05 January 2006

Broadband at last

The new computer

Here's something a lot of visitors to my websites may find hard to believe: for the past five-plus years, virtually all my home computing has been done via a 28.8k dial-up connection. (With occasional forays to Starbucks or Panera Bread to use the high-speed wireless networks there.)

Shortly after I started The Spurgeon Archive in 1995, I upgraded to a 56K modem, and it seemed really fast at the time. When we moved into the new hovel at the end of 1999, I intended to upgrade to DSL, but after moving in, I discovered we were just outside the area where DSL is offered.

Worse, I soon discovered that the phone line here is so bad, I couldn't connect any faster than 28.8, and I lost the connection every half hour or so.

No problem, the phone company assured me. The whole city will be wired for DSL within six months.

Yeah, right. Five years and three laptops later, I still can't connect any faster than 28.8, and I finally got fed up.

So two days after Christmas, I went to Best Buy and purchased a new HP desktop computer. I also bought a wireless router and ordered cable broadband service from Earthlink.

I spent the week after Christmas installing software and setting up the computer. (See part 1 of this post for an explanation of why that's no small task. That partly explains the lack of blog activity last week.)

Today the cable guy came and hooked up my broadband. After he left, I spent the afternoon setting up the wireless router and home network (something I was totally inexperienced at). But it's all working flawlessly now.

Wow.

Phil's signature

37 comments:

Phillip M. Way said...

Yep - you don't think it is a big deal until you have it, and then the difference is amazing! We were 26.5K for years through our phone lines until we finally went to DSL a few months ago. I cannot imagine blogging without it.

You doing it on poor dial up with your graphics and all is actually mind numbing.....

So can we expect more from the Pyro now that he is HIGH SPEED? Talk about burning up the blogosphere!!

Gavin said...

Cool!. I upgraded to ADSL in April last year after being on 33.3k since 1996. Great for all those 20Mb+ gracelife sermons.

Tim Challies said...

Wow. Welcome to the 21st century!

Carla said...

Okay Phil, I am officially, insanely jealous. We had high speed cable until 4 years ago when we moved to the country.

Open spaces, fresh air, privacy - all that good country livin' stuff. And dialup access only... at a whopping 31.2 kbps.

"Don't worry, that area is scheduled to be set up for high speed access in 3 months!" The cable lady said. Four years later, I'm still plugging away at 31.2 clicks.

Oh well... it must be a test in patience? At any rate, I'm very happy for you, and your broadbandedness. May you whip through those things in record time, which last week took what now seems like, forever.

If you're wondering where that frustrated holler came from that sounded like "oh MAN I hate dialup!" that came from Ontario. It's a weekly thing, at least.

SDG...

art said...

should have went with Apple...those iMac G5s are a thing of beauty.

Jeremy Weaver said...

Ddi you have a sense of the Holy Spirit's guidance as you connetcted the router?
Did He nudge you to stick this wire there, and this other one another place?

Ransom said...

Oh great. Next thing you'll be buying a NKJV Bible. Worldling!

Jabbok said...

Dr. Adrian Rogers was right. The only thing we've added to technology in the last 20 years is speed and noise. But ain't it nice!

centuri0n said...

Evenyone else is an amateur. My fondest memories of Broadband/Internet service are with Earthlink, which in my experience is the most reliable service you can find. You have just joined forces with the top-shelf internet provider on the planet.

Bask in your new-found freedom. Stream video from your favorite ministries. Stream audio via iTunes radio. Watch movie trailers.

It's like having the whole world in your own home.

Jim Crigler said...

You already know this, but I'll remind you (and perhaps others) anyhow. Make sure your network is secure. Read and understand and apply the tips from this article. My son bought an iMac a few months ago, and he gets wireless access from a neighbor's house (or perhaps a nearby restaurant).

LeeC said...

You'vetaken your first step into a much faster world.
You can never go back now!

LeeC said...

Carla,
Centuri0ns right about Earthlink in my opinion, but have you considered satelite internet?

It is just fine for everything but online gaming.

Just a thought.

CuriousSaint said...

@Jim Crigler

Does your son know that leeching web services from someone else is illegal? Just a heads up in case you didn't know (in all seriousness).

@Phil

I think I would avoid moving to the country or anywhere if it meant that I wouldn't have highspeed service. :D

Sharon said...

I hooked up with EarthLink via Time Warner two years ago, and have found the service very reliable. You will not be disappointed!

Juice said...

What technology does broadband earthlink use if it isn't cable, DSL, or satellite?

Juice said...

Also doesn't Starbucks charge something like $30 a month to use their wireless or did they finally go for free?

