Satellite Internet Works well

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by mysticokra, Aug 4, 2004.

  1. mysticokra

    mysticokra Well-Known Member

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    For those of you who suffer with a dial-up internet connection, I wanted to share our experience with you.

    We get our internet through www.direcway.com.

    I am in the sticks, in between mountain ridges. No Cable, DSL, etc. My internet download speed is about 1MPS and the uplink is around 100K. This works well for browsing, but is a little slow for my wifes VPN work. Nevertheless, it does work and costs about $100/month. (Bought the dish separately.)

    Satellite TV comes on a separate dish.
     
  2. WanderingOak

    WanderingOak Well-Known Member

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    $100.00 per month is a bit pricey for internet alone. Then again, you mentioned that your wife uses it for her work, so it could be considered a business expense. If the only choices that I had were dialup and satelite, I would stick with dialup unless I needed the high speed for work. How well does the dish work in heavy rain/snow?

    Does the satelite internet work with anything but Windows yet? I was researching it, but as soon as the salesman laughed in my face when I asked about Linux or Mac support, I turned around and walked the other way.
     

  3. HermitJohn

    HermitJohn Well-Known Member

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    I keep my eye on satellite internet as I dont need a telephone except for internet so I'd just dump phone service when prices get close enough. Think 2 way satellite service can be had for like $59 and I have heard that latest equipment works with anything supporting usb or maybe an ethernet card, meaning any modern operating system. Even windows only system, you could use minimal windows box to connect and then network to that with whatever you want to use.

    Right now I pay $23 per month for basic phone plus $6.75 for 300 hours reliable internet service, so if I ditched phone and dialup isp, take $30 off that $59 and cost me $29 per month more than I pay now to have it. Price gap has to close even further though as I cant justify spending extra on satellite. I dont need the speed except for fun of downloading new software to try and such things as that. Be different if somebody was paying me and fast connection was needed for income generation.

    No if I moved further out into boonies and had to pay $20 month for isp service and had even crappier phone lines than I have here, then I dont think I would hesitate as basic phone service keeps inching higher and will be $30 within 5 years I imagine. 2 way internet may drop further in price also as the technology gets better. 1 way satellite can be had really cheap (one place I read about even lets you reuse those old large satellite dishes that are sold as scrap anymore) but it requires you also have phone and a dialup isp, so not really much of a bargain.
     
  4. Mike in Ohio

    Mike in Ohio Well-Known Member

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    mysticokra,

    Is your wifes work over VPN using windows or is it command line (lots of interaction)? Also, is it an IPSEC type VPN or is it an SSL VPN? I've been thinking about getting satellite but I'm wary because it may not be suitable for my work.

    TIA

    Mike
     
  5. Paul Wheaton

    Paul Wheaton Well-Known Member

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    I tried the satellite internet. Two way from starband. It was terrible. I spent far more time on tech support than it supposedly would have saved me in speed.

    For regular web pages it was about as fast as dialup. For big stuff it was faster. Since most of my stuff was regular web pages (like this forum), it wasn't worth it. This had to do with the speed of light and the distance between my and the satellite (latency).

    I now have wireless. There is a series of wireless points from Spokane out here to the sticks. High speed with no latency. I do use VPN.
     
  6. big rockpile

    big rockpile If I need a Shelter

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    I've got Direcway but it only cost me about $50. :confused:

    big rockpile
     
  7. sisterpine

    sisterpine Goshen Farm Supporter

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    Greetings from my mountain top! I have direcway sat hookup for internet all so and I find it to be pretty reliable. Goes down sometimes due to weather though. It can be had for 650.00 for equipment and then a monthy charge. Or 100 per month for the first twelve months to pay off equip and then the monthly price goes down to 59.00 also. Not bad if you can get nothing else and have no phone or land lines of any kind. The new 6000 unit will work without having to download any programing to your puter too. Makes it much easier to change computers when needed.
     
  8. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    Is there a usage download limit?
    BooBoo
     
  9. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Hmmm...when we had Direcway hooked up for the TV the salesman refused to sell us the internet service. Said 90 percent of their customers were unhappy with it and he wasn't recommending it to anyone else.

    Guess it depends on where you live.
     
  10. savingup

    savingup Active Member

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    For those who have Internet access (high speed) and want to get rid of their phone service, Voice Over IP (voIP) is coming down the pipe.

    Right now you can use a program called SKYPE (free of charge) to talk with others through your Internet connection. All that is needed is the program, speakers and a microphone. Soon the program will be able to call land lines.

    I use it regularly to talk with my friend in Scotland. He is on dialup and I have DSL. Works just fine going both ways.

    It is not like the older programs where one person had to talk at one time. The program streams both ways, just as if you are on the phone.
     
  11. Mike in Ohio

    Mike in Ohio Well-Known Member

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    So here's a silly question......

    Say I signed up for satellite service.... how difficult is aligning the dish?

    I'd like to be able to take advantage of it at home as well as at the farm. Maybe mount it on a trailer so I can haul it back and forth.

