• straight talk..

    From August Abolins@2:221/1.58 to Daryl Stout on Monday, September 16, 2019 20:17:00
    Hello Daryl!

    ** 15.09.19 - 13:01, Daryl Stout wrote to MIKE POWELL:

    As for cellphone service, I'm with Straight Talk, and it's the best
    cellphone package I've ever had...$50 a month with tax, and I get 25
    Gigabytes of data, before it gets throttled down..

    That's a *very* nice package. The closest I can get is $40 for 5GB until
    it gets throttled down - with luckymobile.ca.


    But back to the dial-up, those modems only really work with analog
    lines, and not with VoIP lines. Yet, I wonder what the fax machines are
    working with...since practically all the old analog lines are now
    digital/VoIP.

    Is that what they call a "dry loop" line? Here, a dry loop has to be specifically ordered, otherwise a new phone line is a real POTS line.


    If there was a way to make that work, I'd put dial-up
    access back on the BBS...but I saw a comment from Rob Swindell (aka
    digital man), author of Synchronet, noting that "28.8 and 33.6 aren't as
    fast as you remember them".

    Even 33.6 would seem like a crawl. You are best to put the idea of a bbs
    via dial-up out of your mind. ;)


    ../|ug

    --- OpenXP 5.0.40
    * Origin: /|ug's Point, Ont. CANADA (2:221/1.58)
  • From Simon Geddes@1:103/705 to Sean Dennis on Tuesday, September 17, 2019 20:18:00
    At 5:48 PM on 13 Sep 19, Sean Dennis said to Simon Geddes:

    Hi Simon,


    Sorry to butt in - but I hope more BBSes start to offer
    dial-up. And more users switch off their routers and
    dust off their modems.

    With dialup lines costing nearly double of a broadband connections in my area, I seriously doubt I'll be able to afford it anytime soon.

    In the UK, a lot of dial-up lines ("landlines") are used to carry broadband singles. We have a microfilter and splitter which gives you a traditional telephone line and a port for connecting the broadband router.

    That said, a lot of households have additional cable and fibre connections. Asking for a 'broadband' line after a recent house move was met with some incredulity, as we have one of these said cable points too. The assumption was I would of course want faster and faster internet, for faster and faster what I'm not sure.

    So a lot of dial-up lines are sat unused here - ripe for dial-up BBSing..should
    there ever be a mass revival!

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  • From Daryl Stout@1:19/33 to AUGUST ABOLINS on Tuesday, September 17, 2019 15:11:00
    Hello Daryl!

    Hi, August...

    That's a *very* nice package. The closest I can get is $40 for 5GB until AA>it gets throttled down - with luckymobile.ca.

    It's the best cellphone package I've ever had (StraightTalk from
    Wal-Mart). I don't do that much texting or surfing (except for weather
    data), and I save the phone for calls. Besides, the battery runs down
    too darn quick!!

    I've been with Sprint, Cingular, and AT&T, before I got with Straight
    Talk. Every so often, I build up enough points, where I get a month of
    usage on my plan, free of charge.

    Sprint DID ME DIRTY years ago. When I got laid off from my job with
    the State Of Arkansas (budgetary restrictions killed it), I told them I
    could either pay the last months bill OR the termination fee, but NOT
    both. I talked to one of the people at the local center, and even at the Customer Support Center, who agreed to my proposal.

    Not 2 weeks later, I got a nasty letter from them, demanding I pay
    what I hadn't. Angrily, I went in there, and raised hell at the office,
    teling them I would NEVER use them again, and would tell everyone else
    to avoid them.

    The only good thing about them was their classic commercial, where the
    guy was using a "cheapie cell service" and wanted "a hundred oxen". The
    line was so noisy, they thought he meant "a hundred dachshund" (can you
    say weiner dog stampede?? <G>).

    Is that what they call a "dry loop" line? Here, a dry loop has to be AA>specifically ordered, otherwise a new phone line is a real POTS line.

    I don't know...maybe someone else can answer that. But, after the way
    AT&T treated my late Mom and myself years ago (hanging up on me on a
    call), a year and a half before she died, I *CANCELLED ALL* the service
    she had...UVerse, Internet, Cell, EVERYTHING...and told them I would
    *NEVER* be back with them.

    I get MagicJack for Voice Mail for $45 a year, with tax...and the
    idiots at AT&T for a vanilla dial-up line want more than that per
    month!!

