Wild Blue and satellite: not a happy customer

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Somewhere, I ran across an entry that gave me directions on how to possibly get to a rational NG set up. I'm about to try it. I already had T'bird downloaded, just no time until now.
I do NOT know whether or not Wild Blue doesn't allow standard NG usage, but...they had better. I've got a shitload full of contract breakers already, and DSL is on its way. My satellite was down for more than 24 hours starting yesterday morning. Reason? Rain. And when the rain was over, there was fairly moderate fog, which also puts it in the toilet. In fact, any light mist does. Just before 2 p.m. today, some five hours AFTER the rain stopped completely, the satellite came back up. Three hours later, it went down for another hour. Wny? I dunno. Maybe it didn't like the sunshine.
This is chronic: I've been bumped off line for more than three days at a time, and I've been down for 10-12 hours a mess of times. Any light rain or moderate fog does it.
I was told only heavy snow did that, which is the case with our TV (DirecTV) satellite.
Call to see if a repair type can come out and you're notified that you're past your 90 day warranty period, thus there's a charge of 99 bucks just for the repair turkey to show up. I had to tell them three times not to send him/her/it. The third time I said I'd have a deputy here waiting to arrest him for trespassing. He didn't come.
The only other time I bothered calling, it was raining lightly, the satellite was down, and I was told they were not responsible for "acts of God." I guess not. Usually, it's damp when the thing goes down. Often, though, it's a clear evening or a sunny afternoon, such as this one. Those are "acts of God," too, one would imagine.
Oh, yeah. Speed. It definitely is faster than our dial-up connection, maybe even three times as fast. And about 2% as stable. I've never had dial-up go down as long as we had power.
I bought an alignment kit, and was going to get my stepson to check the thing out, but one of my friends informed me that is not legal. If I were able to get up to the satellite, I'd say F..K the illegality, but I don't want to get the youngster in trouble, just in case.
Maybe VA will actually do something with my knees this year, and I can straighten up the satellite.
And, now, onward and upward and try to get a decent NG set up.
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Yeah, well...I seemed to recall trying T'Bird again once I got started. Same old, same old. It does everything just fine, but when I try to get a lsit of NGs for subscription, it starts the search rolling before I can enter a qualifier, and then fiddlefarts around until it times out. I don't know whether that's the satellite or gmail, but I'm going to change to another email account and see if that helps.
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That just says it can't connect to NNTP server.
WTF? I need to take this in to get the last of the AOL horseshit cleared, and I guess I'll have the guy set it up there. Enough is too much when it is time #150. I removed ever speck of AOL with the uninstall and then deleted the goddamned folder it was in, and the SOB popped up as my lead mail program after that. Unreal. I have to shift from that to gmail or any of the others.
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You change your default email program from within IE of all places. Click on Tools-->Internet Options and then click on the Programs tab. You can pick whichever mail client you would like to use from there.
Larry
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I have a similar problem at times Charlie, where did you get your satellite alignment kit? I installed 3 satellite systems when I was with Dish Network but like you I am now with DirecTV. DishNetwork used a compass and protractor. The HD seems to be a problem with them and as they add more HD channels the reception is terrible as they switch transponders. I would not be afraid to realign the dish, the wind seems to do it all the time. I would like to get my hands on the kit and meter.

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Dish Network, and I assume that the other satellite providers, have a signal strength indicator in the setup menus. I used this to tweak my first dish installation.
There is also a signal strength indicator for the over the air local channels. I have used this for pointing the local antenna. Fortunately the RF remote has enough signal strength that I can control the box in my living room while I am on the roof. (I did have to haul an old TV to the roof so that I could see the signal strength while I was on the roof.)
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I thought I'd check on signal strength indicators, so tried gotsky.com. No problem. Got there. Can't remember my password, used my generic, no go, and NO WAY TO REQUEST A PASSWORD CHANGE. Which means I'll have to call customer service, talk to a dolt, and get it re-set. Except that there is one thing about CS with Wildblue/gotsky: the customer service is out of Wildblue, which means I get to talk to someone 8:30 to 5 weekdays only. PST. Which is a whole lot of fun for someone on eastern time. Thus, I can't get hold of anyone there until about 11:30 a.m. in tomorrow morning. Supposedly, their "24/7 technical support" can help, but that would be a first. Usually, they bounce you over to customer service or tell you to call customer service when it opens.
As an incidental point, I did change IE to Mozilla for newsgroups. Same old shit.
I guess I stick with google, because I am NOT paying 25 bucks extra for a NG reader when I'm already paying a premium price for a lump of shit.
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come with OE, and their NG reader. Problem is what service provider you are going to use.
As mentioned, I like Xnews. Many do. It's free, a big plus. After you get used to it, it works just fine. I switched to it after the old Netscape newsreader went belly up. Didn't like the then new variety from NT, nor OE, or Agent, or one or two others, and settled on Xnews.
Your problem, though, is service. There are some free newsservers, but generally only text. I once tried the trial of Giganews. That was VERY Fast and comprehensive. I did it because I was visiting out of of town, away from my Verizon service, and you can only access the Verizon newsservers if your connection is through Verizon. So before the 4 week free trial was up I canceled the subscription. If Verizon were ever to start charging, or gave up usenet access, I would take a Giganews subscription at $5/mo, or one of their competitors. Luckily, erizon is still going strong, and I am very satisfied with their triple play FiOS package here in North Jersey.
Just my devalued 2 pennies.
--
Best regards
Han
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I don't know how those satellite guys do it, but the cable companies hate to lose an account.
So far, every time I canceled, they came back with someone from "retention" to try and talk me out of quitting and, in the process, agreeing to my demands. I did this in FL with COMCAST and in NC with Charter.
Key is being prepare to actually walk away. Netscape will sign you up for $6.95/month for twelve month contract. I used that over local phone lines in NC until I got Charter TV/Phone/Internet for NET $54/ month! (after several complaints). And, when that deal runs out, I tell 'em "Sorry, too much, and switch back if they on't extend the deal.
These companies NEED subscribers - all the expense is sunk in setting up the cable/DSL/Satellite and they need us to recoup the original investments and show a profit to keep their stock afloat.
With the economy tanking, consumers are in a stronger position as foks begin to drop their cable for free TV we may see a softening in prices (for those who threaten to leave) . Unlike Food and Shelter, most of us can do w/o the TV and HS Net.
THe phone lines and central switches are all being upgraded to support DSL and that will improve POTS as a consequence.
Go ahead, hang up on them and see if they don't start calling you back and offering to send a guy out there to ix your problem "no charge."
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Yeah that works but with HD there are several satelites to tweek to and signal strength is more important on HD than SD.

