COMMUNITY FORUM

funstitcher

08:57AM | 02/12/05
Member Since: 01/13/05
1 lifetime posts
Bvmisc
I live in a small apartment and the desk for my computer will only work in one place in my living room. The problem that I have is that the phone jack is across the room. I have a phone extention cord that goes from the modem plug in the computer tower to the phone jack across the room. I have been unable to solve this issue so far. How do I tack the extention cord down so that it does not become a safety hazard and does not look so tacky? I have a cat and he likes to play with the loose cord. Any help that you could give me would be much appreciated. I look forward to hearing from you regarding this matter.

Sincerely,

Tina L. Hanson

tomz71ss

09:09AM | 02/12/05
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
if it were me, i'd run it behind the base board molding, or if the edges of the carpet aren't glued down [if you have carpet], i'd run it under the edge of the carpet.

david_wv

12:12PM | 02/14/05
Member Since: 01/28/01
171 lifetime posts
A box attaches to the phone jack and communicates with a modem on your machine by radio or infrared. I don't know the cost though.

tomh

09:13PM | 02/14/05
Member Since: 07/01/03
549 lifetime posts
The first thing you might try is to simply add a wireless ethernet card to your computer. You may find multiple unprotected wireless connections are available to access the internet. These connections are being broadcast everywhere. It doesn't mean you can hack your neighbors's computer, but you can get high speed internet access (better than a phone line) free; or more accurately, as a result of your neighbor's generosity and lack of securtiy knowledge. I live in a neighborhood of 1/2 acre lots and can pick up 4 connections from where my computer is located. You may still need to subscribe to an account for email and other needs, but you won't need to worry about wires.

The more legitimate option is to install a wireless router and subscribe to DSL or cable internet. It is competitive with dialup and much better. Most plans will provide wireless equipment with a 1 year committment. Forget about phone lines, they were outdated several years ago.

Jim D

12:30AM | 02/15/05
Member Since: 01/06/01
342 lifetime posts
Funstitcher - hi, your post sounds like you may have limited options. First things first - how often do you use the computer to connect to the Internet? If you're only doing it once/twice a day for 10-15 minutes at a time, then replacing the phone cord if your cat chews on it (I have 3 cats - been there, done that!) is cheaper than the options outlined by the others. A handyman or the phone company installer can probably come in and run a new line extension through the walls to put a phone outlet close to your computer setup - how much is it worth to you?

- Your landlord may not approve of you loosening the baseboard moulding to run a phone line behind it, plus you have to be very careful about putting a nail through the wires and shorting out your line. If you're using dialup, you probably use the same line as your regular phone service...short out that line and you can't call out or receive calls until its fixed.

- The wireless devices David_wv describes will work but they work at reduced modem speeds in the cases I've explored. Right now, the best speed you can get via dialup is 53kbps; wireless will drop that down to around 45 kbps or slower. That means you're online longer, tying up the phone line longer...

- The wireless broadband can work - if you have that service available. I lived in such a rural area in VA's Northern Neck (Morattico, VA 22523) I was barely able to get a 23kbps connection on my phone line. (We didn't have cable TV; in fact, with DirecTV I was allowed to purchase the East Coast and West Coast network feeds (ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, and PBS) because I was 75 miles from the nearest major cities (Richmond and Hampton, VA)). Broadband wasn't going to be there in my lifetime although Hurrican Isabel may have sped that timeline up...I ended up increasing my connection speed via the Direcway 2-way satellite setup - at a cost of $600 for the equipment purchase/professional setup (required since it transmitted to the satellite as well as received) and a monthly $60 service fee. Then, if you do have broadband available, Tomh points out your neighbors may find it more convenient to use your wireless connection than to buy their own service. And, who's to say nobody'll try to hack into your computer if you leave it on and unattended? (I have DSL now and I turn my PC off when I'm going to leave it unattended more than a few minutes...)

So - you've had some options outlined by the others. I've hopefully helped you think through some cost and practicality issues involved with each. Let us know how this ends up for you. Good luck! Jim D/West Point, VA
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