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dialup disconnects, cannot reconnect without modem reinstall

Discussion in 'Web & Email' started by _Mason_, Jan 12, 2006.

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  1. _Mason_

    _Mason_ Thread Starter

    Jan 6, 2006
    800mhz PIII
    384mb ram
    Windows 98SE, AVG antivirus, adaware, spysubtract, no firewall
    Dialup internet
    Modem= Best Data: Smart One: 56FWPCI

    I have an issue where I will dial up fine, surf internet fine for 20 minutes to an hour,
    then I get disconnected without any warning. I still have the little network icon saying I'm connected, but I don't send or recieve packets. I'll get "(webpage) cannot be found" if I open my browser. If I pick up the phone, I get a dial tone, so it drops the connection completely. When I try to dial up again, it dials, handshakes and connects as usual, but the same thing happens immediately, no packet traffic, so I can't bring up any pages at all.

    I don't have any indication of any other problem, puter runs fine, as fast as I've seen any puter surf on dialup. Oddly enough, when I ping my default gateway, it gives me 4 replies, even though I can pick up the phone and be able to tell I'm not connected. I've reinstalled tcp/ip. The only thing I haven't done is a destructive recovery.

    As a workaround, I can uninstall my modem and reboot, and it will connect sucessfully and let me browse again, but the same thing will happen again in half an hour. Sometimes I can ininstall and then add the modem immediately using 'add new hardware' wizard without reboot and get reconnected, but if I reinstall it any other way (manual driver file, 'add modem', etc.) it has the same problem again immediately. There's no problem with the phone line, I've tried other lines and external modems, they work perfectly. I know it's a software issue because reinstalling the driver fixes the problem.

    I've performed multiple AV scans and spyware scans, no bugs. I can't stay online long enough without dropping my connection to complete a trend-micro scan, but it's been tried. I've also searched and searched for drivers for this modem, and I've probably tried about a dozen drivers from different sources, so I don't think it's a driver issue, but I can't discount the possibility. I had installed zone alarm to try to fix the issue, but I uninstalled it because it didn't work.

    Any advice at all would help at this point, I'm a computer tech by day and I've spend 15-20 hours trying to get this stuborn thing working, any advice would be appreciated (other than 'get hi-speed' :p)
  2. kiwiguy


    Aug 17, 2003
    A PCI modem is 100% (or near enough to 100%) controlled by the CPU in real time.

    That means it is 100% reliant on every other piece of sofware and hardware installed to "play nicely" with it or all hell breaks loose.

    It is likely a driver bug, but also likely that there may be little you can do about it. WHile the makers try and assure compatability they cannot possibly know of every environment in which the modem will be required to work.

    Upgrading drivers (where they exist) is always a good starting point, but given the ultra low cost of these modems, replacing it is another alternative.

    I can assure you from experience, the old PCI modems make a satisfying "clunk" when you chuck them in the bin.

    When I had my PCs on dial-up, I relied on an external RS232 serial connected modem, which contains its own CPU and has no reliance on the PC's CPU. Never another proble.

    USB modems are usually PCI modems "in drag" so are also best avoided.
  3. _Mason_

    _Mason_ Thread Starter

    Jan 6, 2006
    Thanks for the reply. Yeah, maybe I should just try an old floatation test... *goes for walk on the beach*
  4. bhamlinda


    Aug 3, 2003
    This sounds much like what my old modem did as it lay dying.
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