Dialling.....No answer

  polymath 19:34 26 Jun 03

Most times I try to connect to the internet lately, I get the 'no answer' message in the dial-up connection box (attempt after attempt).

Occasionally, I get through first time. When I can't, changing an ISP setting and changing it back again often seems to do the trick, but that may be a red herring!

I use Win98SE, Internet Explorer & Outlook Express (same problem whether from IE or OE, but I believe they use the same settings anyway).

My ISP's Eircom (Ireland's equivalent of BT), and previous problems haven't been any fault with them. (No use suggesting British ISPs, as they're not amongst the handful available here).
Eircom.net does have its busy times, but I don't think they'd cause such persistent problems (and at various times of day).

In Control Panel - Network, Microsoft Family Logon, Dial-up Adaptor & TCP/IP are all enabled. I've been through all the settings I can think of, without seeing anything I know to be wrong (from my limited knowledge). Any ideas would be gratefully received!

  graham√ 19:42 26 Jun 03

Can you hear the modem dialling?

  graham√ 20:58 26 Jun 03

Testing, testing, 1 2. Hello! Anyone there?

  mammak 21:19 26 Jun 03

There is a lot off ISP,S out there that are not just British, cant say i have heard off your one, but i live in Scotland and although not often have this problem, mostly between 6pm and 9pm, is the worst time,think world wide Internet an awful lot off people trying too connect, it really is going to happen to all off us, at least once in a while, think on a dail up most anytime ISP,S would give you 150 hrs dail up per month, in the real world we are not going too get this, there will be load,s oh good folk,s up here that will give you advice, but i would imagine the will say pretty much the same as me , on dail up as on broadband, you have too shop around to find what suit,s you, in our aera we dont have an option of broadband, so it,s dailup for us. good luck mate , regard,s Mammak

  polymath 21:30 26 Jun 03

Yes, sorry graham - had to go away for a while.

I have the modem silenced, as our place is somewhat open plan, I usually connect in the evening & the sound would wake people.
I'll turn the sound on tomorrow morning & listen, and come back to you.

I think I'll find I can hear it though - the symptoms seem to point to it dialling ok, but an error becoming apparent later.

I was wondering if the modem was set to wait long enough, if there's a glitch on the line, before disconnecting - the phone line here is sometimes noisy. In Modems - properties - connection - advanced, the Extra settings box is currently set to S10=50 (tenths of a second).

  polymath 21:43 26 Jun 03

Thanks mammak. We're in the same boat re broadband - I'm in west Donegal. And on pay-as-you-go; not worth paying a sub so far.

I suppose it could be just heavier internet traffic - when I got connected 2 or 3 years ago I didn't know any other locals with computers; but lots have now, and it could be a countrywide trend.

  mammak 22:01 26 Jun 03

polymath,west Donegal. Well mate am fae Newton Stewart, wee place eh, but ok, Stranraer, doe,s that ring a bell mate we are about 22 miles over the water, big regard,s pal fae Mammak

  graham√ 11:00 28 Jun 03

Was away myself yesterday. If you could listen to the modem dialling, then listen for the response, you should hear a scratchy screeching noise which would indicate a connection.

I'm not sure what the 'Extra' settings are, my 56k modem has a setting for 'Cancel the call if not connected in', default is 60 secs.

The noise on the line is certainly worth investigating. Report a fault to Eircom as intermittently noisy, don't mention computers at this stage! If your line comes from a pole, see if it passes through any trees.

  bof:) 11:49 28 Jun 03

Hi polymath,

just a thought are you using a firewall? If so are you sure its not periodically stopping you connecting to the net.

I've had this problem when using NTL and Zone Alarm.


  polymath 21:03 28 Jun 03

Thanks graham - I'll look at the setting you mentioned. And if the default's 60 seconds, I'll try that/leave it at that, and also make sure that other setting isn't overriding it. (I can hear the modem, making just the same sounds as before I silenced it).

Our phone line is on poles, and there's lots of weather here!

However, I may have found the answer, so I'll mark this resolved for now. Usually, the first thing I do on the net is check for emails; in my case via Mailwasher. Same problem tonight that way, but then tried opening Internet Explorer first, and it worked first time. Then opened Mailwasher & downloaded emails OK (before closing Internet Explorer). So it looks as if Mailwasher is having/causing a problem with the initial connection (which it didn't used to), but not with an existing connection.

I then saw bof:)'s message (thanks!), which seems like circumstantial evidence. I don't use a firewall (I had a nightmare of a problem with one once, and don't connect for long periods anyway), but maybe Mailwasher can cause some similar problems.

I use Pc-cillin (real-time monitor on all the time except during some installations), but I don't think it's causing the problem, as it's on when connecting via IE.

I want to continue using Mailwasher, so if I can't solve the problem I'll just connect via IE first.

Thanks for the help.

  polymath 20:40 30 Jun 03

Post script - that wasn't the answer after all! But when the problem returned, I tried increasing the modems-properties-connection-advanced-extra settings to S10=100, and that fixed it (touch wood!). So in this case it can't have been Mailwasher, Eircom (or heavy net traffic) or IE.

My 'cancel the call if not connected' setting was at the 60 secs default.

I'm a bit puzzled by the maximum S10 being 255, meaning only 25 1/2 secs, while the 'cancel the call' default is 60 secs. But I suppose they must do different things. Another thing to learn about!

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