Can't get online with ethernet cable

I tried to see if I could get internet with my beagleboard and I was
not able to using a USB to ethernet converter. Is there a special
converter you are supposed to use?

The one I am using is a USB male to ethernet male. Thanks.

Look at the kernel messages to see if the USB device was recognised properly

dmesg

Thanks for replying. Yeap I did that right away to see if it was
working and it definitely said no usb0 or network interface was
found. Other things I noticed:

The light on the router side did not turn on.
One of the wires in the RJ45 Ethernet male connector seemed broken.
There were only four wires on the RJ45 Ethernet male connector end (I
thought this was weird cause I would have expected at least 8 wires on
this end).
"ifdown eth0" said no specified device found (can't remember the
message entirely)

I am not sure what other useful information I can provide. If someone
can tell me YES the RJ45 male connector to USB is compatible with the
beagleboard, then I can narrow down the problem to the fact that it
was a bad converter and get a new one from radioshack. At this point
I just returned it and got my money back. Thanks.

Are you connecting to OTG port?
If you are connecting to OTG maybe the over-budget power check in usb
driver prevents you from enumerating the device.

OTG can supply at least 500mA (not sure) and often eth-usb converters
provide descriptors indicating an higher current drawing.
Check if line 100 of drivers/usb/core/generic.c in you kernel sources
causes the problem.
It happened to me sometimes.
   j