DSL Hell

A quick note…
Yes, I’m still alive. I survived a week without electricity up in the mountains. No phones, no computers, no TV. It was heaven. But now I’m back on earth and in DSL hell.

True to form, the Pac Bell installer missed his appointment yesterday. If other people’s experience is any indication, I only have two more missed appointments to suffer through before my non-working line is installed. Then it’s just eight calls to support and I should be online. Sometime in the Fall. Sheesh.

Meanwhile, I’m still working on the book – it’s supposed to be finished by Wednesday. Uh oh. I’ll be doing my first radio show since starting at TechTV this Sunday on KGO, 810 AM in San Francisco. It’s the big AM talk station where I used to do a computer talk show. I’ll be on from 10a-1p talking tech.

I’m also going to do the Weekend Today show on Saturday, August 25. I’ll be talking about using the Internet to find long lost friends. If all goes well this may turn into a monthly gig.

34 Replies to “DSL Hell”

  1. God you cable lovers just love to DSL bash. I’ve never had any problems with my Earthlink DSL which comes via Pac Bell.

  2. Welcome back Leo.I get dazed and confused when your gone,but your back so
    things are ok again.Hey good luck with that Today Show gig,that would be
    cool.

  3. Leo
    You may want to look into Earthlink or Covad DSL. Their self-install kits are supposed to work faily well. Good Luck!

  4. Leo is lucky he can get DSL. I can’t get either in my area. we were just taken over by comcast and they dont’ have @home around here. Im stuck with wonderful 45333 kpbs DIALUP!! AHHHH. Enjoy Leo!

  5. Poor Leo, having to leave behind his cable modem. Cable isn’t perfect either. I am finally able to get back online after about a day and a half of problems. It could be worse. At least you don’t have dialup.

  6. Hello Leo,
    Does PacBell not have a self install option? I use BellSouth DSL and I had my modem package in about ten days and had it installed in less than an hour. I have had no problems at all so far.
    Hope things get better for you.

  7. Leo, sorry about your dsl problems, but being one of the many millions of dialup users who cannot in any way get any form of high speed internet, hope you feel a little more compationate about us, the dialup users.

  8. Is ther Radio show permanent? It’ll be great to now listen to you on Sundays. Money talks is nice and all but it will be wonderful to hear some computer tech stuff. 😉

  9. great to read your words again! we all missed you while you were gone, but pat and marty did do a great job, nothing beats you though!

  10. do you think it would be faster to dig teh cable trench? and i was just wondering what kind of a drive is it to work now, it was an hour drive from teh new house right.

  11. To Joe:
    I don’t have and can’t Ameritech DSL, but have checked on it.
    From what I heard Ameritech DSL is really bad…service and support.

  12. Don’t Worry Leo, I also had problems when they installed our DSL in our house, we were all ready and come to find out they programed the line wrong, it took about 2-3 months to hook up, hope it doesn’t take you that long.

  13. I just ordered DSL from AT&T. It’s a little overpriced for 608/128 (49.95) but they get great reviews. Apparently they bought Northpoint’s infrastructure and recently entered the DSL market. Soon they will patent broadband. LOL

  14. DSL is the worst to deal with ! After 6 great months of service from Telocity, all of a sudden my DSL just stopped working. Called them up..guess what..they thought I cancelled my DSL and disconnected me ! Ok..so how long till they can fix it…”well we have to go through the entire installation processess again. Anywhere from 3 to 9 weeks” . I just ended up cancelling !!! Its crazy! So Im going to try my luck at Ameritech DSL . Good Luck Leo.

