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Re: Cable ISP

	Recently installed Comcast in Mpls area. Couple of things... The
"install" CD only understands Windoz or MacOS and didn't work (hung after
saving registry). I guess this a known problem since the install tech
it and the tech support folks knew how to get around it. I used windoz to do
install, the tech walked me through the whole process which involved stating
web browser and pointing to the local Comcast server. You then walk through
a few screens with the MAC address (from NIC card), the customer ID and
auth number (on the install order). 

	I have not measured any throughputs yet but I'm supposed to have
1.5Mbps down and 256Kbps up. I can't get DSL (too far) but for $45 (includes
modem rental of $3/mo) it beats the cost of a second ph line + ISP at 56K
(or 44K).

	Locally, I have the choice of renting a modem or buying one from a
of supported model. The list seemed fairly long and had at least a half
different vendors with several models from each vendor. At an avg of $100,
it was a 3yr recoop vs. renting.

	While I suspect support for Linux/FreeBSD is sketchy at best, they
did at least have an "Other" option when requesting the service. I had no
trouble getting RedHat and several Windoz versions up with DHCP. I was
not able to get FreeBSD up but didn't try since this really wasn't the way I
wanted to run.

	I've been told that Comcast bills by the number of MAC addresses
requesting DHCP. Thus, if you sign up for one connection, only one MAC
may make a DHCP request. If you want to use a different MAC, then you
at least need to power off the cable modem (to release the current lease)
and then start again with the new MAC. I've also been told that this may
not always work but haven't tried it.

	I run with a Linksys router/hub and pretty much everything I looked
at supports cloning of the NIC MAC so that the router presents the same
MAC to Comcast that the host otherwise would. The router also does all
the NAT/Firewall and generally is a clean way to go. In fact, everyone I
talked to a Comcast about multiple machines suggested this route...
The router allows tunneling back in so I guess I'm unclear as to why
one couldn't connect in from outside (other then BW being a problem).

	We use the connection for the kids to do surfing (fun + school)
and for me to connect via vpn back to work. So far my only complaint
is that it took them three + years from when they started trying to sell
it to me until they could actually deliver on it to my address...

My .02.

Joe Thomas

Joseph Thomas                                     CNT
Joe_Thomas cnt com                           6000 Nathan Lane No.
(763) 268-8133                                       Plymouth, MN 55442

An Elephant is a Mouse with an Operating System

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