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Any help for agonizingly slow dial-up?

by cathrynm47 / February 9, 2007 9:13 PM PST

I live in a rural area. We do not have cable; hence, no TV or high-speed internet. I use a Dell Inspiron 600M with Windows XP and the internal Conexant 56K modem. Earthlink is my ISP. I also use an older Mac (G4) running OS 10.3. There is no chance we'll be getting cable out here any time soon. I live about 5 miles from town in a pretty poor county in Washington State.

There are two problems that are driving me nuts: One, the slow dial-up, and two, dropped connections. Not only is web browsing almost an exercise in futility because it takes so long to download pages, I've also had to tell my e-mail buddies not to send me pictures because one picture can tie up my email for 10 minutes or more. One person sent 5 pictures and my internet took 35 minutes to download them.

BTW, the 56K modem never achieves more than 26K speed. Lately the slowness seems to have gotten worse; not only that, I just download and installed the IE upgrade and now download speed is even slower--if that's possible. If I try to access a page, it may take 5 minutes or more to appear--if it appears at all. Sometimes I can hit refresh and the page will load finally, but not always.

On the dropped connections, I like to play on a couple of game web sites. I frequently get "your internet has been disrupted" messages, which of course causes me to lose the entire game. I would say this was peculiar to game sites, but I've had the disruption occur in the middle of a download from the internet. I worked over several days with an Earthlink tech, to no avail. I've also contacted the game sites, but "it's not their problem; it's the ISP's." The ISP says its the game site or the phone company. The phone company says it's the ISP.

Is there ANYTHING I can do to get even a bit faster dial up? In fact, just now, while writing this message, the dial-up disconnected. I'd be happy just to get closer to 56K in speed, if that's possible.

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'Fraid not. . .
by Coryphaeus / February 9, 2007 9:26 PM PST
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Wayne,, I can't get to your web site using the link that you
by Shirley R / March 19, 2007 8:32 AM PDT
In reply to: 'Fraid not. . .


When I click on it, the Address Bar shows "", but it takes me to "iMatix home page". I have tried several times and keep getting iMatix's home page. Any ideas what's going on? Is there something wrong with my PC?

I would really like to visit your site. Happy


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Hi Shirley
by tomron / March 19, 2007 8:36 AM PDT

I just tried and it worked for me.If you are being redirected to iMatix home page,makes me think hijack.


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by Shirley R / March 19, 2007 1:34 PM PDT
In reply to: Hi Shirley

Hi Tom:

Do you really think so? I have been trying to connect to Wayne's site for a few days now. Never thought I could have been hijacked.
I guess you could say that I am a creature of habit and usually visit the same sites every day. Today I tried to connect to a new web site:

and the address bar showed:

and this:
The page cannot be found
The page you are looking for might have been removed, had its name changed, or is temporarily unavailable.

Please try the following:

Make sure that the Web site address displayed in the address bar of your browser is spelled and formatted correctly.
If you reached this page by clicking a link, contact the Web site administrator to alert them that the link is incorrectly formatted.
Click the Back button to try another link.

HTTP Error 404 - File or directory not found.
Internet Information Services (IIS)

Don't know what's going on. I will run my virus programs and make sure there's nothing there (there never is, just a few minor cookies), but you never know.

In the meantime will you please check out the Bresnan link and see if it works for you.

PC is working fine except for these two sites.

Thank you so much.


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Hi Shirley
by tomron / March 19, 2007 1:47 PM PDT
In reply to: Hijacked??

I pasted into the address bar and this is what came up,LINK


There are many possibilities for "The page cannot be found"not necessarily a hijack issue.Have you run a anti spyware scan?

I suggest you try this,AVG ANTI SPYWARE


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In the same situation but have an idea
by hawksfan / February 13, 2007 8:06 AM PST

I am in the very same situation, in a rural area as well and also in Washington state. I would suggest talking to the people at they are local and have alot more knowledgeable tech help then you are going to get on first try to Earthlink.
They are out of Walla Walla. They have quite a few access numbers and have been around for a long time as well. Good Luck.
I found them recently as my other dial-up provider went out of business.

