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Life Line

ADSL and a non-intelligent installation company

At May 4th we moved into our new office, which should have been equipped with a 'working' ADSL connection. A 'working' ADSL connection for us is one of the things that is writing down in our rental-contract. If for some reason ADSL, or another type of Internet connection shouldn't be available on our location we could disband our contract without any problems. But a 'working' ADSL connection for us seems to be something else than what we got. We are no tied to a 256/64kbit line behind NAT. There are two problems with this: It's too damn slow, and we can not have inbound connections. That means: no VPN, no web-based invoice system, no CVS server, no Internet accessible dev server, no centralized storage system. In short: We don't have a 'working' ADSL connection.

How could all this happen?

Two months ago we asked Telektra to setup an ADSL line for us (they manage the infrastructure in our office building). They told us they did that, and that the ADSL connection would be delivered in time (before May 1st). Several weeks went by, and around April 15th, we decided to check the status of our brand new ADSL line. They could tell us they were waiting for the telco (KPN Telecom) to approve the connection. (It seems that takes more than 6 weeks for them to figure out what an ADSL line is.) So we waited....

One week later, still nothing. So we called them again, and they told a college of my, the famous Mr J, that they had a nice line for us... whoohoo! But when our sysadmin went checking, it seems we got a connection with NAT, shared by 4 other companies in the same building. Telektra told us that the line was not ready yet, and that the situation would be like this for a few weeks until our new line was ready. (This was 9 weeks after the original request was made.

Then I decided to call the provider, KPN Telecom. They told me that there where already 3 connections on the address of the building in which our office is, but that there where no pending requests for a line... We got mad, and let our office manager ask for a fax of the request for a line with Telektra. They sent a fax back, showing that the request for an ADSL line was refused by the provider at March 7th. That's 8 weeks ago.

Last Wednesday we offered to remove the NAT from the ADSL modem so that we could setup our firewall to do the NAT. They agreed to that, and they were going to give the password to the ADSL router to properly configure it. But that password never came. At Friday they explained to us that we would never get the password too, and that they refused any further help to us regarding this ADSL line. So now we're virtually screwed with bad connectivity. Thank god we got an offer today from another company in the same building to take over their line, and route them through our firewall. This is going to happen quickly we hope. But there is still a problem that the line is too slow (512/64kbit), so we called KPN Telecom if it would be possible to upgrade our line to 1024/256kbit. They replied 'no problem', just send a fax with a request. And they also said that this would cause no Internet connectivity for one month. That's just not an option of course. The only hope for a faster connection now lies with a new provider, which can provide 1/1mbit SDSL. May god preach with us for more bandwidth... we're depending on it.


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