View Full Version : What I need to know about SBC/AT&T high speed Internet

03-08-06, 03:18 PM
I'm currently in the process of setting up all my utilities for my new house (I move early next month). I have a bundle of phone, TV, Internet and cell phone through SBC/AT&T/Cingular on order. I was wondering about the Internet hardware I would need. I know I'll need a wireless router, which I'm going to pick up this week. As far as the modem goes, do I have to buy one through SBC or do they provide it for free? I'm not going to lease it because that would just be throwing money away.

I'm new to the whole broadband on my own deal since my current roommate's handled all that stuff for the last 3 years.

03-08-06, 03:28 PM
SBC used to provide a modem for free, but I'm no longer sure since they'be been bought out by AT&T and the price has lowered to $12.99 a month.

Netgear makes a pretty sweet integrated dsl modem/wireless router (Can be had for $40-$60 if you look). Others make integrated units. I have one and would recommend it vs. using the provided modem & separate router.

You should be able to look at the ATT website for modem included? details.

03-08-06, 07:32 PM
The last person I know who got SBC DSL got a modem/wireless hub included with the deal, so maybe you won't need anything!

03-08-06, 07:57 PM
If you end up needing a DSL modem let me know, I've got a Westel you can have for free; it has integrated routing/firewall/port-forwarding/NAT. You'd need a passive switch (or AP, if you're going Wireless).

03-08-06, 08:22 PM
I am not a big fan of SBC dsl, but its primarily because of their contract and service here in parts of austin. They were just not worth dealing with.

Their kits are pretty all-inclusive. If it wasn't for my experience with the tech/customer support, I would probably say they are decent. And they give you a pretty complete package.

03-08-06, 09:12 PM
Here its comcast, sbc, or rnc (i think) and sbc is by far the best service wise, comcast had a 10% downtime when i tried it, pretty pathetic if you ask me, heres what i got right now... (sbc dsl)

Connection Speed:

• Incoming: 2688 kbps

• Outgoing: 512 kbps

03-08-06, 10:47 PM
SBC's service here in Chicago is supposed to be pretty decent so I'm not too worried about it. I'm going with them primarily for cost. Comcast is the only other game in town (at least that's not entirely wireless and God knows I'm not going down that road again) and they're far too pricey. I'm not looking for maximum speed as I'm likely not going to notice the difference between 6 Mbps and 1.5. I will, however, look into SBC's 3 Mb down/1 Mb up to see how that will affect our bottom line. But the one I have set aside, which I think is 1.5 down/384 kb up, it's $75/month including phone and satellite TV. Comparable services with Comcast would be about double.

03-08-06, 11:15 PM
That's not a bad price at all for a combined service.

03-09-06, 10:57 AM
OK, SBC is officially :retard:

The house I'm buying has never had a land line installed on it. SBC can't check if DSL is available until they hook one up. I don't want to pay for it only to find out I can't get it. Looks like Comcast is going to be my only option since Wide Open West isn't available. :(

03-09-06, 11:01 AM
In Florida, where I was, there were a couple of companies offering fibre connections.

THEY were laying the optics down to your place, for free, if you were within a certain distance of where their relay was. If there are any such options available in Naperville, check it. It's more secure and typically less throttled.

What does comcast offer? Is it cable/dsl? And does earthlink/TW have a setup?

They also offer packages for tv/phone/internet.

Son Goku
03-09-06, 11:24 AM
OK, SBC is officially :retard:

The house I'm buying has never had a land line installed on it. SBC can't check if DSL is available until they hook one up. I don't want to pay for it only to find out I can't get it. Looks like Comcast is going to be my only option since Wide Open West isn't available. :(

The problem in the case of aDSL is a technical one. It has some serious limits which include having to be within 15,000 ft from the CO (central office, which contains the phone switch), or < 12,000 ft for decent mBit speeds), can't run over any fibre that's in the phone line, and some other technical limits. Some in building networking equipment (such as a hookup wrt some alarm systems) can also be problematic. Which is why they have to check it out. Some other offerings such as iDSL or sDLS don't have as stringent limits, but are also limited. This isn't so much an SBC issue, as it's a technological limit on aDSL limit...

If you can get an exchange for what your phone number will be, it is possible to check it for availability at many sites such as


albeit as I remember, you have to select an ISP, and then "test for availability". In fact, you might want to go to this site anyhow, as they host various consumer reviews of their own broadband service, and you can get an a-priori customer rating based upon their own past experiences. The review sections for the ISPs you mentioned can be found here...

Comcast has 2 entries:


The first link is for Comcast, the second "Comcast - formerly AT&T broadband, given that Comcast and AT&T's cable service underwent a coporate merger sometime back)



In the case of DSL, when I last moved, I got the approval from the landlord to get the phone hooked up early on, and several weeks before I moved in. And then my line could be tested, so DSL service was up and running on move-in date. That said, Speakeasy also has a fairly good "move service" option for existing customers; albeit this technological limit is still in place with aDSL. Not sure how SBC performs there...

03-09-06, 01:06 PM
I've spent the better part of today scouring DSL reports looking for alternatives.

Here's the funny thing. I had Speakeasy check my distance, and I'm going to be about 14,700 feet from the CO so I'm just out of range. Even if I were available to get service, it wouldn't be anywhere near the advertised speeds. There are no FiOS providers to where I'm going so that's out. I won't do wireless again. Satellite is no good.

The people we're buying the house from already have Comcast, so at least I'll have something. I'm not entirely happy, but I don't have any other options. I wonder if their 8 Mbps service uses a different backbone that won't get as congested during peak times.

03-09-06, 01:55 PM
If your cable service is anything like mine, you should be fine.

I have a 6Mbps (claimed) line and it works peachy even during peak hours. I haven't had lags or slowdowns. I think they've done a good job of fixing that issue.

Son Goku
03-09-06, 02:06 PM
One piece of advise; make sure to keep your downloads below 600 GB/month or you might be unhappy with the results. Some have indicated that their service has gotten cut off on them, with Comcast...

I've got a friend who has it (he's too far for DSL, though ironically enough he only lives a few miles from me, but way it goes...) He, has been using Yahoo email, and has not used his comcast.net email account. I'm not sure the exact reasoning, and if it's related to some of the Comcast email issues I've heard some claim. Thought I'd just throw that out there. Thought I'd just throw that out there... If you have gmail, and aren't sure about their email, that should suffice.

There is an option in the DSL space for 14k away from CO; however sDSL and the like is a much costlier option. I wouldn't bother with a T1 for home (they offer, but forget it, that's like mega-dollars and not really meant for home customers). ISDN is an alternative, but is limited at 128 Kbps for BRI (basic rate interface). It's also kinda pricey from what I understand. Perhaps my friend has some other comments wrt his experiences or suggestions, for which I can try asking him...