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Free Dialup UK Article - Best Dialup connection issues


Majority of the internet users in UK still uses dialup connections to access internet. Dial up connection can be used through your phone line and modem. There are often some issues that can occur with your dial up connections. Here we discuss some of the most common issues…

Modem hardware and drivers

Modem is the most important device in a best dialup connection. This device connects your computer to your phone line to access internet. Some of the regularly occurring issues are related to modem.

Some modems use firmware or modem drivers while other modems use both firmware and modem drivers. Often, updating Modem Drivers and updating modem Firmware can enhance performance and increase a modem's tolerance to line noise or errors. To get the most out of your computer and the dial up service, it is important to maintain the highest performance possible from your modem.

Over the years, there have been many changes in the modem technology. Modem manufacturers are constantly working to improve the quality of connections made by their modems. As new technologies are developed and bugs are discovered and corrected, modem manufacturers release updated firmware or modem drivers so customers who own one of their modems can take advantage of these fixes and developments. You can constantly check your modem manufacturer’ to release better versions or newly updated drivers. This will help you to keep pace with the improvement in the dial up technology to boost your dial up connections.

Modifications or Additions to Phone Equipment

In modern era, there are more then one devices that can be attached to the phone line. New phone equipment such as Fax Machines, Answering Machines, Additional Extensions or Home Networking equipment may be added to your phone connections. Often these devices of one of these devices create issues for your dial up connection. The problems can range from additional noise on the phone line or failing connection.

Root cause of this kind of problems is improper installation of one of the devices. If these devices are added to same phone line that you use to access internet then it becomes very important to see that each device is installed properly. Even the installation of additional telephone lines run through various parts of the house can be problematic if they were not correctly installed.

Testing for these problems can be very easy. You may just temporarily remove other equipment to see if the issue persists. If the issue has started after recently added device then remove that device first and see if the disconnect or noise problems gets rectified. One by one remove the application from the assembly and see if the conditions improve. If a particular device is creating issue then reinstall it properly. If the issue persists then there is a possibility that the device is defective.

Note: - When testing for problems by disconnecting other equipment, it is very important to remember that the power supply may have to be unplugged but the phone cord attached to the connection jack on the wall which should be temporarily removed.

External Call

Dial up connection failures can also happen when you receive a call while you are accessing internet through your phone line. At this time the modem may drop the connection. You may avoid this issue by having a modem with call waiting feature.
The call waiting feature allows a modem to stay connected to internet while an external call is received. At the same time the modem signals the user that a call has been received.

The call waiting feature can be kept enabled or disabled per your requirements. If call waiting is enabled while you are using your dial up connection then the modem connection will be interrupted when the cal is received. On other hand, if the call waiting feature is disabled then the modem will notify the user about the received call but the connection will not be terminated immediately. When you sign off and your modem hangs up the phone, Call Waiting is reactivated.

Modem Noise

The original telephone lines were created to carry verbal communications. With the advance in technology we started using it for other functions such as dial up connection to access internet or to send and receive fax messages. Dial up connections usually makes some sound while dialing but usually good quality connections are “peaceful”. But it is a fact that analog lines such as a phone line is prone to pick up noise if the quality of line declines. Dial up connections are more susceptible to noise than voice communication.

When noise interferes with the signal on the phone line the computer's modem has trouble talking to the access terminal the other end. In bad cases, If the modem cannot be sure it is still connected because the noise is too much or the CPU is busy to control it then it can lose contact with the service terminal entirely causing the connection failure.

Line noise sounds like cracking, popping, or screeching noise. Conversations on a phone line, usually indicates noise on the line. However, noise that can cause problems with a dial up connection may not always is detected by simply listening to the receiver. You will need to check the modem and the telephone line individually to pin down on the source of noise. You may also check the modem on other line or another “peaceful” modem on the phone line.

Limited System Resources

Modems can be either software controlled or controller less. Both types of modems are very much dependent on system resources for their performance to increase or decrease speed of your dial up connection.

All software programs tend to occupy system resources per their requirements. It is possible that a new program or software application recently installed on your computer has reduced the amount of system resources available to other applications or hardware. Some Memory resident applications such as memory managers, device drivers can cause modem connections to fail or run slowly.
In this situation, it may be necessary to run fewer applications simultaneously to get these types of modems to work more efficiently.

Human Interaction

Another issue that can make a dial up connection to fail is the human interference. The modem needs only one phone line and occupies only one phone terminal. In a home with multiple telephones sharing one line, a person picking up another extension in the house can cause a modem to disconnect. Fax machines or computer modems pick up the line and start dialing without sensing that the line is clear or not. We human can make out whether the line is busy or not by listening for a dial tone. However, there is usually no way for the other person to know that the phone line is being used by a modem until they pick up the receiver and listen. This mostly happens then a person unknowingly picks up the phone from other extension when the line is accessed by the modem to access internet. At this point, the modem may drop the connection.

Conflicts between Software applications

Some software applications that you installed can create a conflict in your system. These conflicts often cause your dial up connection to fail. In some cases, event like the installation of another software program at the same time may turn out to be a reason to create conflict. It is not very easy to pinpoint the exact cause of the conflict in most cases because of the number of different possibilities. It is always better to do some investigation to track down the cause of the conflict.

Electromagnetic interference

Electromagnetic interference can be a factor in causing your modem to disconnect. Furthermore, it may also cause damage to the circuitry of the modem device. Most residential phone line wiring is susceptible to such interference because of lack of shielding. Older phones can also create line noise since they were never designed to take into consideration modem use. Poor quality phone wiring is a common problem in older houses.

The fact is that the wiring that was used for voice phone calls may have been adequate for verbal communications but today's fax machines and modems require higher-quality wiring. There are certain precautions that dial up connection users should use.

1. Make sure that your phone line does not run parallel to other wiring for long distances.

2. The phone line should not be wired near to high end electronic systems such as computers and home theater systems as they produce heavy electromagnetic field when they are active.

3. Consumer electronics devices such as TVs, radios and microwave ovens that emit Radio frequency waves may damage the wiring. So, make sure to position then at a good distance fro your phone line.

4. Devices with motors such as fans are sources of electromagnetic interference if they are wired in the same channel as your phone line.

5. Electric appliances such as lights with dimmers or lights that use fluorescent bulbs and other electrical appliances that use a lot of power should not be kept active near your phone connection for a long time.

On final note, you may not be able to keep your dial up connection setup from all the sources of problems but taking precautionary steps time to time and regular maintenance and update will keep your dial up connection from breaking down.


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