internet problem/yellow exclamation mark/DNS pickle/woe is me
October 11, 2013 9:47 AM   Subscribe

After a recent change in routers by my service provider it's taking a depressingly long amount of time to connect to the internet. I need a fix explained to me like I'm your grandmother's less computer savvy friend. Details henceforth.

I changed broadband plans with Time Warner Cable about two weeks ago. Before I did there was a constant working stream of internet coming into and going out of my home. Then they brought out a new router (a Ubee U10C022) and plugged the bastard in. Since then, whenever I boot up my PC (running win7) connecting to the internet takes between 5 and 10 minutes.

After I open my browser window (Chrome), I get a circling of the 'reload' arrow before the screen tells me that I can't connect right now. However, when I click on the 'internet access' bars icon I am told that I am connected to my network. After a minute or two, a yellow exclamation mark appears over the tray 'internet access' icon. I sit and wait and after some time passes my connection is fine and I am exposed to the internet and all of the beastly wonders contained therein. If I allow my machine to run idle there is a maybe 90% chance that the internet's flow will have again been corked and again I will have to wait. As far as I can tell, it's the same wired or wireless.

Something is obviously wrong. Time Warner, being the saints that they are, has told me the problem absolutely has to be on my end and they will not feel any evil pangs of guilt for charging me to come to my house. I can only assume this is a DNS issue, but that's as much as I'm going to assume. For a few days, I thought I might have a malware problem, but 4 out of 4 different scans have told me I'm clean.

I do not fear the inside world of computers but at the same time I do not understand very much at all, so please forgive any seemingly simplistic things I may have overlooked. I need to be walked through in basic, elementary, and easy to parse steps everything that can be done on my end. Where do I start?
posted by hugandpint to Computers & Internet (4 answers total)
Best answer: Well, I'm far from a Networking God but this doesn't sound like a DNS issue. The best thing I could recommend is trying to isolate the problem. Try a new web browser. Get your hands on a second computer and see if you have the same problems there.

By all accounts the UBEE is a piece of shit. A number of forums suggest disabling flood detect and the firewall. Give that a try.

Pro tip: You don't actually have to pay Time Warner a (recently hiked) modem rental fee. You could go out and buy your own modem. In most cases, in less than a year a purchased modem will have paid for itself. But I guess every solution comes with its own set of problems - I'm not sure if TW supports third-party modems with firmware updates, so you might not have the piece of mind and support that comes with renting.
posted by phaedon at 10:47 AM on October 11, 2013

Response by poster: Will disabling the firewall unleash a whole new set of problems, i.e. the unfirewalled internet? Or will I be ok with a decent antivirus?
posted by hugandpint at 11:06 AM on October 11, 2013

First there are several different possible failure points. Your provider could be screwing up. Your modem/router could be screwing up, your computers network settings could be screwed up or your browser could be screwed up.

You can test if it is a browser problem by using a different browser. If the problem persists it isn't a browser issue (it probably isn't given your system tray info anyway).

You can test if it is your computer's network settings by using a different computer or your phone. Are they also slow to connect? If they are it probably isn't your computer. If they aren't it is probably your computer's network settings. To troubleshoot those you can view your system event log to see what is happening with your computers network handshake . Then google the error messages to interpret. Often times these delays are because of things like your computer looking for and not finding a previously networked drive or some such.

If it does come down to your router because the problem is shared across devices call your internet provider and insist they sort it out. Tell them you are considering cancelling and switching to light a fire under their butts.
posted by srboisvert at 1:35 PM on October 11, 2013

Response by poster: It's looking like phaedon's advice re: disabling flood detect fixed things right up. No problems since I did it, which is a decent to good sign.

As for threatening to cancel with TWC, I wish that'd hold sway. Unfortunately their service is by far the best in my area, a sad thing considering I live in a densely-populated part of Dallas - just not a part with enough money to attract other providers.
posted by hugandpint at 2:11 PM on October 11, 2013

« Older Depressed people who ask for advice and angrily...   |   How do you help people have an epiphany about... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.