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MacPPP

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Popular software by Larry Blunk of Merit Network that provides a Point to Point Protocol (PPP) connection to the Internet through a dial-up modem. To install MacPPP, place a control panel Config PPP in your Control Panels folder, and an extension called PPP in your Extensions folder. Then restart your Mac. Make sure that PPP is selected in the main MacTCP window. Also make sure you use Server addressing as opposed to Manually addressing with a permanent IP address.

Open the Config PPP control panel. Config PPP is easy to set up. The “Idle Timeout” feature in Config PPP enables you to specify a time from five to 120 minutes after which MacPPP will close the connection. If you do anything during this time, the timer resets and MacPPP starts counting again. The “Echo Interval” pop-up menu gives you the opportunity to configure MacPPP to periodically query the line to see if your connection has dropped. If MacPPP receives no response after three successive requests, MacPPP assumes that the connection has gone dead.

The “Terminal Window” check box brings up a built-in terminal emulator for use when you have trouble logging on, rather than having to use an external terminal emulator.

After you launch MacPPP, click the “New” button to create and name a new configuration. Click the “Config” button to bring up the “Configure Server” dialog box. This is where you set modem variables such as speed, flow control (sometimes called handshaking), tone/pulse dial, and the phone number to dial. The “Modem connect timeout” field gives you a chance to increase the amount of time MacPPP will wait for the connection to occur.

Users have two possible ways of entering their user ID and password: either a MacPPP Authentication dialog (which is not supported by all servers) or a connect script.

MacPPP has a Connect Script dialog window in which you replicate the process of logging into your host. You do this by entering the various carriage returns, ID names, and passwords you usually enter after you are connected. The Connect Script dialog provides eight data entry fields into which you enter each of these commands. By creating a connect script, MacPPP logs in for you automatically, eliminating the need to type passwords and other commands each time.

After MacPPP is configured, simply click the Open button in Config PPP or open a MacTCP-based program that opens MacTCP, which causes MacPPP to connect automatically. To close your connection, first quit all MacTCP-based applications. Then click either the Hard Close button to hang up the connection and “locks” MacPPP, or the Soft Close button to close the connection but leaves open the auto-connect feature so launching a new application makes MacPPP establish a new connection.

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