ISPs who don't suck, BDCSI,, Dana Street Roasting Company

ISPs Who Don't Suck

ISPs who don't suck, BDCSI,, Dana Street Roasting Company

Not these losers
Post mortem

My current ISP


Personal experience: October 2002 to present

(Ugh, back to the phone company. This sucks.)

Okay, I'm currently freeloading utilizing the dial-up connectivity of a family member's DSL account. I helped this person get SBC Prodigy DSL service and I'm using modem dial-up from my place. Actually, the service has actually been pretty reliable and I get mail, USENET, and web access.

I guess the RBOC has finally figured out how to run a dial-up service over POTS. That's an accomplishment, I guess.

December 1, 2003 update

Okay, I'm sharing DSL with my roommate, got a nice little 802.11b network here in my place. 128-bit WEP, MAC-address filtering for moderate security (the access point can't be administered by wireless clients either). My complex is crawling with open APs, so I'm certainly not the low-hanging fruit.

I'm rebooting the DSL modem every week or two, just to grab a new IP address. Otherwise the connection is pretty darned stable, except for your periodic DNS unresponsiveness.


Personal experience: December 2001 to October 2002

Now that AT&T WorldNet's i495 plan is going away, it's back to a smallish ISP. BDCSI used to be considered a local ISP, but they now have nationwide access on a bunch of telecom companies' networks. I'm using the original BDCSI network (unlimited access, 2 e-mail accounts, no USENET for $18/mo.).

So far, so good. It's standard dial-up PPP access so at least I can boot a decent operating system with this account.

January 18, 2002 update

I had some problems dialing into BDCSI's network and my Linux PPP logs indicated that I was being kicked out for simultaneous login sessions. After 30 minutes of trying different things/OSes, I finally call up tech support. They immediately diagnose the problem as a bad modem disconnect signal from the previous session and reset my account. They also tell me to feel free to call right away rather than spending 30 minutes trying to figure it out by myself. That rocks!

Overall the service performance is really impressive. No DNS issues, ISP egress snafus, etc. like those crummy free ISPs.

July 27, 2002 update

I dialed up and got error messages this morning so I left a message on their tech support hotline. Get this, they fix the issue with no problems, and leave me a voice mail telling me it's done. Hey, you guys are da bomb!

September 15, 2002 update

I've moved back to PacBell ADSL/Prodigy, so I'm waving goodbye to BDCSI, the best ISP I've ever used. They tell me that I can't get a credit, but that I'll have access to the service for the remainder of the month.

September 30, 2002 update

Grrrr. I see another charge on my online bank statement. I leave a message with the billing office.

October 2, 2002 update

Hey, no problem. They admit their error and say they'll credit my account. Still the best ISP I've ever used, the only one with honesty and integrity. You guys rock!

Free 802.11b network in downtown Mountain Dew, California!

Personal experience: March 2002 to present

There's a free 802.11b wireless network at the Dana Street Roasting Company in downtown Mountain View (about twenty miles away from where I live). I've traded in my kick-ass deskside mid-tower for a 600MHz Apple iBook and a $99 AirPort card. (N.B., AirPort is Apple's trademarked name for 802.11b, a.k.a. "Wi-Fi", just like FireWire is their trademarked name for IEEE-1394.)

What's troubling to me is that security experts say that 802.11b's implementation is insecure. There was a recent study where some vans equipped with listening equipment cruised through various metropolitan areas throughout the country and found a rather astonishingly large number of insecure wireless networks.

Oh well, the operators of this little wifi network clear place the onus of network security on the users (which is absolutely right). I drop by maybe twice a month and tip heavily.

December 27, 2002

This wireless network just rocks. I'm there a couple of times a month to just goof off or grab a bunch of particularly large downloads: 1.5Mbit/sec. symmetric DSL is a nice way to go. Plus, the java (delicious beverage, not sucky programming language) is pretty good (and it ain't corporate coffee).

Not these losers
Post mortem

Last modified on Tue Dec 2 01:59:01 GMT 2003
Copyright © 1999-2003 Tara Hertz.
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ISPs who don't suck, BDCSI,, Dana Street Roasting Company