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Thank you to both responders
by cathrynm47 / February 13, 2007 3:27 PM PST

I appreciate the answers from both responders. Just yesterday I looked into satellite internet, but not even taking into account the cost, I'm not sure I can get a clear view of the sky in the right position for a satellite. Oh well. I will try that web site you recommended.

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Sorry, Tom
by Shirley R / March 19, 2007 2:35 PM PDT

I misspelled the link--no wonder it didn't work. It should have been I just noticed my error. It does work when I use correct spelling. Time for new eye glasses. LOL

I will run all of the scans tomorrow.

Thanks again.


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(NT) Your welcome,thanx for posting back
by tomron / March 19, 2007 2:43 PM PDT
In reply to: Sorry, Tom
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Slow PC../needs a Cleaning..
by castingRod47 / February 14, 2007 1:11 AM PST

My first operation to clean my PC is to use the[DISKCLEANUP]feature..I install a ShortCut on my Desktop since I use it before Signing On and then again as Sign Off..its located in SYSTEM TOOLS..Start Up Menu(Programs)..
Secondly..Click the Start Menu/Right Click PROPERTIES..choose Customize..I use Small ICONS(3-only)..Click CLEAR LIST..and then CLICK the Advanced TAB..and UN-Check the BOX--List my most Recently OPENED Documents..and Click----CLEAR LIST..that's been a big help..
McAFEE loads slowly these I allow some five minutes of stall time just staring at the Desktop..and then go from there..
Your Conexant Modem..
should be running at some 42-49 kbps/I would first re-install the MODEM..
First go into ADD/REMOVE..and remove the software..shut down..ground the system useing the Front Panel Power Switch..pull the AC-power cord from the rear of the Tower..
Open the sure and Ground your hand to a metal part on the Chassis..and pull the Modem card..
Re-Start the PC..allow your Desktop to sit about five minutes..Shut Down and re-install the Modem Card..use all safety pre-cautions..always pull the AC-cord from the rear panel..and touch a metal part to ground your Hand..
Again....Re-Start the PC..sign on and just sit at the Desktop until Plug&Play finds your Modem the install messages..but Conexant and DELL use a CD that does not require your ready right there w/that CD..I have found/the CD installs with little INFO about its follow the Indication Buttons..for Drivers and XP---English---whatever..but really wait about 10-15 minutes to assure the Install went all the way..Conexant does inform you if you PULL the CD-early..and askes for you to Insert the CD..don't go that route..un-install any software that LOADED and Re-Install the CD-again..from the don't need to remove the Modem Card again/its OK at this point..
That's really the Install procedure to have your PC---run very well..many hardwares need that operation for Plug&Play..some softwares don't inform of the success of the takes practice about what you have been useing..
I have found that the EMAIL Program and Uploads really has a determental effect on Browser Speed..a complete re-Install is always happening after some 10-Downloads or UpLoads..of the ISP-CD only..but maybe even Roll Back IE7 and re-install that load has a determental effect on the PC-operateing smoothly..
This morning my PC was just dieing all over the place..(02-14-07)and I finally OPENED IE7 to find a GOOGLE TOOLBAR I un-installed that..since I have had GOOGLE problems far...its been about 45-minutes and the PC is back to normal....
That's about it.../good luck.

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Thanks for the help and instructions
by cathrynm47 / February 14, 2007 4:49 AM PST

I appreciate the help and the directions on how to do it. I'm not "naturally" a PC person (I'm a Mac person), and while I've been using PCs for a while now (because I have to), I'm still not comfortable crawling around "inside."

I'm beginning to think about uninstalling the IE7; if it's possible, my PC has slowed down even more and I can only think IE7 is just too bloated with stuff and bogging me down even more.

Does it work better to browse with Foxfire?


