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Archive for November 2nd, 2007

The Allmighty Greek ADSL Adventure

Posted by ILL Natured_gr on November 2, 2007

Let’s begin with a listing of some useful info and stats…

-I live in Nea Makri which is a city 32Kms away from Athens,Greece’s capital and host of the 2004 Olympic Games.

-DSL (we only have ADSL to be accurate) arrived in Greece in May 2003; As a completely new technology for the Greek standards it had to overcome some serious (technical) difficulties… Luckily it arrived at my small town in Jan 2004.

-I was one of the first (Feb 2,2004) to have a “fast” internet connection with the lightning speed of 384/128 kbps… (real speed approx. 290/100 kbps based on over 10 different ADSL speed tests) paying the incredible small amount of 61 Euros ($78) per month.

-Things were always going smooth with a slight problem lasting for over 45 days (Jun-Jul 2004) when the actual speeds went down to Pstn dial-up level… Nothing extraordinary happened,as we learned 3 months later (!) some innovative men had put 120 ports where the maximum limit was 60… No apologies from my ISP,no refunding,no comment…

And after some other slight problems not worthy mentioned here,we came to last week…

Thu Oct 25 : At about 5:30 pm i discover my router’s led flashing… Got ADSL ok but the router couldn’t get an IP,thus i don’t have internet connection…

Step 1 : Called my ISP since i thought it was a common malfuction at their end (not that something serious has happened,in the last 10 days it occured only 3 times). Told me everything was fine at their end,it had to be something at mine,so i must call the “ADSL Help Desk” (that’s NOT a translation,it’s how we call it in Greece!) to inform me about the status of my line…

Step 2 : Called the “ADSL Help Desk” which informed me that i should wait it out,such things are common (!) but just to be sure i must call the telephone company and inform them about my line’s malfuction.

Step 3 : Called the telephone company and informed them about my problem.

**IMPORTANT NOTICE! I forgot to mention that i use the internet for the needs of my work too!**

-1st call 6:30 pm : “Thank you for informing us,we forward your problem to our digital center,if it’s something that can be fixed by them it will be fixed shortly”.

-2nd call 8:30 pm : Same as above.

-3rd call 9:45 pm : Same as above plus “we’re closing shortly (yes,they close at 10pm!!),unfortunately you must wait ’till tomorrow”.

Fri Oct 26 : -1st call 9:15 am : “We have no newer information from our digital center”.

-2nd call 4:00 pm : “Our digital center reports that your problem was fixed in 3:15pm!”
But it isn’t!!”
“Ahh,it isn’t? This things happen,no problem,we’ll report your situation again at our digital center”.

-3rd call 7:30 pm : “We don’t have any further notice from our digital center”.

-4th call 9:35 pm : “We don’t have any further notice from our digital center,unfortunately we’re closing shortly”
“And what shall i do now???”
“If it’s done until our closing time OK,otherwise you must wait ’till Monday.Someone from our digital center will call you to fix a meeting (!) inside the next two working days (if the problem can’t be fixed from our digital center)”.

Sat Oct 27 : No calls were made – as well known nothing works in Greece during the weekends…

Sun Oct 28,Greece’s National Holiday : 10:53am (Still asleep since i work at nights and since i’m a night type of guy) : First my cell rings (ignored it),then my standard phone (again ignored it), then my cell again (decided to take it since i thought something serious has occured)
“Hello,we’re from the digital center,is your problem fixed?”
“Just a minute to take a look,unfortunately no”
“Ahh,OK no problem,we’ll check it out” (!)
“And what happens next?”
“If it’s something that can be fixed from here OK,otherwise someone will call you to arrange a meeting in the next two working days”

**IMPORTANT NOTICE** How come they work on a Sunday which happens to be a National Holiday too? Simple… working overtime is payed double!

Mon Oct 29 : 9:15 am called the telephone company : “We don’t have any updates from our digital center”.

9:45 am : At a moment of despair i decided to call again my ISP since i thought my problem (perhaps) was due to my router (despite i checked it about 97 times ’till then)

“Hello,has anyone ever reported having problems with his connection due to his router?”
“Ahh,many times,it’s a rather too common problem”
“OK,thanks,i’ll try buying a new one,you never know,i’m desperate”
“It’s better to wait for the techs to see it,why spent your money for no reason?” (words of wisdom as i discovered later…)
“I don’t care about the kind of money i’m about to spent,i want my connection!
“I understand,what can i say,all the best”

11:00 am : Bought two (!) routers : One from the “official” shop of my phone company (never heard of that brand before but it was the only one available, right after it made a great gift!!) and an ADSL2+ (despite we don’t have ADSL2+ in Nea Makri!) expensive one just for my testing purposes (for the records: i kept it – hope i’ll need it in the near future,thus before 2100…).
A total expense of 90,80 Euro ($130) for nothing as it proved so a little later…

12:30 pm : Returned home and found out that my connection (and router) were working fine!!! (Ofcourse noone called me from the “digital center”…). I must be the only Greek who had an 832/224 kbps connection (the standard is 768/192 kbps)!!! Must have been a reward for my patience…
**NOTICE** As i’ve seen in my router’s log various connection attempts (done & failed ones) were made before “stabilizing” to this speed…

1:10 pm : In my extreme happiness of being able to use my connection again after 4+ days i decided to upgrade to 2048/256 kbps,which is the fastest speed available in my area (for only 29,50 Euros ($40) per month,a major progress considering it had about 70 Euros ($100) not so long ago…). So i called my phone company,gave my personal info etc.
“Ok, when you’ll upgrade my connection then?”
“In 10-12 days max”
“I don’t want to think that we’ll have any issues with my connectivity,eh?”
“No sir,your connection will be down for about 3-5 hours max (!) for our technicians to perform the necessary upgrades”

Wondering what happened? My connection upgraded on Thu Nov 1,9:12 am and the whole process took 1:47 minutes

**IMPORTANT NOTICE** A good friend of mine (also living in Nea Makri) is still waiting for his connection to upgrade after 9 days…


One thing’s for sure about ADSL in Greece : You’ll NEVER get bored…


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