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Win95 FAQ Part 5 of 14: Modems and TAPI
Section - 5.10. OK that's all cool, but what about non-traditional modem-like devices?

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Top Document: Win95 FAQ Part 5 of 14: Modems and TAPI
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Next Document: 5.11. Oops... I have a Win 3.1 modem app too. How does that complicate things?
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     * 5.10.1. ISDN Adapters 
       
   Dial-up Networking 1.2 and later comes with ISDN configuration
   software, but the simplest ISDN adapters let you use any old version
   of Dial-up Networking or other PPP software. Such examples include
   Motorola's now-defunct BitSURFR and 3Com's Courier or Impact adapters.
   
   Previous releases of this FAQ described how difficult it was to get
   ISDN connectivity. Well, with the right adapter and a cooperative
   phone company, it proves simpler than I thought.
   
   NOTE: I used to refer to an ISDN "modem". Since there's no MOdulation
   or DEModulation occuring in an ISDN connection (except when the
   adapter provides analogue ports for regular phones and modems), the
   word "modem" is not the right word.

     * 5.10.2. Packet Radio transceivers 
       
   This came up thanks to the efforts of Gordon McAndrew
   (gmcandrew@aec.env.gov.ab.ca), who originally posted about using PPP
   over packet radio.
   
   The solution was to use the null modem .INF file and issue
   commands directly to the radio device in a dial-up script.
   Unfortunately, Win95 insisted in sending a phone number string through
   the connection. They worked around this by inserting the user name
   into the space normally reserved for the phone number. Strange, huh?
   
   I don't know the command set used for packet radio modems, but I'd
   like to see a packet radio .inf file made up one day. For example,
   enter the radio frequency in the phone number box. Replace all the
   "AT" commands with appropriate ones for the radio. Thanks to Gordon
   McAndrew's work, we already know that PPP and TAPI in general does
   work over such a device.

     * 5.10.3. Null-modem cables 
       
   I covered this already in Chapter 8, but I'll cover it here. There's a
   MDMCBX.INF file, used to identify the device to Win95, that lets
   you install a Direct Connection driver on a standard COM port. This
   can work with stuff besides dial-up networking. To install it, use Add
   New Hardware or the Modems control panel, and hit "Have disk..." so
   you can point to this .inf file.

     * 5.10.4. "Windows only" modems 
       
   TAPI lets you use any kind of telephony device, not just COM port
   based modems, so it became fashionable to make "software" modems, or
   non-standard PnP modems that don't occupy a standard COM port address.
   To install this class of modem, hit "Have disk..." and feed it the
   disk with the drivers for the modem.
   
   If you can live without Win 3.1 or DOS support for these devices, they
   will work just fine with Win95 apps. In many cases they do create a
   DOS style device (like COM5: if you happen to already have four COM
   ports) than you can access from DOS or OS-friendly Win 3.1 apps that
   support non-standard devices. In other cases they will just show up as
   a TAPI device without any DOS support. Be prepared to stick with Win95
   apps (a good idea in any case) if you purchase such a modem.

     * 5.10.5. PCI modems
       
   PCI modems are brand new as of September 1998. The only reasoning I
   can see for using a PCI slot modem is because you don't have any more
   ISA slots on your system. PCI is really overkill for something 1/20th
   the speed of a floppy disk drive.
   
   What's worse is the performace these things give. A PCI modem from
   Diamond, sold under the Supra label, has very poor latency compared to
   traditional ISA modems or COM port modems; 500 ms ping times compared
   to 120 ms or faster with a USR ISA modem.

     * 5.10.6. USB modems
       
   If you own 4.00.950B or later, or Win98, you can use modems that
   connect to Universal Serial Bus ports. USB is like a high speed
   version of Apple's Desktop Bus on the Macintosh, but is bidirectional;
   you can send data to USB devices as well as receive input from them.
   
   If you go USB, be prepared to abandon Win 3.1 and DOS communication
   programs altogether.
   

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Top Document: Win95 FAQ Part 5 of 14: Modems and TAPI
Previous Document: 5.9. Programs that answer the phone...
Next Document: 5.11. Oops... I have a Win 3.1 modem app too. How does that complicate things?

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Last Update March 27 2014 @ 02:12 PM