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BS: I need a new ISP

GUEST,leeneia 18 May 06 - 01:38 PM
catspaw49 18 May 06 - 01:44 PM
Joe Offer 18 May 06 - 01:56 PM
katlaughing 18 May 06 - 02:25 PM
JudyB 18 May 06 - 02:59 PM
artbrooks 18 May 06 - 03:07 PM
open mike 18 May 06 - 03:11 PM
Richard Bridge 18 May 06 - 06:03 PM
Bill D 18 May 06 - 07:03 PM
catspaw49 18 May 06 - 07:11 PM
michaelr 18 May 06 - 07:35 PM
GUEST,amergin 18 May 06 - 07:36 PM
JohnInKansas 18 May 06 - 09:06 PM
The Fooles Troupe 19 May 06 - 12:07 AM
Stilly River Sage 19 May 06 - 12:53 AM
artbrooks 19 May 06 - 07:47 AM
GUEST,leeneia 19 May 06 - 09:32 AM
Stilly River Sage 19 May 06 - 11:18 AM
Bill D 19 May 06 - 11:26 AM
GUEST,leeneia 19 May 06 - 12:08 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 May 06 - 12:34 PM
catspaw49 19 May 06 - 01:30 PM
NH Dave 19 May 06 - 04:53 PM
GUEST,leeneia 19 May 06 - 05:17 PM
GUEST,Joe_F 19 May 06 - 09:18 PM
GUEST,Texas Guest 19 May 06 - 11:47 PM
Kaleea 20 May 06 - 01:44 AM
GUEST,leeneia 20 May 06 - 01:38 PM

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Subject: BS: I need a new ISP
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 18 May 06 - 01:38 PM

I'm not happy with my present internet service provider. I want a new one. I want to have dial-up, e-mail, and an accelerated connection.

I also want a company that actually answers a question when I ask it - not one that has a machine scan my e-mail and make a guess at what I want. The guess is almost always wrong.

I'm getting too much spam at present, and I wanted to get a new e-mail address. My provider refuses to give me a new e-mail address. Hey, whose computer is this?

I live in the U.S.

If you are happy with your ISP, would you mention its name? If you are worried about privacy, don't put your moniker in the "From" box.


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: catspaw49
Date: 18 May 06 - 01:44 PM

Why would you want to stay on a dial-up?

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 May 06 - 01:56 PM

I want a new ISP, too. I've been with MSN since about 1992, but all I can get for my $22 a month, is a slow dialup connection. I hate to change and lose my e-mail address. I guess that's the thing that's stopping me.
I can't get broadband service by cable or phone line in my rural location, but I'm looking around for a wireless ISP.

I have to say I'm pretty happy with MSN Hotmail, now that I use it on the Web. It sorts out the Spam pretty well, and I check the Spam folder once a day or so to sort out any odd messages that were inadvertantly put there.

But if I change ISP's, how do I recover from the loss of my e-mail address?

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 May 06 - 02:25 PM

If you get a free online email account, such as Yahoo, you can always have the same addy no matter if you move, change Ips, or whatever. So, instead of using the one your IP gives you, keep the Yahoo one for most email. I only share the IP one with a few folks whom I trust to not send spam, etc.

Have you checked to see if there are any local IPs in your area? We have several here, one of which my husband's company uses. That way you at least get a real person to talk with if you have any problems, etc. If you can afford cable I would highly recommend it; the difference in speed, etc. is phenomenal.

My brother has been fairly happy with www.peoplepc and their dialup, though it is slow.

Hope this helps.

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: JudyB
Date: 18 May 06 - 02:59 PM

To follow up on kat's suggestion, checking the Yellow Pages under Internet may give you an idea who the providers in your area are. We have two ISPs (on different computers) - GWI (a local Northern New England provider) and Verizon (one of the big guys). We've had reasonable luck reaching a real person by phone at both (though it takes longer on "hold" and more transfers on Verizon) though I think only the local provider has a real person answering e-mailed questions.