    TIA

    Mike
     
  12. RobinAnn

    RobinAnn Well-Known Member

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    I don't think you can do the alignment yourself. FCC regulations require professional (permanent) installation because you are uploading in addition to downloading (unlike satellite TV). I guess they don't want you beaming "whatever" at the "wrong" satellite.
     
  13. desdawg

    desdawg Well-Known Member

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    I called Direct TV a while back about my television service. Asked about taking one of my receivers portable in an RV. Actually to a permanent RV in the mountains. The customer service rep told me that many truckers actually take their service on the road and watch TV in their sleepers. They usually purchase a special dish that sets up easy and can be rotated on a tripod. Direct TV doesn't sell them but she gave me the names of some companies that do. So maybe the internet service couldn't be handled in the same way? It would look pretty reasonable if it could serve two residences. But I suppose the equipment expense, someone said $650, would double? I have never seen the equipment so I don't know how portable it is. Just thinking...........one thing you never want to hear me say is "IIIIIIIII been thinking"
     
  14. RobinAnn

    RobinAnn Well-Known Member

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    TV only satellite service is transportable and do-it-yourselfable, but satellite internet is not. (At least according to direcway's website.) Again, FCC regulations.
     
  15. RobinAnn

    RobinAnn Well-Known Member

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  16. texican

    texican Well-Known Member

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    I've got Direcway, one way w/dialup 40/month.

    You can move the one way dishes. Easy to set up the dish...IF, you have your pole completely vertical, and no obstructing trees. The dishes are rather large, so it would be a chore to move the dishes between locations....The two way dishes need a certified installer, as the dish is sending a strong signal skywards. Those dishes have to be high enough so that nothing can get in the way...the radiation isn't too healthy for living critters.

    There is a usage limit, called the FAP, fair access policy. FAP occurs if you dl 160mb in a short burst. You can massage the FAP, using dl managers, to get large bursts, slow down or stop, and start over...I've gotten 600mb in a day.
     
  17. JulieNC

    JulieNC Well-Known Member

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    I was researching it, but as soon as the salesman laughed in my face when I asked about Linux or Mac support, I turned around and walked the other way.

    Direcway has been upgrading, and I believe I'm correct in saying that it now supports Mac.

    We've had Direcway for more than a year, and I have mixed emotions. Our telephone lines are antiquated out here, and Sprint has no plans to upgrade them. Consequently, we were having a very hard time even maintaining a dial-up connection. We had lots of noise on the line--not enough to really bother you in terms of voice quality, but bad enough to wreak havoc with an internet connection. Sprint won't fix the problem, maintaining that they only need to provide voice quality service. :no:

    We have no access to cable--it stops at the front of the entrance to our subdivision, and even though I've asked, they won't extend it. When I asked about paying the cost to bring it to our place, they said it was cost-prohibitive (which is probably true considering everyone in here has about 10 acres).

    We also live too far out for DSL and ISDN would be even more expensive than satellite since they'd charge us monthly for installing extra boosters along the route.

    Given that, Direcway is a good alternative for us. Still, if you have access to something else, get it. It's expensivem, and when something goes wrong, it's rarely easy to fix it yourself. I've found that while it's faster than dial-up (and certainly a lot more reliable for us), it's not all that fast . . . loading pages can take almost as long as dial-up. (And we have two-way service, which is supposed to be faster!) Others, however, have different experiences.

    In my mind, Direcway only makes sense if you can't get anything else in the way of high speed access.

    We're going to upgrade to the new equipment next month and I'll let folks know how that goes.
     
  18. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    TV setup with an RV is a breeze after you've done it a few times.A tough setup is 15 minutes,Ive got some the first time I put it up.
    BooBoo
     
  19. mysticokra

    mysticokra Well-Known Member

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    The direcway internet satellite is a different group from the directtv satellite.
    Most of the TV guys can't sell you the internet.

    The satellite group sent a technician from about 80 miles away to install mine. I bought a "business profile" for 90/month, which was more than the 'home user" because it gives me more bandwidth on the uplink. It also got me a static IP address, which makes diagnosing any VPN issues easier.

    My XP system works great on this. My wife's windows 2000 system seems to have more difficulty. I am sure there are a few tweaks we could make to her system, but we are beating up her IT people to just go ahead and give her an XP box. I am always amazed at corporations who purposefully stay a year or two behind the IT curve. Their logic is "we don't want to be test subjects for Microsoft." The reality becomes they just suffer longer with known bugs.
     
  20. Paul Wheaton

    Paul Wheaton Well-Known Member

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    I say again: look into wireless. I'm about 35 miles away from my wireless internet provider. They have a wireless point about five miles from them, then another eight miles from that, and then another and another and then one that is near me. The one that is near me can serve people as much as ten miles away. That serves about five small towns and gobs of farms.

    MUCH faster than satellite. MUCH easier and MUCH more reliable. Installation is about a quarter of the price and the monthly is less than half.

    There are about four companies that offer wireless in Spokane county and the range of all of them is constantly growing.