Another Telkom ADSL modem bites the dust

by Maskil on April 13, 2008

Connectivity problems once again. Once again, it appears to be the Telkom-supplied ADSL modem. The original one was a “freebie” from Telkom (a reward for signing the 24-month ADSL contract) and was fried to crisp during the January Eskom power failures (euphemistically referred to as load shedding). Telkom replaced the original with the current Mega 105WR, which looks far more robust and reliable than the Marconi unit it replaced.

Anyway, the modem has been dying a slow death since last Wednesday, when it dropped my connection for no apparent reason. Now when I power it on, all Das Blinken Lichten light up and stay that way, and I can’t get a connection at all.

I’m now reliant on a 115.2 Kbps connection through my trusty Nokia. Totally painful compared to my usually adequate 384Mbps ADSL connection, but something. It will have to do for now; I have ordered a Billion 7300GX 3G/ADSL2+ Router and a Fastlink E800 card, but it will be a week or more before they arrive. This will give me redundant 3G/ADSL connectivity.

I simply can’t afford another hiatus as with the January power failures; you can see the negative impact on my visitor/page numbers, which are only now getting back to pre-December/January levels.

In my mind there is now a huge question mark over the equipment supplied by Telkom as “customer premises equipment” to residential ADSL customers. Two failures in three months?

(The Fastlink E800 uses an Express or PC Card slot (with an adapter). I would have much preferred the USB equivalent, but that’s not supported by the 7300GX. If I’d thought it through clearly, I would have ordered the Fastlink E220 (or another USB modem) and waited for the 7402GX, which does support USB. Hindsight is perfect sight, I guess.)

Latest update: I’m feeling very technically challenged today. Before I could even post this item, I lost my 3G Internet connection. I’ve spent the better part of the last seven hours trying to restore it, and finally succeeded in doing so after deleting and recreating my modem and network settings umpteen times. I still have no idea why I lost it, or what exactly I did that brought it back.  The only plus is that my connection now runs at 460.8 Kbps.

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