Verizon provides a lot more free web space; GWI has better spam filters (Verizon just lost a law suit because it was blocking legitimate email as spam); we can usually get onto Mudcat with Verizon when many other people can't get through; people in Australia can't see all my free web space on Verizon.

I throw these out not because I think either one is the solution for you (unless you're in northern New England, in which case you might want to take a look at GWI) - but to sort of prompt you to think about what's most important in an ISP, so you can quiz other people in your area about the one they're using.

Best of luck!
JudyB


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: artbrooks
Date: 18 May 06 - 03:07 PM

I have, and like, Earthlink. I pay $54 per month for broadband and all of the ISP bells and whistles. I think I can have up to 5 separate e-mail addresses.


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: open mike
Date: 18 May 06 - 03:11 PM

cable DSL or other fast connections are not available here either.
I researched the availability of satellite internet and found 3
main ones were Direc Way (connected to Hughes and Direct t.v.)
Starband and Wild Blue. I found Wild Blue the best price and
for less than $50 per month I can now unplug the seperate phone
line i had to serve the modem, and connect at 1,000 Kilo Bytes per second (100 mega bytes per sec.) (if my math is correct)

so now even when the phones are out due to weather conditions
i can still connect....my local Wild Blue Company is called Got Sky...


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 18 May 06 - 06:03 PM

Are you paying through the nose or what? Move to England and get broadband from GBP 15 per month or GBP 20 if you want a proper ISP, not BT, AOL, Tiscali (Yecch!) etc.


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: Bill D
Date: 18 May 06 - 07:03 PM

I finally got cable 2 years ago. I use Comcast, and though they are a "BIG BUSINESS", they do have more of the bugs ironed out. Very few outages, and FAST! Access to 100,000 newsgroups, free space to store files, 24 hour service #s.... If they are in your area, it's a possibility. I just get my TV and internet on a deal thru the same cable.

I know those in rural areas have problems.


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: catspaw49
Date: 18 May 06 - 07:11 PM

I went with RoadRunner through Time-Warner here and we're out in the sticks ourselves.....They put in all fiber-optic stuff a few years back and this whole little town went to them! We have really old phone lines and switching equipment here so ANY dial-up is totally crap. Some time this year Time-Warner will have their breoadband phone service out here and I predict this whole town of about 800 will go to them for that as well.

Seriously, if you have cable modem availability it is the only way to go.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: michaelr
Date: 18 May 06 - 07:35 PM

I use, and am satisfied with, NetZero, which was until recently THE cheapest ISP (PeoplePC Online is now giving them competition). I pay about 10 bucks a month for dial-up. This includes a free e-mail account but I don't use it much, preferring Yahoo! instead.

If you're willing to have your Internet usage limited (I forget to how many hours per week), NetZero is actually free.

Cheers,
Michael


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: GUEST,amergin
Date: 18 May 06 - 07:36 PM

Joe,

You can switch to another ISP and keep your same email address. All you would have to do would be to just downgrade from a paid account to a free account. I do not know if the space would remain the same. When I did tech support for MSN the space for a free acocunt was still only 2.5 megs....now it is 250mb. Hoever, if there is anything on your email you want saved that would take up the whole 250, you can always forward it to another address.


Amergin


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 18 May 06 - 09:06 PM

It's remotely possible that some useful information could be had from SurfSpeed: Test Your Surfing Speed, 05.11.06, PCMag, By Tim Smith, for anyone considering a change in service providers, or it could possibly be of interest to a few just on general principles.

This is a program, requiring download and installation on your machine, offered by Ziff-Davis/PC Magazine. Usually their "utilities" incur a fairly minimal charge, but since they intend to be able to collect information from the program, this one is free. You do have to register at the download site to get it. You also agree to let them get a certain amount of info from your use of it, but you can uninstall at any time. A download link is "discreetely placed" at the top of the page linked, but I'd suggest scanning the whole article to see if it's something you want.

