The important utilities

Posted: November 28, 2005 in General, House

Friday Cara had to work, but I didn’t so I finally got the entertainment center and internet up and running.

Comcast had come out last Sunday and hooked everything up, but I didn’t have the cable modem or any of the TVs easily available (having just moved everything in the day before). Tuesday evening I hooked in the old satellite runs that the previous owner had in place so we could set up the smaller TV in the kitchen (mostly to verify that we actually do have cable). I also uncovered the cable modem and attempted to get the internet up and running with Cara’s new iBook.

Comcast has a gateway page for unknown users that require a download and install to set up your account. The problem is that the installer was compressed with Stuffit, which Apple no longer includes as part of the OS install (so it wasn’t on the new laptop). Friday morning I finally set up my desk and got my desktop machine operational. From there I was able to get the files uncompressed, only to find out that their stupid installer requires IE (which on the Mac is very close to obsolete). Since the laptop also didn’t have IE installed, the installer insinuated that it would install it, only to enter into a loop that goes nowhere. I spent a little time trying to “hack” the installer to work, but ultimately gave up and called Comcast.

As is typical, the first phone call when nowhere fast (Comcast has one of the stupider phone trees,) and after being forwarded three times, the auto attendant told me that it couldn’t help me and hung up on me (I shit you not). My second phone call was more successful and I was able to set up my account without installing software.

Once the account was created, I set up the wireless network and ran a wired connection from the living room to the basement (I also ran cable and a pair of speaker leads). I had a few problems with the newer Netgear router, but my older one worked like a champ.

For now my desktop machines are running via a Linksys WET11 bridged to the Netgear router in the basement (I actually get 75%-80% connection quality from one end of the house to the other). The only physical connection (for now) is the entertainment center (i.e. the ReplayTV). It’s been almost a week that I was without internet at home, and I have to admit that I was going through a bit of withdrawal.

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