Northwest Nexus Frequently Asked Questions

Connecting to Northwest Nexus using Win95 and Win98:

Microsoft's Windows 95 comes with everything you need to connect to an Internet Service Provider likes Northwest Nexus. Our examination of what's provided and the alternatives, along with months of extensive testing on our own everyday machines, suggests that as of this writing, using the built-in networking facilities is preferable to using other external packages, like NetManage Chameleon or Trumpet Winsock -- if you don't need the extra clients and capabilities that come with Internet Chameleon. Even if you do need and want those clients, you can get all of them in other freeware or shareware programs available through the Internet, so there's even less reason to run Chameleon on Win95. NetManage may not be thrilled to hear us say that, but we always recommend the shortest and best path (if there is one that's both ;-) to our customers.

Note also, though, that because Win95 DUN is a V1.0 product, there are some bugs and strange behaviors in the Win95 network code, but our personal experience with using the Win95 Dial-Up Networking (DUN) software has been overwhelmingly good, surprisingly so. Microsoft has a Dialup Networking 1.2 patch available from their website as a free download. Win98 comes with this newer Dialup Networking already installed. In all, configuring Win98 for the internet is pretty much the same as Win95.

You can run all of our favorite Internet client programs, like Eudora for mail, WinVN or FreeAgent for news, and Netscape for the Web with Win95 DUN.

You'll Need Our Personal or Premium PPP Service

To use Win95's DUN connection capabilities, you need at minimum, our Personal PPP service. If you currently have Personal SLIP service, you can change to Personal PPP at no charge -- simply send us electronic mail at:

...asking us to change your account from SLIP to PPP. Be sure to tell us that you're using Win95. We'll make the change by the next business day, in most cases.

Set Things Up Our Way

Some versions of Win95 (ie Win95 w/Microsoft Plus! Pack, Win95 Internet Explorer edition, and Win95B-OSR2) come with useful online setup wizards (such as the Internet Connection Wizard of Get On The Internet wizard). These wizards are usually located under Start/Programs/Accessories/Internet Tools. Usually, these setup wizards are rather simple to go through and will do a pretty good job of configuring everything all in one session. They will help you install a modem if you don't have one already in your Modem control panel; they will configure your Dialup Networking; Network Control Panel; and also email for Internet Mail or Windows Messaging. If you choose to setup your system with a wizard, make sure you DO NOT use the automatic setup, because this will attempt to sign you up with an internet account with a service such as MSN. Make sure you choose the option, I Already Have An Internet Service Provider or Manual Configuration. Also, if you have more than one Internet provider, you may want to choose the setup method below so it won't accidently interfere with your previous settings. We have found that this step-by-step method gives more consistent results than the other two methods.

Here's how to get Win95 Dial-Up Networking installed:

A. Make sure you have Dial-Up Networking installed

  1. Open My Computer. If you do not see a Dial-Up Networking icon, follow Steps 2 through 6.
  2. Open the Control Panel.
  3. Click Add/Remove Programs.
  4. Click the Windows Setup tab.
  5. Click Communications, then click Details.
  6. Check Dial-Up Networking, and then click OK. You may be asked to insert your Win95 source diskettes or CD-ROM.

B. Install the Client for Microsoft Networks

  1. Open the Control Panel.
  2. Select Network.
  3. Select the Add tab.
  4. Select Client.
  5. Click Add... button.
  6. Under Manufacturers, select Microsoft.
  7. Under Network Clients, select Client for Microsoft Networks.
  8. Click OK.

The Client for Microsoft Networks files will be installed to your hard drive.

C. Install the TCP/IP Protocol

  1. Open the Control Panel.
  2. Select Network.
  3. Select Add tab.
  4. Select Protocol.
  5. Click Add... button.
  6. Under Manufacturers, select Microsoft.
  7. Under Network Protocols, select TCP/IP.
  8. Click on the OK button.

The TCP/IP files will be installed to your hard drive.

D. Configure the TCP/IP Protocol

  1. Open the Control Panel.
  2. Select Network.
  3. Select TCP/IP
  4. Click on the Properties button.
  5. Click the Bindings tab and check the Client For Microsoft Networks box.
  6. Click the DNS Configuration tab.
  7. Check Enable DNS, fill in your login name for Host, and for Domain.
  8. Under DNS Server Search Order, enter (in this order):
  9. Click the IP Address tab, then check Obtain an IP Address Automatically.
  10. Click the WINS Configuration tab and disable WINS Resolution.
  11. Click OK three times.

You may be prompted to restart your computer for network settings to take effect. You may do this now, or after you have completed all remaining configurations.