I haven't tried running it, and can't really give a recommendation on the program, but it claims to be able to give you actual effective browser/connection performance for your own machine on your current hookup and for other services in your area or globally. With the inflation in claims common to advertising, the "real world" often is quite a bit different than what's in the ads, and the same service may have significantly different real speeds in different locales.

The PC Mag utilities I've looked at have been pretty good, and are professionally written. The source is, in my opinion, one that can be trusted to do what they say they will.

Apply your own judgement about the information this program attempts to get from your participation.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 19 May 06 - 12:07 AM

I get regularly 52000 thruput - sometimes up to 53333. Not bad for allegedly 56K. I changed back from Optus (a digital cable connected phone) to the Telstra copper pair, and my speed jumped up from about 40000.

My (external) modem has a little LCD window which show me this. It's a 'Woomera' - which was designed to work on very poor quality outback Telstra lines, and can 'hunt' the speed up and down depending on the instantaneous quality of the line.

Another trick is to make sure all phones in parallel*** on the line are unplugged.

There have recently been moves to bring in ADSL2+, and the costs are starting to drop, but I'll be damned if I'll sign a Telstra 2 year contract...

*** Don't try arguing with me that they really are in 'series' btw...


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 May 06 - 12:53 AM

Art, you can have up to eight email addresses on your account, and each one can have a separate web account (limited space, I don't know if they have increased that) per each email.

Earthlink is more expensive than SBC in this area, but for some strange reason, Earthlink would put in DSL here and SBC says it isn't available. Go figure. I've had earthlink for so long it would be arduous to change out all of the email accounts--I don't know if they'd let me use the web mail if I stopped paying for the internet access, but it is something to consider, if SBC ever comes to my house.

Earthlink has an accelerator program for dialup, and it basically reduces the amount of time spent loading images based upon your preferences. You can set it so a fuzzy image comes through for each image, or you can get the entire photo, or something in between. The more image information comes through the longer each page takes to load.

This site gives some help in deciding who to go with. I plugged my number in and it doesn't list Earthlink, but then my Earthlink goes through Covad, which is listed. I dropped "compare DSL service" into Google and found the site. I also found several that while they appear to be "neutral" are in fact lackeys of the cable company and only list cable as the outcome. Pretty smarmy of them. I won't have cable in the house--the local company is Charter, and their service is so piss poor that a survey a while back ranked them below the IRS for customer satisfaction. I put in satellite television. It isn't any cheaper--it has gone up about $10 in the three years I've had it--but it isn't cable and that is what counts.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: artbrooks
Date: 19 May 06 - 07:47 AM

SRS, I didn't know it was that many. I only use 2, and each has 100 MB of virtual space. I never use more than about 3, since I'm in there all the time...except when my bro-in-law was sending me some very big picture files! One good thing about it is its portability; I've had the same e-mail address for about 10 years, in several different parts of the country.


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 19 May 06 - 09:32 AM

Thanks for the responses.

Spaw, let me your question "Why do I want dial-up?"

I understand that with broadband service, one's computer is online all the time and it has a stable identity. With dial-up, I only go online when I tell it too, and my computer has a different identity everytime. Since I keep track of my bank account and life savings online, I prefer the old-fashioned method.

Dial-up may be slower, but it's good enough for my needs.

--------
That was brilliant about checking the Yellow Pages. It hadn't even occurred to me!
--------
War stories: I went to Netzero, discovered they are the same company as what I'm using now.

I went to the company that my computer tech suggested, and with every step I took, a screen popped up saying "An error has occurred running scripts on this page..." If they can't run their own web site, can they run a service?

I tried AT&T, my phone company. They wouldn't let me do business unless I entered a code from my phone bill. I don't save phone bills, so I couldn't do it. Called them on the phone, and they would only sign me up for a year. I told them no.

So now you know why I turned to the Mudcat.


