Friday, October 19, 2007

BellSouth Tech Support

Switched from Windows to Mac ... for my computer at least ... back in August. Things have gone pretty well. Takes some getting used to, but it's not the drastic change I thought it would be.

That's not to say there haven't been issues.

For one thing, the hard drive crashed. Now, support was good. Took it to the shop on a Tuesday, and it went off to repair (in Memphis, I think) and was back in my hands 48 hours later. That's not bad turnaround.

But, this week, I had the pleasure of trying to get support from BellSouth regarding my MacBook.

"Why?" you might ask.

Go ahead and ask. I'll wait.

Well, since you asked, I'm not always at home. And this week, I had need to dial in to the Internet.

Using a telephone line.

You know. Hit "connect." It goes beep-bip-bip-beep-beep-bip-bip-bip-beep-beep. Then it squeals. First a medium, then quickly a low, then a high pitched squeal.

Then it stops squealing and the word "connected" comes on the screen.

Ah, dial-up. The good old days.

Yes, I know. Many people connect via dial-up today.

But I don't.

But I did. Had to. Yesterday.

Got to try out my fancy Apple modem. And it worked.

Only, it seems, I haven't set up a dial-up connection in a long, long time. And never on a Mac.

So, naturally, I messed up.

Did get a screen in my browser that told me I needed to reset my password.


Reset my password?

Okay, I thought. Somebody at BellSouth has gone security crazy. Not that anything's wrong with security. Security is a good thing.

If done right.

Anyway, it told me I needed to use Internet Explorer to do that.

And, in case you missed it, I have a Mac.

Okay, to tell the truth, I do have Internet Explorer on my Mac. I have a utility called "Parallels" on my Mac. It lets me run other operating systems inside a window on my Mac.

And I have Windows XP installed. And, of course, it comes with Internet Explorer.

So, yeah, I have IE.

Only, the thing is, Windows XP won't work with an Apple modem. Unless I download a driver. From the Internet. Which I can't connect to unless the modem works to reset my BellSouth dial-up password.

Need the modem to get the driver to be able to use the modem.

So, I called BellSouth tech support.

First guy I spoke to didn't accomplish a whole lot, other than help me reset the password on the account.

But it still wouldn't dial in.

So, he connected me to another group.

They were sales, or something.

They apologized and sent me back to tech support.

This new guy was much more helpful. By the time he was done, I was online, doing what I needed to do.

And that was all well and good. Until I got home.

Was tired, and didn't write anything up after I got home.

Until this morning.

And I couldn't get online.

Instead, I got the "BellSouth password reset" screen.

Well, called them tonight. And, as it turned out, I needed to reset the password on the router.

Of course, it took them a bit to understand that I had a Mac, not a Windows machine.

Okay, yes, I could have gone over to the Wife's Dell. But I didn't feel like it.

Anyway, finally got the DSL modem reset. And the password on the router set. The little girl did good, once she understood the situation.

And now I'm back online.

Lucky you.


  1. Basil, in the Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex DSL is oldschool. Everyone here is on highspeed cable or FiOS. My wife has never used dialup.

  2. What do you think of the service, Basil? Is the speed OK? The company is offering it to employees for like $15 a month, vs the $45 I pay to Time Warner.

  3. Sorta Blogless Sunday Pinup...

    Happy Sunday to all! It is another fantastic day in the U.S.A. Birds are chirping, the Sun is shining, and it is a couple hours till football. Of course, we are having a bit of a drought here in North Carolina, and would love to be able to turn the sp...

  4. Basil, thank you for being a computer literate tech support user.

    When I worked for a certain ISP who's name sounds alot like birth-kink I was astounded by the morons that would call. A clean third didn't even know what kind of computer they were using.

    "Do you use Windows or do you have a Mac?"

    "It's all Windows, every time I click on something."

    "No, I mean the operating system on your computer. Is it Microsoft Windows or do you have a Macintosh."

    "Well, I don't know. It must be windows since every time I click on something it opens a window."

    This would go back and forth until I asked them how much they paid for the machine. Oh, and lord help me if it was a gift from their kids.

  5. Hey, Basil, I ordered BellSouth (well, ATT) DSL, going to give it a whirl, see how it compares to Road Runner.

    Good news, if someone in CS ticks me off, I can easily find out their supervisors name, if you get my meaning.

    Question: do you use the WP Cache plugin?

  6. Basil...have you tried getting your Mac Browser to spoof IE?

  7. Actually, I went one better. I launched Internet Explorer. In Windows. On the Mac.

    The reason it wants IE is so they can install an application via ActiveX. And, that needs Windows.

    So, I just told them I had a Mac and they had to figure it out from there.

  8. When you upgraded to Leopard, did Parallels still work? Did you have to use their Beta? Do you use Missing Sync? Does that still work?


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