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[#] Wed Jul 02 2008 00:07:43 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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Passwords can be revoked from a central server too :)

[#] Thu Jul 03 2008 10:18:15 EDT from Peter Pulse @ Uncensored

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Interesting idea. Then I would be able to switch to a cable modem and those cable fuckers wouldn't be able to mess with my traffic.

[#] Thu Jul 03 2008 13:45:59 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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More likely, they would *always* mess with your traffic.  I've heard that they tend to give low priority to VPN protocols because they can't cache it like they can with web pages, and therefore they's actually have to (gasp!) pay for all of the bandwidth they're selling to you!

[#] Thu Jul 03 2008 18:43:28 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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As for my speaking to it: I was expecting to have to do a lot worse.
Like all things linux, you wait long enough they make it easy. That's why I like living behind the curve.
Having never played with any vpn software on linux I had the thing 99% working in about 30 minutes, and most of that was figuring out what to download and run.
The other 1% was me being an idiot and having to add a rule to iptables to let connections in.
At the moment I haven't played much being out for the count for a week but before I left, I set up a script to drop and add the routes to the routing table every hous
hour.
If left alone the connection has problems, the ppp0 interface stays up (though I told the pptp thing to keep persisting) but I had to add some stuff to my routing tables to make it work, and that gets messed up.
So my quick temporary fix was just to reset the routes every hour.
I came back from hospital and it was still working.
Which probably means I'll never get around to working up a better solution.
But it does NOT drop connections when I do that so no harm done unless you happen to connect in that tiny little window after I drop routes before setting them again.

[#] Thu Jul 03 2008 18:43:55 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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Oh, and it's insanely cool.
FIOS can go fuck themselves, I have a static ip!

[#] Fri Aug 22 2008 10:47:07 EDT from davew @ Uncensored

Subject: Turn me back on!!!!

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Today I got my new router from my ISP complete with a new IP address range. So I reconfigured the DHCP and clients etc and I'm back on the net. Fantastic.

 

Why have I had to go through this? Well thats a horrible story so here it is.

 

April 2007.

Wife and I seperate. I move out. So I get my phone line moved to my new residence (keeping my phone number) but the ISP tells me that the broadband on that line won't move with the line / phone number and I need to order a new connection and cancel the old one.

No big deal.

The BT engineer comes to install the new line but that has problems since there is limited availability he wants to multiplex the line. Can't have broadband on a multiplexed line so after several phone calls the juggle other lines and I get a nice clean line for my broadband.

New broadband gets put on the line, new router arrives. All plugged in and working great.

 

June 2008.

I discover I'm still paying my ISP for the broadband that was at the house of my wife and I. How did I miss that well the company pays for it so no one noticed.

I check into this a little more and get onto the ISP (Demon Internet). Realising there is plenty of scope for things to get really stuffed up here I walk the customer services rep through it carefully.

So at the time I call to get rid of the defunct broadband the account with the ISP consists of 3 broadband connections, each with a /28 subnet of static IP addresses. One account is provided on a phone line at the office and needs to be the master provision to which the domain name, fax2mail, VOIP, etc are attached. Other two broadband provisions are on the same phone number, one broadband leads off into limbo and the other gets here to my house.

The only way to distinguish between the two broadbands on the same phone number is by IP range but the ISP lists them only via the phone number they are on so we can all see whats going to go wrong here can't we. They're going to turn off the wrong broadband aren't they.

Well after much carefull hand holding with the customer services representative (in a call center in India) we are all very clear on what needs to happen. They email me a specialy produced form to sign to confirm exactly what is going to happen, I check it carefully, print it off, get the secretary to read it to me just to make sure, sign it and fax it back to the ISP.

 

July 2008

Latest bill from the ISP shows that the defunct broadband is gone and everything else is still working great. In fact the throuput logs and the Nagios reports show that the broadband at home has improved so I'm very happy and thinking that these Indian folks aren't too bad. I'm also feeling fairly pleased with myself that I chose a good ISP who has managed to resolve this issue without a mistake.

 

August 19 2008 22:00 ish BST.

Broadband and DSL lights go out on the the router at home.

Maybe its just a glitch, leave it till the morining.

August 20 2008 10:00

Lights are still out.

Call the ISP. Customer services say its still on at their end. I say its not on at my end so what do we do? I get put on hold for technical services and the call is promptly cut off.

