Tech Tip: Create a fast connection with MultiLink

MultiLink is a feature of dial-up networking (DUN) that allows multiple devices in Windows 98 computers to be bonded together to make a single, faster connection to a remote service.

To enable MultiLink, you must have more than one modem or other communication device installed in the Windows 98 computer. Create a dial-up connector as usual, open the Properties dialog box of that connector, and select the MultiLink tab.

Here you can add other devices to the connection that will also attempt to connect to the remote service and act together as a single connection. Each device can either dial the same number—if, for instance, you're dialing an ISP that lets you log on with multiple devices—or, at the same service, dial different numbers that can be aggregated together.

While MultiLink helps legacy equipment create a single, faster connection, it has drawbacks as well. Here are some problems to watch out for:

  • Check to see if one device connects but second and subsequent devices do not. If this occurs, it's likely that the host isn't configured for MultiLink.
  • MultiLink was initially designed to support ISDN. (Windows will see each channel separately.) It's possible to successfully implement modems of differing speeds in a MultiLinked configuration, but the overhead that's required to manage this might impair the performance.
  • MultiLink requires standard Windows 98 DUN connections. If third-party communication packages use other dialing software, MultiLink will not be available.

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