[SWLUG] Broadband ISPs

Robert McQueen robot101 at debian.org
Wed May 8 11:55:08 UTC 2002

On Wed, May 08, 2002 at 12:37:00PM +0100, Nick Condon wrote:
> Hi all,
> I'm looking to swap my 56k dialup for ADSL. Who out
> there can recommend a provider?
> I'm not in an NTL area so I'm pretty much stuck with
> BT wires and exchanges, what I'm looking for is
> recommendations/horror stories/gotchas about using
> Linux with ADSL service providers in South Wales.
> Looking at www.adslguide.co.uk there seem to be an
> awful lot of resellers, so my lazy side is pushing me
> towards a name that I know (say, Demon or Freeserve).
> The prices are better with the likes of Zen or
> Nildram, but I'm wondering what their service is like?
> Anyway, all advice, large or small, gratefully
> received...
> --
> Nick

I'm on Demon ADSL, renting an alcatel speedtouch USB adapter from BT. I
got it working with no difficulty using the reverse-engineered GPL
drivers from http://speedtouch.sf.net/, which I am also packaging for
Debian. Through no fault of theirs, or Demons, the box keeps crashing
either because the USB OHCI driver (ie, the USB adapters on PCI cards, 
on-board mobo ones work fine) in the kernel sucks, or because the
adapter draws too much power for the adapter and the driver in the
kernel sucks and can't deal with the device disappearing.

Provider wise, I havn't heard many horror stories. I have friends who
are on Pipex, who are perhaps the cheapest with free setup at the moment
for wires-only, BT, who used to be the cheapest, myself on Demon... I
wouldn't go with BT now, so I'd recommend either Demon for good
all-round cluefulness (like 24/7 tech support who actually help you
with Linux), but they're slightly more expensive, or Pipex just because
they're cheap at the moment.


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