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Do you expect your internet connection to work when you want to use it?
Do you depend on this connectivity to run your business? Unfortunately,
consists of millions of smaller domestic, academic, business, and
government networks, which are out of our control. It’s amazing that
everything seems to stay ‘up’ most of the time! This month we explore
problems which can impact your connection to the internet.
If you use an ADSL-based broadband connection, you are transmitting data
over the traditional telephone lines and that’s where the problems can
start. Assuming everything is good with your computer, there will be
some cabling (or a wireless connection) to an ADSL modem, which plugs
directly into your phone line. Failures can occur anywhere along that
connection chain, with the cables, the modem itself, or even from
interference cause by devices on the same line (such as phones and fax
machines). Make sure that any other devices use ADSL Line Filters, if
required. If you are experiencing a problem, try restarting your
broadband modem, which can be achieved by pulling out the power cord if
it doesn’t have a power switch. If you have other dependant devices
(such as a separate wireless access point, switch/hub or server) they
may also need to be restarted in a particular order.
Next in line is your internet service provider, as they provide the
gateway for you to join the other internet networks.
Unfortunately, their gateway may be carried over another
telecommunication company’s lines, so a perceived problem with your ISP
may actually be a problem at the telephone exchange, out of their
control. Usually a call to your ISP and some troubleshooting procedures
will identify if this is the case. These procedures will involve
determining how widespread the problem is (e.g. is it just one, several
or all websites that give you a “page cannot be displayed” error or
similar? Is it impacting email too? Is it working on any of your
computers?), checking cables and ‘rebooting’ things.
If email communication or website presence is critical to your business,
you may want to look at a high quality ‘business grade’ internet
connection. This may be more expensive than your current standard
internet plan, but it may include options like backup satellite
connections, guaranteed availability rates (e.g. 99.9%) or even rebates
for outages within your ISP’s control.
If you are hit by an unexpected outage, you may have to revert to
traditional business practices, like going into the bank branch, finding
a stamp and an envelope or calling people on the phone.
Talk to your local Computer Troubleshooter about how you can improve the
quality of your internet connection – they may also have some self-help
tips (like what to reboot) that may get you back up and running again