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Best of DSLreports (dsldigest)
Volume I, Issue I


Welcome to the first issue of the Best of DSL Reports, otherwise known
as the DSLDIGEST. We hope this will become a bi-weekly newsletter,
but if we dont accumulate enough for a new issue, we'll wait till we
do.. we're not into filling your mailbox with short newsletters for
the sake of it.

DSLDIGEST is put together by Matthew Ballard, who is the most prolific
contributer on the DSLR boards. Nothing escapes his eye!

In this Issue

1. Site News
2. Fish Torturing!
3. Networking No-Nos
4. Making sense of wiring
5. Want to see a 'Redback' ?
6. Speed Tweak: Myths and Legends
7. Web by Voice
8. What really goes on behind the scenes?
9. EarthLink/MindSpring Latency!
10. New Poll

1. Site News

---> Speed tests now have an archive of results.. you can search the
archive by your ZIP code, or by domain name. visit:
and find out how YOU compare to your neighbors, and others on your ISP!

---> Despite all the discussion on network shares, its still vary hard
to know where to start to share your PC. Wouldn't it be easier if you
could just find someone with similar equipment to you, and just ask them?
well now you can ... Network setups described online can be searched
by KEYWORD .. this means it is easy to find others in a similar "mess"
to you. Visit:

2. Fish Torturing

boneland.com has taken our directory of 'Broadband required' sites by
storm, shooting straight to the top of the charts, in front of Adcritic.com
which looked like it was going to settle in to #1 spot for the rest of
the month!
boneland.com has been described as "hysterically funny infantile humor",
with the most popular exhibit being "The Fish 3".. The fish 3 is digital
stress relief - torture an animated fish..
Check out boneland.com, and other popular sites at

3. Networking No-Nos

Wiring your house properly can be a challenge, and there are plenty of
big mistakes you can make along the way. Check this thread for some
howlers, for example
* mack1951: Running the wires along quality wood-work using staples
and getting smacked in the head by your wife.
* J Advocate G: stepping on one of those staples. OUCH!
* Greywolf: If it aint broke department: getting into the telco wiring
closet to "improve" your connection ....
* pimp: opening your alcatel touch home modem thinking you can tweak
it because the tech that came said this modem can be modified to
go faster. Sproing! parts everywhere..
* kshrum: (BIG NO NO) Sawing through the wrong wall to gain access
to the pipe run to string your cat5 cable to the wall jacks..

View these and others, contribute your own disaster perhaps!

4. Making sense of wiring

If you want/need to make your own ethernet cables (straight or
cross over), (and who doesnt)? take a look at this thread:

and at the bottom is a good set of diagrams for the connectors:

We also recommend the network wiring resources listed at

5. Want to see a redback?

If you're interesting in the type of equipment that runs much of
the DSL infrastructure, take a look at this 'Redback' streaming
media advertisment. Broadband to the home has required the creation
of the "mega pop", the million subscriber network centre.. this
needs some heavy duty equipment. Check the thread:

6. Speed Tweak Myths and Legends

If you are confused as I was about the number of claims made by
SPEED IMPROVEMENT programs and websites and registry patches, then
looking at a new tweak matrix page will help.
Check out this grid to reassure yourself that, for your version of
Windows, you really have finished tweaking and can get on and use
your connection! Life is a lot simpler for users Mac, Linux, BeOS
and FreeBSD operating systems though.. they just work!

7. Web by Voice

Voice interactivity on the internet will be an important for the internet
for widespread usage. IBM is starting to work on getting that out there.
This reuters story covers the IBM plans to enable voice browsers. The idea
is that voice, over cellphones, will probably be the most frequently used
way of accessing the net in future, so they have started building on XML to
allow developers to voice-enable web services. (using IBM web server
software of course). I can just imagine:
human: "todays horoscope please".. synthesized voice: "Todays horoscope for
Aquarius, is... you maybe being overcharged for long distance service, say
ONE to switch to AT&T".

8. What really goes on behind the scenes?

Tier 1, Tier 2, BB group, CX's .. what are all these terms? its the
land of Bell Atlantic Tech support! and you can catch up the first episode
of life as a BA Tech Support guy by reading:
As a double bonus, read the scoop on what REALLY goes on after you order
a DSL line, penned by an anonymous ISP employee at

9. EarthLink/MindSpring Latency

EarthLink/MindSpring users now have their own board, as they were clogging
up the Speed/Gamers Latency board with huge threads. Obviously a popular
DSL provider!
For those interested in what has happened with the MindSpring problems in
New York, the New York POP is up but not at capacity, and not everyone has
been switched over yet. Most of the current users that have been moved are
getting really good ping time (10-20ms to the gateway), but only about half
their maximum throughput, and the people that haven't been switched are
seeing better ping times. To read more, or to read/post to the new
EarthLink/MindSpring board, it's underneath the Telocity on the board
listing, and you can get there directly here:

(if this is wrapped for you, the whole link should be one line)
All The forums are here of course:

10. New Poll

A new poll is up. People are being asked what they most want to see in DSL,
Faster? Cheaper? Easier to get? or More Secure? check the results and vote at



Best of DSLreports.com is put together by Matthew Ballard (mballard), and
edited by Justin Beech (justin).
Dont want to see another one of these, hate DSL and broadband news in
general, dont want us watch us struggle to make an interesting newsletter?

Have you seen something in the site you think should be in the next issue?
do you want to see something covered? seen anything on the web that should
be mentioned? Send it in! mailto:mballard@dslreports.com