Ok. If you don't see another post for a little while, our Road Runner cable Internet connection is almost dead.
In my March 8th post, I mentioned that I was noticing some page-load stalls. I could still get RocketBoom, but it kept freezing up on the downloads. Downloads of, well....downloads....also would get partially done, then stall out--regardless of website or type of download. Then after a couple of minutes, they would pick up again.
I called the Time Warner help desk and after convincing them I was a real-life sysadmin and did know what I was talking about, got them to run a set of tests on their end to the cable modem. The rep. reported the highly technical report analysis findings as being "all lights are green," but a little low, however not enough to be concerned about.
By the way, how can network quality lights be low but still green? Do they mean dim? I don't really approve of using a color gradient to describe network issues. I prefer technical details like packet-loss rates and Time to Live and Time data. But if colors are what Time Warner prefers, maybe they could switch to a Crayola Crayon Method: (Brick Red=bad, Mountain Meadow=good, Neon Carrot=we better monitor this.)
Anyway...I was asked to call back when I saw the problem "really bad". OK, fair enough--I'll get my daughter's box of crayons out and call back when my Internet network quality hits "Razzmatazz."
Today it is REALLY bad. Above, you can see the speed test I was running on their own site. I had a 11Kbps rate. I don't think that number is even listed on their little cool color chart. It is like, sub dial-up quality.
I did all the usual tests before calling. I checked Alvis's Linux system, Lavie's Laptop, and our XP system. All poor. Then I tried shutting down the ZoneAlarm firewall and even our anti-virus app (since I was still sitting safely behind our physical router/firewall). Same problem. Then I shut down the router and piped the signal directly from the cable modem to the XP pc. Same thing--really bad quality. Finally, I grabbed one of my Linux Live CD's and booted my XP box directly into Linux, bypassing the XP OS entirely. Same thing.
Soooo, by this point my l33t sysadmin skillz were telling me that I don't think it was my hardware or my software that had the issue. Back on the phone to TimeWarner. Got a tech pretty quickly and again went over my troubleshooting steps. Asked him to run a test down to their cable modem box. Guess what he saw....?
Yep. Packet loss. LOTS of packet loss. Way so much packet loss that they transferred me to a local office and I (hopefully) have a technician coming out tomorrow to 1) test their lines out here, 2) test their modem out here, or 3) replace the lines and/or the modem. We will see....and I will keep you posted!
Here are some "third-party" cable/dsl/network speed test links off their website:
I'm not griping. Really. The technicians got on the line both times very quickly with me and didn't waste my or their time when I explained all that I had done in troubleshooting before. They scheduled me for a next-day technician's visit (on a Sunday) and we have been very happy with our experience with Time Warner's Road Runner network service. I just hope it turns out well tomorrow. To put it in lingo I used to use in a prior life..."Time Warner now has an opportunity for customer service excellence achievement."
In other news.....Full Metal style,
I know that the TV cable signal has nothing to do with the digital Internet signal. I just am in a nervous state that the TV cable will go out tonight. It's the final episode (51) of Full Metal Alchemist on Cartoon Network tonight. It looks to be a real doozie.
So, if you missed it because your cable went out...here is a link to an episode summary of the show....spoilers are ahead if you click...just don't blame me.
See you soon,