I call technical support directly and tell them the issue. The support guy wants me to check the line for dial tone etc. I'm using it to talk to him so it must be working. He tries to test the DSL but his end reports no line and he says the phone line must be out, I'm still using it to talk to him (idiot). He puts me on hold and goes off to talk to someone else. Twenty minutes later he's back saying I cancelled the broadband. I tell him about the conversation with customer services an hour ago when they said it was still working and I give him a brief description of the history and what I think has happened (they cancelled the wrong one or cancelled everything on that phone number.

I'm on hold again.

I'm back on to customer services again who are telling me that they show the two correct broadband provisions on the correct lines with the correct IP ranges etc etc.

I'm on hold again.

I'm back at tech support. This time the engineer is telling me the problem is because I cancelled the service. I'm very annoyed now and my temper is running away with me. Finally he manages to get his explanation through to me. Turns out the language thing was obfuscating things and he was trying to explain the root of the problem is the cancellation of the defunct broadband and that BT had scheduled DSL to be disconnected from the line when that broadband was cancelled. BT must be really thick to turn off DSL to a line that still has an active broadband with traffic, not to mention really slow since it took them nearly two months to get round to it.

So now the tech guy is telling me the only way to resolve this is to cancel the broadband that should still be active and order a new one so that BT will reprovision the line and DSL wil be back on etc. I'm OK with this, even though I'll have to re-configure the router, DHCP and all that. I'm OK with it untill he tells me it'll take 7-10 working days for all that to go through.

I explode!!!!

I'm on hold again.

Now I'm talking to Rahul (tech manager). He's explaining what went wrong and why it'll take 7-10 days.

I explode again.

Rahul says there is a way to get it to happen faster. I can ask for the order to be "fast tracked" when I speak to sales but that it'll still take 2 - 3 days and I should be on by Monday at the latest, possibly Friday. I've calmed down a bit now because the secretary has been in with tea and biscuits (chocolate ones) so I agree to this.

I'm on hold again.

I'm speaking to sales. The rep gets all the details of what I want as though this is a totally new order and I'm not an existing customer and I'm happy to humour her until she tries to force me to accept a dynamic IP and resists giving me a /28 subnet. She wants to know why I want a /28 and I bark back because thats what I had before (time for another chocy biccy).

So now we've sorted out the deatils and we get to the end. She tells me the price per month and we go through the billing details and we're good. Right up to the point where I tell her this needs to be fast tracked when she says that'll cost another £175.00.

I explode again!!!

I'm back on hold.

I'm talking to the sales manager now. She's trying to get me to accept this £175 charge and I'm not having it. I tell her to speak to Rahul in tech support.

I'm on hold again (that music is getting a bit repetative and I'm running out of chocky biccy's)

I'm back with Rahul.

He's grabbed hold of this again now. Turns out now that the order is on the system he can do stuff to it. He's going to ring me back in half an hour and give me an update.

Its 13:25 and the left side of my head is aching from having the phone surgically removed.

14:00 phone ringing. It's Rahul. He had to wait for the order to get past the provisioning department and then intercept it before it got to accounts so he could wipe the fast track charges (good boy). He's added a new pre-configured router to the order so I don't have to re-configure the existing one and that should be with me in two days, along with a new welcome pack that describes the service being provided, address range etc etc. He says he'll need to call me a couple of times over the next few days to keep me posted on the progres of things and he wants my mobile number. No problem as long as things are happening. Good job he's got all this under control now, I've run out of chocky biccy's and the next time explode today it could prove fatal.

August 21 2008 09:00

The DSL light is back on on the existing router.

Time to go to site.

12:30 mobiles ringing. Its Rahul. He tells me the DSL provisioning has been accepted by BT and things are going ahead. Looks like I might be back online Friday. He's a good boy. But theres one other problem.... Oh no, here we go, I can feel the fuse burning..... Turns out he's got quite interested in my case and has delved deeper into things. Seems thefailure to cancel the original defunct broadband was their fault. They had turned off and re-allocated the IP range to others but had failed to stop billing us (I thought we had just forgotten to cancel it). His current problem is how do I want the refund to be paid, as credit on the account or cash in the bank? This guy is great. It's going straight into my arse pocket bank account.

16:45 mobiles ringing again. Rahul, I like this guy a lot now (especially since he's arranged for me get some money back, roughly £600). The new router will be with me Friday AM. Cool. The money has been BACS'd to my beer fund and should show on my balance around Tuesday. The Ip range has been allocated and the broadband should be on by Friday lunchtime.

SHould I hire this guy? Do I want to expand into India???

