Dial Up or Dial out
The difference between dial up and dial out is more than just a matter of semantics. It’s also a matter of service and the difference between
an individual pc and a network of computers. Understanding the differences is important, particularly to those who are running a business
requiring regular internet access.
Dial up is often used on private computers. It is the term used to describe accessing the internet through the use of an individual modem,
which is contained within the computer itself. By today’s standards, dial up service is considered an extremely slow method for connecting to the
internet. Instead, it is being quickly replaced by the much faster and more efficient broadband service.
Broadband service does not require dial up or dial out. Instead, broadband takes advantage of a band of frequencies used to transmit
information. The information can be sent on many different frequencies at the same time, which allows for more information to be transferred at a
faster pace than dial up service.
For dial up service to work, the computer user needs to “dial up” to the internet service providers (ISP) node. This is done through a
standard telephone line in the form of a phone call between two computers, rather than between two people. This call creates a modem to modem
link, which results in the computer user’s modem being routed to the internet through the ISP’s modem.
Using dial up to access the internet only requires a modem and access to a standard telephone network. Since telephone networks are available
throughout the world, dial up internet access is the most universal means for accessing the internet. In fact, dial up access is often the only
way to access the internet in rural communities because more advanced forms of access, such as broadband, are not available in these areas.
Dial up is also generally less expensive than broadband access, which makes it the internet access source of choice for individuals on a tight
budget. Dial up can, however, contain hidden charges. Dial up requires dialing a phone number through the telephone network so the two modems can
communicate with each other. Therefore, dial up can create long distance charges if the phone number used to call the ISP’s modem is a long
distance number. These charges continue to build for the duration of the time spent connected to the internet.
The quality of data transfer is not as good with dial up as it is with broadband internet access. This is because dial up access is slower and
has to pass through telephone lines. In fact, some computer games currently being released on the market will not work with dial up internet
access because the rate of transfer is simply too slow.
Dial out; on the other hand, is very different from dial up. Dial out is used in conjunction with a network of users, such as in businesses or
in schools. Dial out permits computers that are connected to the local area network (LAN) to access a central modem within the network that is
always connected to the internet. This makes it seem as though each computer is continually connected to the internet.
Dial out allows employees to either access the internet or a private network. Here, electronic bulletin board systems, ftp sites, information
services, and network email sites can be easily accessed.
Because dial out allows LAN-based users to take advantage of the modems that are connected to a remote access server, it eliminates the need
to have a modem attached to each individual computer. This reduces costs for companies who don’t have to purchase additional hardware for each of
its employee computers.
In addition, dial out generally results in faster, clearer, more efficient service for computers within the network. This is because the
computer creates access through a digital line rather than an analog modem and because there is a continual “hook up” to the internet through the
Establishing a dial out service, rather than relying on individualized dial up services, is a smart business choice. It saves costs in
purchasing hardware and it provides a better connection to the internet for employees and it allows for the creation of private information
boards and networks.
Dial up and dial out are terms that are often used interchangeably. While they both have to do with accessing the internet, how this is done
and the purpose of each form of access is vastly different.
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