VPN, newsgroups. They should definitely allow the VPN and they should get newsgroups back.
VPN isn't going to hurt anyone and it isn't going to put any excessive load on their system either. There is no reason to charge extra for VPN.
The newsgroups thing too is kinda weird, they should give those back to people.
Traditionally, the difference between residential and business services is whether you are installing the service in a residence or a place of business, not what you are using the service for. A home based business, for example, is most likely a residential area. That is why they call it home-based. You can't build a factory in your back yard. So if you ordered internet access for your home based business, they you would most likely order residential, not business.
You can get residential SDSL, you can get business SDSL. Business accounts, even at the same bandwidth, say 768/768, will have like 24 or so IP addresses and come with different hardware so you can hook up larger numbers of computers; residential accounts will come with 1 or 2 IP addresses and they won't include a router but you just hook your machines up to a hub.
Residential and business are traditionally NOT about what you use your computer for, they are whether your computer is located in a home or in a business.
Comcast would definitely be breaking new ground if they say that using VPN is a business use. If you are using it from HOME, it is a residential use. If you are in an office building, it is BUSINESS use. That's why our employers don't have cable modems.
And there are a lot of people who want newsgroups. Therefore Comcast should provide them with newsgroups. They are paying more money for the service and receiving less services.
| || To write off home expenses for business the IRS requires you to have an area designated as a "home office", and you can only write off the proportionate footage of this area, not the entire home, as a business expense.|
Therefore it would be provable in court, that occasional use of VPN, would not be a business use, because the IRS will not recognize occasional use of a residence, as a business expense.
Happy @Home user since April 2001
Let's face it, none of us are getting out of this life alive.
network performance vs. revenue It seems that a common thread running through this whole problem we have on our hands concerning Comcast High Speed Internet is that there appears to be a lack of consideration for the performance of the network when it comes to implementing additional network features whose only purpose is to generate additional revenue for the cable company.
It is easier to understand a change in speed (it's still a big shock), it's easier to understand having to change e-mail addresses, IP addresses, DNS servers. These things are necessary to keep people connected. I highly doubt anyone, including Comcast thinks that people are going to be overjoyed by these things. We all realize that it would have been easier for everyone involved if nothing had changed. Comcast is also well aware of this.
What is difficult to understand is why Comcast would do something that drastically (or even not so drastically) impacts the performance of the network for no other reason than what appears to be an attempt to generate additional revenue for themselves.
The proxy server is a very good example of this. Somewhere between "many" and "most" of the problems people were experiencing were alleviated when the machine was removed. The machine was not there for the customer's benefit. Only after there was talk of Michigan Attorney General and things like that did the machine "mysteriously" come down. It was obvious the proxy server was causing MAJOR problems, the machine should have been removed sooner. Sounds like we might be in for the same situation when it comes to banning VPN.
Sort of like saying that we have to pay extra to be able to do a secure credit card transaction over the internet.
The whole concept of the internet is to bring diverse hardware and software together and make it work together. The spirit of the internet is one of cooperation, not one of putting up barriers. The idea is that someone's Windows XP box can speak to an IBM mainframe can speak to a Sun Microsystems server can speak to a Linux box can speak to a Palm Pilot can speak to a cellphone, and so forth. Furthermore, these communications can take place using a diverse array of cables and transmission mechanisms -- fiber optics, telephone lines, CAT5 cables, satellite links, wireless links, SCSI cables, coaxial cables, etc.... It's actually pretty amazing if you think about it.
We as a public want broadband. Broadband is still in an infancy stage, sometimes hard or impossible to get, often unreliable, filled with belly-ups and customer horror stories.
To achieve a state of affairs that will alleviate many of the problems we have today concerning internet access, cooperating will be the only way to do it.
Disallowing VPN is simply putting up a barrier. Charging extra for it is really getting people upset.
Now we arrive at the truth. In order to disallow VPN, the only apparent reason being that disallowing and then charging extra for VPN can become an extra source of revenue for the ISP, everybody's connections' performance has to suffer.
So let people use VPN and leave it be... connection performance doesn't suffer.
Disallow VPN, monitor the network (a broadcast network to boot) so that you can charge extra for VPN, and everybody's connection performance gets negatively impacted.