Hello and thank you for taking the time to read this.

My girlfriend and I are both using MS Vista on our laptops. We are located in Brussels, Belgium using the incumbent telephone and internet provider Belgacom. We have a device called “b-box 2” which serves as a modem and (wireless) router. We use WPA2 encryption for the wireless connection. Both laptops connect to the wireless network after we enter the correct password. However, the connection is displayed to be “local only” and indeed, we have no internet, that is we cannot connect to sites on the www. The solution that works for both of us is connecting to the “broadband connection” as if we were connected via cable although we are not.

We set up the broadband connection (a PPPoE connection) using Vista's wizard, filing in the username and the password provided by our internet service provider. It is no surprise to me that connecting to this broadband connection works when I actually insert a networking cable. However, I am surprised that we can connect to the internet via that broadband connection even without a cable, using the “local only” wireless connection. On startup the laptop automatically connects to the wireless network. To connect to the internet, I simply click on “connect to” and select the broadband connection which connects just as if there were a ethernet cable. While I am delighted that this has solved the issue with the connection being “local only” (which is described in many forums in the www, so if you found this post because you are having that problem, try this), I do not really understand WHY and HOW that works. My very rudimentary explanation is that the wireless connection replaces the cable because it provides a connection to the “b-box 2” but that is probably overly simplistic. Is the broadband connection treated like a VPN? Please help me understand this. While I have a fair understanding of (Windows) computers in general I am really a novice when it comes to how networks and the internet work.

The reason why I am interested in finding out why this works is that I run UBUNTU Linux on my desktop (decided a couple of days ago that I want to try it for real and installed it). There I can connect to the internet using a cable and the data by my ISP. I can also connect to our wireless network, after entering the correct password. However, that connection seems to be “local only” as well (although in Ubuntu there seems to be no place where this is displayed) – I have no internet connection although I am connected to the wireless network. Unfortunately, I am not able to use the “wired” connection without a cable like both me and my gf do on our MS Vista laptops.

If you could help me get a wireless internet connection in Ubuntu that would be perfect but also any information on how and why this works in Vista would be very much appreciated. If I get to understand how and why it works under Vista, hopefully I will be able to do the equivalent in Ubuntu.

Thank you very much!

Best regards

Ben