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 May 06 - 11:18 AM

You don't keep your bills? I think the IRS requires you to keep records going back several years, and I've included bills as part of that. Anyway, if you put in a good firewall and if you use a router between your modem and the computer you eliminate many of the problems you describe as things you're worried about.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: Bill D
Date: 19 May 06 - 11:26 AM

"... with broadband service, one's computer is online all the time and it has a stable identity."

well, it 'can' be, if you let it. My broadband cable modem has a little button you can push, and two of the 4 green lights go out and nothing gets thru. (My wife makes me turn it off at night, even with the computer off).Plus, I use a firewall that allows me to "stop all traffic" with one click. The firewall also is set to be the first thing to load, even during boot-up, so that nothing can get in while things are starting. Two years with cable, and absolutely NO problems.


I also use online banking, and it uses very safe protocalls to ensure anything I'm doing there is protected.


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 19 May 06 - 12:08 PM

Thanks for the info, Bill D. I like the sound of the little button.


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 May 06 - 12:34 PM

I have a couple of different power supplies here, and though I don't do it, I can simply hit the master switch and turn off all of the computer end of things (CPU, monitor, extra drives). My computer is always turned off at night. The router and the modem are on a separate power supply because sometimes I have to reboot them and this way I flip one switch and they turn off and I didn't also have to power down the computer.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: catspaw49
Date: 19 May 06 - 01:30 PM

Hi leeneia.......I have a similar set up to Bill with the firewall but the little button on my modem shuts the modem down completely. I understand your concern but continue to investigate the cable set up as it is sooooo much faster and far more enjoyable to use.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: NH Dave
Date: 19 May 06 - 04:53 PM

Sage,

    The IRS doesn't require you to keep your bills, but it may require you to explain a deduction that you took up to seven years ago, which can be difficult to do if you haven't kept your bills. Keeping your bills and other recirds, in the USA, is a good idea, not a requirement.

    Dave


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 19 May 06 - 05:17 PM

Thanks, Spaw. That may be just what I'll do.


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: GUEST,Joe_F
Date: 19 May 06 - 09:18 PM

I have Verizon DSL, and have found it to be generally satisfactory. It does not officially support my news & mail reader (Gnus), but in fact Gnus works. It is true that its spam filtering has sometimes been overzealous; sometimes legitimate business mail to me from Europe has been rejected. But there is a "whitelist" service that can overrule the filter, once you find out what has happened.

--- Joe Fineman    joe_f@verizon.net

||: Many are born impatient; the lucky ones become cabdrivers. :||


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: GUEST,Texas Guest
Date: 19 May 06 - 11:47 PM

Leeneia - out of Houston,Texas, there is an ISP by the name of
Academic Planet (www.academicplanet.com) but they have a requirement that you must somehow be involved in "education" - use your wits here.
You can be a teacher, student, parent, etc. and they will let you buy their inexpensive service - about $7 a month. We had it here in Fort
Worth for a couple of years but decided to try broadband and haven't looked back. I know they are in Texas and they were planning on going national a few years back but I'm not sure they made the
transition. At any rate, if you can get it, it's a good service and they are very conscientious. Cheers.


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: Kaleea
Date: 20 May 06 - 01:44 AM

I'm considering the possibility of looking at dial up right now. Being in the timewarner portion of San Diego, I have to have that for just the basic cable I have, but I also have their phone & internet. Paying for all that & a cellphone, too, is just getting to be too much for my neice & me right now, so we are stuck with if we cut off the house phone, we can keep the cable & internet, but if we keep only the basic cable, we'd have to have a house phone to have dialup. Maddening! Vonage seems to offer a cheap deal on phone (from which we could do dialup), but when I did a search on them, there were lots of things which popped up about lawsuits, being put on hold on 911, & fun stuff like that.
I just don't know what the answer is, other than being rich, which I am not.


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Subject: RE: BS: I need a new ISP
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 20 May 06 - 01:38 PM

Gee, Kaleea, do you need to be that connected? Surely there's a way to save money here.

As for cable, how much good TV do you really get? Most people say that they have hundreds of stations and nothing worth watching.

I don't watch TV myself. It gives me something like motion sickness. I save a lot of money that way.
--------
Texas Guest: thanks for the tip.


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