How to use Ubuntu Linux Network Configuration Tool

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As expected, Ubuntu provides an easy-to-use network configuration utility. You can configure your Ubuntu computer to connect to a LAN by using the following instructions:

1. From the GNOME menu bar, choose System -> Administration -> Networking.
The Enter Your Password to Perform Administrative Tasks dialog opens (unless you've entered your password in the previous five minutes).

2. Type your password in the text box and click OK. The Network Settings dialog opens,
Enter the password you chose during the Ubuntu installation process.

Most computers come equipped with an integrated Ethernet network device; many computers, especially laptops, also come with a built-in modem. The Network Settings dialog shows all the network-related devices on your computer.

3. Click the Wired connection and click the Properties button. The Interface Properties dialog opens, showing your current, if any, configuration.



Choosing network connections
The Internet uses IP addresses to identify the location of both the sender and receiver. You must assign an IP address to your Ubuntu computer before it can connect to and use your LAN and the Internet. There are two ways you can assign an IP address to your Ubuntu computer: dynamically or statically.

• Use dynamic IP addresses (DHCP) if you don't want to provide network services (share files and folders, provide Web pages, and so on). DHCP reduces the configuration work required to use a network. Most cable and DSL modems and Ethernet switches dynamically assign an IP address to any computer (or printer or networking device) that connects to it by using the dynamic host configuration protocol (DHCP). DHCP allows a computer to connect to a network containing a DHCP server and automatically have an IP address assigned to it.

• Avoid using static IP addresses unless you're setting up a server. Static IP addresses don't change and are useful when setting up a computer that provides services to a network. You generally need to know the IP address of a server so you can contact it and use the service or services it provides.



Configuring a dynamic connection
You can use Ubuntu's network configuration utility to set up dynamic networking using DHCP. DHCP provides the easiest method to configure and use a LAN or Internet connection.

You shouldn't have to configure a cable or DSL modem (or Ethernet switch) to use DHCP. Most such devices default to DHCP unless you configure them otherwise. That means you usually only need to plug your Ubuntu computer into the cable modem, DSL modem, or Ethernet switch to obtain an IP address that enables you to use the network.

The following instructions tell your Ethernet interface on your Ubuntu computer to use DHCP:

1. From the GNOME menu bar, choose System -> Administration -> Networking.
Or if you still have the Interface Properties dialog open from earlier in the chapter, skip ahead to Step 4. The Enter Your Password to Perform Administrative Tasks dialog opens (unless you've entered your password in the previous five minutes).

2. Type your password in the text box and click OK. The Network Settings dialog, opens.

3. Click the Properties button in the Network Settings dialog. The Interface Properties dialog, opens. The Enable This Connection check box should be selected and the Configuration drop-down menu should be set to DHCP.

4. Click OK. The Interface Properties dialog closes and control returns to the Network Settings utility.

5. Select the check box immediately to the left of the Wired connection option. Your current network connection closes.

6. Click the check box again. Your new network connection, including all the changes you made in the previous steps, opens.

7. Click OK.

That's all there is to it! The Network Settings window closes and your Ubuntu computer is connected to your LAN or to your broadband modem. Your Ubuntu computer will now automatically get an IP address assigned to it from your broadband gateway or Ethernet switch.



Dynamic host configuration protocol. DHCP dynamically (automatically, on demand) assigns IP addresses to computers and any networked devices (such as printers) on your LAN. You'll find that in general, your dynamic IP addresses rarely change. That's because DHCP generally sets a time-to-live (TTL) option of a day or two on assigned IPs. Your IP will be reassigned only if you leave your computer off for more than the TTL and another computer asks for an address; even then, the DHCP server might not reassign your IP address, but hand out the one in sequence.



Configuring a static connection
Static IP addresses, as the name implies, don't change after they're set. You choose your IP address rather than letting your network switch or broadband modem make the selection.

Your static network connection configuration is not saved permanently if you're using live Ubuntu. Your configuration settings will be lost when you reboot your computer. Network configurations are saved if you're using a permanent Ubuntu installation.

Source of Information : Dummies Ubuntu Linux For Dummies

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