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Free Internet Access

The very first step to creating your own online presence is to obtain access to the Internet. While most people pay an Internet service provider for this privilege, it is increasingly possible to get online for free. We're not suggesting you try to create your Web site using a free computer in a public library or coffee shop because that would be completely impractical if not impossible. First of all, you wouldn't have the software tools you need installed at hand, but perhaps more importantly, the other patrons would be planning to lynch you for hogging the computer long before you had a chance to finish. No, to build a Web site you need access from your own computer, from your own desktop. A small but growing number of businesses are willing to offer you just that.

Most free Internet access offerings are for dial-up connections. The service vendor provides special software that you must install on your computer to receive the free service. You have to run the software every time you use the free connection. Most of these software packages include advertising boxes or banners that remain ever present on your screen (though they can be moved around). A few don't. Many people find that enduring the ads is a reasonable price to pay for free access.

It's important to note that some vendors of free Internet access go beyond displaying ads, and actually track where you go on the Internet and use it to collate information used for marketing and other purposes. If this offends you (as it does many people), then verify that the free access vendor you choose doesn't do this. Also, take the time to  slog your way through that boring user agreement. At least one "free" DSL subscriber agreement says they can charge you $500 if you cancel the service within 5 years! That site is not included in this portal.

Are you ready to search for a free ISP?

Did you have a previous free ISP that's disappeared? Read our Free ISP Update to find out why.

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