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falling down7

Natrona Heights, PA

can i use a pulse phone line for dial-up?

I am getting my parents a computer for christmas so they can use the internet,I am going to recomend they start out with dial-up in case they don't care for it, my question is they have the pulse phone lines (even when you put the phone switch to tone it won't dial out it will just make the tone sounds)so my question is will the pulse phone line effect the dial-up operation? will it still work? thank-you!chris

the Outsider

Valrico, FL
That would all depend on if your ISP setup supports pulse/rotary dialing.

Milford, NH
·G4 Communications
reply to falling down7
The ISP does not care if the phone line is Touchtone or pulse dial.

The problem with pulse dial is the modem must support pulse dial to call the ISP. Not sure if any modems can be set to pulse dial rather then tone dial. The alternative is to set the modem to manual and dial the call from regular phone.

Are you sure the line will not accept tone dialing? At least here in NH it has been years since the Telco changed for Touchtone and defaulted to pulse dial.


falling down7

Natrona Heights, PA
I'm not sure but all thru childhood all we could ever have was pulse (we lived 1/2 mile into the woods away from the road) I guess they'll just have to check into it,thank-you all for answering my post! chris

falling down7

Natrona Heights, PA
reply to tschmidt
Thanks to your reply I went searching and found on my computer that you can indeed change the modem settings in control panel under phone and modem options then edit! thank-you for the suggestion and keep this in mind if anyone ever asks again! chris

reply to falling down7
I used to run a public BBS in the 90's, so I have some experience with "modem tricks". In the case of "pulse dialing", the remote modem neither knows if you are doing this (or cares), because as soon as the receiving modem gets into the picture, the call is already dialed and answered!

So the only limits on "pulse dialing" are on your end (your modem, the telco phone line you are using, and the configuration options of your dialing software). If all three support "pulse dialing", you can do dial-up with pulse dialing. While I haven't personally been on dial-up for a few years now (and I had "tone dialing" for years before that), I used to do dialup with "pulse dialing" a lot in the late 80's and early 90's.

I'm not sure how common it is these days to have modems that allow pulse dialing, but it used to be very common (although not talked about much) in the 90's. For example, pretty much all the US-Robotics modems I've owned allowed pulse dialing, if you configured your software for it. Specifically, it was very common to "tone dial" a number by sending the modem "ATDT number", but if you wanted to use pulse dialing you instead sent the modem "ATDP number" (the T or P standing for "tone" or "pulse").

Again, I don't know how common it is for the current crop of modems to support the legacy "pulse dialing" feature, but I'm sure you can still find them if you look carefully. And as to the "dialing software" issue, that's a simple matter of getting some dialing software that lets you configure which string you use for "making a call" (and then changing it from ATDT to ATDP).

NOTE: With many older modems, you could actually make a "dial-up" connection AFTER making the call manually. All you needed to do was send the modem "ATD" (start a modem connection without dialing any digits first) after dialing the call "manually" (from another phone in the house, for example).

In fact, if both sides are "cooperating", you can even make the "dial-up" connection AFTER using the same call for talking voice. What you need to do in that case, is for the "receiving side" to tell their modem "ATA" (immediately "answer" the call), and the other person/side tells their modem "ATD" (immediately try to connect as if I called). If all goes well, you two have just converted a "voice call" into a data/modem call WITHOUT HANGING UP!

Passionately apathetic
Houston, TX

1 edit
reply to falling down7
My uncles computer connects via dial up on a pulse line. Like the OP, switching to tone does nothing. AFAIK any old modem will work, in fact his old one died so I put in whatever they had on sale at the Office Depot next door to the pet store when I went to buy cat food, and it worked just fine with no additional software. If you are going to be using the built in Windows' DUN protocol, you will need to insert a P infront of the number to force pulse dialing. So to have the modem call (555)-123-4567, you would enter the number as P5551234567