  15. Sounds like you are going to be unplugged for a while, hope all goes well. And sorry to hear about PacBell (not that the guy missed his appointment, rather that you have to suffer from their DSL). Hope all goes well, and I’ll be first in line for the book signing.
    -Shayne

  16. Hi Léo!
    That is very exciting that you will be hosting the radio show on Sunday. You can count me as one of your listeners. My best wishes. Keep us posted in regards do the “Weekend Today” show.
    DSL = Damn Slow Line – I have both, Cable and DSL. Nothing but trouble with DSL. Very slow compared to my fast @Home Cable service. Hopefully, you won’t go through too many more hassels with DSL. How much would it cost to have that cable line brought to your house? Hey, I think all of us fans should send you a buck so, that you can get the cable line brought over to your house!
    I am glad that you are back. By the way, the best show while you were out was with Martin and Chris. Chris is too funny. They both were great hosts.
    Cheers,
    – Michael J. Titera
    Fremont, California

  17. Oh, by the way Leo, don’t forget to post the saga on DSL Reports. Like I said before I just placed an order with AT&T and they were supposed to verify the line on the 19th at midnight then setup the installation so I’m getting anxious waiting for an email. Hopefully I won’t have the same horror story as yours.

  18. Hey Leo, Weren’t you on the Weekend Today show back a couple months ago? I can’t wait for you book to arrive on the shelfs and good luck getting you DSL in! I’m just glad I have cable! I feel sorry for you that your “unplugged”.
    Eric

  19. Hey Leo, Weren’t you on the Weekend Today show back a couple months ago? I can’t wait for you book to arrive on the shelfs and good luck getting you DSL in! I’m just glad I have cable! I feel sorry for you that your “unplugged”.
    Eric

  20. Finally… the Leo has come back to Leoville! 🙂
    Funny, Leo, that you mentioned all those “no’s”. Sound like a Gilligan’s Island thing was building up there. Then you mentioned a book. Been to my site lately, Leo? 🙂
    Have that online novel thing going called War of TechTV. Episode V: The Athlon Strikes Back has begun and yourself along with the other TSS crew and Dvorak are there.
    Glad you are back, Skipper… I mean… Leo! 🙂

  21. good luck with your DSL. We’re likely nixing ours and getting cable as soon as our contract is up–we pay Earthlink for our DSL but the line is provided by Verizon. It’s down about 30% of the time. When it works, it rocks, but it likes to randomly stop working in the middle of large downloads, checking email, or surfing news sites (??) so it’s often worthless. And, of course, it always goes down when I need to have some sort of research done the next day and it’s already 10pm..
    But some people have had great luck with their DSL. Maybe (once you get past installation h*ll–I wish we’d gone through that instead of the connection dying multiple times daily) it’ll turn out really awesome.

  22. Leo,
    Tell us more about your book. We want info like:
    Working Title
    Topics
    Publisher
    Release date
    Good to have you back on The Screen Savers.
    Im addicted to your show. I often watch it twice each night ( I know that crazy
    but at least Im multi-tasking during both broadcasts..not just sitting on a couch).
    Steve NeSmith
    (Online Marketing Mgr at a major publishing company)

  23. Hey,Leo. It’s good to have you back. You were missed. Glad to hear that you and the family survived “roughing it”. Moving can be an awful pain. Lots of luck with the DSL instalation, and hopefully, you’ll be up and running again soon. We have DSL here, and it’s so far, so good.(fingers crossed) Have a good evening, and I’ll be seeing you on TSS.

  24. When they install your DSL, if they give you a modem make sure it’s the best they have. Our installers gave us a piece of junk modem when we started but we had problems and they immediately gave us a better one (the westell wirespeed). They explained that PacBell had overbought the other junk modems and was just trying to get rid of them. I have since installed some firmware which runs on the modem (I got it from the westell site) which dials the PPPOE automatically and acts as a DHCP server to my computer. It works very well and I no longer have to run that funky dial out (Enternet 300) thing every time I reboot.

