Shelter-in-Place Journal, Day Twenty-Nine

Our Internet woes continued this morning; rebooting everything didn’t help, so I finally gave into desperation and called Xfinity. I used their chat tool to set up a callback from tech support; 15 minutes later, my cellphone rang and I was talking to Brian at tech support in Honduras. I described the problem and let him know I was seeing a lot of packet loss as well as huge variability in ping time; a few minutes later, he’d downloaded new firmware to my modem, restarted it, and all was well. Thanks, Xfinity, and thanks Brian!

Except that an hour later, the Internet service went all to hell again. I got back with Xfinity and another agent tried to reset my modem with limited success – then yet ANOTHER agent called me, looked at the signals and suggested I get a temporary rental modem from the service center. I agreed and he set it up on my account and drove over to the service center. It was the easiest in-person transaction I’ve ever had with Xfinity.

As long as we were out, we did this week’s shopping (Talenti gelato was still on sale at Nob Hill!), and when I returned, I was happy to hear the Sonos playing away.

I’d left a ping running when we left – to my great surprise, there had been NO packet loss for the two hours we’d been away. I decided to take my chances and leave my old modem in place but monitor what was going on.

It’s been 6 hours so far with no packet losses. It’s as if agreeing to pay Xfinity another $14/month (plus $9 in taxes and fees!) solved the problem all by itself.

I’m going to leave things as they are for a few days; if the problem doesn’t recur by next shopping day, I’ll take the modem back, still in its protective plastic, and see what happens then.