Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Customer Support

Our internet service provider, Comcast. has an online tech support system. You log on and some techie (in India, I'll bet) logs on, and chats with you (via some chat room thing on their site). I'm having a problem with our service, so I had to try to use it tonite. Below is my entire conversation, transcribed (with no modifications whatsoever).

>>>Beginning of Conversation

user Paul_ has entered room

Paul(Wed Aug 20 05:07:01 PDT 2008)>cannot connect more than one comp through wireless connection; freezes the modem.analyst

Pearl has entered room

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:07:07 PDT 2008)>Hello Paul_, Thank you for contacting Comcast Live Chat Support. My name is Pearl. Please give me one moment to review your information.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:07:13 PDT 2008)>Hi there! How are you doing?

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:07:17 PDT 2008)>good. how r u?

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:07:40 PDT 2008)>Glad to hear that.I am doing fine, as well. Thank you for asking.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:07:55 PDT 2008)>Paul, may I know if your router comes from Comcast?

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:08:00 PDT 2008)>yes. it did.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:08:10 PDT 2008)>im sry. u mean the cable modem?

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:08:12 PDT 2008)>Thank you.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:08:19 PDT 2008)>No, the router.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:08:25 PDT 2008)>oh. no. it didnt.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:09:17 PDT 2008)>I see. Have you tried to bypass the router by connecting the modem directly to one PC to check if the router is the issue?

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:10:04 PDT 2008)>the router isn't the issue. I'm connected directly through the modem now, but the whole setup works great as long as there's only a single computer trying to access the net.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:10:11 PDT 2008)>i've been using it for two months that way

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:10:22 PDT 2008)>but we just got another computer, and it won't work now.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:10:37 PDT 2008)>i also purchased another router today and tried that

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:10:47 PDT 2008)>same results. either one or the other computer will work

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:11:01 PDT 2008)>Have you configure the router before you connect it to the modem?

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:11:00 PDT 2008)>but as soon as i try to get on with the second comp, it freezes the modem.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:11:15 PDT 2008)>yes. as i said, it works fine, until I add the second computer

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:11:15 PDT 2008)>Have you configured the router?Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:11:20 PDT 2008)>then the modem freezes.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:11:26 PDT 2008)>yes i have configured it.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:12:22 PDT 2008)>Please try to check first if the modem will work without a router. If it will allow the computer to work without a router then compare the results.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:12:50 PDT 2008)>yes. as I said, i'm working directly through the modem now; no router.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:12:53 PDT 2008)>so that works.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:13:11 PDT 2008)>Then it is verified that there is a problem with the router.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:13:15 PDT 2008)>nope.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:13:35 PDT 2008)>because i can plug the router in, and work online just fine with only one computer.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:13:39 PDT 2008)>so the router works great.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:13:54 PDT 2008)>If the router will work fine, Paul, it should allow another PC to connect after you connect the router to your modem.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:13:55 PDT 2008)>as soon as I try the second computer, the MODEM freezes (the router continues working)

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:14:03 PDT 2008)>I should.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:14:05 PDT 2008)>but it doesnt

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:14:08 PDT 2008)>so...

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:14:11 PDT 2008)>we have a problem.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:14:24 PDT 2008)>with the modem.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:15:10 PDT 2008)>May I know what made you say that there is a problem with the modem if it is allowing it has a connection?

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:15:20 PDT 2008)>ok...

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:15:36 PDT 2008)>I mean if it is allowing the other PC to connect.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:15:38 PDT 2008)>the modem freezes as soon as a second computer tries to get out on the net

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:15:50 PDT 2008)>i can still see both computers through the router...

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:16:02 PDT 2008)>i just can't get out onto the net

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:16:38 PDT 2008)>does that make sense?

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:17:08 PDT 2008)>Allow me to explain.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:17:12 PDT 2008)>ok

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:18:28 PDT 2008)>The modem will provide connection to the PC. If there is a router, the signals will go through the router before it reaches the PCs. If the PC is not able to get a connection when you connect it through a router then the router is not giving enough signals to the PC, right?