  25. I guess I got lucky. We have CenturyTel ADSL out here in our little country home in Louisiana. We haven’t had any trouble. Well, other than the fact that I knew more about hooking it up then the CenturyTel technician did! He showed up when expected. Was very pleasant to talk to. He wasn’t even afraid to admit he didn’t know much about computers or DSL! He said he got the promotion at work, because he was the only technician working for them that had a PC! It was kinda funny, beause when he was hooking it up, he said “I don’t know why they spell Internet wrong here. They always spell it Ethernet.” LOL I clued him in, explained a few things to him, and recommend he start watching TechTV. I told him to look for Call for Help and The Screen Savers. This was back just before the new format. I haven’t had any trouble with my DSL, so he hasn’t been back for me to ask if he’s watching. Here’s keeping my fingers crossed for you that you Leo, that you have good luck with your DSL!

  26. I co-located in my own house… haha get it? Not funny I know. Hey I’m almost done with my new site design, but I would like some help with a MySQL and template thing for my site so I can run my whole site off one template. I have PHP and MySQL. That’s what I want to use. I got it to work a little. But hey, if you want me to host your site, the computer I built has 3 80 gigabyte IBM desksters, RAID, it’s running on Redhat (unfortunatly errr, I was too lazy to get slackware) Apache, and some other ****. Yo, though I’ll host you for free if you’ll put a banner to support my site on yours. Or I’ll do it for free if you’ll write a script for my site so I can go easier. IM me on AIM at YamahaBrez, or on ICQ 101840970, or e-mail me with that e-mail address. hahaha, I really co-located in a small ISP near me, they’re cool it has like 4 workers, but a lot of people in my town use it. LOL, their site is Stryke PC it was HCISP but I think you can still get to it that way. Talk to you people later.

  27. I saw that segement that Dvorak did on Silicon Spin when they were discussing broadband. They had the president of PacBell internet services on it and John gave them hell about the dead Pac Bell line he has and how they cannot seem to fix it. Ley me give you my PacBell horror story.
    First off about a year and half ago I ordered Pac bell DSL online. after waiting 5 months and making several phone calls they never contacted me back. So I cancelled and eventually I called up now defunct Flashcom and they had me hooked up in 12 days. 6 months later Flashcom went down the tubes and my DSL was taken over by (the now defunct sold company which is DirectTV). I had no choice in the matter, Guess what though, I needed a Telocity “gateway”. Instead of a simple DSL modem like the very reliable 3com modem I had this motorola cpu powered piece of crap on my desk that had variable speeds. Then..guess what? It turns out that my lines were Northpoint lines. yep you guessed it. they shut them off wothpout real warning and I have been DSL less ever since. Meanwhile Pac Bell in their fabulous way of doing things started charging me 39.95 a month for DSL service I never had. I called immediately. They said for some reason a DSL order I made and canceled 6 months ago had kicked in. It happened for 5 months and 7 phone calls! They finally credited me back over 200 dollars that was accumulating on my phone bill for service I never had. yet, I just got my last bill and they charged me AGAIN! I have no recourse but to call up every month and get transferred around between their “specialists” who assure me that’s it’s “no big deal” and they’ll yake care of it. yet month after month I am charged.
    The irony of the situation is this… now Pacific Bell says they can’t provide me service even if I went to them, because they say I am too far away..yet I had great service from Flashcom before. In fact I went to my apartment complex’s main office and found out I am literally SURROUNDED by tenants with Pac Bell DSL. Even people who JUST got the service a month ago. Yet after repeated calls Pac Bell says I am too far away. Other DSL providers must somehow draw their info from the same pool of data that PacBell keeps. therefore I am held hostage by the phone company, charged for DSl service I don’t have) though they say i don’t have to pay while they fix it), and unable to even get service from somebody else. This, my friends is what DSL is. The monopoly of Pac Bell decides who gets DSL and squeezes out every other DSl provider. I would not be surprised if COVAD and all the other DSL providers around are gone within a year.
    I am literally trapped by PacBell’s bad management because of en entry in a computer somewhere that they cannot, in all their infinite wisdom. find.
    This is what happens with a monpoly that has the money and connections to lobby the government not to change the laws to allow fair competition. The DSl market now here is a token gesture by Pac Bell to satisfy some people that their really is competition in this market. Don’t be fooled. there isn’t.

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