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by castingRod47 / February 22, 2007 12:19 PM PST

Hello Cathy..I find this in many of the PC operators lifestyles..from discussion boards..
Why Wonder..??
The PC is for Projects..its has has REGULATIONS..all wrapped up in Compatibility issues..its written on the side of the Box..
Considering the Slow Running PC..this is like being a blind person..
Some Blind People are said to have talent..some need a seeing eye dog..some just Tap their way along hoping for success..
To condense a operateing really good..
1./the CLEAN Install..means that you were able to register your OS
...automatically/at the Microsoft did not get asked to
...telephone a TECH..
2./You use a Start-Up and Shut-Down Procedure..includeing HARDWARE
...REMOVAL Procedures..and CLEAN DISK..
3./You have Virus Scanning Software from a qualified source..
4./Useing XP requires that you use MICROSOFT Update serv.....
5./useing the latest in technology..NTFS File System..USB 2.0
6./Its only in reading Technical Documents that your really getting
...HELP..considering the "outside" sources..I find some useless..
That's about it..
a good TIP..ERROR Properties..for HDDs..
Learn your EVENT Administrative Tools..
ARCHIVING...don't load up on FILES/FOLDERS..get an external HDD..
I own two PCs..but have 5-HDDs..and I use my USB 2.0 to research the DISK Management..feature..
RAM issues..Random Access Memory..this piece of harware is quite involved in its stroy..I have problems with the technology..but have found KINGSTON RAM to have good info resources..
then the PAGEFILE....virtual memory..
has two settings or a NO Setting..
System Managed Size..or Custom Size..
I would not let my PAGEFILE SIZE be set higher than 800-MBs..under any adjust the DEVICE manager..
I run two PCs..
One has 512 MBs of RAM..System Managed Size=754MBs..I'll set it in CUSTOM for 700-MB/750-MB
..then my second PC has 1-GB of RAM where the PAGEFILE will hit about 1500-MBs..I set that to the same as the first PC..700MB/750MB in CUSTOM..
But upon a Re-Install of the OS(XP)..I remove one Module and re-set the Device to System Managed Size..and will change it back later that day..once I'm all Re-Installed..
The same with the first PC..on a OS Re-Install I re-set the DEVICE to System Managed Size..and then Custom once all is done later that day..
Works every....time......[end]

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If I recall correctly, uninstalling any version of IE will mess up your PC. Some Windows programs rely on IE, and I believe you will not get a clean uninstall, anyway.

Firefox is a much better browser, however, if you are looking for a speedy browser, I would reccomend K-Melon (a slimmed down Firefox) or Opera (I consider it the fastest browser on Earth).

Try using the TCP Optimizer, it might help your problem. It's sort of helped my dial-up speed up. Or try using the TZConnection booster, availible at Major Geeks. I haven't used it, but some person on another post said it helped.

If you have a slow computer, try using CCleaner to clean up all sorts of fluff from it. Be careful on which boxes you check, though. It's a powerful cleaner.

A large registry also might create slow problems. Use EasyCleaner for registry cleaning.

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Have not uninstalled IE7
by cathrynm47 / March 17, 2007 11:02 AM PDT

I haven't uninstalled IE7 because I had a feeling it might mess up stuff. But I'm using FireFox exclusively now. It is faster, all things being relative. If I was frustrated by how slow internet surfing was before, when I downloaded and started using IE7 I was shocked at how much slower it worked. I have no idea what Microsoft did to IE7 but it's just horrible.

And yes, I'm using pcpitstop, so that's a help. We're looking into getting satellite internet. The nearby provider for Wild Blue initially told us we had to wait until April while a new satellite was launched. Apparently there is some glitch with that--they're telling us June now.

Is there some reason I can't get the modem to operate faster than 26.4? I've been told a 56K modem even on slow dial up should operate at around 42-44. By the way, my phone company is Qwest and they don't answer e-mails or phone calls--I've tried and tried.

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You can try this!
by indigoaven / February 22, 2007 2:22 PM PST

Like you I too live in the rural part of my state and have to depend on dial-up. I have Netzero3G and it helps, but we on dial-up will never have fast speed so, I do many things to help maintain my computer and it seems to help with faster page loading. Go this is a free site where you can tune-up your computer. It will scan your intire computer and give you the results with helpful instructions on any area that may be problamatic. I to was afraid of venturing into my computer but if you follow their instructions you may find your problem. Let me know what happens and I'll try to help more if possible.
Good Luck

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