For experienced internet users, the raw facts:

Phone numbers for PPP access:
  • (123) 456-7890
DNS Servers:
1.2.3.4 (dns1.acme.net)
5.6.7.8 (dns2.acme.net)
POP Mail Server:
mail.acme.net
USENET News Server:
news.acme.net
For inexperienced but adventurous internet users, who have some proficiency with Windows 95:
Step 1 Call ACME for your personal internet account. Be sure to write down your username, password, and internet E-Mail address; you won't be able to use the internet without them.
Obtain an account and password on the ACME internet server.
Step 2 Get your original Windows 95 CD or disks. You will need them if TCP/IP or Dialup Networking were not installed when you loaded Windows 95.
Locate your Windows 95 media.
Step 3 Make sure your computer is turned on and is operating normally.
  1. Press the Start button.
  2. Select Settings, then Control Panel.
  3. Double-click the Add/Remove Programs icon.
  4. Select the Windows Setup tab, then click on the Communications option and press Details.
  5. Make sure that the Dial-Up Networking option is selected.
  6. If it is, go on to Step 4.
  7. If it isn't, select it and click OK.
  8. Windows 95 will attempt to install the needed drivers, so make sure you've got your installation disks or CD handy!
  9. Now that Dial-up Networking is installed, you can proceed to Step 4.
Verify that Dial-Up networking is installed.
Step 4
  1. Press the Start button, select Settings, then Control Panel.
  2. Double-click the Network icon.
  3. You'll see a dialog box. Make sure the Configuration tab is selected.
  4. Both Dial-Up Adapter and TCP/IP should be present.
  5. If they are, proceed to Step 5.
  6. To install Dial-Up Adapter, click Add, double-click Adapter, then scroll down the list until you can select Microsoft.
  7. Choose the Dial-Up Adapter and click OK.
  8. To install TCP/IP, click Protocol, click Add, then select Microsoft, then TCP/IP, and click OK. Now your Network dialog box should contain both Dial-Up Adapter and TCP/IP.
  9. Select the Dial-Up Adapter, click Properties, Bindings, and make sure the TCP/IP box is checked.
  10. You're now ready to proceed to Step 5.
Verify that the Dial-Up Adapter and TCP/IP protocol are installed.
Step 5 Now that the driver is installed, you need to configure it so it will work with Windows 95.
  1. Go to the Control Panel and double-click the Network icon.
  2. Click on the TCP/IP protocol and press the Properties button.
  3. TCP/IP Properties - fill in the following:
    1. IP Address: Select the "Obtain an IP Address Automatically" option.
    2. WINS Configuration: Select the Disable WINS Resolution
    3. Gateway: Leave This One Alone!
    4. Bindings : Leave This One Alone!
    5. Advanced: Leave This One Alone!
    6. DNS Configuration
      If ACME will be your only Internet Service Provider defined within Dial-Up Networking, enter the following information:
      1. Click Enable DNS
      2. HOST: Your login id (lower case)
      3. DOMAIN: acme.net
      4. DNS Server Search Order: Enter 1.2.3.4 then click ADD (primary), then enter 5.6.7.8 then click ADD (secondary)
      If you plan to use other Internet Service Providers with Dial-Up Networking, make sure DNS is disabled. It will be enabled in a later step.
  4. When you're finished setting these options, press the OK button. Then press the OK button in the Network dialog box.
  5. Windows 95 will ask you to reboot. Press Yes and run to the fridge for a quick snack. You're almost done!
Configure the network control panel.
Step 6
  1. Double-click on My Computer
  2. Double-click on Dial-Up Networking
  3. Double-click on Make New Connection icon (unless you have an icon that says ACME). Make New Connection wizard will start.
  4. Type in "ACME" or whatever you want to call the icon (the title won't affect the connection). Your modem (which should have been configured when you installed Windows 95) should be shown in the Select a modem: area.
  5. Select Configure.
  6. In the General section, Crank up your modem speed to as fast as you think it will go. If you have a 14.4K modem, for example, make the maximum speed 38400. DO NOT, however, select "Only Connect at this Speed." This will let your modem adjust as the connection quality requires. Don't worry about the Connection or Options sections, the defaults should be fine.
  7. Click on Next.
  8. Enter the Telephone number (456-7890) You don't need to put in an area code if it's a local call.
  9. Click Finish.
Set up the Connection Icon.
Step 7
  1. Select your newly-created connection icon, press the right mouse button and choose Properties.
  2. Pick Server Type. The type of Dial-Up Server should say PPP: Windows 95, Windows NT 3.5, Internet.
  3. Uncheck Log on to network, NetBEUI and IPX/SPX Compatible.
  4. Select TCP/IP Settings.
  5. Select Server assigned IP address.
  6. Select Specify name server addresses and add these IP addresses
    Primary DNS 1.2.3.4
    Secondary DNS 5.6.7.8
  7. Select OK.
  8. Select the OK button in the remaining dialog boxes. When you get back to the Dial-Up Networking window, you can click and hold the "ACME" icon and drag it out onto the desktop to make a shortcut to it. Now you are ready to connect.
Set the Dial-Up Properties.
Step 8
  1. Double-click on the "ACME" icon that you recently made. You'll get the "Connect To" dialog.
  2. Put your User name and Password in the appropriate text areas. (You must type these in lower case letters.)
  3. Press the Connect button and your modem should start dialing.
  4. Windows 95 should take care of the rest!
  5. After you get the "Connected at ####### bps" message, you can minimize the Dialog Box.
  6. YOU'RE CONNECTED!
Dial in and connect to the server.
Step 9 You will need a web browser if you want to "surf the web." Netscape is the world's most popular web browser, and you can download it over the internet. However, it is not free, and you should pay for it if you use it.

