ART MATRIX - LIGHTLINK PO 880 Ithaca, NY 14851-0880 (607) 277-0959 Voice (607) 277-8913 Fax (607) 277-5026 Modems [email protected] E-mail [email protected] E-mail 01/09/98 6:43pm LOST CONNECTIONS OR UNABLE TO CONNECT If you are loosing your connection repeatedly, or your modem has to dial in many times to get a connection, please check the following. Give us a call if you wish help. LITELINK As a reminder, lightlink is not spelled litelink. WEATHER We get an enormous increase in complaints about lost connections during windy and raining days. Wet phone lines can generate lots of static. There isn't much that can be done about it, but you might want to check your connections outside the home and in the basement for green copper corrosion, or water. LIGHTNING AND HALF BURNT MODEMS Modems can suffer subtle damage when lightning strikes the phone poles, the electrical shock comes in over the PHONE WIRE so it doesn't matter if your computer was off or not, or on a surge protector. During Lightning storms you need to unplug both your computer and your modem! Modems can get half burnt, meaning they work, but start to flake out easily. The only solution to this kind of damage is a new modem. DIFFERENT PHONE NUMBERS If you can't connect on one phone number try another. Ithaca 33.6: 277 5026, 277 9182, 277 1076, Ithaca 56K: 277 0356, 272 2284, 272 3148, 275 0954. Elmira 33.6: 735 4949, 735 4909, Elmira 56K: 735 9691, 735 9844 Elmira 56K modem banks do NOT roll over to each other, so if you get a busy signal with one number, try the other. RESEATING YOUR MODEM Take your modem out and reseat it in your computer. Connections get dirty over time, this one action has fixed bad connections where people have tried EVERYTHING else. GET RID OF SPLITTERS Take off all phone line splitters so your modem wire goes directly to the wall. Faxes and other phones that share the modem line can kill 56K connections, particularly iMacs. Also try another phone wire, the one you have may have a flakey connection. ELECTRONIC PHONE EXTENDERS Remove all electronic phone extenders, such as those sold by Radio Shack, that use the 120 volt wiring of your home to give you added extensions in other rooms. Modems will not work over these connections. CLEAN YOUR PHONE PLUGS AND WALL AND MODEM SOCKETS Unplug all your phone wires from the modem to the wall, and replug them in and out a few times to clean the contacts. Use a Q Tip with alcohol to clean the contacts if necessary, make sure they get dry before plugging back in, and make sure no cotton is left on the contacts. *LOOK* at them with a magnifying glass, you will be shocked how dirty they can become, Yecch! Trace the wire down to the basement and make sure its a clean connection where it comes into the house, if you can. SECOND PHONES, RADIO PHONES, PHONES WITH TWO LINES Take off all extension phones that are on the same line, *PARTICULARLY* if these phones also have a line two. Cross talk between line 1 and line 2 can be a modem killer *EVEN IF NO ONE IS USING THE OTHER LINE!* Say you have two phone lines, line 1 and line 2, and the computer is plugged into line 2. You also have a two line phone in another room, which has both line 1 and line 2 plugged into it. That is sufficient to stop many iMacs from signing on, and can degrade other modem connections signficantly. It doesn't matter if line 1 is in use or not, its mere presence on the same phone that is connected to line 2 can be sufficient to ruin the line 2 quality enough so the modem won't sign on. However even if the modem signs on properly on line two, someone picking up on line one may drop the modem on line two, even if the line one phone is on the other side of the house! Radio phones can also be disasterous because line two will act as an antenna to the signal being broadcast on line one, and cause the modem to drop. REMEMBER IF YOU HAVE A PHONE THAT IS PLUGGED INTO BOTH LINE ONE AND LINE TWO, LINE ONE DOESN'T HAVE TO BE IN USE TO DROP A MODEM ON LINE TWO. IDLE TIME OUTS If you leave your connection idle for more than 40 minutes, our modems will disconnect you to protect you against excessive phone bills. But your own software may be set to disconnect you if you are idle for 5 or 10 minutes, if this is on you may want to turn this off, as it will disconnect you while reading e-mail. Make sure your idle timeouts are set to more than 10 minutes in your dialer. Win95 users go to My Computer, Dial UP Networking, highlight the dialer icon, go to FILE, hit on properties, Configure, Connection, turn off "Disconnect call if idle for more than X minutes." CALL WAITING If you have call waiting, make sure your dial string is set to turn it off before logging on, otherwise anyone calling you will cause the line to