Having Problems With Your DSL?

I guess this post is an off topic but I think this will somehow help those who bang their heads to the wall solving the ADSL problem connection. I don’t know if I have to mention the company where we were subscribed with ( I used the term we because the phone line was named to my sister-in-law but I’m the one paying the monthly bills). Before, I mean when I don’t have a DSL connection, I’m using the internet by dial-up. But it seems that using dial up slows down my work so I decided to upgrade it to their 990 plan where the payment was a flat monthly rate regardless how long you use the internet or the phone. That was a real bargain and I’m impress with their service because it only took a few weeks before the line was upgraded. Customer service is also very responsive and polite.

But since it was my first time using DSL I thought there was a problem on our phone line installation because the speed is just a little faster then a dial-up (when I measure it on a broadband meter, it was only 66kbps) and patiently waited for the technical support to solve the problem after calling them many times regarding the problem. Since I’m not contented, what I did is I made my own troubleshooting by replacing the telephone wires inside our house and sometimes removing the phone to see if the speed will improve but still the problem remains. So again I just contented myself on that speed just for the sake of not wasting my time calling the technical support. Just last month (March), I was surprised because the my DSL speed improved and when I measure it, the speed was 200+ kbps and I thought the problem was solved. But I noticed the downtime is becoming more frequent and It took about 15 minutes for my modem to connect to the DHCP server. Sometimes the connection was good and can connect for 4 to 6 hours strait but often if disconnects and having intermittent connection.

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So again I called customer service about the problem and they made some testing and told me to turn the modem on and off then forwarded it to their technical support and told me to wait for a their technician to call me back. They made a remote testing and called back to ask about the problem and told the technician that my modem takes a long time time to connect and get the IP address. To my surprise, the technician told me it was because there are already many subscribers so it was hard for me to get a connection. Although I didn’t argue, I don’t believe what he said because my wife’s friend about 100 meters away within our subdivision have no problem on connecting to DSL. It was a vicious cycle because I called them 3 times about the problem and all they reason out is there was a problem on our phone line. If that was the case, then I would also be having problems using dial-up because I don’t have a problem using dial up. In fact it was better (but not as fast if the DSL connection was good).

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So after isolating all the problems, the phone line ( no problem because I can use dial up), the DHCP server ( I called them several times and confirmed no problem on their side), my computer ( I’ve reinstalled my operating system to remove the suspicion of bad registry or viruses) and checked my LAN hardware and driver (by pinging the modem). So the only component left was the modem. I really didn’t suspect that there was problem with the modem because it was still new and only almost 6 months and was very careful using it. The only thing I notice was the design of the casing and when I use it for a long time it becomes hot. The modem is colored gray and only the bottom side have slots for cooling but the top and the sides have no holes or slots to release the heat. I guess the modem was not designed in tropical countries like us and can only be used in air conditioned room. So I finally decided to ask the customer support to replace the modem. It took me a while because I called the wrong customer support who gave me a wrong number to call. But it was quick. After less than two days a technician came to replace my modem. Guess what? it was really a hardware problem. He replace modem with a boxy type (ZyXel P-600 series) with many cooling slots. At first the technician was not convinced and won’t replace my modem but when he saw how bad the connection was, he plugged the new modem and hurray! it immediately connects to the internet.

I suspect the first modem they gave to me was already defective but I can’t prove that because I don’t have a modem tester to check if it is defective. I need to wait for the defect to get worse in order for me to get a replacement. So the moral of the story is “don’t bang your head to wall if you are not sure where is the problem.” ( like I did, just kidding)