January 21st, 2020

It’s Comcastic! Sort of…

I feel like I should re-introduce myself to the world. It’s been quite some time since I’ve had something I wanted to share. Maybe that is a good thing considering I like to share all the bad things that happen. Must mean things, technology wise, must been going pretty well.

I wanted to write about high speed interent. Like most of you I have high speed internet at my house. I go through the cable company to get my internet so that means the world of Comcast. For the last few months I have been having all kinds of trouble with my internet randomly loosing connection. Thinking it was my Airport Extreme, I swapped my main Extreme I had supplying the wireless mojo with the one I had in the basement which was relaying the mojo to my eBox 360 through the ethernet port. I also thought it was time to secure my network at home with WPA2 encryption so I spent an hour reconfiguring the replacement Airport, 2 airport expresses and 1 additional airport extreme that is giving mojo through it’s ethernet port to my girlfriends sons Mac Mini.

Result… the Internet still dropped. So… I set out to find another reason. I noticed that when I downloaded large files, mostly torrents, that all of a sudden the DL speed would go to zero and then restart again after several minutes. Odd… Then sometimes it would never resume. So I went out to check my modem and the light indicator for having data from the cable was blinking. So I reset the modem and all was well. That made me curious. So I sat by my modem as I fired up Transmission to get my torrents and I noticed that the modem itself was resetting! What! That’s crap.

So I IM’d tech support and to make a long story short he setup a tech to come out on Friday. Last Friday. They didn’t show. So I called Comcast Wednesday and I explained to the guy what was happening and he said “Haven’t you been reading the paper?” I hesitated for a moment wondering what the hell that has to do with anything. I told him no since I don’t read the paper and he said told me that because of where I live our service has been updated for free to a 12 meg service. The modem that I have is two years old and the reason it’s resetting is that the modem doesn’t support the software update that Comcast is trying to push out to it so it’s resetting. Bring your box in and we’ll swap it out and you’ll be good to go… or will I???

I got the new modem home and after a quick call to Comcast it was up and running. I’m now enjoying the love of 12 meg speed. But would it fix my problem. Answer.. NO! Anger has now set it. Then I remembered that the guy on the phone who helped me activate my new modem somehow determined using their remote tools that I had a bad splitter in my house which would cause my service to go out periodically. The only splitter in the house was in the basement splitting the service to the TV down their and what I later found out to be a phantom line going outside. So I disconnected the splitter and ran the line that was coming in directly to the outlet that was feeding the TV. By-by splitter. I’m thinking to myself there is no way this is going to work because the coax that the splitter was on wasn’t even the line supplying the Internet cable. But sure hell, presto, I ran Transmission all night and my service did not disconnect all night.

Summation… so all along I just had a bad $4 splitter on my cable network that was screwing everything up. I didn’t even know that something like that could screw up an internet modem. My guess is that I really didn’t need to replace my modem at all. Now granted, I would not enjoy the new 12 meg speed without it, but at least I could have avoided the headaches over the past several months with internet randomly going down.

That’s it people. It didn’t dawn on my to check all the pieces of my cable “network” just like I would a computer network if something wasn’t working. I hope this post will find others struggling with their service disconnecting on them.

One Response to 'It’s Comcastic! Sort of…'

  1. 1Geek Gather » It’s Comcastic! Sort of
    October 24th, 2008 at 4:52 am

    […] http://scottie.scheldberg.com/blog/?p=43 […]

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