Doc's (Darn) lucky he's got Internet. Power at home...

by Bruce Bergman

... doesn't really matter - even if you have a generator and lots of fuel, and can merrily live off the grid for a week.

Cable Internet requires Utility power supplies every few miles back to the Cable Company Headend, and having power there to run the routers and connect to the Internet at large. And the Phone Company keeping that backhaul DS3 link to the world hot. Cable companies pay lip service to backup batteries, they go flat in a few minutes.

And even DSL and Dial-up can be killed by power going out to the Telco Remote DSLAM/Line Concentrator box for your neighborhood. (That cluster of big green or tan boxes by the curb that the repair trucks are always congregated around.) They have better backup batteries, but anything over an hour is a crap-shoot. And to get a generator backup they have to park a truck with a generator there.

If you are close enough to the real Switchroom to go there direct for your Dialtone and DSL (under 18,000 ft.) you have far better odds.

Posted on Nov 16, 2011, 10:24 AM

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