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Problems accessing the Internet

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Problems accessing the Internet

Not sure if anyone else has this problem, might not even be something to do with Force 9 (hence haven't logged it as a fault). Just wondered at the moment whether anyone has the problem of being unable to log onto the Internet at times, first time round. I certainly do, and the problem only gets resolved if I switch my router off then on again.

Thought it was a fault with my router but someone said that it could be something to do with the Dynamic IP address that's allocated by Force 9's DHCP? It's certainly not my firewall, I even switched it off and it didn't make a scrap of diffrence. As it is intermittant thought it could be the IP address that I'm allocated at the time, and once I re-set my router it obtains a different IP.

Any thoughts? Not very technical I'm afriad so no mumbo jumbo please!
11 REPLIES
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IP

Hello pwb1969,

Yes! gaining web access could and would be directly affected if your router lost it's IP address (internet address) for some reason, I'm assuming from your previous comments that your router is designed to auto-detect network settings.

Personally I prefer to have a Fixed IP address, OK heres the point if your router is automatically assigned an IP its abit like having a new telephone number everytime you make a phone call. A fixed IP on the other hand is like a permanent phone number it doesnt change. A fixed IP makes life much more simple and easy to work with in my opinion as your less likely to have problems like this associated with your IP address. If your using a router I'm sure if you ask F9 for a fixed IP they would be able to do that for you.

Ivan
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Problems accessing the Internet

Thanks Ivan good idea.

Before I do this, are there any downsides to a Fixed IP, such as hackers trying to access your PC etcHuh
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Router,etc and security replying Ivan

Hi Again,

No! there are no disadvantages as far as my experience goes, only a simpler life and an easier to setup & configure systems.

As for security, If your concerned about your system or home network from a security point of view, then most routers now a days come with a firewall builtin (it may only require you to input the correct settings on the routers admin page), or another technique is called NAT's (network address translation) which means that your router protects the identity of your computers behind it by translating one IP for another. This is a very clever and effective way to shield your network or computer, I wont go into greater detail as it can be rather technical and dont wont to bore you.

**Failing the above you can also install on each PC or computer or laptop a personal software firewall such as the excellent ZoneAlarm (you can downlaod a freeware basic firewall from ZoneLabs at the following website address:- http://www.zonelabs.com

**The advantage of ZoneAlarm in contrast to other software firewalls is that it puts your computer into stealth mode so no hacker can even see your machine from the internet, secondly ZA uses something called Stateful Inspection which works at the data packet level and network level unlike other programs which use packet filtering. Stateful inspection is a far harder technique to brake through or hack if you like.

**DONT try using MS Windows XP builtin firewall as its very poor indeed and I wouldnt trust it, its so bad I disabled it myself. Also if your using winXP beware that service pack 2 automatically switches on the builtin firewall so then you would have to disable it again (if you know how?).

**Also I DONT recommend Nortons firewall either as its extremely complicated and tends to come with so many extra bells & whistles as it make life very complicated. Well unless Symantec have radicaly improved this product.

**Yes! just in case you want to know or were going to ask can I have both installed and working then the answer is YES! You can have the router use its builtin firewall (check your documentation for the router or makers website to see if it has a firewall and how to set it up,etc) working and ZoneAlarm too which would be belt and braces if you want to look at it that way.

Ivan
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Problems accessing the Internet

Thanks again. I already have Zone Alarm installed and will be looking to Force 9 now to provide me with a fixed IP.

Cheers for the excellent advice.

Paul
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Problems accessing the Internet

Sorry Ivan, one more question. I haven't a clue how to set up a Static IP! I have a Belkin Modem & wireless router and don't know the first thing how to set it all up. Any suggestions?

Thanks again

Paul
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Router setup

Hi Paul,

Yes! inorder to setup your router with a fixed IP address you will need to connect with your router (depending on how the routers setup program works and yes! it can vary alot depending upon the model or make). Either via a cross-over cable or a CAT5 patch cable with an RJ45 jack, some routers allow you to setup via a normal web browser like IE6 or via a telenet session.

