Flutterby™! : real expenses of broadband

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real expenses of broadband

2002-02-27 18:08:31+00 by Dan Lyke 6 comments

I'm pretty lucky in being able to have a colocated server and the smarts to run a network. As I watch friends with PacBell[Wiki] DSL have outbound email stuck in the queue for 12 hours, and see the hassles people have with ATTBI tech support for their web hosting I'm realizing that one of the costs of broadband is that you've still got to pay a real ISP for competently administered email, web hosting and the rest of the services you used to get included from your small dial-up provider. So how can we convince the broadband providers to get the hell out of the way? I'm not quite sure how to tie this together, but Microsoft is trying to cast HTTP as obsolete because network attitudes like those pushed by the big ISPs have turned HTTP away from its original purpose, which was as a peer-to-peer protocol.

[ related topics: Microsoft broadband moron ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment made: 2002-02-27 22:37:15+00 by: skrubly

Well, that's one of the reasons I've stuck with Sonic.net.. (Full disclosure: I used to work there)... They've got shell service, too, which is really nice. But generally good about mail, anti-spam, domains, etc. They will be your Pacbell DSL ISP and stuff. www.sonic.net is their site... Based in Santa Rosa, for all you North Bay folks here (most of you, it sounds)

I've got my DSL line through them, and they help you deal with the crap Pacbell attempts to dish out about problems, etc


#Comment made: 2002-02-27 23:01:41+00 by: Shawn

Similar story for me. I use Qwest for the line, but my ISP is Isomedia. Primarily 'cause I used to work there, which means some nice fringe benefits:

- Free access/hosting for as long as they're in business (as far as I know, all former employees [who left on good terms] get this).

- An inside line to the sysadmins. I even talked them into giving me write access to my own apache conf file so I can configure my web server settings without having to pester them <insert evil laugh>

#Comment made: 2002-02-28 00:31:39+00 by: Dori [edit history]

I probably live closer to Santa Rosa than anyone else here, but they don't do DSL up in these boondocks.

My attitude is that my home/office connection is one thing, and my email/ hosting connection is something else altogether. I do the former with whomever will sell me bandwidth (currently AT&T), and the latter with the pros at pair.com. I've used pair for about 5 years now and they've been great.

I also have an Earthlink account because I travel a lot and they're cheaper than most national ISPs ($17.95/month). I never use them except when I'm on the road.

Would I like to combine all of these? Sure! But I would hate to give up any of the features I currently have.

#Comment made: 2002-02-28 00:53:12+00 by: Diane Reese

Well, I've done it the boring way. I ordered my DSL through Earthlink, and the line is owned and installed by PacBell but I never contact them in any way: everything is through Earthlink. I have been 99.5% satisfied with the quality and responsiveness of the service I've gotten from Earthlink's tech support, and have no problems with the PacBell-installed DSL line. Maybe our needs aren't special enough to translate into what any of you are doing, but we've been very happy with our setup.

#Comment made: 2002-02-28 01:56:16+00 by: Shawn [edit history]

I was very soured on Earthlink after my first experience with them. Originally, they told me that they could give me DSL (through Covad) - set me up with an account and everything. Then one day I couldn't log into my account to check the status of my order. Thinking it was probably a glitch, I waited a couple of days. When I still couldn't log in, I called the customer service drone and was told that my service install had been cancelled - with the implication being that it had been cancelled by me(???). More calling around finally got me an answer: Due to a splitter on my line they couldn't provide me DSL after all. It's fairly common, but it would have been nice to get some kind of notification. An email saying "We're sorry, but we can't service your line after all", would have been appropriate.

This turned out to be the early steps in what became a four month journey that ultimately culminated in me being enough of a thorn in the local Qwest staffs' collective toe that I got somebody to come out and remove the damn splitter. At that point, I was able to go with Qwest and my [then] employer.

It's very frustrating being denied access to the DSLAM only three blocks away just because some tenant decided they wanted a second phone line into my apartment years ago... ("Yes, I understand that removing the splitter will remove the second line. That is what I want. I don't want the second line. Take it out. Yes, I understand I'll only have one line. I'm getting DSL - why would I care?")

#Comment made: 2002-02-28 15:22:00+00 by: Dan Lyke

Diane, I think my point is that even though it's free, you also have your site on editthispage.com. Not everyone has to have their own domain, but if your bandwidth provider is going to make any pretense at offering a real user account, they should offer web hosting that we can build multi-staged web services on. Otherwise you've got to get some of your net services elsewhere, and as you've seen with performance on editthispage.com, sometimes that costs.

Earthlink is pretty well known for getting mail right. Nevin can probably tell more, but I believe they've funded a bunch of Sendmail development to handle the traffic load they do.

And skrubly, if I could get DSL out here I'd call Sonic.net in a heartbeat. Right now, like Dori, cable and my colo server is the best of the options.