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roadrunner webmail not accessible?
December 22, 2012 10:35 AM   Subscribe

My folks are visiting. They won't migrate to contemporary email services such as gmail, preferring to rely on the email service from their broadband provider, Roadrunner. On the road, they have used "https://webmail.roadrunner.com/" as the point of access in the past. However, at the moment, the website appears to be universally inaccessible from within my hole LAN, wired or wifi. When I access the URL, no browser completes the page render. If allowed to timeout, I can examine the source for the page, and the sent content includes a frame hosting a javascript which appears to loop, directing the frame to load "https://webmail.roadrunner.com/". They are not interested in setting up mail client access or forwarding. How can I solve this?
posted by mwhybark to Computers & Internet (17 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Call Roadrunner customer service to see if they have an alternate URL or any advice? Your parents can't be the first to have had issues with the webmail.roadrunner URL.
posted by lovelygirl at 10:38 AM on December 22, 2012 [2 favorites]


pastebin link to pagesource.
posted by mwhybark at 10:41 AM on December 22, 2012


Use a web proxy service and hope it works when accessed from somewhere else (IP-wise).

Use a VPN service and hope it works from somewhere else.

Have them run down to the local Starbucks or McDonald's.
posted by jgreco at 10:43 AM on December 22, 2012


there are hundreds of pages of requests for help available on the internet on this subject, mostly responded to by instructions to either configure a mail client or to contact roadrunner. the roadrunner support requests seem to generally produce no resolution or support instruction loops such as "disable your webfilter" or "verify your connection to the internet".
posted by mwhybark at 10:44 AM on December 22, 2012


Clear your cache and all the general flushes on your browser.

Maybe download a low impact browswer like Opera for just their use. If it works, it will always be there for them only (unless you decide to use it too). There are other browsers too that you can try. (you can run multiple browsers on the same machine. I currently have 5, 1 main and 4 for testing stuff)

It could be though, your ISP's hatred of all things RoadRunner. If that is the case, any browser install could be moot.
posted by lampshade at 10:50 AM on December 22, 2012


I bet they can log in through a service like mail2web.com
posted by lgandme0717 at 11:00 AM on December 22, 2012


nthing mail2web

or ease them into gmail by letting gmail check the RR account.
posted by Mad_Carew at 11:08 AM on December 22, 2012 [2 favorites]


Try going to https://webmail.roadrunner.com/do/dologin?l=en-US&v=standard and see if perhaps it gets you past the flaky landing page.
posted by pla at 11:20 AM on December 22, 2012


the resistance to gmail is based on an unwillingness to provide personal details to national-scale third-party services. mail2web, a service which provides access by performing passalongs for userid and password, fails their security comfort requirements.
posted by mwhybark at 11:34 AM on December 22, 2012


OK, although Time Warner Road Runner is not a small local outfit.

So, how about a back2myPC or secure tunnel/VNC solution to their home computers?

Or if it's your ISP, how about getting a MeFi or other 3G/4G device, or tether a laptop to an iPhone and let Verizon or AT&T act as the carrier?
posted by Mad_Carew at 11:42 AM on December 22, 2012


I like the idea of a MeFi device!

Roadrunner support as expected performed a fingerpointing ballet, same for my ISP.

Roadrunner email is POP only, so even after I convinced mom to set up a device-based mail client her requirement that her home desktop unit remain primary invalidated that approach.

pla's suggestion of skipping the convoluted redirects looked good but in practice failed. commandline pings and traceroutes and so forth actually show the roadrunner servers responding appropriately, so the filtering appears to be at the roadrunner end - which they disavow via support.

They turned off their desktop machines before heading out, so remoting in is a no go.

I think this is beyond resolution.
posted by mwhybark at 12:39 PM on December 22, 2012


The source that you pasted in looks like code that would be for iframe busting. If your router, isp, and browser aren't interfering with the html in some way (adblocker? other plugins?), you could try a vpn as others have mentioned. Also, make sure you can get to https versions of other websites.

Also, while google is a larger company than time warner, it's not by much. That is a weird reason to not want to switch to google. AFAICT they are pretty serious about respecting people's privacy and the law (note that respect here means complying with their own TOS, so if ads based on your email keywords isn't your cup of tea, so be it).
posted by Phredward at 1:55 PM on December 22, 2012


We do pop-only email all the time when we travel. We just set the device to not delete the messages once it downloads.

If you really want to dig into the problem, you'll need to go a level deeper than the page that you get.

If you look at the page in Safari's web inspector, FireFox's Firebug, or whatever they call it in Chrome, you'll see a bunch of sites in use, including doubleclick.net. Your ISP or your router settings may be blocking something that RR expects.

You might want to use one of those browsers to see which thing it fails to load and see why you can't load it all.
posted by Mad_Carew at 3:51 PM on December 22, 2012


I agree with your parents and wouldn’t consider Gmail either. I use POP mail through Comcast all the time traveling, and from other computers.

I seems like you must be blocking something, or I’m not understanding. I can go to that page just fine in iCab and I can’t see half the internet because I’m blocking so much. In Safari it does have an ad, so that might be your problem.


Have you tried http://help.rr.com/chat?
posted by bongo_x at 4:30 PM on December 22, 2012


If they have privacy concerns with Google, etc., why don't they register their own domain name ($10/year or less)? Some services make it pretty easy, and come with free email.
posted by dcipjr at 5:25 PM on December 22, 2012


Maybe RoadRunner Mobile?

That's RR's mobile browser landing page. They claim it has a simplified webmail interface. You might need to force your user agent to present itself as a mobile browser of some kind? (Although it appears to work for me without tricks.)
posted by snuffleupagus at 4:47 AM on December 23, 2012


Quick update: access returned without me doing anything. Therefore I suspect some sort of outage between my ISP and Roadrunner, possibly DNS involved.
posted by mwhybark at 12:19 PM on December 27, 2012


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