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Josh-D. S. Davis

Xaminmo / Omnimax / Max Omni / Mad Scientist / Midnight Shadow / Radiation Master

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Fury of poor service
Josh 201604 KWP
So, who else is in CenturyTel turf and has woe stories?

For those not in the know, in the Lake Cities, CenturyTel has a no-compete agreement with the local governments. This is how they operate. They own the copper and the city won't lease out wire space to other LECs.

So, if I want to run an internet host, my choices are:
* Satellite - 1/5 second lag minimum
* Charter - Dynamic IP only
* CenturyTel - Not great offerings, but not horrible
* T-xx service - overpriced for the capacity, and the last mile is still by CTel.

So, about 4 times a year I have an outage of a few hours. It could be worse, but it could be better.

I got a flier the other day and called about it. Basically, I'd been forced to pay $20/mo for a static IP for the last year, when it was supposed to be free. They cut the charge and gave me a $33 rebate.

That night, I lose my static IP. My firewall rules are taylored for static IP, so I lose connectivity. It takes 2 calls and about 45 minutes to get this sorted out.

The next day, I choose to apply the difference towards faster connectivity. I'm still capped at 512mbit up, but I'm moving from 1.5 down (business only) to 6mbit down. My order was to be serviced in 3 days, aka, today.

At 1:45pm today, my line drops. This is expected because they needed to replace my line card. I figured the outage would be a few mins. At 2pm I call and get Matt, one of the guys whose voice is in use on the daytime VRU even. He checks things, said my DSL modem is OK for this upgrade, and to call back after 5pm if not back online by then.

So, at 5:45pm, I call and wait on hold a bit. Jason checks, and the line isn't even mapped for DSL anymore. There's no tracking number assigned either. His supervisor gets a tracking number assigned, and says it will be wednesday before my service is restored.

Business line, $112/mo, 5 day outage. Unacceptable.

"That's why my supervisor offerred 1 month credit."

Still not ok.

Over to Steve in cust service. He works with his supervisor, Carrie (sp). Dispatch is closed. Repair can't help because it's a problem with provisioning. Carrie promises to call dispatch first thing Monday and to keep me advised via my cell.

I'm fuming.

I have bulk transfers to send and work to complete this weekend because I'll be out of town next week and much of the following weekend. These customers need service now. It doesn't help that this loaner laptop's network stack dies after pushing 2-8GB, requiring a reboot before even opening new programs.

So, I'm on my cell card. I'm going to go to my office later and use their cable modem. I hope I don't need anything from my home server.

I'm trying to figure out what to do about this. I'm not ready to move out of CTel turf. Satellite internet is expensive and laggy. If I go cable, I lose the ability to connect to my home server reliably, and I'll need to offload my web hosting to probably dreamhost.

I think I need to write to my mayor and to ctel execs too.

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ive always wondered what i'd do if i got some land out in the boonies and i worked from home. i alawys figured satellite was the only reasonable option, but i'm fairly ignorant about the options

Pretty much, Sattelite, or pay to backhaul wire to your acreage. :)

I've got CenturyTel for my landline phone only. My internet is something else, provided by my school. Thank goodness. Although it's become kinda crappy with disconnecting a lot. It sounds like you don't have a lot of choices in your area?

If it's coming over phone lines, it's CenturyTel. Even if I were to arrange something from some other company, in reality, it would still be CTel. Lots of line drops lately for us too, but it usually reconnects fairly quickly.

I've been exploring a move to DreamHost. It's very nice, but I have many users and virtual hosts. It's difficult to move and no simple way for me to back it all up.

It turns out that Charter offers static IP through it's business program. I've asked them to contact me.

Verizon isn't out here (non-compete with CTel), so I can't get FIOS.

There are no wireless ISPs in Lake Dallas.

I can use cellular. It's 40KB/sec down and 8KB/sec up. Not bad, but can't run my home network on it.

Satellite is prone to interruption, it's laggy, and it's expensive.


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