Reformed Centurion said...

You must be a very patient person.

Micah said...

So when you were going to start talking about ceassationism, I thought you meant spiritual gifts, not old technology.

Daniel said...

Phil, I would augment the article that Jim linked to only in this way, on point #7 "Position the Router or Access Point Safely" - the best place to position the wireless lan (router) if you can physically pull it off, is in your cellar (if you have one).

The signal is still quite strong in the house (er, and above it for that matter), but much weaker outside your house since the signal is hindered somewhat by your house's foundation.

DJP said...

I expect a LOT more blogging, now, Mister!

BlackCalvinist said...

Yep. should've gotten a Mac. You'd have been set up and on the web and had everything up and running in much less time.... and the Mac's OS is much more secure than WinXP even before the router's firewall.

But it's cool.

I like DSL, though - even though the connection itself is unsecured (Verizon gives you a combo router/broadband modem), you still need a Verizon DSL account to log in and connect.

It's interesting how many people leave their networks unsecured.

Searaptor said...

I guess I should be happy with my 600kbps. We are actually going to go to insight which would be cheaper and about 6-8 times faster. How could you survive on dial-up?

Jeremy Weaver said...

Hey! Another Centurion! Except this one's reformed!
:-)

JohnTheReformedBaptist said...

Yesterday, I announced to all that I had been scammed by Steve Camp. Since then, Steve has taken care of the situation in a very gracious, humble manner. I apologize to Steve publicly for sharing what he believes is a private matter in such a forum. Sir Phil, please forgive me for using your comment area for this purpose.

Terry Lange said...

Once you get wireless and broadband, you will hate dialup if you are ever forced to use it again.

Welcome to the future!

Impacted Wisdom Truth said...

I hope your experience with Earthlink is better than mine was. When I had dial-up, they were OK for a while then seemed to go to pot right about the time they acquired Mindspring. I got fed up with them and dropped them like a bad habit.

DslExtreme is my provider now, and they are great. Their charge for new customers for DSL is $14.95 a month for the first year.

marc said...

I actually blog through my 2 Tin Cans and a String connection. It never drops but loading my blog takes about 4 days.

Via Crusis said...

The downside is you will smoke your virtual cigars faster.

candleman said...

The really cool part was sending files wirelessly from the laptop to the networked printer, from downstairs, while my wife was upstairs on the desktop and wondered how the printer started up...

Welcome out of the age of rotary phones and having to walk to your TV to change a channel;)

{{{Candleman}}}

centuri0n said...

doxo:

Don't make me clown you.

oh wait: Phil's not haloscan. Shoot.

centuri0n said...

For Marc @ purgatorio:

I actually blog by dictating my entries to a bird which types the message onto stone tablets and then flies them to BLOGGER HQ in L.A. Then Wilma Flintstone removes the stone tablet that is in front of a stone-age TV camera which broadcasts my blog with the new tablet. It takes about a month, but watching the process is worth it, and Wilma's giggle keeps me enchanted when I find myself getting impatient.

TOP THAT.

Libbie said...

Isn't testosterone an amazing thing? Now we have men challenging each other about how stone age they can be..

How deliciously unreconstructed of you :)

Steve Sensenig said...

cent wrote: TOP THAT.

Why do I feel like I just stumbled into a Monty Python skit? LOL

Let's see...I compose my blog in heiroglyphics (sp?) on the wall of a cave, then fill in the cave with mud and stones and wait for a team of archaologists (sp again?) to discover the cave, dig down into it, translate the pictures into text, and then publish doctoral dissertations containing the findings in a trade journal.

Eventually, the journal gets picked up by Google, someone finds the article and blogs about it, thus finally making my thoughts accessible to the blogging community.

I dunno....maybe yours was better, cent! ;)

steve :)

Student of History said...

Welcome to the superhighway, Phil!

:+) Kate

TulipGirl said...

Wooohoo! You'll never go back. . .

That was our biggest treat when we returned to the States--high speed internet access. In Ukraine, we usually had 28.8--on good days, 36.6--on bad days. . . well. . . it was non-existant.

Kyiv does have high speed internet--but like you, we found ourselves just outside the limited area where it was offered.

Jim said...

Cent,

I think Steve may have you beat on this one. If not in archeology, then in doctoral dissertations. :)

Phil,

You will need to guard your time most judiciously now; much more content to kill time with...

Jacob Hantla said...

Wow. Of all the people in the world, I would have pegged you as one of the last to have sat back in the stoneage and watched the www whiz by you at about the same speed as paint dries and snails crawl. Congrats, and it's about time.