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Old 08-05-2006, 10:24 AM
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mechmagcn mechmagcn is offline
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Computer problems....HELP!!!!!!

Hi fellows, didn't we have a member who claims to be a computer guru? I have a 1 year old Dell that is driving me crazy (don't have to go very far).
On to the problem, when I am on the net and open a window, sometimes it will just stall and not load the page. Sometimes I can wait a minute or two and it will resume, but usually I have to disconnect and then reconnect before it will work again.Sometimes it will do this on the first window opened, sometimes I will be on the net for anywhere from 10minutes to hours before it happens. Anybody have an idea? I hate to call tech support because I will have to go through 3-4 different ones before I get one I can understand (wish these companies would use english speaking techs)
So if anyone can help, please do!!
Jeff
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Old 08-05-2006, 09:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mechmagcn
Hi fellows, didn't we have a member who claims to be a computer guru? I have a 1 year old Dell that is driving me crazy (don't have to go very far).
On to the problem, when I am on the net and open a window, sometimes it will just stall and not load the page. Sometimes I can wait a minute or two and it will resume, but usually I have to disconnect and then reconnect before it will work again.Sometimes it will do this on the first window opened, sometimes I will be on the net for anywhere from 10minutes to hours before it happens. Anybody have an idea? I hate to call tech support because I will have to go through 3-4 different ones before I get one I can understand (wish these companies would use english speaking techs)
So if anyone can help, please do!!
Jeff
Disconnect and reconnect are the magic words, that means you are unfortunate enough to be using dial-up internet correct? If so, this usually indicates either a line problem ( noise/static ) or an problem on the provider end.

On any ISP, dial-up or dsl, they typically issue more accounts than they have the means to support, as they count on not all users being online at once, but sometimes when they get close to the max, issues like this arise...

If this started happening all of a sudden, My suggestion is this, disconnect all phones on that particular line and test again, sometimes when surges make there way in it can cause a particular device to produce noise on the line..

If this doesn' help, check to see if your provider has an access number in a town close by, and change the number in your dial-up settings.. I realize this may entail long-distance charges, but its a good way to eliminate your computer and local lines as a problem. If this cures the problem, then you've got a problem with your local provider, and that be the case, all I can say is Good Luck!

There is another alternative, you could purchase a different type of modem for your computer, a hardware modem, aka controller modem, usually $60 - $80 but this is no guarantee that that will help. Most newer computers use a type of modem called a soft or win-modem. this means that they put part of the modem's workload off on the computer, in days past ( win95 and win98 ) this sometimes caused issues, but most computers these days are so fast it literally makes no difference. Kind of like the difference between 87 and 89 octane gas in an 85 toyota..

I can say this, If you do have Dial-up, check to see if you can get dsl or cable, you won't be sorry.

lemme know something, I'm glad to share any info i can

Joe
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Old 08-05-2006, 10:17 PM
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Thanks Joe. No DSL or cable available. Dial-up only. My Nephew has a computer on the same line and has no problems. Looked just now, I have been online now for almost 10 hours today with no problems. Earlier today I might not get 30 seconds before it would stall. I have tried different modems to no avail.

I think a lot of this started when the computer was only a few weeks old, we had a very close lightning strike which took out the original modem although it was run through a surge protector(I replaced it with a US Robotics Pro, the first of 2). Several weeks later, the power supply took a dive and Dell sent out a tech to replace it and the mother board. This problem has been happening ever since, but worse at times than others. When I first put the US Robotics pro modem in it, I had no problems for over a month. I think you have hit on part of the problem stemming from the ISP, we have had lousy service lately with slow connections. I normally connect at 44K, and lately it varies anywhere from 26.4 to 40K.
If this gives you any more ideas, I would love to hear them.
Thanks again, Jeff
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Old 08-05-2006, 10:25 PM
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just out of curiosity, who is your ISP? have you checked to see if anyone has wireless in your area?
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Old 08-06-2006, 08:05 AM
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My ISP is Earthlink. I don't know if anyone offers wireless around here. I think Alltel might offer something, but not sure. Wish I could get cable or DSL, have been on it and it was unbelievable. There is cable all around me, but I live down a 1/2 mile road by myself plus across RR tracks, so the cable company is reluctant to run the lines. I have offered to pay for the installation, but they say "not at this time". We plan to fulltime RV in a few years, so satellite service will be necessary, but for now the price is out of reach.

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Old 08-06-2006, 10:03 AM
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I didn't mean wireless as in cellular, i meant as in wifi. Point-to-Point wireless, they put a small antenna on your house that points at a local tower.