    That's like the local newspaper printing only on Sunday, with the
    e-Edition otherwise, but to get the e-Edition, you have to have a
    special iPad, available ONLY for a subscription with $8 per printed copy
    (to cover the iPad cost), which is $32 to $40 a month (4 or 5 Sundays).
    I get The Miami Herald in south Florida (my old stomping grounds)
    e-Edition, for $50 a year.

    Needless to say, it's obvious which option I'm going with. I'm a
    frugal cheapskate, but I think these idiots believe I'm a dumb @$$.

    Even 33.6 would seem like a crawl. You are best to put the idea of a bbs AA>via dial-up out of your mind. ;)

    That's what I figured...telnet, FTP, and web, are the way to go now.
    If folks don't get on the technology train at the depot, they're going
    to be left in the dust.

    Daryl


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  • From Simon Geddes@1:103/705 to Andrei Rachita on Wednesday, September 18, 2019 20:49:00
    At 3:37 PM on 15 Sep 19, Andrei Rachita said to Simon Geddes:

    I always liked dial-up BBSes.
    I think that besudes the fact some people don't know how to use a modem anymore, there are also 2 small problems:
    - Dial-up over VoIP lines can be a little tricky
    - most modern machines don't have serial ports anymore, and the best
    modems out there are still serial devices...

    Just my thoughts...

    I had wondered about VoIP as a solution to diminishing landlines - didn't know data signals over VoIP are problematic.

    I've faced the serial issue on my Apple laptop, but overcame it by buying a fairly cheap USB to serial adaptor. This works well, giving me a serial device I can point my term software too.

    The biggest issue I have faced is just getting old terminal software running on
    a more moderm OS (MorphOS). Everything seems to half-work. Not like first time
    around in the mid-ninties, where the process seemed to be very plain sailing. I've definitely wanted to give up a few times!

    * Q-Blue 2.4 *
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    * Origin: Vertrauen - [vert/cvs/bbs].synchro.net (1:103/705)
  • From Simon Geddes@1:103/705 to Sean Dennis on Wednesday, September 18, 2019 21:22:00
    At 8:47 PM on 16 Sep 19, Sean Dennis said to August Abolins:

    Hi August,

    Besides.. the modem technology is fickle, and slow.

    I disagree. In all of the data centers I have ever worked at, there has -always- been one POTS connection as an emergency backup. The POTS
    system is actually much more reliable than the Internet physically but
    yes, it's slow, which is why it fell out of favor.

    Forgive my ignorance...what's a POTS line? Is this the same as an analogue landline?

    (You are witnessing life without the internet in action - the old me would have
    just googled this and found the answer in a second. But then I would have also
    have seen the 'gmail' link at the top of the page and so would have quickly checked my email in Pavlovian fashion. Then in my inbox I would have been tempted by a Quora email about how I should be best investing my money. After reading that I would have bought some rubbish amazon ebook the poster was actually pushing, before, one hour later, seeing that my telnet connection had timed out. And then I probably wouldn't call back to reply, and in my embarrassment probably would have never called again.)

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    * Origin: Vertrauen - [vert/cvs/bbs].synchro.net (1:103/705)
  • From Rob Swindell@1:103/705 to Simon Geddes on Wednesday, September 18, 2019 14:05:12
    Re: Re: FidoGazette Vol 13 ne
    By: Simon Geddes to Sean Dennis on Wed Sep 18 2019 09:22 pm

    At 8:47 PM on 16 Sep 19, Sean Dennis said to August Abolins:

    Hi August,

    Besides.. the modem technology is fickle, and slow.

    I disagree. In all of the data centers I have ever worked at, there has -always- been one POTS connection as an emergency backup. The POTS system is actually much more reliable than the Internet physically but yes, it's slow, which is why it fell out of favor.

    Forgive my ignorance...what's a POTS line? Is this the same as an analogue landline?

    Yes. POTS = Plain Old Telephone System/Service.

    digital man

    Synchronet/BBS Terminology Definition #54:
    Phreak = Telephone system hack[er]
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  • From mark lewis@1:3634/12 to Simon Geddes on Wednesday, September 18, 2019 21:58:01
    Re: Re: FidoGazette Vol 13 ne
    By: Simon Geddes to Sean Dennis on Wed Sep 18 2019 21:22:00

    Forgive my ignorance...what's a POTS line? Is this the same as an analogue
    landline?

    yes... P.lain O.ld T.elephone S.ystem (or S.ervice) ;)


    )\/(ark
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  • From Mike Powell@1:2320/105 to SIMON GEDDES on Thursday, September 19, 2019 16:50:00
    I had wondered about VoIP as a solution to diminishing landlines - didn't
    know
    data signals over VoIP are problematic.

