Re: Quality of Internet Providers

Andrew Germaine (andrewg@carfax.ims.advantis.com)
Fri, 23 Feb 1996 16:28:45 -0500 (EST)


The company I work for, Advantis, is the US provider of the IBM Global
Network (www.ibm.com/globalnetwork).

The IBM Global Network is one of the largest providers of Internet
access. The IBM Internet Connection services is available in 41
countries.

With over 570 local dial numbers, you can be assured that you can connect
to the Internet without expensive phone charges.

In the United States, there are 352 local dial numbers. 332 of these
numbers are V.34 with speeds up to 28.8 Kbs.

We have our own global backbone, and peer at Mae-East, Mae-West, CIX,
Sprint-Nap, and LINX in Europe.

Check out www.ibm.net for more information.

This is the pricing plan for the US. Pricing plans are available at
www.ibm.net for other countries. There ARE packages available if you
purchase the Internet Connection Kit where you get some free time.

FEE SCHEDULE (Effective 1/1/96)

This Fee Schedule is subject to the Agreement for IBM Global
Network Access to Internet Services.

There is no Trial Access Period for this Service, you will
incur the following charges, exclusive of taxes:

800 Number Dial Access Surcharge
6.00 US dollars per hour, in addition
to any local dial access charge

ENTRY PLAN

Subscription Charge
4.95 US dollars per month (or any part thereof)

Local Dial Access
2.50 US dollars per hour, for hours in excess of 3 per month

STANDARD PLAN (Default Registration)

Subscription Charge
12.95 US dollars per month (or any part thereof)

Local Dial Access
1.95 US dollars per hour, for hours in excess of 10 per month

COMPREHENSIVE PLAN

Subscription Charge
29.95 US dollars per month (or any part thereof)

Local Dial Access
1.95 US dollars per hour, for hours in excess of 30 per month

You can change your plan type from the IBM Internet Connection
support pages on the World Wide Web. Changes take effect in
the next billing period.

Andrew J. Germaine Advantis
Technical Staff 1311 Mamaroneck Ave.
OpenNet Network 2nd Level Support Center White Plains, NY 10605
Internetworking & Multimedia Services 1-914-684-4433

On Sat, 24 Feb 1996, John Osborne wrote:

> Steven...
>
> Good question. I get asked this frequently. I regularly use about
> 4 to 5 Internet Service Providers (ISP's), always on the lookout for
> the "right one". The first two criteria you mention are important.
> If your prospective ISP doesn't offer 28.8 or better, look somewhere
> else, for starters. You will be much happier with the fastest
> connection *you* can support/afford instead of being artificially
> constrained by *their* equipment.
>
> Local access number is *very* important, otherwise you'll be paying a
> surcharge to the phone company for long distance in addition to the
> connect charges levied by the ISP.
>
> That said, look to see how they charge. If you are a casual user
> (say 3-5 hours per month) then look for a charging plan that only
> costs for the hours you use. If you plan to use the Internet for
> longer periods of time, look for a provider that has a "flat fee"
> charging structure such that you pay $xxx/month for a certain number
> of hours (which could be unlimited) and a smaller per-hour fee after
> that.
>
> Make sure you *ask* how many phone lines/connection are available.
> I trialled an ISP here who charge rate was only $1.00/hour but the
> limited number of lines meant lots of busy signals unless I used the
> service at weird hours.
>
> Ask how your prospective ISP is connected to the rest of the Internet.
> You will be happier if they are directly on, say, MCI's backbone
> rather than having to hop thru a bunch of other people's routers
> before you get anywhere.
>
> Does your prospective ISP offer Email? Not everyone does so if it's
> important to you, ask.
>
> Does your prospective ISP offer USENET? Not every ISP does due to the
> large amount of disk space (up to 9 gigabytes, I believe, for a full
> USENET feed) it takes up. This may not be a consideration for you
> but USENET is very important to me.
>
> What about technical support? Aside from the "usual" initial setup
> problems new people have getting connected, how knowledgeable about
> problems are your ISP's staff? When are they available?
> Can they help with Email problems, mail setup problems, Web page
> authoring, third-party package problems (Chemaleon, Netscape, Eudora,
> Pegasus, WS-FTP, the list is endless), SLIP setups, PPP setups?
>
> What payment methods are available? How often will you be billed?
> Can you get an interim statement/usage information or do you have to
> put up with a monthly heart attack when the bill arrives?
>
> I hope this helps.
>
> Regards, John
>
> Steven Gruchawka wrote:
> >
> > Can someone tell me what criteria does one use to select an internet
> > provider for using CU-SeeMe over a 28,800 bps modem - aside from price and
> > whether they have a local or 800 number?
> >
> > Some providers have much faster equipment and more phone lines. How do you
> > determine this in advance before you sign up? What questions do you ask
> > them?
> >
> > I have heard of "T1" connections. What is this? What other types of
> > connections are there - which is best?
> >
> > I am presently signed up with two providers using MacTCP\MacPPP. One I have
> > to pay for by the hour but get very good service most of the time over an
> > 800 number. The other is unlimited access at a local phone number but
> > connections are flaky - more often than not giving me "does not have a DNS
> > entry" error messages when using Netscape 2.0. I want to switch this latter
> > provider for a more reliable one, but don't what to ask, so as not to get
> > another flaky provider. I've talked to this provider on they phone to
> > troubleshoot and get the impression they are stumbling around in the dark
> > like I am, and don't quite know what they are doing.
> >
> > By the way, I found this site that gives a list of Internet Providers by
> > state or area code - it lists prices and great detail:
> > http://thelist.com/
> >
> > Thanks, -Steve
>