2011 is set up to be a good year. At least considering how bad it's been so far, it can only improve. Our internet connection died on January 1st. We have spent 6 to 8 hours on the phone trying to sort it out. There seems to be a combined issue of a dead modem and something problematic on the line. January 1 we told the IP that the modem was bad and to ship a new one. January 5th they advised us that they hadn't shipped it yet because they were waiting for a report back from Bell. So finally they got the report from Bell and sent the unit which was supposed to arrive yesterday. It finally came today, in a box, without packaging just rattling around loose. We plugged it in, reconfigured it (we're getting good at this, we've done it about 50 times since the beginning of the year) and nothing. Just to verify that it's the modem and not a problem with the internal phone lines, we plugged it in at the demarcation point where the phone line enters the house and disconnected all of the phones. Sure enough, it's dead as a door nail.
We've had issues before, so we actually bought a backup modem for times like this, but even with our fully functional modem we've had issues We have download access, so I can view web pages and receive email, but I can't send files or email and periodically my connection fails altogether. Doing things like the 25 Motif Challenge has been a "challenging" experience. Between loosing connectivity and getting kicked off my computer while the modem gets reconfigured again and again it has been difficult to view the blogs. Of course once I view them, I have to upload the pictures to the challenge blog which is an interesting experience when your upload speed is slower than dial up. Last Saturday I spent 12 hours trying to do the blog post.
Don't even get me started on the nightmare of trying to upload files for the Design-Tat course. It took 2 days just to get 1 file uploaded. It would look like the file went through and then it would suddenly disconnect. Over and over again. The file was so large I couldn't even use dial up to send it, but finally after repeated attempts it went through.
Unlike most homes we have a single dedicated line for the DSL service. When we went with DSL a few years ago it just made sense to run a separate line for the modem so there is one phone line from the demarcation point, which in our home is the basement, straight to the modem on the second floor. So a lot of the typical comments that "it's your phone line" are highly unlikely. However after the 3rd Bell phone technician was here insisting that it's the new (it's only been in 5 years) heavy gauge wire that is responsible, we went out and bought a reel of Cat 5 wire and we are now in the process of re-wiring the line to the modem. Anyone who has fished lines through a house can appreciate what this is like. Last night we brought it from the basement through the wall up to the second floor. Now all we have to do is run it under the floor to the wall and we can create a new junction up here and split off all the computers.
On top of all of this, since my computer is the one closest to the modem, it means that all of the configuration of the modem and the router have to be done on my computer. While my computer is being used I switch to working on the laptop. Except that when we need to connect to the demarcation point, it is necessary yo use the laptop. So since the beginning of the year I have begun and trashed endless emails and tutorials as I'm kicked back and forth from desktop to laptop computer. At one point the tech support person insisted that it was necessary to reset the computer's internet browser back to factory setting to fix the problem. Of course, the tech was an idiot and it did nothing to repair the issue, but all of my customization is completely gone and I'm left looking for things that no longer exist.
As frustrating as I find it, it's nothing to what my dear sweet honey is going through. He's the one who's having to deal with idiots on the phone, writing copious emails and repeating endlessly the explanation of what has gone on before while trying to get people half a world away to respond in an efficient and timely manner.
11 days and counting and we still don't have internet.