If your RV'ing, i guess a satellite is your best option, but every time I've seen it, the signal latency is so bad that the connection seems to crawl. ( the latency is actually worse than dial-up )

I've tried cingular's internet service in this area, and its about 1/4 the speed of dial-up. But i just used it to check the fish & game forecast while camping. I've heard that they are upgrading the service soon to be close to broadband speed.

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Old 08-06-2006, 01:45 PM
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Joe, definitely no wifi around here. A friend of mine has connection on a cell phone and it is a joke.

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Old 08-07-2006, 07:46 AM
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You could get satilite access:

http://www.gethughesnet.com/

jimbo
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Old 08-07-2006, 03:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimkidd
You could get satilite access:

http://www.gethughesnet.com/

jimbo
Joe, you seem to know computers. What do you think? If I can do better, I'm game. Also, how would I hook up my nephew's computer, he's in the house and I'm in my office about 250' away? Wireless network?
Jeff
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Old 08-07-2006, 04:38 PM
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Satellite internet is ok i guess, but i would consider it a last hope.

problem with it is the latency, or time between when your computer sends a request and time it takes for it to make it full circle and back to your computer.

on a dial up connection, this is usually 200 - 500 milliseconds, on DSL and cable it varies, but its usually under 100 milliseconds. On a Satellite connection, I've NEVER seen it less than 1 second, ususally it is 1 - 4 seconds. ( an eternity ) With packet loss of 25 - 50 %.

Starband attempts to compensate for this by installing a web cache software, that cuts down on the amount of data it has to download. I've seen computers on a LAN here in Searcy that wouldn't even load a web page without the web cache program enabled.

As far as sharing the connection to the other computer in the house, a router is your best bet. Wireless would work, but at 250 feet, you would need pretty much a clear path from device to device IMO. I'd suggest running a CAT5 cable if its possible. Just be careful not to exceed 300 - 320ft. as it will start to loose signal strength and drop packets.

Thing is, if you do go with a satellite, and the provider requires you to use a web cache program, then a standard router won't work. You'll have to setup the connection on one of the computers, then configure internet connection sharing, and run a crossover cable between the two computers.

Don't get me wrong, satellite can be fast depending on what your doing, downloading music an movies would be fast.

I'll admit, I've never seen the hughes or directway in action, but the starband was pathethic. I've also seen a satellite connection at the pontiac dealer here in town, that uplinks them to GM, and it's latency was 8 - 12 seconds.

I did a quick check, and looks like Mail Boxes Ect there in El Dorado is a wifi hotspot. Might want to check it out. but if they don't have an antenna outside, you'll have to be right next door

Ill do some looking around and see if i can find anything else as well

Joe
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Last edited by tojoski; 08-07-2006 at 04:48 PM.
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Old 08-07-2006, 06:11 PM
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Mail Boxes Etc. is about 3 miles from me. There is also Connections, an internet cafe, but it is the other side of town. It's nice to live in the edge of town for convienence, but it's a pain for other things. I can see the city limits from my office window.

Jeff
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Old 08-07-2006, 06:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tojoski
I'll admit, I've never seen the hughes or directway in action
Hughes and Direcway are the same thing. Hughes is the parent company.

Surfing is not slow...maybe a tick slower than a DSL, but light years ahead of any dialup I've ever been on. Downloading big files (videos, program updates, whatever) the satellite is way, way fast. My wireless router works just fine running off the satellite router too.

The only downside of the Satellite system I've experienced is it's stupid expensive....but worth it for me. That and it is sensitive to weather conditions...i.e, I lose my connection during thunderstorms.
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Old 08-07-2006, 08:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cookie88

The only downside of the Satellite system I've experienced is it's stupid expensive....but worth it for me. That and it is sensitive to weather conditions...i.e, I lose my connection during thunderstorms.
The cost after equipment purchase will be about the same as I pay now for internet and land line. If I go with satelite, the land line will go too because we have 3 cell phones. The weather was a concern that I had, we have Dishnetwork and lose the signal during heavy rain. Hughes says that they have an external antenna and booster for areas with frequent storms, but the $299 price tag would steer me away.
Jeff
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Old 08-12-2006, 08:15 PM
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OK, I've ordered the Hughesnet setup. Should be installed next week. Joe, I've got one question. I'm going to set up a wireless router for my Nephew's computer, Should I use the wireless or go with the wired connection for my computer since it will be close to the modem? My computer already has a ethernet card installed. This is sort of new to me since I have only had dial-up since my first computer.

Jeff
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Old 08-12-2006, 08:20 PM
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if its right next to the router, i'd use a cable

Joe
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Old 08-12-2006, 08:20 PM
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