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How can I use the wired internet connection if my laptop doesn't have a network socket?

Some thin, modern laptops such as MacBooks don't have a network socket included but it is possible to buy a USB-ethernet adapter which will enable you to connect. There are several different types available:

USB to ethernet adapterUSB-Ethernet adapter
Typical cost: £15-20
Can be used on Windows or Mac laptops. It's a good idea to be in range of a wi-fi signal the first time you try to connect the cable so your laptop can download any drivers it needs. Make sure you get one that is compatible with your laptop: USB 2.0 to Ethernet will work with the majority of laptops.

This type of adapter doesn't usually work with University networks.Avoid the cheapest models which often don't support the authentication and encryption protocols used in University networks.

Apple USB to ethernet adapterApple ethernet adapters
Typical cost: £25
Apple make their own USB to Ethernet adapter which works fine with most Macs but is not compatible with the latest MacBook (2016 model) which has a USB type-C port.

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This is question number 2748, which appears in the following categories:

Created by David Guest on 11 September 2015 and last updated by Richard Byrom-Colburn on 31 October 2016