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Posted: 1/5/2003 6:31:19 AM EDT
 I'm considering changing from dial-up to DSL. Where I live the phone lines are really old and my internet connections are very slow if I can get one. I don't really know what or how DSL works? How does it work? What are the advantages over dial up? Any help would be appreciated.  
Link Posted: 1/5/2003 6:43:51 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/5/2003 6:44:24 AM EDT by echo6]
The advantage of DSL is [b][red]SPEED[/red][/b]

If you have old phone lines, you probably cant get DSL, a high speed connection requires the new fiber optic lines vs. the old style copper ones.

Link Posted: 1/5/2003 6:44:21 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/5/2003 6:48:11 AM EDT by gomer]
To sum up the advantages DSL is faster and doesn't require a second phone line.

Edited to say: Check out www.dslreports.com for all of your answers. It is a great resource for DSL/Cable modem information.
Link Posted: 1/5/2003 6:46:59 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/5/2003 6:48:49 AM EDT by gomer]
Originally Posted By echo6:

If you have old phone lines, you probably cant get DSL, a high speed connection requires the new fiber optic lines vs. the old style copper ones.

View Quote

Not quite. DSL service is often not available because of the existance of fiber. Just because the lines are old doesn't mean that DSL service is not available. In fact, the existence of old phone lines is the reason why DSL exists. The phone company will need to remove any bridge taps from the local loop and as long as you are within about 18,000' of a DSLAM service should be accessible.
Link Posted: 1/5/2003 6:52:44 AM EDT
DSL runs over a standard pair of copper wires.

When I had mine installed (1999) they installed a separate line for the DSL. Now days the provider will typically "piggback" the existing line.

As far as the age of your phone lines go, I have seen DSL running at nearly max speed on old wires that the braided cloth insulation has fallen off and has corroded green.

The only way to find out for sure is to have the potential provider test your lines.

Link Posted: 1/5/2003 7:21:29 AM EDT
If you are REALLY interested in speed, get a CABLE MODEM, if the service is available in your area...I get T1 speeds all day long.
Link Posted: 1/5/2003 7:23:57 AM EDT

Go to www.dslreports.com and use their tools utility to check the distance from your house to the CO (Central office).  When I first got DSL I was 9000 ft away and had good service, in my new house I am 12,000 feet away and I have better service (their equipment got better).  The DSL signal is carried over the standard copper wires and has nothing to do with fiber optics.  The copper wires for phone usually carry signals in the 5khz range and the DSL signals start at 20khz.  These numbers are just examples but the ratio is right, the DSL signal is 4 - 5 times higher.  So with increased freq. you get increased bandwidth for internet.  When they install they give you little filters that you put on your non-computer line.  These filters filter all of the high freq. stuff that is intended for the computer.  Without the filter on the regular phone the conversations sound all staticky.  I have had DSL for 2 1/2 years and have had zero trouble.  The best thing you can do is run a direct line from the outside telephone hookup to where you want the computer, this way you get no splices etc.  If the installer knows what he is doing you go outside to the box and you run two lines; one for the computer without a filter and one for the regular phones and you put one filter on that before it branches out everywhere.  This is nice because then you don't have to use all of those little filters on each phone.

Link Posted: 1/5/2003 7:34:23 AM EDT
Negative on the fiber optics.  If there's any fiber in your line between your house and the central office you can't get DSL service.  

Your central office must support DSL service and the maximum length of the cable run is limited to 15,000-18,000 feet.  
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