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Will using older components for faster downloads cause security risks?

I have just reinstalled the components for an older cable connection with dialup networking on my PC with Windows98SE. I noticed that when I run "winipcfg," it shows the PPP adapter with no IP/submask address. I have a Linsysetherfast LAN card for road runner. I also have a dialup but it's not plugged into the wall socket. I noticed that my download speeds have increased dramatically. They are faster by as much as 250kbs. I do alot of P2P, and when I try to configure my Zapro firewall it will likely be impossible without an IP/submask address. I only installed those components to hook-up an old Packard Bell, but if this is going to be a security risk please let me know and I will get rid of these components.

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As far as the change in speed goes, installing some network adapters may change certain low-level TCP/IP settings that govern how packets are handled and dispatched. I'm sure you're fond of the fact that things are moving faster -- who wouldn't be! -- but the exact reason for that would be difficult to track down without a detailed manifest of what's been installed in the computer.

A firewall is best installed on whatever machine you're using as the gateway to the outside world, (if in fact that's how you're doing it.)

This was first published in June 2002

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