    Some VOIP providers may allow the end user to configure their VOIP
    protocols some. I have heard that mentioned before and folks who know
    which ones to tweak seemed to not have troubles like others do. Other providers do not apparently allow the tweaking. I do not see any way to do
    it with my Magic Jack, for example. I only use it for voice.

    Mike

    ---
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  • From Andrei Rachita@2:530/306 to Simon Geddes on Friday, September 20, 2019 10:25:09
    Hi Simon,

    You would need a VoIP provider that offers G711a as a codec. Modems don't seem to work with G729, or at least for me it didn't.
    You will also need an analogue telephone adaptor or ATA that will convert VoIP to analogue, so that the modem can talk over VoIP.
    I personally recommend AudioCodes MP series like the MP114.
    As a modem I use a courrier 56K V.Everything, serial and managed to get 33600 bps connections to some BBSes.

    If you need more info, feel free to ping me.

    Andrei


    At 3:37 PM on 15 Sep 19, Andrei Rachita said to Simon Geddes:

    I always liked dial-up BBSes.
    I think that besudes the fact some people don't know how to use a modem
    anymore, there are also 2 small problems:
    - Dial-up over VoIP lines can be a little tricky
    - most modern machines don't have serial ports anymore, and the best
    modems out there are still serial devices...

    Just my thoughts...

    I had wondered about VoIP as a solution to diminishing landlines - didn't know data signals over VoIP are problematic.

    I've faced the serial issue on my Apple laptop, but overcame it by buying a fairly cheap USB to serial adaptor. This works well, giving me a serial device I can point my term software too.

    The biggest issue I have faced is just getting old terminal software running on a more moderm OS (MorphOS). Everything seems to half-work. Not like first time around in the mid-ninties, where the process seemed to be very plain sailing. I've definitely wanted to give up a few times!

    * Q-Blue 2.4 *

    --- AfterShock/Android 1.6.7
    * Origin: pufa (2:530/306)
  • From Richard Menedetter@2:310/31 to Andrei Rachita on Friday, September 20, 2019 14:56:14
    Hi Andrei!

    20 Sep 2019 10:25, from Andrei Rachita -> Simon Geddes:

    You would need a VoIP provider that offers G711a as a codec.

    Or G711 mulaw.
    Both are nearly the same, one is used in Europe the other in the US.

    Modems don't seem to work with G729

    Most definitely not!

    CU, Ricsi

    ... You may be disappointed if you fail. You are doomed if you don't try!
    --- GoldED+/LNX
    * Origin: That's as useless as a trap door in a canoe! (2:310/31)
  • From Daryl Stout@1:19/33 to SIMON GEDDES on Thursday, September 19, 2019 08:55:00
    Simon,

    Sounds like pretty terrible service. You would think with plenty of competit SG>such poor service would be a thing of the past. Maybe you moving on will hel SG>them review their customer service methods.

    I understand I'm NOT the ONLY one they've done this to.

    Sounds pretty good. I had half a gig of cell phone data for the longest time SG>probably should have been paying a lot less.

    I'm lucky if I use 5 gigs a month. The main detractor is that the
    battery runs down so fast, then it takes like 3 hours to charge it back
    up. So, I don't have any games on my phone.

    This is a worry really, as may scupper my dial-up dreams before they have SG>begun. I haven't noticed any major issues here in the UK however, but I dare SG>say digitial migration and VoIP is being rolled out at a snail's pace. I kno SG>we have much less fast broadband coverage than many other European countries SG>If this does become an issue, I wonder if cell phone modems (cdcadm protocol SG>think) might provide another route? With a cheap sim with unlimited calls in SG>cell phone USB modem, I could potentially add multiple dial-up lines for not SG>very much at all.

    I had thought of having a deal, if nothing else, as a backup for 911,
    when the cell towers went down...as they invariably do when bad weather
    affects the area. But, I can't see paying over $75 a month for a vanilla
    phone line. So, to offset the economic loss by people abandoning their landlines for much more inexpensive cellphones, they raise the landline
    rates to compensate. It's like they're wanting to kill the landline
    industry altogether (the analog is going to digital), so they don't have
    to mess with it anymore.

    Daryl


    * OLX 1.53 * I've used up all my sick days, so I'm calling in dead.
    --- SBBSecho 3.09-Win32
    * Origin: The Thunderbolt BBS - tbolt.synchro.net (1:19/33)
  • From Daryl Stout@1:19/33 to SIMON GEDDES on Thursday, September 19, 2019 08:56:00
    Simon,

    Yup. And that would be pretty demotivating. Still...tempted just to confirm. SG>Rather than advertising on the internet, I would put up local cards in SG>newsagents, computer shops etc. Some old timers might be tempted to get a mo SG>to give it a try. Or not. But would be interesting to see.

