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Channels: digital music : file sharing : gnutella: napster
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When you first use Napster the program will ask you a couple of questions. Take a second to contemplate your answers. You will be able to make changes later on but life will be so much easier if you make the right decisions now.

User Name
First, you'll be asked to enter your user name. This is the handle you will be known by in the napster community
. The name can be anything you like. Make it anything you want: Silly. Stupid. Political. Nonpolitical. Annoying. You'll find all of the above in quantity on Napster as well as some more extreme choices. Get forty million people together, turn up the music, and well - you know the story...

Choose Line Speed
Here you'll be prompted to select the line speed of your connection from a drop down menu, enabling Napster to transfer files at peak efficiency.

  For information on connection types click here.
For help dealing with a slow connection click here.

Choosing Your Shared Files Folder
This is the folder on your hard drive where your MP3 files will live. If you don't have any MP3s just yet, don't panic. You will soon.

You can store your files in any folder you like. Bear in mind that other Napster users will be visiting to take a look at what you have stored here. Although in theory, you could share your whole
MyDocuments folder, it probably isn't a very good idea. As long as you stick to Napster you will only be able to share and download MP3 and WMA files. Other file sharing programs will let you share almost any kind of file. But for the time being at least, Napster is for music only.

The easiest thing to do is probably to go ahead and let Napster make a new directory for you by default. The default directory will be named Music. If you would like to share files from more than one folder you can do so later on by selecting the folders you would like to share in the Napster's preferences.

Connection Problems
Napster should connect to a server automatically as soon as the program launches. If it refuses to, you have a problem..... duh.
The problem may have to do with your Net connection or it may be something on Napster's end.

If you're trying to connect from work or school and you run into problems, it's very possible that the powers that be have decided to restrict your access. A quick email to the people who run your network or a trip to your school or company's web site should let you find out pretty quickly if this is the case.

The problem might also have to do with the security protecting your computer.
Firewalls can cause particularly obstinate problems.
In any event, for every problem there is always a solution. Even if your network administrators have decided to ban Napster there are ways to get to the music. Unfortunately, you may not be able to use Napster to get there.

For more information on solving connection problems see stuff you should know

  Next up - firing up Napster. Learning your way around and finding files.

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