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[personal profile] randysmith

So I've had ISP service with Speakeasy DSL for a while now, but I'm beginning to get a little sick of them. My original reason for going with them was that they provided a static IP address and that they had knowledgeable, geek-friendly technical support. But over the years both how knowledgeable and how geek-friendly their tech support is has gone downhill, I haven't used the static IP, and speakeasy's pretty expensive, especially with the current economy (I'm paying $60/month and Verizon's $20 at their cheapest, and $43 if I find I really need good bandwidth (which I actually doubt I do)).

But my sense of the "standard" ISP world is that if you step one step out of the box they've set up for you they come down on you like a ton of bricks. And I have a few things that I'd really like that are non-standard:
* Two IP addresses (both dynamic is fine). They're both NAT routers; I keep my wireless network separate from my wired network.
* Tech support not getting hives when you mention the name of a non-Windows OS.
* Ok with sending outgoing mail with a different address than my incoming mailbox. I have my own domain and have no interest in having mail sent directly to an ISP I may leave next year (or month). The last support call I had with speakeasy they told me that I was using them for email forwarding, and that wasn't supported (Dude, I'm on your network and I forward the address in my From: line straight back to you; how is this forwarding?)

I'd like to have:
* No outgoing port filtering. I'm not planning on doing server stuff (see "never used static IP" above), so incoming port filtering, while annoying and wrong, I don't care about on a practical level.
* Preference for net neutrality; I realize that I may not get this.
* SSL & Password (or better) authentication for outgoing mail (I want this because I've found authentication to be correlated with being able to send email from behind firewalls, and I'd like SSL so my password isn't in the clear :-}).

Am I crazy to look a little longingly at Verizon's prices? More generally, what ISPs do the folks on my friendslist use? Many of you are substantially geekier (along this axis) than I--I can't believe that you hook your computer directly up to the wall and use the email address that Verizon gives you. What options do I have for a non-speakeasy DSL ISP that'll let me keep my current setup?

Thanks much in advance ...

(no subject)

Date: 2009-03-06 03:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frotz.livejournal.com
The only other game in town that I know of is Worldband (http://www.worldband.com/). I know somebody who has a couple of static addresses and pays a lot less than mentioned above per month, but I'm not sure whether that's generally available. (Also, Worldband seems to not advertise to end users at all, but will happily provide them net. Their customer service is awesome.) I say "the only game in town" unless you've actually found a way to get multiple static addresses from Verizon, which I didn't think was possible without a rather pricey business-oriented plan.

We have the medium Verizon DSL plan, 3Mb/s down and 768kb/s up, $30 a month. As far as the actual movement of bits goes, it's great. I don't use their mail servers at all, though; all they see are a lot of encrypted bits going back and forth, and they don't seem to mind. There have been a handful of late-night maintenance windows (over years of service) where service dropped for a few minutes, but it's far from frequent enough that I've thought about setting something up to automatically restart pppd. Also one actual "something broke" outage which was well-documented on their service status site and fixed within a few hours.

Why the need for static addresses? Any chance having a colo box somewhere else (real or virtual) will give you what you need?

(no subject)

Date: 2009-03-06 05:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frotz.livejournal.com
No love with the multiple addresses per se, but these days I think they hand you a combo dsl/NAT/802.11 hub thingie, so if you plug your hardwired machine into that and just use the verizon box for 802.11 it might give you what you want. (I've got an ancient bare-bones DSL modem, and have a linux box talking pppoe to verizon.)

(no subject)

Date: 2009-03-06 02:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dancingwolfgrrl.livejournal.com
I'm not clear on what the email problem is: I also have a domain and use an email address on that domain, and therefore just never touch my ISP's email servers.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-03-06 03:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dancingwolfgrrl.livejournal.com
Oh, yes, I see. I do have an actual domain that lives on an actual box in someone's server farm; my domain address is not a redirect. Verizon is a pain in the ass in that you have to wait on hold with them for 30 minutes to get anything done, but they are cheap -- I pay $24/mo for an ADSL line.


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