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Internet & Modem Issues

 
  1. I have a 56K rated modem but never get connections that fast.
  2. I keep getting bumped from the internet. What do I do?
  3. When I try to connect, it says there is no dialtone.
  4. I try to use my modem but it keeps saying it is already busy or in use.
  5. The speaker on my modem is either too loud or too soft.
  6. Certain sites make my browser crash. What gives?
  7. Can I get DSL?
  8. I lose connections in the middle of downloads.
  9. I think I might have a computer virus. What do I do?
  10. I have a cable or DSL modem and notice the connection is sometimes active for no reason.
  11. I am having problems getting my WinModem to work.
 

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I have a 56K rated modem but never get connections that fast.

You never will. Many factors go into what connection speed you can have. First and foremost, your ISP has to support 56K transfer. And, in this, it must support the type of 56K of your modem. Most now use the V.90 specification and most ISPs also support it, but if you have a older one that uses X2 or k56flex, you need to pay attention to this. Also, the quality of your phone line could bring down connection speeds. Having the PC a far distance from the wall via a long phone cord could bring down speeds. also, at full speeds and optimal quality, you will still never get 56K as the lines limit you to 53K. Also, you must keep in mind that when online, your true transfer speeds also depend highly on the system at the other end. If the network is running slow or the server us running slow, your connection will be slow no matter the speed of your modem.

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I keep getting bumped from the internet. What do I do?

Many times this is just a symptom of a crappy ISP. After you have ruled a couple other things out, the thing to do is call your ISP and raise some hell. the first thing to check is whether you have call waiting or not. Call waiting, as you know, emits a beep over the phone line to indicate a call. This beep interferes with the modem connection and can knock you offline. To disable this, include *70 in your dial-up access number. Second, if you are idle for long periods of time, many ISPs will bump you just to save connections. You can either stay busy or you can download a program that will intermittently ping your ISP and keep the connection active. If these things don't ring a bell, call your ISP. If it happens a lot and your ISP gives you the run-around, then consider switching to another provider.

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When I try to connect, it says there is no dialtone.

More than likely, you don't have the modem connected correctly. Check your phone setup. Is the phone wire connected? Is it connected to the LINE jack on your modem and not the PHONE jack? I some times grab a spare phone and use it to do some line tests. This often finds the problem.

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I try to use my modem but it keeps saying it is already busy or in use.

You have a conflict with another device. You are probably trying to use the modem over a COM port that is already being used. You will need to re-assign the modem to a different COM port.

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The speaker on my modem is either too loud or too soft.

You can adjust it by going to your modem settings under System Properties and using the slider to adjust the volume.

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Certain sites make my browser crash. What gives?

Try to notice the pattern. Is it only certain sites? Are those sites running different client apps or java? Sometimes after a long time online, your PC will start to lose memory, called memory leak. Its a common thing. But, this gives your browser less room to breathe and it may crash more often. A reboot could help. It if is things like java that do it, then update your browser or check your java settings for your browser. Also, if you use Netscape, switch to IE (okay, that is a personal preference, but I'm entitled).

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Can I get DSL?

It depends. Many DSL ISP's are able to run a line test to see if you are able to get DSL, but they are not always cut and dry. It depends on your line quality. If you have an older house with thin, high-guage wire, you may not be able to do DSL. Likewise, if you are too far from your phone company's central office, you cannot to DSL. Some more rural areas compensate for far distances by running phone lines out from the central office and to a separate router, then going out to the individual houses. This setup will usually not allow DSL on those houses on the other side of the router.

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I lose connections in the middle of downloads.

See the question above that addresses connection drops. Also, you may want to consider getting a download manager or an FTP program that can resume dropped downloads. Just do a search on the internet for one, or check out the common download locations like SHAREWARE.COM or DOWNLOAD.COM .

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I think I might have a computer virus. What do I do?

You need to grab a virus scanner, update the virus definition list, then run a scan on your system.

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I have a cable or DSL modem and notice the connection is sometimes active for no reason.

Two things could be happening. You may have a program running that is set up to automatically perform some task over the internet. In this case, you will have to search it down yourself and disable it if it really bugs you. The other thing is a result of internet activity. There are many computers on the internet. Many of them are setup to automatically scan IP addresses and do certain things. Most of them are harmless, but some, nonetheless, could be someone looking to wreak some havoc. So, I would recommend downloading some firewall software. it is available for free in some cases. Instead of my naming them off, just run a net search for it or uses the common download hubs of the net. You're bound to find one without too much trouble.

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I am having problems getting my WinModem to work.

Join the club. WinModems were a weird invention to save cost. They replace some of the typical modem functions with software counterparts to make it cheaper. Unfortunately, they often give conflicts and problems. Rather than going into troubleshooting this, I'd recommend to stay away from these things. If you un-install one, make sure you also un-install whatever software you installed for it, as this will only conflict with a real modem.

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