August 22 2008 07:00

I notice the "Internet" light is on on the existing router. Strange that.... I wonder if the've given me the same IP range and auth codes.... Telnet to router. No such luck, the "internet" light is coming on and going off because the router has found PPP running on the DSL and is trying to auth but getting rejected.

08:00

I'm in the shower and there's someone banging on the door. They'll go away soon.

08:30

All dressed and off to the kitchen for a cup of tea. Theres a great big Parcel Force van in the yard with a very bored looking driver behind the wheel. Turns out it was him banging the door and he's been sitting there waiting for me to come out. Somehow Rahul has managed to arrange a very special delivery for this router. The driver has very specific instruction to deliver to me before 09:00 and to remain at my address until delivery is completed even if it takes all day. I think Rahul deserves a drink (how to buy a guy in India a beer?).More to the point, how did Rahul get Parcel Force to agree to that?

09:01

Router installed. Static IP addresses configured, DHCP done. WiFi codes updated and the house is back on line.. YAY!!

09:02 Mobiles ringing. Rahul has received notification of delivery of the new router and wants to talk me through re-configuring the PC's I need to go to "Start"... Rahul, stop mate. We don't run Windows here. OK, no problem, what flavour Linux am I running? No mate, its OK, all done. Thanks for the help. Where do you live? His answer... GLASGOW. Turns out he's the manager of tech support for the tech support team and I had been passed back from the call center in India to his department in Glasgow.

Does he want a new job? No he doesn't (damn) and he doesn't drink (double damn). So now I need to send a realy good letter of thanks to his boss.

 

 

I never did find out how he got Parcel Force to agree to stay at my address until delivery had been completed.

 



[#] Fri Aug 22 2008 11:12:43 EDT from fleeb @ Uncensored

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That's an amazing story, davew.

[#] Fri Aug 22 2008 11:22:16 EDT from davew @ Uncensored

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Yeh, only two things left to do now.

1. get IG to update my node info for my new IP address.

2. Update the Nagios so it knows the new IP range of the house.

 

I still want to know how Rahul got Parcel Force to agree to waiting all day if necessary.

 

At one point I was ready to move all of our internet stuff to a new ISP if they didn't sort it out. In fairness though mostof my agitation was self inflicted. Had I been a little more patient I would have discovered that they were attempting to give detail as to what went wrong before they provided solutions. Most other suppliers don't do that, they just try to make out it was your fault so I was jumping the gun a bit at times.

Now to send a PM to IG with my new IP address 8-)

 



[#] Fri Aug 22 2008 11:24:48 EDT from Freakdog @ Dog Pound BBS II

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Fri Aug 22 2008 11:12:43 AM EDT from fleeb@uncnsrd (Uncensored)


That's an amazing story, davew.
It's quite obvious that BT is not owned by Verizon or AT&T. :-p

[#] Fri Aug 22 2008 11:41:34 EDT from davew @ Uncensored

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Ah, now I'm thinking I wasn't quite clear with my story.

My ISP is Demon Internet.

BT is British Telecom.

BT has the monopoly on all phone lines in the UK except in the Hull area where all phone lines are owned by Kingston-on-Hull Telecom.

Due to the monopoly there is a law that says BT must sell its services to re-sellers at a discounted price and sell to the general public at a higher price to allow for a competative market place (or at least something like it).

BT are a real shower of idiots. It was BT that turned off the DSl. It is down to the way BT operate that prevented my existing stuff just being turned back on. Its down to BT that my first broadband couldn't be moved with the phone line (only half a mile down the road). Its BT's charges that mean a fast track provisioning normally costs £175.

Its because BT are so crap at customer service that the only thing I use them for is basic phone lines.

I'm certain that if my ISP were BT then I would have been forced to pay the £175 and would still be waiting for the necessary kit.

Oh and BT will NOT provide static IP addresses.



[#] Fri Aug 22 2008 13:30:16 EDT from fleeb @ Uncensored

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I've heard horrible things about BT in the past, too (through arabella, another member of the board that occasionally checks in).

[#] Fri Aug 22 2008 13:50:12 EDT from davew @ Uncensored

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Yeh, BT are the UK's evil empire.

 



[#] Fri Aug 22 2008 14:09:04 EDT from BOFHMike @ My Castle Wall

Subject: Bright House

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I'm SO* happy that I have Bright House (cable) Business service!  My router was blown by lightning while I was on vacation.  The local tech hand delivered a pre-configured router to my neighbour who then connected the unit in my basement. When I returned, I put the old unit in a box, left it on my door step, and the tech returned to pick it up while I was at the office.  NO fees, no hassles, a couple of well placed phone calls and life is golden.  Sure I pay extra every month for SLA's and business service, but for the service I get, it's worth it.

