I've got to rant. Sorry.
A bit of background on me: During college, I interned by programming a control system for a relativistic heavy ion collider on Long Island. Second internship was to dev a management system for the linear particle accelerator that feeds the RHIC. Immediately after finishing my thesis and graduating, I nabbed a job at a prominent internet service provider in the area. I started in Tier 1 support, worked my way through tier 2, 3, escalations and ended up in engineering. (So I was working directly with the hardware in question below.) I've seen these failures a few times in my career, know the telltale signs, and know how to proactively treat the problem so a minimum number of subscribers are impacted. During my (albeit brief, my own choice to leave) stay at said ISP, I've managed to keep subscriber impact below 0.5% in my managed areas for any given outage. I suck at a lot of things, but when it comes to large-scale network management, I'm just frankly damn
Basically, I am sick of Time-Warner Cable's support. It's terrible. Tier 1 knows about as much as my left pinky when it comes to networking and how to support a system. Tier 2's about as competent as my right hand, at best. Long story short: They have a failing UBR card that I'm attached to. Me and about 35,000 other subscribers. But they're being cheap as hell and not replacing it. As such, my SNR drops to about -80dB at random for no discernible reason, and my connection dies. How do I know this? I've been logging my US, DS and SNR for the past 6 months (or since this issue started happening.) Upstream and downstream are consistently within spec. SNR drops to roughly 50dB below minimum every time I disconnect. The reason is likely because the card itself has a broken signal timing crystal or broken amplification circuit. Likely the latter, as crystals don't exactly break without physical tampering. But they won't replace it. Instead, every time the card chokes and drops 80% of its subs, they send a truckroll out to bounce the card and play a virtual shell-game with subscribers' physical connections to said card. This generally gives the card some time to cool off and resume working, but never results in a permanent fix. The fix is to replace the card, but they're too cheap. They also won't invest in infrastructure because they have a government-granted monopoly on the area, so they can get away with mountains of bull-manure.
What has me even more pissed, is the attitude tier 1 and 2 take with me. I give them the troubleshooting steps I've taken, and yet they still talk down to me like I'm some invalid.
"Have you tried turning it off and on again."
Yes, I just told you that. I've bounced the modem, router, machine, cleared cache and checked the US/DS/SNR. Everything is fine except the SNR.
"Disconnect your router and connect your computer directly to your modem and turn off your firewall."
.....Yeah, because I enjoy Alexa being all over my machine like white on rice, and about thirteen Chinese hackers sucking my tax-info folder dry. How about no and you just escalate me to Tier 3 because you have an outage on your hands? No, instead I have to sit through about an hour and a half of support script torture before they finally give me a case number and put me on hold for another half f**king hour before they finally get me to a Tier 3 agent who tells me, "Yeah, it's an outage. We'll have it up within 24 hours." and hangs up on me.
I never thought I'd say this, but: I miss Cablevision, dearly. And I cannot wait for Google Fiber to roll out in my area.
[This message has been edited by Ravant (edited 04-15-2014).]