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DominicX's avatar

What should I do about my internet problem?

Asked by DominicX (28583 points ) September 26th, 2010

I’m living in a house with 4 housemates and we’re having a problem with our internet connection. It just stops randomly, all the time, all day long. It’s like someone unhooks the connection for 30 seconds and then puts it back. Right now it stopped in the middle of downloading a song off iTunes and I had to have almost a minute-long pause in the middle of downloading. Loading videos on YouTube is a nightmare.

I know it’s not a computer problem because everyone is having the same problem. What the hell are we supposed to do about this? We just got it installed brand new a couple weeks ago…

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14 Answers

asmonet's avatar

I had this problem for months before I finally just committed a day to calling tech support. Turns out they had us listed all wrong and had our ‘range’ set incorrectly in their system, it caused us to be disconnected every few hours automatically. It took me hours on the phone, just take a day with tech support and BE VERY FUCKING NICE NO MATTER HOW ANNOYING OR PISSY THEY ARE.

jrpowell's avatar

Is your router built into your modem? If it isn’t it could be a bad router and I would plug one computer directly into the modem and see if you can reproduce the problem on that computer. If you can’t I would spend the 30 bucks on a new router.

And are any of your roommates using Bittorrent or other P2P programs? A badly configured Bittorrent client can bring a network to its knees.

Axemusica's avatar

I agree with @johnpowell try his troubleshoot before calling the tech. Routers are sometimes quite unreliable. It might be as simple as resetting the router, but plug directly into the modem and see if the problem can be recreated as @johnpowell mentioned. If the problem is recreated, then I would contact your ISP.

lillycoyote's avatar

What kind of internet connection do you have? What brings the initial signal into the house? Cable, FIOS, satellite, wireless broadband card, etc.? It seems like that would make a big difference in how you go about correcting the problem. Who is your internet provider?

DominicX's avatar

@johnpowell @Axemusica @lillycoyote

Yes, the router is built into the modem. The cable line hooks into the router/modem and that also hooks into the TV. It’s provided by AT&T.

I have Bittorent, but I haven’t used it in a while…

jrpowell's avatar

If you can guarantee all your roommates are not using bittorrent at the time and can reproduce the problem it is unfortunately time to have AT&T come out. Either to replace the modem or fix the line. Welcome to hell.

lillycoyote's avatar

—@johnpowell You and I don’t know each other very well but by this time I should have at least given you props on your bottomlineness. If I have failed to to that in the past I am correcting it now, even if it is only on a relatively minor cable/internet issue.

You said:

”...unfortunately time to have AT&T come out. Either to replace the modem or fix the line. Welcome to hell.

I like the answer but I mostly like the welcome to hell part.

jlm11f's avatar

You can try changing the broadcast channel on the router. That has worked well for me in the past.

downtide's avatar

I had a problem like this a couple of years ago and it wasn’t fixed until British telecom came out and repaired some wires unter the street, which were broken. It took maybe a year to get it sorted.

rooeytoo's avatar

We don’t have AT &T, we have Telstra Bigpond but judging from the comments above, talking to them must be a similar experience.

We just spent days on the phone with a problem similar to what @DominicX is describing. Finally they sent out Dave a line tech guy who was at our place about 6 times. Finally he gave us a new modem (but don’t tell anyone he said, so don’t tell anyone, okay!) and replaced some line buried up street a way and now it is glorious. According to speedcheck.net we are getting about 4.5kps which is fantastic for us and we are so happy.

As was said, prepare yourself for the annoyance and just keep calling, eventually they will get sick of you and actually do something to help. Well hopefully they will.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Do you have a cordless phone in the house?
My connection kept dropping until I realized my Wifi and my cordless phones were on the same frequency, Ch 11. It took me about a month to find the relationship between someone else in another room using the cordless phone and my connection dropping.
I flipped the cordless phone channel switch and was good to go.

rooeytoo's avatar

@worriedguy – yep we went through that exercise as well. The invisible electric dog fence can also cause problems. In our case though, it was bad lines up the street and perhaps the modem itself, the tech wasn’t sure but when it started to work and kept it up, he said don’t change anything!

lillycoyote's avatar

So… does the signal drop when you only have one computer connected directly to the cable modem or does the signal only drop on the computers that are accessing WiFi from the router?

jerv's avatar

I have that issue all the time since I have a roommate that likes to torrent stuff. BitTorrent clobbers nine flavors of dog piss out of our DSL, practically knocking my wife and I off despite having the bandwidth to spare. It’s all the pinging that does it.

Your issue may be different, but that is my first suspicion; multiple users, and/or at least one person doing the BT thing.

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