How To Get Connected

How to guide for getting your business online.

To get online, you need a computer and an internet connection. If you are new to the internet, ask someone you know to help you get started, or send us an email with your questions!

If you need a website for your business, click here.

Choosing a computer

There are many affordable computers on the market today. To make the right choice, consider what you will use your computer for. deskPad is all about growing your business through online marketing, and for this purpose the requirements for your computer are very basic. You need a computer which has web browsing software and can connect to the internet. It is almost impossible these days to purchase a computer which does not do these things.

Which Web Browser?

Any common web-browser can be used, including Internet Explorer, FireFox, Safari, Opera or Goggle Chrome. It is recommended to install the most recent stable release of your chosen web browser for your operating system. Using the most common web-browser will mean that your user-experience will be optimized as the more common the browser, the more websites which will work as intended in that browser.

Which Internet Connection?

Most new computers have 'on-board wireless'. This means that with no additional equipment, your computer can connect to a wireless internet service, if there is one in range. The other type of internet connection is a cable connection, usually using an ethernet cable, which requires your computer to have an 'on-board' network card. Whether you will connect your computer via wireless or ethernet, you need a network to connect to. At your place of business you will want to set-up a broadband internet connection. Broadband refers to an 'always on' high-speed connection to the internet. There are several types and connection speeds, most using your telephone line. The added advantage of a broadband internet connection is that you can take advantage of VOIP voice-over-IP services to get significantly cheaper telephone calls and save on line rental. deskPad uses Exetel to connect to the internet. We have found this service to be reliable and competitively priced. If you would like to use Extel for your internet connection, deskPad can assist you with ordering and setup.

Other Considerations

There are many other benefits your computer can offer, and it is a good idea to consider which of these you may find useful, so you can consider this in your purchasing decision.

  • desktop publishing - creating print marketing materials such as letters and flyers
  • creating spreadsheets for budgetting and financial planning
  • general research and/or entertainment - watching movies and dvds and surfing the internet

For the above, especially for desktop publishing software, the processor speed of your computer may be important. Also the operating system will need to support the specific applications and application versions you wish to run. If you will be storing a lot of files on your computer, you will want a way to back these up, in case of system failure or theft. For this you may want to consider an external drive or a CD/DVD burner. If you will be storing a lot of media files such as photos and movies, these can be quite large and so you will want to consider how much disk space you need.

Desktop or Portable

These days portable mini-computers are very reasonably priced and can be connected to an external screen, keyboard and mouse to give you all of the benefits of a desktop PC as well as the mobility of a portable. Beware, portable computers are much easier to steal! Therefore a cable lock is recommended to prevent theft, as well as ensuring that your computer is covered by your contents insurance. With a deskPad website all of your business data is online and backed up daily, so even if you did lose your computer, you would not lose your data. What you may lose is any local files such as photos and word processing documents which you have stored on your computer. These should be backed up regularly to safeguard against theft and/or hardware failure.