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DSL Internet Access User Guide Glossary


An acronym for digital subscriber line, DSL is a high-speed connection that uses the same wires as your regular phone. Even though it uses the same connection as your phone, DSL service does not prevent you from making phone calls.

DSL Filter

A small device that separates analog phone signals from DSL signals. Also referred to as DSL blockers, microfilters, or DSL phone line filters, DSL filters are installed on telephones, fax machines, or any equipment connected to the DSL phone line, with the exception of the DSL modem, which must not be connected to a filter.

Demarcation point

The demarcation point defines the point at which you become responsible for the phone wiring within your home. It is also referred to as a network interface device (NID). The telephone company is responsible for providing and maintaining service up to the point of the NID. The NID is important because it contains something called a demarcation jack that is on the part of the line outside your home (and for which the telephone company is responsible). The demarcation point can also be located in a common area or at the entry point of a unit in the case of Multi Dwelling Unit. You can use this jack to test your phone line.


A technology used to connect computers and other devices to a network. Ethernet networks transmit information at very high speeds, ranging from 10 million bits per second on a standard network to 10 billion bits per second on a 10-Gigabit Ethernet.

IP Address or Internet Protocol Address

An address that pinpoints the location of your computer on the Internet (example: XXX.XXX.X.X). Without an IP address, your computer cannot communicate on the Internet.


A device used to transmit digital data over a phone line. Modems essentially act as a conduit between the DSL service and your computer.

NIC or Network Interface Card

A small piece of hardware also referred to as an Ethernet card, which acts as an interface between your computers, the local area network your computer is hooked up to, and the Internet.

Operating System

Often referred to as OS, your operating system is a program that manages all the other programs or applications on your computer. Windows XP and Mac OS X are examples of operating systems.

PPPoE or Point-to-Point Protocol over Ethernet

The method your computer uses to automatically learn network settings from a remote server. We use PPPoE to provide IP address information to your modem.


A small device with two jacks ("Phone" and "Modem") that separates the High Speed Internet data from the sounds coming from the telephone line. The splitter can only be used with the modem, if you need to install a phone on the same telephone jack that is used for the modem.


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