E. Create and Configure a Dial-Up Connection

  1. Open My Computer.
  2. Double-click Dial-Up Networking.
  3. Double-click Make New Connection.
  4. Click the Next button in the Wizard twice.
  5. Enter the name you would like to use to refer to this connection in the space provided. We suggest something like "Northwest Nexus"
  6. Click on the Configure button.
  7. Select the Options tab.
  8. Click on the OK button.
  9. Click on the Next button.
  10. Enter the Area Code (if necessary) and Telephone Number you use to connect to Northwest Nexus in the Phone Number field.
  11. Uncheck the box marked "Use country code and area code" (Win95) OR "Use area code and dialing properties" (Win98) PLEASE NOTE:
    If you have to dial a '1' and an area code in order to establish a connection with us, you're making a long distance call -- your telephone company will charge you accordingly. Northwest Nexus will not be accountable for any long distance charges your phone company applies.
  12. Click on the Next button.
  13. Click on the Finish button.
  14. Right-click on the newly created icon in the Dial-Up Networking folder.
  15. Select Properties from the pop-up menu.
  16. Click on the Server Type button.
  17. Select PPP from the drop-down menu.
  18. Check advanced settings as needed: - Enable Software Compression: This should be checked. - Require Encrypted Password: Leave unchecked.
  19. The only box that needs to be checked under Allowed Network Protocols is TCP/IP.
  20. Click on the TCP/IP Settings button.
  21. Select Server-Assigned IP address.
  22. Select Specify nameserver addresses. - Fill in the Primary DNS box with: - Fill in the Secondary DNS box with:
  23. Check the Use IP Header Compression and Use default gateway on remote network boxes.
  24. Click the OK button to close each folder (3 windows/folders).

Below is how the Server Types window should look like after it is correctly configured. (Steps 16-19)

This is main area where Win98 differs in DUN. It will show several additional check boxes, but still only check the two as shown above in the Win95 picture. Below is a snapshot of what the TCP/IP Settings window should look like.

(Steps 20-24)

Don't forget to restart your computer if you didn't do so after configuring TCP/IP.

That's it for the setup portion -- now, on to using your connection for the first time.

Making Your First Connection to Northwest Nexus

  1. In My Computer, choosing Dial-Up Networking.
  2. Double-click on the icon for the connection you just created.
  3. In the Connect To dialog box, enter your login name and password, and check Save Password.
  4. Click Connect.

Making It Disconnect When You're Done With It

It's easy enough to disconnect manually, but what if you want it to disconnect you automatically if you haven't used it in a while? This feature is built into Windows 95 Dial-Up Networking. Here is how you enable it:

  1. Open up the Dial-Up Networking Folder.
  2. Click on the connection icon that you want to enable this for.
  3. Type Alt+Enter or Right Click on the icon and select Properties.
  4. In the Dialog that comes up Click on the Configure Button.
  5. In the Dialog that comes up Click on the Connection Tab.
  6. Check the checkbox labeled Disconnect a Call if Idle for more than.
  7. Fill in the idle timeout value.

If Something Blows Up, Check This Out First

You can have only one copy of a file called winsock.dll on your system in the path that's searched when programs run. This is the library that all the Windows Internet programs in the world call when they need to talk to the Internet. There are lots of different versions of that file; every manufacturer has their own. Netscape Navigator Personal Edition comes with one; Eudora Pro comes with one; Internet Chameleon comes with one; and on, and on. You can never use someone else's winsock.dll with the rest of the lower-level networking stuff, like dialers and TCP/IP stacks; you can use all the popular programs, like Netscape itself, Eudora, WinVN, FreeAgent, Mosaic, CU-SeeMe, and hundreds of others, with good stacks like the Win95 one.

So you need to be sure that you are using the Win95 winsock.dll, and that you didn't inadvertantly install another when you were using other software that came with a book, or when you installed that copy of Netscape PE that someone gave you for Christmas. If you've installed or run other network software, like Chameleon or Trumpet Winsock, you'll have their own winsock.dll files, too. Have we made this point emphatically enough?

Use Start/Find... to find:


...on every drive in your system. Rename every single one of them except this one:

winsock.dll 42k 7/10/95 or 7/11/95 9:50am

That's the Win95, Version 1.0950 one. This file should be in c:\windows. If you find any copies of winsock.dll other than the one that's 42k in size and in the c:\windows directory, delete or rename them. And that should make things much, much better, in 95.0 out of 100 cases.

Windows 95 System Updates can be downloaded from Microsoft.

There's also a great Web page that is very helpful for troubleshooting/fine tuning Win95 in general. It's called "Windows 95 Annoyances", and can be found at:

Copyright 1996 Northwest Nexus Inc. All Rights Reserved. This document may not be reproduced nor redistributed in any form without express permission; contact us at with questions.

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