12237 Views 1 Reply Latest reply: Sep 20, 2007 5:26 AM by JMVP
You can use your existing WiFi Access Point (WAP) with the eMac. If you have the WAP set up in the usual manner (serving IP addresses via DHCP), you shouldn't need to change anything on the WAP. You will need to know the WiFi network password and the type of encryption (WPA or the older WEP). How to get the eMac to see the WAP depends on the eMac model.
The eMac has an internal slot for either an 802.11b original Airport card or the later 802.11g Airport Extreme card (the two are not interchangable). Look at the graphics card info in Apple's system profiler (Apple menu -> About This Mac -> More Info button); nVidia graphics eMacs use the original Airport card, ATI graphics models use Airport Extreme. The original Airport cards only support WEP, the Airport Extreme cards support WPA.
The original Airport card has been out of production for years and is difficult to find (and expensive when it can be found). For those models, a wireless Ethernet bridge is a practical alternative. Those bridges are usually sold in stores or online as game console add-ons; it plugs into the eMac's Ethernet port and connects to the WAP. Wireless Ethernet bridges currently on the market should all support WPA encryption.
The Airport Extreme card is still sold and can be installed in the eMac using the guide in eMac - Do-It-Yourself. Note that the Extreme card is, well, an extremely tight fit in the eMac slot; numerous posters have noted that you'll need to continue pushing the card into the slot past the point where it feels as if it's fully clicked into place. You need to push the card until just short of the point where the 50-lb eMac begins to slide away from you. Once installed, the Airport Extreme card takes up no additional desktop space.
I've found it's just as quick to enter the setup info in System Preferences -> Network manually as to use any network setup assistant. In Network Port configurations, drag Airport (if using Airport Extreme) or Built-in Ethernet (if using a wireless Ethernet bridge) to the top of the list. Show the appropriate connection type, click the TCP/IP and other tabs, and make any changes from the default settings.