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Anyone use dial-up ISP?

Online Learning   (1,113 Views | 7 Replies)

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I currently have cable internet but will be moving to an area without it. No DSL either. I'll be starting grad school online next month and I was wondering if anyone else uses dial-up internet for school;. If so how bad is it? I checked into Direct TV internet. It's $579 up front and $59 month. I'm not sure how the speed compares to dial up. They said the download speed was 500K and upload was 128k. Anyone know what this means and how it compares to dial up?

Thanks in advance for any answers.

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mona b RN is a BSN, RN and specializes in Child/Adolescent Mental Health.

769 Posts; 10,489 Profile Views

I currently have cable internet but will be moving to an area without it. No DSL either. I'll be starting grad school online next month and I was wondering if anyone else uses dial-up internet for school;. If so how bad is it? I checked into Direct TV internet. It's $579 up front and $59 month. I'm not sure how the speed compares to dial up. They said the download speed was 500K and upload was 128k. Anyone know what this means and how it compares to dial up?

Thanks in advance for any answers.

I have a feeling you will not like going back to dial-up. I am spoiled with cable internet and it would kill me to go back. I have never heard of having to put that amount of money up front for internet service.

I am also enrolled in an online program and I think there are people in my class with dial-up. So it would probably work for you, just not at lightening speed.

Hopefully, someone who knows about dial-up vs broadband will respond.

Good luck

mona

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328 Posts; 5,313 Profile Views

I also live in an area where the choice is either dial up or satellite. I have not made the jump to satellite yet but I may do it soon (assuming there are no trees/mountains in the way for line of sight). My computer modem is 53k but my actual speed is about half that. I am told this is because I am so far away from the nearest station and the phone lines are old- something like that. I know that once I do switch I will never be able to go back. That is one of the reasons I have waited. It is doable with dial up. I am currently in my third online class with UoP. We have to do a lot of PowerPoint presentations. If it is a particularly large one, it takes quite a lot of time to send/receive. I have learned to multi-task and do several things at once so I'm not sitting starting at the blue bar slowly moving on the bottom of the screen. Since I don't know anything else, it is fine for me. My son gripes and complains every time he uses the connection at home since he has lightning speed at his school.

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RedSox33RN specializes in Emergency Dept, M/S.

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Are you sure there is no DSL? I live in a very rural area, on a way-far-out-from-our-one-horse-town on a dirt road, and 6 months ago Verizon told me I COULD get DSL. I switched immediately. Be sure you double-check with all providers in the area.

But I did do online classes on dial-up. The only problem I had was disconnects in the middle of an online class discussion (mostly because they were at night, the dial-up provider's heaviest times), but thankfully never during a test, which I took during the day.

I think the above poster is right though, it will be hard going back. Maybe if you can get the DirectWay (which I looked into since we have Directv), the cost can be construed as education expenses and maybe you can claim them on your Federal taxes. Just a thought.

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traumaRUs has 27 years experience as a MSN, APRN, CNS and specializes in Nephrology, Cardiology, ER, ICU.

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I've been doing online classes since Nov 03 and had dial-up for the first six months - kept getting cut off - very frustrating. I live in a rural area and then we got cable put in and now - whew! Its wonderful - haven't had any problems. In fact - bought me a new computer and its wireless - so I can go all over the house and even outside on the deck. Of course, that kinda makes it hard to concentrate on boring old homework!

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I work for a communications company where we offer cable internet services. I also live in an area where I am stuck with dial-up. As far as DBS at 500k, that is 1/6 of the speed we offer. Before you lose your cable internet do a speed test at www.pcpitstop.com or www.speed411.com. That will give you some idea of what you would get from the dish. But 500k is still almost 5xs what you can get from dial up.

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146 Posts; 1,918 Profile Views

I'm in a semi-rural area and I don't have DSL. In town they do, and it's slowly growing, but very. Fortunately we do have cable, but that has only been for a few months ... just before I moved in where I am. Where I was (an hour away, even less rural) also did not have DSL yet. Some areas are still a ways away from getting it. FYI, if Verizon or the main phone company in the area doesn't have it, then no one will ... other providers simply rent the lines.

I used to use 56K and got on fair, but it's hard to imagine going back. I hear the new improved 'fast' connections are actually pretty good, even though they don't approach cable/dsl speeds.

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hello,

The $579 may sound like a lot to pay for internet service, but it works out a lot cheaper than paying $59 a month. In many markets where DSL and cable internet service are offered, you will pay between forty-something and fifty something bucks a month unless you've got some bundled package with the telephone company's local and long distance service or the cable provider's cable television service anyway, so you're not being ripped off on the cost of the service if that's a concern.

If you use the internet only for e-mail and to download small assignments for school then dial-up isn't such a bad thing at all. Its a LOT slower than the cable speed that you're used to, but the difference in speed isn't really that noticeable unless you download a lot of large files or if you need to access streaming video content for your classes. Dial-up can be a huge waste of time if you download a lot video and audio files or presentations that contain a lot of large graphics (i.e. some powerpoint slideshows and PDF documents). A big file that takes a minute or two to download on a cable or DSL connection may take hours to download on a dial up connection, and webpages also take longer to load. Worst of all, with dial-up, there's also the risk of the connection being dropped at any time (especially during peak hours when a lot of people are online) and if you're in the middle of an online quiz when that happens, you're screwed.

DirectTV internet service uses a satellite transmission instead of cable or telephone lines. Its much faster than dial-up, but it compares to the slowest type of DSL service that telephone companies call "dsl lite". What this means is that its fast, but still much slower than real DSL and a joke compared to cable. They're offering you download speed of 500 kilobytes per second and upload speed of 128 kilobytes per second. When you do the math you'll see that what DirectTV is offering is a fraction of the performance for the same amount of money. But, if there's no other means of getting a high-speed connection, and a 56k dial-up won't do, then...

Now for the drawbacks: You have to buy expensive hardware to attach to your computer, and its gonna cost much more than a DSL or cable modem. Last time I looked into this the hardware and satellite dish cost about $400, and if you don't know how to install it yourself they charge you another $200 to send somebody out to set it up for you. If you live in an apartment or condo you have to first check with the landlord or association if they will allow you to mount the dish on the property. Many associations will allow you to put a dish on your balcony but they won't let you put it on the roof. The problem with this is that if your balcony is facing any direction other than true south you probably won't be able to use the DirectTV service because the receiver must be angled a certain way and positioned so that it points directly at the DirectTV sattelite in the southern sky with no obstruction. If you have tall trees around your house, that could be a problem, too. As with the DirectTV television service, you will probably get interference if there's snow, heavy rain, or a strong winds so you'll always have to have a backup dial up program anyway.

I encourage you to think carefully about all this because it would be a shame to spend all that money and then discover that you don't like the service.

God bless!!!

T.

I currently have cable internet but will be moving to an area without it. No DSL either. I'll be starting grad school online next month and I was wondering if anyone else uses dial-up internet for school;. If so how bad is it? I checked into Direct TV internet. It's $579 up front and $59 month. I'm not sure how the speed compares to dial up. They said the download speed was 500K and upload was 128k. Anyone know what this means and how it compares to dial up?

Thanks in advance for any answers.

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