Why does BT say my laptop can't handle broadband?

  bart warstein 23:44 14 Jan 06
Locked

I use a old-ish laptop with an AMD 400 MHz processor and Windows 98 Operating System(I know, it's not exactly the latest model, but it's reliable!) I plan to change from PAYG dial up to broadband. My local exchange has ADSL (no LLU). No cable in our area. I checked ISP sites and forums, and used the BT Broadband online compatibility checker to make sure my computer was OK. Bizarrely it said the OS was no good and that Win 95, 98, ME, 2000 or XP was required (yeah, well mine's Win 98... so what's the problem?) Similarly it said the laptop processor was inadequate, minimum of 233 Mhz needed (yeah, and mine is 402 Mhz...). So can anyone explain the why the BT checker verdict seems to be so illogical? Do I have to get another computer, or will mine in fact cope?

  Skyver 23:46 14 Jan 06

It will cope with broadband to an extent, purely browsing will be fine - watching video via Quicktime or streaming audio while browsing may give you some problems.

  Skyver 23:47 14 Jan 06

It will be best to use an Ethernet/RJ45 BB connection rather than USB, eases the load on the CPU.

  CMC 42 23:49 14 Jan 06

DON'T GO WITH BT - the wireless router is useless, cuts out all the time for 'Training' their customer service is teribble and after haveing this really poor service for less than 3 months my friend has managed to get BT to give them a weeks free broadband and the disconnect the broadband free of charge.

Have you tried using other checkers on other broadband providers to see if it comes out right? There might be something that none are recognising properly.

  Skyver 23:51 14 Jan 06

ISP aside, I've often used a Pentium MMX 200 with Win98SE ,1,2 & 4 megabit/ps broadband and had no problems updating Windows or browsing.

  VoG II 23:59 14 Jan 06

I don't have any experience with BT as a broadband customer but I do with their so-called telecoms. I switched to Telewest cable as soon as it was available. BT are a shower - I would only go back on pain of death - maybe not even then, they were so awful.

  bart warstein 00:04 15 Jan 06

Thanks to Skyver for this reassurance: my usage plans are modest - browsing but no serious audio/video streaming etc. I'll see if I can do online check on other sites: many just seem to list the minimum spec.

Re the connections, I haven't got modem/router yet, but was reckoning on using an Ethernet wired connection, or maybe wireless (!). In either case I'd have to get the relevant PCMCIA card adapter (providing RJ45 socket or wireless 'receiver'). Would there be any problem with this?

As for choice of ISP... there's good and bad reviews of almost all of them. I'd shortlisted BT, NewNet, F2S and one or more of the "Brightview" group (IC24, Freenetname etc). May just end up flipping a coin!

  josie mayhem 00:16 15 Jan 06

Humm... it sounds like a computer that I maintain for a Friends son, according to the set up disk that should be used to connect his bt broadband service up, his computer is also unsuitable, apparently to there checks, he is running windows 3.1 and has only MB of memory, so refuses to set up.

But his computer is only 2 years old runs xp home, and has MB of ram, the processor is around about Hz or there abouts....

So when I need to reset up his Internet the only way I can do it, is by doing it manually, by loading the drivers and placing it through a dial-up connection.

And apparently concerning my own Internet, I can't even have broadband at all!!! but I have a MB connection that runs happily (I don't use bt but onetel who told me this when I tried to upgrade from MB broadband)

The only suggestion that I've got is if you know any one who is already on broadband is to try to set up your computer on theres or take a risk and order it and hope for the best

  Skyver 00:18 15 Jan 06

No `problems` as such with wireless, except to check the software/hardware combo works with Win98, and bear in mind you will only be able to use WEP encryption by default with `98. It's better than nothing but not hard to crack; WPA-PSK is the next step but requires either a third party solution (and probably more CPU power than your laptop can spare) or an up-to-date Windows XP.

  Skyver 00:20 15 Jan 06

This used to be free click here

  wee eddie 00:30 15 Jan 06

New BT Router Voyager 205. works with USB2 or an Ethernet connection.

It's pants with USB1.

Maybe that is the reason.

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