Books, culture, fishing, and other games

October 09, 2003

Is my face red!

After all that time talking to BellSouth tech support it now appears my IP problems were due to some combination of my Linksys router and cabling. The router was old, so that's not hard to believe, but the fact that it was working fine up until BellSouth's outage of 10 days ago made it seem unlikely that it was the problem. And, in my defense, powering it off and on, resetting it, and everything else I tried didn't affect the interval in which a new IP address was assigned, so it seemed darned unlikely to be involved.

Well, something was. I swapped back to the new Linksys that includes wireless and monitored the IP address and saw no changes. It's been about 18 hours now, and the interval was about 110 minutes, so I've run through more than nine of the old time cycles without an IP reassignment. I swapped the cable at the same time as the router, and there's a possibility of yet another odd coincidence, but I put long odds on that router being the problem now.

Putting in the new router, of course, introduced yet another problem. EVE wouldn't stay connected to the server (though Star Wars Galaxies was just fine). That was one of two things too. It was either the MTU setting, which I adjusted downwards a bit, or the firmware upgrade I did in desperation. Somewhere in there I fixed it.

I should be a bit more anal(ytical) and methodical in my troubleshooting, and normally I am, but I was so darned frustrated and tired, after postponing seriously tackling the problem until the big project was finished, that I just did a bit of "throw everything but the kitchen sink (short of dollars!) at it."

So, one down. Now to figure out how to fix comments on this blog.

This server runs on one of my newer systems and I'd sort of like to reclaim that box for other things (gaming!), at the same time I managed to cobble together another working system out of parts from two others that died a few months back, so I decided the route to take was a complete server rebuild on the new (old) box. It's a 700mhz Athlon, so it's not too wimpy for blog server status (my DSL line will be the limit, not the server hardware, I think), and it has an older video card, which matters little on a server. The plan is to build the OS in a mostly secure fashion, get my needed internal services up, then install Movable-Type and set up a test blog to troubleshoot comments. Once I figure out what's wrong there, I can port my blogs from the current server to the new one easily and swap IP addresses.

The trouble will be in testing. What I need for that is a second phone line. What I don't want to pay for is a second phone line. My alternative, and I'm trying to convince myself that business justifies it, is a wireless modem and a contract for Verizon's new wireless service. Right now, for $80 per month, I can access in internet from nearly anywhere in the US that I can use a Verizon cell phone at pretty respectable speeds. And they give me $100 in rebates towards purchase of the wireless card, and one month free if I commit to 2 years. My friend and erstwhile boss, Ross, has been using the plan for a few months and loves it. It would let me give up my Earthlink dial-up account (my current backup and travel ISP), which costs me $25 per month, so the net would only be $55 monthly for better speed, more mobility and no hotel phone charges for email, surfing and gaming! Tempting.

No, honest, I'm not trying to convince you, I'm trying to convince me. It's almost working. If I can talk them into giving me a package deal with a cell phone, maybe I could shave the price even further. Time to do some research and a spreadsheet,

Meanwhile, back to building this new server. This time I set up my own email service too. No sense being tied to an external ISP for functionality I can provide myself.

Posted by dan at October 9, 2003 02:25 PM | TrackBack
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