Dial up internet is a form of internet access where your computer accesses the internet over a standard telephone line. When you have dial-up internet, your computer dials out to connect to an ISP or internet service provider server. However to use dial up access you need to install a dial-up internet modem. This type of modem is also known as a 56k modem. 


First you will want to purchase a PCI slot dial up modem at either an electronic stores or retail stores. Ensure that it is PCI slot compatible and a 56k modem. While there are lower speed dial up modems they will not be sufficient for telephone line internet connections.


To begin the installation you’ll need to turn off the computer and any connected components such as the monitor and printer. Unplug the computer power supply and component power supplies. To ensure all electricity has been discharged from the computer wait a few minutes.


Open up the PC case. Use a screwdriver to remove the case screws. Slide off or lift off the computer cover to reveal the inside components of the computer. Turn the computer so that the open inside faces you with the front of the computer facing to the right.


Look for an open PCI slot inside the computer. You can identify PCI slots by looking for long narrow slots that are often white or brown in color with small gold or silver lines inside. You’ll notice that surrounding PCI slots are filled with video cards, audio cards, and other component cards.


Take out the holding screw directly behind the available PCI slot where you’ll install the dial up internet modem. This will allow you to slide out the metal cover piece behind the PCI slot that covers the back of the PC opening for the card slot. This opening allows access to the PCI card input jacks.


Discharge static electricity by touching your hands to a non-electrical metal surface such as the outer computer case. This will minimize the chance of static damaging the computer’s internal components. You may need to do this multiple times during the installation.


Insert the dial-up modem PCI card into the PCI slot. Make sure the edge of the modem with the gold or silver lines on the side goes into the PCI slot. Press firmly inwards until the card pops into place. When in place the phone jack port of the modem should be visible in the open slot on the back of the computer that lines up with the PCI slot.


If the card does not go fully in, make sure the plastic holding clips on either side of the slot are pulled outwards while pushing the card into the slot. When in place the clips will snap back into place. Only some computers have this feature.


Screw the back holding screw back into place to secure the card. Replace the casing and case screws. Plug the computer components back in and reconnect the power cables. 


Connect a dial up phone line to the modem line jack on the back of the new modem. Connect the other end to your phone jack. Turn on the computer and let the computer boot up. The computer should automatically detect the drivers for the dial up modem. If not, insert the disc that has the dial up modem software for the new modem. Follow the on screen prompts and restart if needed.


Install and setup your dial up internet service provider software of your choice such as Netzero, AOL, Earthlink, or Juno. To connect to the internet after setting up an account, double click on your ISP icon on your desktop and enter your username and password for the ISP. This will allow you to connect to the internet through the dial-up modem.


Note that if you are sharing a phone line with another device such as a phone or fax machine you’ll need to sign offline and disconnect to allow the other devices to access the phone line.