[#] Fri Aug 22 2008 14:27:39 EDT from davew @ Uncensored

Subject: Re: Bright House

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Thats great. Unfortunately cable is still rare in the UK so the only way to get a line for internet is via BT.

I pay for business quality services too, both for the broadband and for the BT phone line. Promlem is that BT seem to play the percentages game with their customers. 90% of their customers are in large towns and cities so they put 99% of their engineers there. Then of that 90% the most revenue is derived from 5% so they dedicate 60% of their available resources to them and everyone else gets to like it or lump it.

Also I reckon the BT engineers come from the same school as IG's utility companies engineers.

 



[#] Fri Aug 22 2008 16:46:18 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

Subject: Re: Bright House

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It's also good that you have Demon because the Big Blue X peers directly with Demon, so you've got a nice fast connection here. Do a traceroute ... probably not many hops at all.

[#] Wed Sep 03 2008 09:44:57 EDT from davew @ Uncensored

Subject: Re: Bright House

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Fri Aug 22 2008 16:46:18 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar@uncnsrd
Subject: Re: Bright House

It's also good that you have Demon because the Big Blue X peers directly with Demon, so you've got a nice fast connection here. Do a traceroute ... probably not many hops at all.

10 hops in total though they are all either demon or xand machines.

 mit.edu is 12

cisco.net isgives up at 30

 

Ping gives 120mS round trip for Uncensored, 180mS for almost everywhere else.



[#] Wed Sep 03 2008 12:14:29 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

Subject: Re: Bright House

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10 hops in the other direction too, handing off at the NYIIX at 60 Hudson Street in New York City, as I expected. You really ought to think about calling Demon and having your reverse DNS set to something other than "no-dns-yet.demon.co.uk".

[#] Wed Sep 03 2008 12:16:47 EDT from davew @ Uncensored

Subject: Re: Bright House

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Wed Sep 03 2008 12:14:29 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar@uncnsrd
Subject: Re: Bright House

10 hops in the other direction too, handing off at the NYIIX at 60 Hudson Street in New York City, as I expected. You really ought to think about calling Demon and having your reverse DNS set to something other than "no-dns-yet.demon.co.uk".

Yeh, I really should get it set to something in my domain. This system is just a test and dev box so I've never really bothered. I've got 32 other IP addresses some of which do have proper DNS stuff set up. I guess I should take the time to name them all ready for the "Great Day".

 



[#] Wed Nov 12 2008 01:30:18 EST from Peter Pulse @ Uncensored

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So my DSL is fucked up again. As usual Acecape is really nice about it but it is a bummer since I have work to do. They put a trouble ticket in with Verizon... So today I had to go to the post office anyway, by Grand Central.
So I took my laptop there and paid them $8 to use their internet.. and damn it is almost as bad as mine! So I got some of my work done but I couldn't finish it :( So this evening I went to my friends apartment, conveniently located in my building.. to use his internet. They just got a cable modem.
As it turns out, they are having problems too. Instead of being intermittently fast then dead, like mine.. it is steady but REALLY slow. 1500+ millisecond ping times. Painful! I tried to work for 2 hours and got nowhere.

But the somewhat happy ending is that my friend lent me his Thinkpad X40 with an EVDO card in it, which is what I'm using right now. It's a tiny bit laggy but MUCH more useable than any of my other options. So that is how I am going to work tomorrow. Too tired to try anymore tonight... Meanwhile, he also gave me a complete Thinkpad T41 with a gig of RAM and an optical drive.. just no hard disk or hard disk cover. I think I have a cover.
Anyway, the machine boots with the drive from my T30.. but the mouse doesn't work, and the screen does funky fuzzy things sometimes when you move the machine.
I am sad :( But I am going to take it apart and see if I can tighten up the connections... Theoretically it worked last time it was used... I have to admit, in the time I've had the T30 I've really come to appreciate it.. hardware wise it's so solid, the keyboard is much better than the 40 series.
But the T41 is a better processor, it has an extended battery, it's smaller, it has USB 2.0, it has more RAM. So I want to switch to it. Anyway, I am not going to give up on a free laptop so quickly.. I will see if I can fix it up...

[#] Wed Nov 12 2008 11:54:11 EST from Ford II @ Uncensored

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Again for all of the ubiqutous technology we take for granted... technology can still easily fail us.


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