The 3rd Dish Network satellite system I installed for my father 12 or so years ago had a bad co-axial cable and the strength would go from great to terrible if I touched the cable. Of course moving the dish the slightest bit moved the cable. A new cable solved that but it tool me a couple of hours to isolate the problem.
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On Sat, 8 Mar 2008 14:57:46 -0800 (PST), Charlie Self

That doesn't sound right at all, you're aiming YOUR receive only antenna!
I've installed my own Sat. service at several locations. We got BRUTAL rain today, and our service never skipped a beat.
One thing I've noticed about satellite TV is that the quality of the install is everything, since the receivers actually power the outdoor parts. My in-laws kept losing their service. When I looked at it I found stuff like finger-tight connections open to the weather, a non-waterproof splice on the roof, they had re-used poorly installed and corroded cable TV wiring in one part of the house, etc...
On my own installs, I've sealed the connectors and used brand-new home-runs of quality wire, etc...
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On Mar 8, 6:56 pm, "Bonehenge (B A R R Y)"

I do NOT have problems with the TV satellite. The guy who installed that did a wonderful job...still nothing to watch, no matter how many channels, but what the hell. That's not his fault.
Come spring maybe I'll get my fat ass up on the roof and realign the antenna. I'm not sure how the transmit on this thing works, but...
And it does look as if I'll have to get a real pro to pull in my newsgroups, all two of 'em.
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<<snip>>

I'm not exactly sure about it, but I think that the alignment kits rely on receiving a carrier "tone" for lack of a better term from the sat and you tune on that, going for the strongest signal...sorta like the Luftwaffe used to find London during WWII.
Or I could be way off on this...never done it, just a memory of a memory that I read somewhere.
I'm hoping that someone will prove or disprove this, but I'll wait.
Mike
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I think you're right, but can't find the kit in all this clutter. As I recall, it's a fairly simple directional deal, with the aid of a gauge, and a downloaded list of angles.
Now, to download Xnews.
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what.
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Han
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Downloaded xnews, it can't find the server. I don't have time to play with it further right now. Family lunch coming up, so I need to change into clothing less like something plucked from my shop rags.
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Special|Setup Xnews
I think that this link should answer all questions, but feel free. (I googled "Xnews setup")
http://www.slyck.com/xnews.php
--
Best regards
Han
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Bonehenge (B A R R Y) wrote:

If you check the Wildblue site you'll find that it's bidirectional via satellite, so it's not "receive-only". That being the case one is required to have an FCC license to mess with the antenna.

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Well, right now, it's irrelevant. I can't climb a ladder.
I do love the way companies change things and don't lower their prices...the changes are almost always ones that save them money, cut services to the customer and do not result in price drops.
According to the latest Verizon BS (they've been saying it will be here in six months since we moved back here nearly four years ago), it should be here shortly. The fact that my actual service is intermittent, regardless of Wildblue's customer service idiot saying it's an act of God when rain interferes, is a contract breaker, I think. Yesterday evening, it went down for no reason I could determine. I know it was snowing like crazy--200 miles west of here. Maybe that affected it.
The extra speed is a help. I can't upload or download much on these country phone lines, and I can't view about 70% of the sites I'd like to use for research when I'm running 26.6K or 19K whatever. The latency is enough to drive you crazy, and for some reason it loves to eat the mouse indicator, so you're never sure where your changes will be made.
Astonishingly imperfect technology for something as expensive and widely available as it is. There are good and obvious reasons why satellite Internet is the last possible choice for broadband.
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On Sat, 8 Mar 2008 23:04:11 -0500, "J. Clarke"

A-ha! With a transmitter, that would make sense.
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