconnect

To stop using FTP

At the ftp> prompt, type:

quit

Accessing Online Services Using the Internet

Online services provide a critical resource for computer users who need to gather information and communicate with other computer users.

Windows 95 offers some options to users wanting to access online services on the Internet. Windows 95 supports two of the most popular remote connection protocols to the Internet - SLIP and PPP. Users can connect to the Internet in these ways:

Note A Windows 95 Remote Access server cannot provide access to Internet resources it has available to a PPP client. There is no IP router built into Windows 95 to provide this service, as is available with Windows NT 3.5.

Windows 95 integrates a variety of access points into online services. Windows 95 Mail users can send and receive mail through gateways to the Internet community directly from the mail client. The Windows 95 HyperTerminal tool includes scripts for a variety of existing online services including CompuServeĀ®, Dow Jones News/RetrievalĀ®, and America OnlineĀ®.

For more information about HyperTerminal, see Chapter 18, "Modems and Communications Tools."

Browsing the Internet with Public Domain Tools

In addition to the tools provided with Windows 95, there are a variety of graphical applications which you can use to access and peruse the Internet more easily and with greater capabilities. These include Mosaic, Gopher, and Wide-Area Information Server, to name a few. The following sections provide information about these applications.

Using Mosaic

NCSA Mosaic is a graphical network navigational tool that provides users access to networked information on the Internet and the World Wide Web (WWW) distributed information system. NCSA Mosaic gives the user a mechanism to retrieve and display a wide variety of data types, including text, image, video, and audio. It uses a hypertext user interface similar to Windows Help files, so you can click on a word or image of interest, and Mosaic connects you to the appropriate resource. There are now two flavors of Mosaic - one for IBM-compatible computers running Windows 3.1, Windows for Workgroups or Windows NT, and one for the DEC™ Alpha AXP™ computers running Windows NT.

To access Mosaic

1.Connect to ftp.ncsa.uiuc.edu.

2.At the prompt, type:

cd /Web

3.Read the FAQ.TXT file in this directory for more information. This section discusses exactly what you need to download from this FTP site, and what you need on your PC to install Mosaic correctly.

4.After you install Mosaic, click in the text box labeled Document URL: and type:

http://www.microsoft.com

This connects you to the Microsoft World Wide Web server. Rather than typing commands to change directories, just position your cursor over any of the highlighted words. When you click on them, the appropriate screens will come to the forefront.

Using Windows Gopher

Named for the official mascot of the University of Minnesota, where the system was developed, Gopher is a tool that offers menu-based access to Internet information. Using Gopher, the intricacies of the Internet are hidden from the user, bypassing complicated TCP/IP addresses and connections. They can choose the information they want from a list of menus, and Gopher makes the connections necessary in order to retrieve the information.

Tip Public-domain Windows-based utilities such as LPR and Gopher can be obtained on the Internet using ftp.cica.indiana.edu in the /pub/pc/win3/nt or /pub/win3/winsock directory, or using the same directories on ftp.cdrom.com.

Also, a list of Internet sources for Windows Sockets applications is available through info@lcs.com.

To access Gopher

1.Type the following command:

gopher

2.Log on as:

gopher

3.Gopher offers a menu of choices. Choose the number that corresponds to the selection you want to make, as described in the following list.

Type For information about

1 Information about Gopher.

2 Computer information/

3 Discussion groups/

4 Fun and games/

5 Internet file server (ftp) sites/

6 Libraries <TEL>

7 News/

8 Other Gopher and information servers <?>

9 Phone books/

10 Search lots of places at the University of Minnesota <?>

11 University of Minnesota campus information/

Notice the symbol after each menu choice:

Using Wide-Area Information Servers

Wide-Area Information Server (WAIS) provides an organized way to peruse the hundreds of databases and library catalogs you can access on the Internet. WAIS searches the contents of documents based on any word you type as opposed to other search tools that just look at the titles. In response, WAIS delivers a list of relevant documents. Depending on your search, this list may be extremely large, so WAIS organizes the documents by sorting them based on how many times your keyword was mentioned in the document. Also, if the list is very large, you can choose a few of the documents that suit your needs, and tell WAIS to find more documents in those related categories.

To access WAIS

WAIS displays a list of databases you can access and simple directions for navigating, because you have to select your sources before you actually begin your search. The screen shows the following:

To select the database you want to use and begin searching

1.Press the space bar next to the appropriate sources. An asterisk appears next to the selected databases.

2.To type keywords in the area at the bottom of the screen, press ENTER. Then begin typing.

WAIS will begin searching the contents of all of your sources, and return with a sorted list of possibilities.

When WAIS displays this list, the article with the most occurrences of your keywords appear at the top. You can read any of the returned files.

To regain access to the keyword list

Press w to alter the list and then run the search again.

- Or -

Press s to change your previously selected databases and search again.

Configuring a Gateway Server

If your site can afford a dedicated connection to the Internet, you can choose this option over having to go through a third-party Internet access provider. The advantages of this include improved performance and potentially reduced costs, depending on your use. You'll need to set up hardware and obtain a domain name for the connection.

Setting Up Hardware

You will need to set up a dedicated computer which acts as the gateway server to the Internet. This server should use a high-speed connection, such as a T1 line. The TI line connects to the computer using a special network adapter card. The T1 connection offers a high throughput rate of information, but costs roughly $5000 per month.

Obtaining a Domain Name

Once you set up the gateway server, you'll need to obtain a domain name so that others can send information to your gateway easily.

Networks that connect to the public Internet must obtain an official network ID from the InterNIC to guarantee IP network ID uniqueness. The InterNIC can be contacted using electronic mail at info@internic.net (1-800-444-4345 or, for Canada and overseas, 619-455-4600). Internet registration requests can be sent to hostmaster@internic.net. You can also use FTP to connect to is.internic.net, then log on as anonymous, and change to the /INFOSOURCE/FAQ directory.

After receiving a network ID, the local network administrator must assign unique host IDs for computers within the local network.

Troubleshooting Internet Access

@See Also

See the Troubleshooting section in Chapter 7, "Network Technical Issues," for tips on troubleshooting TCP/IP connections.

Troubleshooting tips to be provided.

Using World-Wide Web

World-Wide Web (WWW) is a hypertext-based search engine designed by the European Particle Physics Laboratory in Geneva Switzerland. Like WAIS, it allows you to peruse lists of articles available on the Internet.

To access WWW

1.Use Telnet to connect to ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu.

2.Log on as the following:

www

3.When WWW displays a menu of choices, choose the number that corresponds to the selection you want to make, as described in the following list.

Type For information about

1 Help

2 World-Wide Web (Information about the WWW global information initiative)

3 CERN Information (CERN is the European Particle Physics Laboratory)

4 Particle Physics (Other HEP sites with information servers)

5 Other Subjects (Catalog of all online information by subject)

6 Other Subjects by server type