Microsoft's Internet Explorer is free, but Netscape is smaller and faster.

Follow these steps to download Netscape for Windows 95:

  1. You must be connected to download Netscape Navigator. If you have broken the connection, you must activate the Dial-Up networking icon again.
  2. Press the Start button, select Programs, then MS-DOS Prompt. You should get either a command window or a command screen. (You can toggle the DOS session between a window and full-screen by holding the ALT key and pressing Enter. If your DOS session locks up, you should toggle it for display as a window, then close the window.)
  3. Enter the following commands:
    1. mkdir \hold
    2. cd \hold
    3. ftp ftp.netscape.com
    4. For the User: prompt, enter
      ftp
    5. For the password, enter your E-Mail address (i.e., jdoe@acme.net). You will not see the characters of the password as you type them.
    6. cd /pub
    7. cd navigator
    8. cd 3.03
    9. cd shipping
    10. cd english
    11. cd windows
    12. cd windows95_or_nt
    13. cd navigator_standard
    14. bin
    15. hash
    16. get n32e303.exe
  4. Go have dinner. You are downloading a 3-Megabyte file. It may take a half-hour or more. You will see "#" marks appear on the screen as the download progresses, and you will also see your modem activity lights blinking on your task bar (lower right corner of the screen). If the lights stop blinking or your connection to the internet is broken, you will have to start over.
  5. After you see the message "Transfer Complete," enter the following commands:
    1. quit
    2. n32e303
    Netscape will begin its installation. Follow the prompts to install Netscape. When it has finished, you will have a blue Netscape Navigator icon on your desktop. You may use it whenever you are connected to the internet.

    Netscape's integrated USENET News client should work with minimal modifications.

    You must modify the news server to be news.acme.net in the Servers section of the Mail and News Options.

    To activate the News client, select Window / Navigator News from the Netscape Navigator menu.

    Netscape's integrated Electronic Mail client will require substantial configuration before it will work. To configure it, follow the following steps:

    1. From the main Netscape Navigator menu, select Options.
    2. Select Mail and News Preferences...
    3. Select the Servers tab.
    4. In the POP3 User Name box, enter your ACME internet account name.
    5. Select the Identity tab.
    6. Type you full name, as you want it to appear on all of your E-Mail messages, in the Your Name: box.
    7. Type your email address in the Your Email: box. You should have received an E-Mail address when you signed up for internet service with ACME.
    8. Select OK. Your E-Mail is now fully configured.
    9. From the main Netscape Navigator menu, select Window.
    10. Select Netscape Mail.
    11. Enter your password in the dialog box. If the password is correct, any E-Mail messages waiting for you on our server will be downloaded to your machine.

    When you are absolutely finished installing Netscape, you can (and should) delete the installation program to save your disk space. Here is how:

    1. Press the Start button, select Programs, then MS-DOS Prompt. You should get either a command window or a command screen.
    2. Enter the following command:
      1. del \hold\n32e303.exe
Download Netscape Navigator.
Step 10 Microsoft, in their infinite wisdom, requires you to already have a web browser before you can download Internet Explorer (at this time, there are no published Microsoft sites that make MSIE available by anonymous FTP).

The WWW address for Microsoft Internet Explorer is http://www.microsoft.com/ie

If you really want Microsoft Internet Explorer, you can:

  1. Download Netscape, and use it to download MSIE.
  2. Use our disks to install MSIE.
  3. Contact us, and we will put a copy of MSIE where you can easily download it.
If you choose to download MSIE, be prepared to wait. The compressed version of the full install is over 10 megabytes. Plan to do it overnight.
Download Internet Explorer.