Once Upon A Time . . .

Once upon a time, Somebody’s broadband connection began deteriorating.

Somebody found that it worked erratically, occasionally, it was OK, occasionally, it was slow, occasionally, it kept losing the connection, and he found himself disconnecting and reconnecting pretty often, sometimes ten times or more in a day.

Somebody didn’t like this, but thought it was due to the highly variable nature of a broadband connection.

Then it got pretty hot, and Somebody found out the connection pretty much didn’t work at all. To make a not-too-long story short, it dawned on him that maybe it wasn’t the connection that was the problem. Maybe the four-year-old cable modem was the problem. It did feel pretty hot to the touch, and it did seem to work better for a while when unplugged and allowed to cool down.

Then Somebody started looking around for a new cable modem and found out that others had had similar difficulties, too. Somebody got bold, and bought a new cable modem without further ado.

Then the real problems started.

The modem operated in stealth mode. The blinking lights on the modem seemed to indicate that the modem hadn’t completed its self-diagnostics correctly. This didn’t come as a terrible shock, but to Somebody’s bewilderment, the modem would show lots of packets being send and received, but no actual results.

Things didn’t get exciting until Windows deactivated itself and told Somebody he had three days to activate or less, which is not the best message to give Anybody with a nonfunctional cable modem.

Somebody got the old hottie back in action and reactivated, then thought a bit about the day’s events.

Somebody was perhaps a bit less perturbed than the average bear about the day’s events because in his research, he had read that at least some cable companies required the MAC address of the new cable modem so they could reconfigure on their end. Even the Windows deactivation didn’t disturb him all too much since he knew that some MAC addresses were a part of the activation test.

Unfortunately, Somebody hadn’t found anything in the Time Warner or Roadrunner websites which said that, or said what to do when one tried to activate a new modem.

It was time to call the cable company. Again, telescoping the action, Somebody got someone who basically took down the information and told him to call back after three business days.

Somebody had less than complete confidence that whatever had to be done would be done, especially when the transcriber indicated this was going on a sheet of paper and asked him to spell “Motorola.” Somebody expected the worst when he called after three business days.

There’s one good thing about anticipating the worst: you’re never disappointed, and sometimes you’re pleasantly surprised. To Somebody’s pleasure, this was one of those times. He got through to tech support and:

  • they actually had the necessary information in the computer
  • the cable guy hit a few buttons over there
  • the cable guy told him seconds later told me that the new modem would work
  • He turned on the modem and saw that none of the lights were blinking anymore and best of all
  • everything worked! And no, Windows didn’t deactivate again!

    Was there a difference? No more than the difference between night and day. Somebody found that there was no problem with the cable connection at all. 🙂

    And Somebody lived happily . . . for at least a few more years.

    The Moral

    You might be Somebody someday, and if you are, you might save yourself some grief and frustration by considering that not only the electronics inside the computer can overheat and crash.


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