Thanks for the responses, I will poke around for a 'Save and Restart' link/button. I definitely have not run across it by accident yet.
Here's why you should always just call Actiontec and forgo the online form. This was their 'online' response to my issue:
"Doubtful a firmware upgrade would fix the issue. The unit memory has no battery backup and when you power it off for any length of time, the memory resets. Simply leave it on. The modem is designed with power saving chipsets and is supposed to be left on 24 hours a day."
I think they were confusing the word 'memory' with 'configurations settings'.
Of course the unit RAM has no battery backup...all RAM forgets everything when it loses power...that's why the configuration settings are stored in the NVRAM. Besides battery backups on-board with ic's are pretty much only used for CMOS chips, which are things you won't find in consumer grade routers. So anyway their answer misleads me into thinking that all actiontecs must be left on 24/7 to retain their settings
. After having fun reading that I simply called and got a very knowledgeable person.