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No Bed Of Roses

The basics are all working, but little problems keep popping up with the new system. I’ve found a few cables that no longer work after being unplugged from the old router and plugged into the new one, Fortunately I had working spares.

The most serious problem is with e-mail. I can receive e-mail without a glitch, but I am being rejected when I attempt to send an e-mail. I need to contact the new guys and find out if their spam filter may be unhappy with my e-mail host. I have to wait to talk with a person by phone, because they haven’t given me my account name and initial password yet, so I can’t access their on-line system.

These things scarcely affect the joy I felt when I worked my way through the Phone Company’s menu system to cancel the service. All of a sudden they discovered that it was possible to lower my bill, a bill I’ve been paying since I got a phone from them in 1991.

The news seems to be about the fact that the airliner still hasn’t been located, while the death toll increases in the Washington State mudslide.

7 comments

1 Dizzy { 03.28.14 at 9:45 pm }

I find it totally amazing this sudden finding out that you don’t have to pay as much as you have for the long term, only when it comes time to cancel your service. It’s amazing how often that comes up. But as long as you are paying then hey, get everything they can.

I ran into this sort of thing some time back with the internet service from my ISP at the time. Seems I updated the program in one of their routers I was renting at their suggestion for better security. Suddenly I had no internet at all. Yet I could plug one computer straight into the modem and it was there. So when I called tech support, it seems they could rent me a new modem/router as a unit but couldn’t help me with my problem of why it no longer worked as it had before the bios update. Yeah, right.

I got sort of heated up about it and told them flat out, it worked before your recommended update and now it doesn’t. It’s plain where the issue is. Either put me in touch with who can tell me how to fix this or you won’t have another month’s service from me as I will go with a different provider.

Suddenly there might be another solution besides renting a new router setup. I got an actual technician on the other end. What he said was that the updates weren’t the same as the shipped modem and the settings were changed internally as part of the update. So they were willing to hold that info in an attempt to sell new equipment.

That’s very much gouging the customer and it seemed very much purposely done.

2 Bryan { 03.28.14 at 10:42 pm }

That sort of thing is why I bought my own router and modem. I don’t have to deal with them, I can deal with the manufacturers of the equipment. [My router's firmware got updated as soon as I got it up and running. If there were any problems, Belkin was going to eat them because I was still in the refund stage with the store I bought it from, so Belkin had an incentive to do it right.]

That really does sound like consumer fraud to me. Changing is annoying, but sometimes it is the only way to stop the aggravation.

3 Badtux { 03.30.14 at 7:58 pm }

Most cable Internet services filter outgoing port 25, so if your former email client relied on port 25 to its upstream email service, that pretty much explains that. The answer is an email client that uses 465 or 537 to do SSL-encrypted connections, as you probably found.

My deal with the Internet providers is that the hardware they provide is often *not* the same as what you can buy in the store. It’s got customized stuff in it for that particular provider (hey, when you’re Comcast and have 60 million customers, you can do that kind of thing), and the generic updates off the manufacturer’s web site will brick it faster’n you can say “monopoly power”. That is why nothing I own was provided by Comcast. I picked a cable modem off their provider list that did the latest DOCSIS standard, and went with it. So far so good… the only time it’s been a problem was when the idiot cable company disconnected *my* cable when they were supposed to disconnect the *neighbor’s* cable. Oops!

4 Bryan { 03.30.14 at 11:15 pm }

The e-mail host does support SSL on 465 and I was using it. It was something in the e-mail client that wasn’t sending information that the server wanted to see, so they were rejecting the connection. Whatever it was, Thunderbird takes care of it.

I know they rent you refurbished equipment to clients down here, and a cable modem is simple and straight forward, so there was no point in renting a used modem for $7/month. The account sign-in is the MAC and serial number of the modem. The router worked before I ran the set-up CD. I’ve never had fewer problems with the hardware than this – everything just worked out of the box.

5 Badtux { 03.31.14 at 3:19 am }

Note that SSL on port 465 is now officially a “legacy” protocol and many mail servers will cease supporting it within the next few years (actually, exim4 already dropped port 465 support). You’re now supposed to negotiate a SSL connection via ESMTP on port 537 via STARTTLS. This has been the case since RFC 3207 in 2002 and was reiterated in RFC 5321 in 2008, but everything moves at the speed of turtles when it comes to ISP’s…

My own mail servers that I maintain (three of’em now, sigh) use port 537 and ESMTP/STARTTLS.

6 Kryten42 { 03.31.14 at 7:36 am }

You beat me to it Badtux! ;) LOL

yeah… what he said! ;)

Glad you are up-n-running m8! About time you got a win, and saved some money to boot! :D

7 Bryan { 03.31.14 at 11:32 pm }

I’m still waiting for people to catch up with IPv6. I can get a fixed IP address if I switch, but too many people and too much equipment still can’t handle it.

I’m sure they’ll upgrade ‘real soon now’, but I’m not holding my breath. I’ve also heard about 4G cellphones, but it will be a while before they get it around here.