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ADSL works by splitting the phone line into two frequency ranges. The frequencies below 4 kHz are reserved for voice, and the range above that is used for data. DSL uses the existing phone line and in most cases does not require an additional phone line. This gives "always-on" Internet access and does not tie up the phone line.You can leave your Internet connection open and still use the phone line for voice calls. In some cases when you are using the same phone line for both ADSL and POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service), you will need to add a simple filter between your phone and the wall jack. No more busy signals, no more dropped connections, no more waiting for someone in the household to get off the phone. A DSL modem connects the DSL line to a computer at the customer location, providing the customer with continuous connection to the Internet and use of the telephone at the same time.
DSL modems are of three basic types: external, internal or USB. For external modems, on the back is a socket, usually marked LAN. A cable (ethernet cable) connects this to your computer, which needs an ethernet card, (known as a Network Interface Card, or NIC). Such cards are available from dozens of vendors at prices as low as $20, and for this purpose, they all work the same way and are all compatible. Many current computers come with a NIC, and socket, built-in, simplifying things still further. For internal DSL modems, or USB modems, the equipment is plugged in and some driver software must be loaded into your computer before it can be used.