How can I get an ISDN line?

Ethernet cable

Episode 1053

David from Glendora, CA

David is a voice over artist who uses an ISDN line to do his job. But when he asked for one at the phone company, they looked at him like he was crazy. Leo says that if he lives in a smaller town, they may not offer it or may just be surprised he's asking to get one. It's a speciality line and the phone company simply doesn't want to do it because of broadband. It's not required by the FCC to offer it, and because it requires a separate switch, they just don't want to do it.

Can I bond two DSL lines into one and make it faster?

Episode 1052

Sam from Victorville, CA

Sam can get DSL from Verizon, but he's so far away, he can't get it very fast. So he went with DSLExtreme, which is half the price. Can he get another line and then multiplex it for more speed?

Leo says he can, and there's a product called Fusion that will do exactly this. It's dual ADSL2 lines. The problem is that he's so far away from the network hub, and DSL degrades rapidly over distance. Bonded ADSL will work, and he should ask DSL Extreme if they have Fusion in his neighborhood.

(Disclaimer: DSL Extreme is a sponsor).

Should I buy or rent my cable modem?

Motorola Surfboard modem

Episode 1042

LaxMan from Tempe, AZ

Laxman has to get his own DSL modem for his cable internet service, but will they be backwards compatible? Leo says that DOCSIS III modems have auto configuration menus that can handle older devices. But buying is a far better option than renting that modem for $5-7 a month.

Leo likes the Motorola Surfboard. He will have to tell his ISP that he bought one and make sure they support the model he wants to use.

Netflix Says Netherlands Has the Fastest Internet Access

Episode 1040

Netflix, which just recently launched in Holland, has been there long enough now to say that people who watch Netflix in the Netherlands get the best bandwidth. Mexico ranks last, just below Ireland and the US.

Netflix says Netherlands has the fastest broadband (CNET)…

Which Internet ISP should I get?

Episode 1040

Marylin from Highland Park, NJ

Marilyn is getting a new computer and now wants to get broadband at home. She's wondering what the best ISP would be: Verizon FIOS or Optimum by Cablevision? Leo says that either is excellent, with FIOS likely being faster. Optimum is #2 in the country right now in service. So both options would be excellent.Marilyn should look beyond the teasing first year "tease" rate, and find out what the cost will be afterwards.

How can I get DSL without a phone number?

Episode 1033

Barry from Sierra Madre, CA

Barry would like to get DSL Extreme without having to pay for a Verizon phone number. Leo says that's called "Dry Loop DSL" and the carrier should to offer it, according to the FCC. But the phone companies do make it very difficult to get because there's no money to be made from it. Leo says that DSLExtreme will fight for him to get connected. From the chatroom, AT&T offers Dry Loop. So if he has AT&T it in the area, that may be the option.

(Disclaimer: DSL Extreme is a sponsor).

What are alternative options for getting wireless broadband?

Episode 1011

Nancy from Carson, CA

Nancy lives in a mobile home park, but can't get any broadband cable installed due to park regulations. So she's stuck with 4g wireless hot-spotting. She doesn't want to get stuck with overages. Leo suggests using Virgin Mobile, as they don't have data caps on their service. T-Mobile has data caps but they can't charge for overages, they just would slow her down a bit. There could be some Wireless Internet Service Providers (WISPs) in her area.

I'm in a rural area stuck with dial-up internet. Is there a better option?

Episode 1007

Arlene from Temecula, CA

Arlene lives in a rural area and is stuck with dial-up. Leo says that one option is satellite internet from WildBlue. She'll have to pay for more equipment up front. The other option is cellular. If there's 4G access in her neighborhood, then that could also work. If not, then dial-up will be as good as it gets.

Do I have any choices for Internet other than cable?

Episode 1002

Yureal from Long Beach, CA

Yureal is a gamer and he's got cable internet. He's cancelling the service because it's too expensive ($70) and they want to charge him because "they have to leave the line in." Leo says that's nonsense. If he's having issues with his cable, it could be because of how far he is away from the office. If there's no competition in the area, he'll probably have to pay more for less. The only other choice is a wireless provider.

Is there a Wi-Fi router with a Roku-like function built into it?

Episode 990

Michael from Valley Village, CA

Michael is going with DSL Extreme and he needs a WiFi router for it. Could his old AT&T Wi-Fi modem work instead? Leo says it could act as a router, but it has to have Ethernet into it. He should make sure that he's enabled it for bridge mode. It'll either work or it won't, but Leo says that Michael should just get a wifi router instead. Leo recommends Dlink.