drop. This is usually done in the DIAL PROPERTIES area by adding a *70, to the dial up string. Make sure to include the comma. If you don't have call waiting, make *SURE* your dial string is NOT set to turn it off, as the modem won't dial properly at all. If you have had a second line put in, and the first line has call waiting, don't assume that the second line has call waiting too. REINSTALL THE DIALIUP ADAPTER AND TCP/IP SOFTWARE Win95/98 users should try reinstalling their Dialup Adapter Software. This will often refresh the winsock.dll's to their proper version numbers after many software installs have messed them up, or many machine lockups have corrupted them. Goto My Computer -> Control Panels -> Add Remove Programs -> Communications -> Dialup Adapter and turn it off and hit ok. Then go back in, and turn it back on again and hit OK. It will ask you for your Win98 disk, so if you don't have it already on your hard drive, you will need it. Don't do this unless you have your Win98 software! Then reboot. WIN MODEMS Is your modem a Winmodem? If it is, it will say so in the Dialup Adapter area where it lists your modem type. LT Winmodems, USR Winmodems, and Rockwell Winmodems all use the CPU of your computer to do data compression and error correction and the code that ships with them is often just plain flakey, particularly on brand new computers which are *OFTEN* shipping with old firmware in the modems made months ago. That code didn't work then, and it still doesn't work now. Upgrading to the lastest firmware often fixes many of the problems, but some USR Winmodems have problems downloading that just won't fix no matter what you do. If you have a winmodem, the latest upgrades are available through our home page, just ask. If you don't have a Winmodem, don't get one. FORCED ERROR CORRECTION TURNED ON Make sure you have forced error correction set to on. In win95/98 this is set by turning on "required to connect" in the dialup adapater settings. (See below). For others, you will need to add \n2 or \n4 to your modem init string. DECREASE SENSITIVITY TO CARRIER DROPS Decrease your modem's sensitivity to dropped carrier by adding S10=20 to the end of your modem init string. In Win95 put ATS10=20 in the Extra Settings in the Advanced settings area. (See Below) FORCING ERROR CORRECTION Win95/98 users need to do the following: If your modem is listed properly then: Go to My Computer -> Dial up Networking -> highlight the Lightlink Icon -> File pull down on Properties. Make sure your modem is listed correctly. Make sure your modem type does NOT say STANDARD MODEM. If it does, you need to find out what kind of modem you really have, call us if necessary. If your system is working properly with STANDARD MODEM, then leave it alone. Hit on Configure and make sure your speed is set to 57600 or 115200 for 33.6/56K modems and 38400 for 14.4 modems. Then hit on Connection -> Advanced -> Turn on "required to connect" -> put ATS10=20 in the Extra Settings window and save your work by hitting OK all the way out. All other users should check their modem init strings against the following: LIGHTLINK RECOMMENDED MODEM SETTINGS Most of the rest of this is not necessary any more and you shouldn't worry about it, unless you really know what you are doing. For all modems, PC's should be set to &D1 and Mac's should be set to &D0. All modems should have forced error correction turned on. Win95 users turn on 'required to connect' in modem settings. Other users should make sure the init strings are set as shown below. If you have static on the lines you might want to add S10=20 which will cause the modem to tolerate a 2 second loss of carrier before it drops the line on you. Mac IBM Best Data AT&F&C1&D0&K3&Q5\N2 AT&F&C1&D2&K3&Q5\N2 Best Data Smart One AT&F&C1&D2&K3&q5\N2 Boca AT&F&C1&D0&K3&Q5\N2 AT&F&C1&D2&K3&Q5\N2 Cardinal 28800 AT&F1 AT&F Gateway 2000 Telepath AT&F1&M5 Geoport AT&F\N2 Global Village Gold AT&F1\N2 Global Village Gold II (*) AT&F1\N2 Global Village Platinum AT&F1\N2 Hayes Accura 28.8 V.FC AT&F&C1&D0 AT&F&C1&D2 LineLink 14400 AT&F&C1&D0&K3&Q5\N2 AT&F&C1&D2&K3&Q5\N2 MaxTech 33.6K AT&F1&D0&M5 AT&F1&M5 Motorola 14400 Fast Talk II AT&F2&D0 AT&F2 Motorola Modem Surfer AT&F&C1&D0\Q3\N4 AT&F&C1&D2\Q3\N4 Modem Blaster 28.8 AT&F&C1&D2&K3&Q5\N2 Multitech AT&F1&C1&D0&E2%E6 AT&F1&C1&D2&E2%E6 Practical Periph 28800 AT&F&C1&D0&K3&Q5 AT&F&C1&D2&K3&Q5 Supra 14400 AT&F1\N4 AT&F2\N4 Supra 28800 AT&F1\N4 AT&F2\N4 Supra Express 288I PnP AT&F1\N4 AT&F2\N4 USR 14400 Mac and Fax AT&F1&D0&C2&M5 USR 14400 Sportster/Courier AT&F&D0&H1&R2&M5 AT&F&D1&H1&R2&M5 USR 28800 Sportster/Courier AT&F1&D0&M5 AT&F1&M5 Zoom AT&F&C1&D0&K3&Q5\N2 AT&F&C1&D2&K3&Q5\N2 (*) Make sure Teleport control panel is installed and set to V.42bis.