If you have a full-time , wired Internet connection (cable modem, DSL, or corporate network, for example), skip this section.
If, on the other hand, you have a dial-up modem or connect via AirPort, read on. Internet Connect shows your current status and settings (as configured in the Network pane of your System Preferences), and provides a Connect/Disconnect button for opening or closing a connection. Here's what you can accomplish with Internet Connect:
Choose Internal Modem and then click Connect to dial out using your current modem settings.
Once you're hooked up, check the status display to confirm whether or not your modem successfully connected to your ISPor if you've been disconnected.
You can also see your connection speed , to find out if you really connected up at 56 K (ha!), or if your modem was only able to negotiate a 28 K connection.
Internet Connect keeps a neat log of your connection activity (choose Window Connection Log). Reading this log is about as exciting as reading random entries from the White Pages. Nonetheless, if youre having serious connection problems, it can be a useful troubleshooting tool.
The "Show modem status in menu bar" checkbox lets you use a menu-bar icon to dial and observe your connectionswithout using Internet Connect at all.
Internet Connect is your gateway to Virtual Private Networking, a feature that lets you tunnel into corporate networks from the road. Ask your network administrator for the settings you need.
Click the AirPort tab to see your wireless network's strength, pick a new network, or turn off AirPort altogether to save power.
Of course, even in these cases, you don't really need Internet Connect to get online. If your Internet settings are configured correctly (see Section 9.1.3), your Mac will automatically connect whenever you launch a program that needs to get online (such as Safari).