More specifically, Wayne B. from Qwest is my hero today.
For my Internet access at home, I use Speakeasy as my DSL provider. They’ve consistently been great, and I’ve had occasion to test them. Although I subscribe to their 768 kbps data plan, they’ve needed to throttle back my account in order to keep a persistent connection. It wasn’t ideal, but it worked. Finally, though, it just seemed like my Internet at home was getting slower, or I was just getting impatient. (Writing about the Apple TV was especially painful when waiting waiting waiting to download movies and TV shows to test.)
So, I finally resolved to call Speakeasy and see what could be done, and if necessary, consider alternatives such as cable (which would likely mean Comcast, ew). A tech there had me connect my DSL modem directly into the phone box at the side of the house, which showed no speed bottleneck. Hooray! But that meant the problem was in my house’s internal wiring. Boo.
Fortunately, I’ve had Qwest’s line-checking service on my bill for months and months, so this was time to put it into effect. I set up an appointment (a block between 1 pm and 5 pm today).
You won’t believe this, but Wayne showed up at 1:00. Maybe it was 12:55. (Our house is hard to find based on its street number, so most people get lost.) After touring the house and locating the phone jacks, the problem became pretty apparent: old wiring was interfering with the signal. The solution was to isolate the main portions (DSL, phone, and security system) using a new little switchbox so that everything worked just fine but kept the DSL line separated. Not only did this approach improve the DSL speed, it’s all now much cleaner. I’m sure that if another Qwest person needs to access our phone box, it will be a hundred times easier to grok what’s going on.
All the while, I shadowed Wayne as he explained everything. Not to the point where I can go out and reconnect or reconfigure things, but enough that I have a rough topology of what’s going where. If Wayne ever tires of working in the field (which I doubt), he’s the guy who should be instructing the next-generation techs coming up.
So, thank you Wayne, thank you Dustin at Speakeasy, and by extension high marks today to both Qwest and Speakeasy.