Connect Your PC

Troubleshooting Windows XP (may apply to Windows Vista and Windows 7)

Windows XP is very good about installing much of what you need to make network connections. While connected to an Ethernet network, an XP system will attempt to (and usually succeed) automatically configure itself upon startup. If the machine has previously been setup using a different network or internet service provider those settings may need to be cleared or disabled in order to communicate properly on the MHC network. Please see the section on Cleaning out Network Connections if you have used this machine with another network or service provider. Even if your machine works when you plug it in, you should verify the following settings:

Network Connections Settings

1. Click on the Start button and choose Control Panel from the list.

2. From the list of Control Panels, choose Network and Internet Connections.

3. If you do not see the control panel, look in the top left corner of this window for the button labeled "Switch to Category View" and click to select that view. Then look for Network and Internet Connections again and choose it from the list.

4. In the Network and Internet Connections window that appears, choose Network Connections at the bottom right corner of that window.

5. In the Network Connections window that appears, you should see a Local Area Connection on the right hand side of the window. If you have more than one Local Area Connection listed, please see the section below about Cleaning Out the Network Connections.

6. Double click on this icon and then choose the Properties button from the screen that appears. This should open up the Local Area Connection Properties Window:

7. Make sure that on the General Tab "Connect using:" lists your ethernet adaptor. Then highlight Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) in the list and click on Properties.

  • Where it says: Obtain an IP address automatically; you should choose: Checked
  • Where it says: Obtain DNS server addresses automatically; you should choose Checked

8. Click on Advanced and switch to the DNS tab. After "DNS Suffix for this Connection" type in mtholyoke.edu. Click on OK then on OK again and finally on Close.

You may need to restart your machine for these changes to take effect.

Network Identity

1. Under the Start menu, locate My Computer, right click on it and then choose Properties from the menu that appears.

2. Click on the Computer Name tab and then on the Change button.

  • Where it says: Computer Name; enter your MHC username
  • Where it says: Member of; choose Workgroup
  • Where it says: Workgroup text box; enter your dorm or building name

3. Click OK to save your changes to this setting, then click OK again to exit System Properties. If your machine asks you to restart, do so.

Cleaning Out Network Connections

If your computer came with a modem or if you have connected to other networks besides the Mount Holyoke Network, your Network Connections screen may contain multiple Local Area Connections, Dial Up Connections, VPN Connections or Network Bridges. To find out which Local Area connection you want to keep you will need to double click on each Network Connection and then click the button that says Properties. In the Window that comes up look at the top of the window where it says "Connect using." Each Network Connection listed with have a different item listed under this "Connect using" section of its properties. You are specifically looking for the connection which identifies your ethernet adaptor in the "Connect using" section..

Once you have located this connection, make a note of it’s name (Usually Local Area Connection or Local Area Connection #2) and then click on cancel to close this window. Close the Local Area Connection Window itself (with the packets sent and received status). You should be looking at your Network Connections window again with all of your Network Connections listed on the right. You can now disable any network connections which are not using your Ethernet adaptor by right clicking on them and choosing "Disable" from the context sensitive menu.

Network Bridges

If you have devices connected in a Network Bridge you must double click on the Network Bridge first and choose Properties. In the Network Bridge Properties window under the General Tab, in the Adapters section remove the check from the boxes listed for ALL network devices in the bridge and then click Apply. You can then remove or disable the Network Bridge itself.