    Using the Business Card Software (commercialware), I designed cards
    for my BBS, and give them out when telling folks about the system.

    Daryl


    * OLX 1.53 * Sure, when... OINK! FLAP! OINK! FLAP! I'll be damned!!
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  • From Daryl Stout@1:19/33 to SIMON GEDDES on Thursday, September 19, 2019 08:56:00
    Simon,

    Forgive my ignorance...what's a POTS line? Is this the same as an analogue SG>landline?

    Yes, it's an acronym for Plain Old Telephone System. There's a utility
    with Synchronet BBS software called Sexpots. It sounds kinky (dirty old
    Sysops need love, too (but they also need more showers <G>), but it's an acronym for Synchronet External Plain Old Telephone System. It allows
    dial-up callers to logon to a telnet BBS.

    Originally when I was dial-up only, under GT Power, and part of
    FIDONet, I first used FrontDoor as the frontend, then InterMail. I was
    able to integrate BGFAX into it to get both dial-up callers and faxes.
    At least with BGFAX, there were no junk faxes, and waste of paper. If I
    didn't care for the incoming fax, I just zapped the file.

    As noted, most analog lines are being converted to digital (VoIP),
    which don't do so good with the fax modems. I had a utility with the US Robotics 56K v.92 fax modem, but I never got it to work right on the
    MagicJack Plus line, so I quit using it...and am letting that line
    expire in December. If I need to send a fax, I go to the local FedEx in
    west Little Rock.

    Daryl


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  • From Simon Geddes@1:103/705 to Rob Swindell on Friday, September 20, 2019 15:52:00

    Forgive my ignorance...what's a POTS line? Is this the same as an
    analogue
    landline?

    Yes. POTS = Plain Old Telephone System/Service.

    Ah ha! Thank you.

    * Q-Blue 2.4 *
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  • From Simon Geddes@1:103/705 to Mike Powell on Friday, September 20, 2019 16:03:00
    Some VOIP providers may allow the end user to configure their VOIP protocols some. I have heard that mentioned before and folks who know which ones to tweak seemed to not have troubles like others do. Other providers do not apparently allow the tweaking. I do not see any way to
    do it with my Magic Jack, for example. I only use it for voice.

    I don't think Magic Jack is something that has made it across the pond yet. Most people's VoIP usage is via Skype or similar. How does it work, from an end-user perspective? Does it give you a traditional style phone just hooked up
    to your internet connection? Do you have a traditional-style telephone number?

    * Q-Blue 2.4 *
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  • From Simon Geddes@1:103/705 to Andrei Rachita on Friday, September 20, 2019 16:06:00
    At 10:25 AM on 20 Sep 19, Andrei Rachita said to Simon Geddes:

    Hi Simon,

    You would need a VoIP provider that offers G711a as a codec. Modems
    don't seem to work with G729, or at least for me it didn't.
    You will also need an analogue telephone adaptor or ATA that will
    convert VoIP to analogue, so that the modem can talk over VoIP.
    I personally recommend AudioCodes MP series like the MP114.
    As a modem I use a courrier 56K V.Everything, serial and managed to get 33600 bps connections to some BBSes.

    If you need more info, feel free to ping me.

    Fantastic, thank you. Will save this message for future reference. As things stand, I have working dial-up connectivity over the analogue line to other UK boards. Will be good to know the options should things change as the infrastructure is upgraded over time.

    * Q-Blue 2.4 *
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  • From Mike Powell@1:2320/105 to SIMON GEDDES on Saturday, September 21, 2019 21:04:00
    I don't think Magic Jack is something that has made it across the pond yet. >Most people's VoIP usage is via Skype or similar. How does it work, from an >end-user perspective? Does it give you a traditional style phone just hooked up
    to your internet connection? Do you have a traditional-style telephone number?

    Yes, it can give you a traditional phone and telephone number. The
    "dongle" I have plugs into a power source and has two ports... one is an ethernet jack that I plug into my router, and the other is a phone jack
    where one can plug in a traditional phone or, in my case, run the line to
    the home phone jack so that the whole house is wired (if you do this, you
    have to make sure the old phone box on the outside of the house is disconnected!).

    It also allows me to install an app on a smart phone that gives you "home" phone capability (and free texts) on the smart phone.

    Mike

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