All posts by Frank Pilone

This is my personal web site, and much of my information about me is here. Any questions, feel free to ask me.

How to Deal with Comcast’s cap

As I noted in a previous blog, Comcast (Concast)forces a cap on all of their customers of 250GB. Concast claims that this only affects about 1% of their customers, but I am sure the number is much larger, and this number would only increase as the demand for Internet resources increases.

If you do a lot of downloads, as I do. I on my own right do about 1.5GB, and would only increase as time goes on, than this could be a problem for a family of 4 (1.5GB x 4 people x 30 days = 180GB). This is just for computer downloads that are actively done. There is also streaming ( I watched 150 minutes last night alone), VOIP, OS updates, Anti-virus updates – all which consumes bandwidth. To make matters worst, Concast refuses to provide a meter showing how much bandwidth an account consumes.

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I must Wait to Get Bigger

Recently, I purchased a 320GB hard drive to replace the 160GB hard drive I currently have. So, after fighting with a stripped screw on the mount for the 160GB hard drive, I placed the 320GB in the system. I tried to use a trial version of a cloning software, and found out I have to pay for the trial to allow it to do its job. So, I reinstalled Vista on the 320 to hopefully get it up and running, and would go on the Internet to get the needed drivers. However, most of the hardware including the network connections for the Aspire 5100 series requires drivers to work.

So, I turned off the PC, removed the 320GB hard drive, and installed the 160 again. I went on a mission to try to get my 160GB cloned to my 320GB. I tried Clonezilla with no success. I tried another that would not recognized the 320 that was sitting in a USB enclosure, and finally Norton Ghost Trial which would not do the reason why you would waste $70 on Norton Ghost.

Continue reading I must Wait to Get Bigger

Do You Have a Spare Printer?

A few days ago, I had went and bought a new network printer. This printer also serves as a basic photocopier, and network scanner. However, there is nothing wrong the old printer with the exception of a damaged output tray which does not hamper the printer.

To help my brother’s family, I would be taking the older printer to their house. Once it is set up, it would be able to allow either of the two computers to print, as well as my notebooks. This is because as with the new printer, the old printer is a wifi network printer. And since both are Lexmark, and my desire to unify, both also uses the same type of ink cartridges.This would allow me to buy in bulk, although my brother and his girlfriend would have to contribute to theirs, but it would allow me to acquire dual packs cheaper than if I just bought two with different code numbers. Continue reading Do You Have a Spare Printer?

Gangsta Comcast Gonna Bust a Cap in Your Data

According to CNET’s Buzz Out Loud on the 29th of August, 2009 – Comcast would be capping Internet usage to 250GB. I know, many would say this is a lot, and it is – however it may not serve some families, and it is what Comcast would do if you exceed your cap. This is because the United States Federal Government says that ISPs are legally not allowed to throttle the connections to their paying customers.

So, now Comcast would would act like a spoiled brat who is not getting their way. So, what would happen? First time, Comcast would give you a warning. Second time, Comcast would suspend you from service for 1 year. Again, Suspend you the PAYING customer for 1 year. What does this mean. If Comcast is your only high broadband service, you would be SOL. This is why I am glad I am an advocate against Comcast’s policy. Continue reading Gangsta Comcast Gonna Bust a Cap in Your Data

Nokia 6068

On the previous Friday, I went to a local T-Mobile store – the one I always deal with, and bought a Nokia 6068. The reason for this was to allow temporary usage of the phone to those that I feel would need it. For example, if I was watching my niece and nephew while Andie may have to go somewhere, I would let her use the phone so I could be assured to reach her. Therefore, the phone’s purpose was never to be really intense.

The phone does meet my minimum set of standards. It is a clam flip phone which helps protects the keys when not in use. Of course, it is bluetooth allowing connections with other bluetooth devices. The phone also is UMA compliant allowing me to use existing wifi networks I have access too.

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The EDGE is Sharper than UMA

I have been having some occasional problems on my UMA access. I could be in the same room as the router, and my UMA would drop out and go to EDGE. This would be a small problem as it could be a billing problem. If a call originates on EDGE, or GSM, then the call is billed. If it originates on UMA, than the call is not billed. So, this could be a potential problem if I was to receive or make a call with someone that is not in my Faves, and the call is on EDGE rather than UMA.

After speaking with a Blackberry Specialist on T-Mobile, they said it was mostly a frequency, and software issue. Most Wifi-G uses 2.4Ghz which is also what bluetooth, microwave ovens, and some computer components use. Another issue is the RIM OS 4.2.xxxxx has. According to the specialist, when 4.5 comes to T-Mobile, it would solve the problem almost entirely.

Continue reading The EDGE is Sharper than UMA

T-Mobile Is Cool

OK, I am sure there would be some whom may disagree with me, but I have been a customer of T-Mobile’s Cell phone service for a few months now, and come to find out that they offer a great deal more than the other carriers. Yeah, I know – AT&T has rollover, Cricket has the cheapest Unlimited plans, and blah blah blah. I had a taste with every carrier at one time or another, and while I haven’t had them in recently, I do not have a job testing carriers.

So, what makes T-Mobile cool? Well, first – their Faves feature. It allows you to make and receive calls with 5 phone numbers for free. If you are like me, and have a very small social circle, this is actually good. If you have a larger social circle, than this is a step in the right direction. They don’t offer network calling without charging extra, but in all reality, I only know two people who uses T-Mobile.

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You’re Grounded, No More Minutes

Earlier today, I seen a commercial from T-Mobile with Family Minutes Allowance. Despite the silliness of the commercial, it basically allowed the account owner – almost always a parent has the option to set limits on text messages, and cellular minutes on secondary lines. I only found one good page posting on this, even T-Mobile doesn’t have all of the details on their site, but from what I gathered, this only affects billable minutes. If a family has MyFaves, or Network Calling, these don’t get adjusted. I am curious to know if this affects their Hotspot calling features. If Hotspot calling is treated like the MyFaves,  than this would be a great option for families.

From what I learned, the primary account holder can decide what phone numbers are good or bad with whitelisting, and blacklisting. This means that the parent can block the bad boy’s phone number (until he changes it) from calling the precious daughter. Whitelisting assures that calls can be made even if it would exceed the allotment of minutes. There is also time restrictions, so no calls in school at 3 in the morning when they should be asleep. I am assuming that the whitelisting would override the time limits too.

Continue reading You’re Grounded, No More Minutes

Collide in my Lunascape

A few days, I have been enlightened to a couple new music groups. Well, I actually heard one before, but as with much of the music I try to get, it seems easier said than done. One artist, I have received a full album, while the other one – I just acquired one song.

The album is Vortex from Collide. A few of the songs are softer, and there are in my night playlist, but most of them are the eccentric strange musical tastes (at least according to many) that I have. I bought the album from iTunes since I already had credit on iTunes. I really love their music, so I am hoping to eventually get all of the albums.

Continue reading Collide in my Lunascape