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:18:51 PDT 2008)>Make sure that all the cable wires are plug in.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:18:54 PDT 2008)>i DO GET A CONNECTION through the router though...thats my point. I have been for two months

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:19:25 PDT 2008)>But you are not getting a connection but can connect with just the modem?

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:19:38 PDT 2008)>yes. I ALSO have a connection when I connect through just the modem.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:19:47 PDT 2008)>THE PROBLEM is that i now have TWO COMPUTERS

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:19:59 PDT 2008)>and when the SECOND computer tries to connect, the modem crashes

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:20:13 PDT 2008)>NOT the router

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:20:38 PDT 2008)>(i have two routers, and I've tried them both independently tonite, with the SAME exact results, so the problem HAS to be the modem)

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:21:31 PDT 2008)>Okay, if you insist I will send a technician over to fix the modem which comes from Comcast to be able to check this on your end.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:21:47 PDT 2008)>Will that work for you?

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:22:03 PDT 2008)>I'm not "insisting" anything...if you'd rather, we can just cancel the service, and I can go with another provider...

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:22:14 PDT 2008)>I'm simply saying that the modem has an issue...

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:22:27 PDT 2008)>and I've verified that against two routers

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:22:45 PDT 2008)>Paul, please understand here in chat there are certain limitations.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:23:13 PDT 2008)>We do have tools that is currently monitoring the status of the PC.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:23:18 PDT 2008)>I mean the modem.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:23:25 PDT 2008)>okPearl(Wed Aug 20 05:23:50 PDT 2008)>I have seen here that the modem status is fine and it is getting enough signals on our server.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:24:33 PDT 2008)>Let me try to ping the modem to further check it here.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:24:45 PDT 2008)>Here is the result.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:24:47 PDT 2008)>PING 64 data bytes
72 bytes from icmp_seq=0. time=54.6 ms
72 bytes from icmp_seq=1. time=54.9 ms
72 bytes from icmp_seq=2. time=54.6 ms
72 bytes from icmp_seq=3. time=53.4 ms
72 bytes from icmp_seq=4. time=54.7 ms
---- PING Statistics----
5 packets transmitted, 5 packets received, 0% packet loss
round-trip (ms) min/avg/max/stddev = 53.4/54.4/54.9/0.59

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:24:52 PDT 2008)>the modem is fine now because i only have a single computer connected to it

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:25:28 PDT 2008)>in order to demonstrate the problem, I'll have to connect the router and the second computer; unfortunately that'll end our conversation

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:25:30 PDT 2008)>so...

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:26:29 PDT 2008)>Yes, please do that is the only way that we can check and verify the real cause of this. Make sure to Powercycle everything once you have connected the router before turning everything on.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:27:00 PDT 2008)>im going to lose do I get back to you?

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:27:42 PDT 2008)>I may not be able to assist you once you chat back however you can inform the next agent who will handle you regarding the steps that we have done from here.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:27:50 PDT 2008)>we haven't done anything

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:28:17 PDT 2008)>When you powercycle the modem please do not forget to unplug the modem for a minute or two.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:28:35 PDT 2008)>yes; i know. i've had to do it like 30 times tonite...

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:28:33 PDT 2008)>Then re-insert cable modem plug into electrical outlet. Allow cable modem 30 seconds to initialize before starting computer.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:28:42 PDT 2008)>ok...

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:28:55 PDT 2008)>thanks.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:29:15 PDT 2008)>You are welcome.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:29:26 PDT 2008)>So are we now set to go from here?

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:29:30 PDT 2008)>sure.

Paul_(Wed Aug 20 02:29:32 PDT 2008)>thanks.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:29:53 PDT 2008)>You are welcome.

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:29:59 PDT 2008)>We are here for you 24 hours a day 365 days a year! To learn more about your services and find answers to many questions, please visit our FAQ pages:

Pearl(Wed Aug 20 05:30:07 PDT 2008)>Analyst has closed chat and left the roomanalyst Pearl has left room

>>>End of Conversation.

I give up...


Katie Booker said...

WOW!!!! I really think they hire idiots to converse on those help chats!
I was laughing tho!

LAS said...

Hey PJ, don't you love talking to those people? It was good seeing you and your wife at camp meeting.