You need to enter the routers admin page or setup or configuration page, once you have access this page you should find a box or field that asks you to enter your routers fixed IP or it might ask you if you want to enable or disable DHCP. Here you need to switch off the DHCP if the router has one, also you may have to decide if your going to use NAT's or No NAT's or if the router has a firewall you need to enable or disable this.

If your new to these things its a bit hard to describe them to you in technical detail as you really need to have a good understanding of networking concepts and techniques to fully appreciate what each setting does and why! sorry no offence meant but it can become very complex and so its quite hard to explain in simple terms.

At its simplest a router has two IP address's one of which is an internal IP for your own network (such as say 192.138.90.01) and a second IP which is public facing or outward facing the internet (such as an IP F9 might give you, such as 212. 156.07.95 for example) your router might need both of these IP depending upon how it works.

When another computer or person pings your router the reply will come back from your outward facing IP address, they wont see or know about how many machines or devices live behined your routers public IP. Non for all they know but in reality it could be thousands of computers.

**If you get stuck trying to setup your router let me know and I would be willing to help you over the phone, let me know and I'll give you my phone number via a private message.

Ivan Cool
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Problems accessing the Internet

very helpful, thanks.I've gone into the routers config page and have switched off the DHCP. Interestingly, it didn't ask me to put in the fixed IP address, but it still works when logging on! Very strange.....
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MORE IPs

Hi Again,

That's pretty weird as you would definately be required to have a fixed IP some were in your networking setup. No! IP address then you wouldnt have a working connection, your fixed IP address might be inside the network connections config.

i.e. Start button,start menu, control panel, network connections, local area network or wireless area network, then do a properties of this item, should see a tabbed page, see networking tab, see the item TCP/IP, properties of this item, then you should have a general properties page which contains Fixed IP or DHCP options and also DNS server IP's (primary F9 DNS IP & secondary F9 DNS IP).

PS Have you looked on the F9 portal (logged in) too check what your fixed IP address is? Mine is 212.56.88.108 see if you can run a ping command and see if you get a reply from this.

You definately must have an IP inorder to connect with F9.

Ivan
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IPs

Hi again,Yet more,

On second thoughts perhaps your router has held onto its previous DHCP automatically assigned IP which would explain why its still working and connects, I suspect that you might well run into problems when the IP address's lease runs out which can be in hrs, days or weeks. Then I suspect you wont be able to connect and will be required to input a new fresh fixed IP address and then you'll have fun :-)

Ivan
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Problems accessing the Internet

1) All Force9 ADSL accounts have static IP's

2) I recommend Kerio Firewall http://www.kerio.de/ After using ZoneAlarm for years, Kerio's free personal edition I find is far better and more stable.

3) If your WAN (Wide Area Network aka the Internet) IP dissappears and the router needs to be rebooted, it's due to a "stale session" , basically the remote part of the connection is stuffed and as far as the servers are concerned, your not connected Cheesy

4) To fix DHCP lease problems, set all field values to 0, that should give a lease that expires in several years...

5) Right click your network connection, click properties (Now the fun begins)

Click TCP/IP, click properties
For a static computer IP, Click Add on the Tab, type in a number which you want as an IP, ensure the subnet is the same as the router (Type ipconfig /all to see the current subnet Cheesy)

Your Gateway, is your router IP, the metric is automatic

Click the DNS tab;
Under the DNS Server box (Top box) click add, the DNS server is your router (It will automatically pass the routing information transparently to a Force9 DNS server)

Click the WINS tab;

Disable NetBIOS over TCP

Click ok on all the Windows until it asks you to reboot Cheesy

Mwahahaha
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Problems accessing the Internet

Thanks Guys, having read the Force 9 info, apparently I already get a fixed IP address anyhow, so it's still a mystery. An example I sometimes experience is that it won't connect to the Internet when my PC is switched on, and it won't connect to MSN. But if I press a few Internet Explorer pages repeatedly, it then sometimes works! Not always, sometimes the only way it will work is if I restart my PC and wireless router. A real nightmare.