Remember dial-up? What a fun game that was. You had to make sure no one else was going to use a computer, or the phone, and then you would wait forever for that screeching noise to end so you could pull up the html editor for your band fan page hosted on angelfire. Hopefully no one picked up the phone, or called, or anything else to disrupt the connection.
That connection from your computer via dial-up to your modem was Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP), the grandfather of Point-to-Point over Ethernet (PPPoE). PPP created a connection. For the home user, that connection was usually from their computer to the internet.
But then internet speeds got faster. Instead of sharing the family desktop, we started to acquire personal devices. Our TVs, phones, and even our speakers became “smart” and required a connection. The old PPP wasn’t equipped for that. It could only handle one device at a time. Then came PPPoE.
PPPoE makes multiple connections, and allows you to access the internet over multiple devices. It’s the 21st century’s answer to connectivity and multi-tasking.
But Wait, There’s More
PPPoE doesn’t just create connections. It allows your Internet Service Provider (ISP) to regulate the internet you purchase from them. Ever wonder why different bandwidth has different prices? And how they can determine that?
By assigning you a unique username and password, your ISP can recognize you. It then sets up your terms of service, usually your bandwidth, within their servers.
PPPoE also offers essential networking features, like authentication, data encryption, and data compression. The networking features plus the ISP regulations is why it’s one of the most preferred ways to deliver the internet.
I Don’t Know How To Set That Up
It’s cool. You don’t have to. If you’re using the modem your ISP sent you, it’s already set for you. If you do want to buy another modem, or you want to configure PPPoE yourself, a quick internet search can help you out if the new equipment doesn’t do it automatically.
Internet Search Pro Tip: don’t use broad terms when you’re looking for something specific. Typing, “how to setup PPPoE,” is going to get you much broader (and potentially more confusing) results than, “PPPoE setup for This Brand Router.”
I promise setting this up isn’t scary. You have more know-how than you think you do. You can do this.
As always, stay safe out there.
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