Communications Breakdown

Communication breakdown its always the same

I’m havin’ a nervous breakdown .. drive me insane

— Led Zeppelin

Fortunately, it’s just the electronics and the Internet, not anything important.

When I left home last Monday, everything was working fine. By the time I got to Toronto, all hell had broken loose — apparently Linkline (my ex-ISP) and Level3 (their ex-upstream-ISP) were into a serious hissy fit, and as a result, all of their Northern California customers on Verizon were cut off.

But I didn’t know this, and I told Diane to power-cycle the router and the DSL modem, which usually fixes this kind of problem. But, since the problem was upstream, it didn’t help — but now, she couldn’t even connect to the router!

When I got home on Friday, I found a note from my new ISP (DSL Designs) giving me my new IP address and routing, but I, too, couldn’t get into the router to set it up. So I dug out the router manual and discovered that the yellow light on the front of the router meant the router’s brain was fried…just too late in the day to call Nexland for support.

So first I plugged the Ethernet from the modem directly into my laptop to make sure I had connectivity, then ran to a local electronics superstore to buy a new router (at least temporarily). And all was well again.

This afternoon, I came home a bit early and connected to the Internet; then I had to run an errand, and when I returned, I’d lost connectivity. I can talk to the router from my local LAN, but it can’t see anything upstream; I dialed to work and found I can ping the upstream router I’ve been assigned, but can’t ping my address (or any of the nearby addresses in the same subnet).

So I’ve called DSL Designs and am waiting for them to either fix the problem or call back…preferably both.

[I had to call DSL Designs a second time, but then I got a tech who worked with me until we figured out the problem — they had the MAC address of my old router in their tables, and so their system squashed my connection. I set the LinkSys up to masquerade as my old router, and my connection returned instantly. Why it ever worked is a question, of course.]

The point of all this? To apologize for not having read any of your excellent weblogs for a week or so (connectivity in Toronto was painful and expensive). If I ever get connectivity back, I might be able to catch up — but probably not till next week, since I’ll be at Computers, Freedom, and Privacy this week and will be burning the candle at both ends just to pretend to scan my work e-mail.

Yom HaZikaron

Today is Israel’s annual Remembrance Day, honoring those who have fallen in defense of Israel. As of sundown (Jerusalem time) tonight, when the holiday began, the total since the earliest Zionist settlements was 21,182. Haaretz‘s English edition has more details (and they also have a Hebrew version).

Are you a friend of Israel?

If so, visit this site and add your name to the honor roll.