Westell: modem from hell

February 15, 2010 - Leave a Response

Since last Wednesday, my Westell moden from AT&T has required two restarts and four complete resets.

Just in case you don’t speak modem, here’s what that means: call AT&T tech “support” and you’ll hear the recording tell you to try unplugging your modem and plugging it back in. That’s a restart. I don’t know what it does, but it does result in the modem’s return to functionality.

A reset is a bit more invasive. Thats’ where you use a pencil to press the reset button the back of the WestHell modem. It’s the nuclear option because all the settings in the modem are returned to factory spec. (Makes me wonder if the working conditions there are any better than the sweat shops Wal-Mart uses.)

Once reset, I have to plug the modem directly into my computer and return it to bridge mode wherein it simply passes the net to my Apple Airport Extreme router which serves up the PPP.

It’s all so geeky and I could have lived a long, happy life not knowing any of it. But, AT&T has afforded me the necessary task of learning how to make their modem do what it’s supposed to do.

Six failures within less than a week that trace directly to the modem’s failure to operate. But, call AT&T and tell them and they’ll tell you the first have to send a technician out to look it over. Which leads to a decision: what day to I want to take a half-day off from work.

For the record, I’m still sitting on two unresolved trouble tickets. Never got a call. Never saw a tech. Never got any kind of follow up from big blue.

AT&T DSL is so fail.

I feel your pain, my digital brother

February 12, 2010 - Leave a Response

Found this site today, loaded with complaints about AT&T. This one was my fave:

“ATT UVERSE is the most incompetent service provider that I have ever encountered.”

Clearly, this boy hasn’t had any dealings with big blue’s DSL posse. Looks like lack of effective problem resolution is systemic across all their data services. You gotta hand it to AT&T for consistency.

I can’t imagine why anyone with 10 watts of common sense would risk bundling phone-tv-internet in one package–especially from AT&T. (I’ve heard similar horror stories from those intrepid souls who’ve set sail with COMCAST.)

Want more? Here’s a story eerily similar to my own.

Trouble ticket WEXYT401***

February 9, 2010 - Leave a Response

2010 Trouble Ticket Count: 3

I’ve reached a new level with AT&T’s alleged customer service protocol. I call in. They run me through the same do-nothing line tests. A trouble ticket is generated with a promised call from the “broadband support team.” (I thought that’s who I called…) And then, nothing. No call. No follow up.

I’ve omitted the last three numbers of the trouble ticket (as will be my practice moving forward), but this one was issued on February 6th. There’s yet to be any hint of follow up. Not even that call (from a number you can’t return dial in San Francisco) making sure I’m completely satisfied–which always seems to come in the middle of the day when I’m working to earn money to pay the bill for the service I only get intermittently.

Damn. AT&T DSL is sooo FAIL.

Total trouble tickets since Jan/08: 20

The last DSL straw

February 8, 2010 - Leave a Response

I could be sleeping right now, dreaming of data streaming freely over my alleged 1.5 meg DSL, which AT&T freely admits is more of a goal than a true deliverable. Instead, I’m here creating this monument to corporate incompetence.

It would be one thing if they were the least bit apologetic. Other than the scripted “I’m sorry for your trouble” from people who could give a flip whether or not the DSL works on the other side of the planet from the cubicle they’re speaking from, I get squat from AT&T.

When I popped on to check email before bed and saw those spinning balls on Mac mail, I reached the end of reason (see previous post) and had to do something. I’m not even going to bother calling this one in tonight.

For the record, I did a modem reset and still have no service.

If it weren’t for my G3 Modem Card, I’d be adrift on a technological desert isle.

Thanks, AT&T. Your service is fail.

There is a point beyond reason where there is only action

February 8, 2010 - Leave a Response

20 trouble tickets in 12 months and still my AT&T DSL doesn’t work consistently. There was a time when it would fail every few weeks. Now, it scarcely makes it a day without failing. Of course, each failure leads to another wasted half day.

Waiting for the tech. Another tech. Another excuse. Blame the modem. Blame the router. Blame something beyond his control. It’s the lines. It’s the wiring. It’s the old pairs. It’s a problem at the CO.

It’s anything but a solution. What choice do I have?

Buy DSL from someone else? How do you think it gets here? Same wires. Same techs. Just another layer of blame game.

Get a cable modem? Sure and be metered and see bandwidth choked down when I pass what The Man says is fair use. Nope.

So, here we are. A blame game turned inside out. My rant is your entertainment. Let’s keep score. It’s February 8th and I’m on trouble ticket #3 for 2010.

For the record, I have no illusion this will do any good where my connection is concerned. In fact, I’m having to post this using a wireless card because…. yep, the DSL is down again–third time today.

My experience, my opinion: AT&T DSL IS FAIL.

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