How does one plug into the Internet?

Subject: How does one plug into the Internet?
From: Steven Owens <uso01 -at- MAILHOST -dot- UNIDATA -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 14 Dec 1993 09:16:37 -0600

Chuck Petch advises Ken:
> Ken, connecting to Internet from home requires two items: (1) a fast
> modem (9600 baud or better), (2) terminal emulation software that is
> capable of making a SLIP connection to a UNIX host (VersaTerm, for
> example), and (3) a UNIX host to log into.

Actually, while SLIP or PPP is nice, you don't really need them to
hang out on the internet. A 2400 baud dialup to a local host can be quite
enough (higher speed is nice, though).

> By the way, I think SLIP means Serial Internet Protocol.

Almost. Serial Line Internet Protocol. PPP is Point-to-Point
Protocol. I've never looked into PPP, but I've heard it's better for
some purposes.

> Hope that helps. Perhaps there are more knowledgeable users out there
> who can add to what I've said.

I have an internet friend in Canada. I'll ask him for leads
to internet dialups. One thing to look into is local users groups and
BBSes, and local colleges. Many colleges and universities give out
computer accounts to all of their students these days, and some may
even have a policy in place for obtaining an account as a non-student.
Local users groups may have their own system on the Internet (I know
somebody who gets his access this way) and may provide you with an
account with the membership.

Finally, you don't really need synchronous access (i.e. real
time) to the internet to do many things (mail, news, file retrieval),
so you may want to look into local BBSes that have an old-style UUCP
link. Many or most of these are free. A UUCP link connects to a host
system at regular intervals to pick up new mail, and get new messages
for the newsgroups. Many systems also support Archive Servers. These
are similar to FTP, but they operate via e-mail; you mail a request to
the archive server address, it mails the file back to you in a
uuencoded form.

(uuencoding is a way to translate a binary file - ones and zeros - into
a stream of standard ASCII characters, so you can transmit it over normal
mail systems. Note that uuencoded messages are often very long, so you
should check for message length restrictions first).

Hm... I was going to wait until I could dig up some more
information before I posted a reply, but it looks like I've gone and
done it. I'll send more later.

Steven J. Owens
uso01 -at- unidata -dot- com
(303) 294-4864
(303) 367-8074

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