On my XP Home system (SP2) there is always a "Generic Host Service" that establishes my connection. I have discovered that without it, no connection is possible. "Svchost" covers alot of territory, and yes, most users have several running in Taskmanager at the same time. To gain a better view of the "Services" covered by svchost, I got the very useful free Process Explorer from Sysinternals: http://www.microsoft...ssExplorer.mspx
(download link at bottom of page) A mouse-over each svchost shows a "tooltips" of the services being hosted, and a double click brings up an informational "Properties" dialog. XP Services often have arcane (and not very intuitive) names, but many are essential to the function of XP as we know it. Some are not, and some can consume system resources without providing much benefit. Before making changes to the Services' settings, I suggest a good read about them at: http://www.theelderg...vices_guide.htm
I got myself into some serious trouble by playing with Services before learning about them. If you want to trim them down, I suggest a "Manual" setting rather than "Disable." (except for those disabled by default in your system) A "Manual" setting will allow the system to start the Service if required for any reason. If it is disabled, you are out of luck until you return and reset it. Some software applications install their own services as well. If you want the particular program to work, it's "Service" is also required.