ARRRRGGGGHHHHH!!! Comcast Helpless Desk!

Okay, let me start by saying that for the most part, I love my Comcast high-speed internet connection. It has served me very well. It’s speedy, and for the most part it’s pretty reliable. I’d say I have a small outage every couple of months or so, and when that happens, then I’d rather gouge out my eye with a rusty spoon than have to talk to their tech support. To put it succinctly, they are idiots.

Here’s what happened Sunday. I was playing an online game (Guild Wars – participating in the beta) when things started not working. I looked over at my cable modem, and all looked good, but even trying to surf the web, I was getting nowhere. So, I decided that a reboot of the cable modem was in order. I did so, and it came back, but showed it as offline. Okay, we lost cable connection, that happens sometimes, and I just have to wait for it to come back.

So I did some photo editing and about five minutes later, the modem came back online. Great, now I can get back to work. Fire up Mozilla, and nada. Don’t have access. Maybe the router/firewall is having issues. Log in, and everything looks fine, although I have an internal address for my WAN address, wierd. So I release and renew the IP through DHCP, but DHCP never connects. Great. So my link is up, but for some reason the provider won’t give me an IP address, gateway or DNS server. Guess I gotta call.

So I do call, and I get an Indian gentleman (naturally) that has one of the thickest accents I’ve ever dealt with. Now I’m pretty good at understanding non-native speakers in general, but this guy was damn near indecipherable. I had to have him repeat himself numerous times during our conversation.

Anyway, I explain that my router/firewall is not getting an IP address, and that I think their DHCP servers are having problems.

HIM: “Well, lets look at your computer. I want you to go into Control Panel.”
ME: “Um, no need to go into control panel, it’s my firewall that’s not getting the IP address.”
HIM: “Click on Device Manager”
ME: “My machine doesn’t matter in this, my firewall is not getting the address. I have a hardware firewall/router. IT is not getting the IP address.”
HIM: “Sir, please can you just look under Network Adapters? Do you see any with a yellow or red icon?”
ME: “NO, my NIC cards are just fine. Once again, MY machine has nothing to do with my router not getting a DHCP address from YOUR server.”
HIM: “Well I need you to reboot”

So after having me reboot my machine (twice), and my cable modem (three times) and my router (three times) we can’t get anything to work.

ME: “Okay, my ROUTER can still not get an IP ADDRESS via DHCP from YOUR server. So either your DHCP server is having issues, or my router has fried.”
HIM: “Can we connect the modem directly to your machine then?”
ME: “Sure. I’ve got my laptop here, I’ll just connect directly to that, it’ll be easier.”

I attach my machine directly, try to release and renew. Nothing. Can’t reach the DHCP server.

ME: “Still won’t connect. Says it cannot hit the DHCP server.”
HIM: “Okay, I want you to shut down the cable modem, the laptop and the router” The router wasn’t connected, but whatever “Then I want you to remove the cable and flip it around.”
ME: “You want me to FLIP the cable around? For a DHCP problem, that I also had with the OTHER cable?”
HIM: “Yes”
ME: “Fine.”

By now I want to climb through the damn phone and choke the shit out of this guy. But I do it, flip the cable, reboot everything, and then my laptop gets an IP address.

ME: “Well the laptop got an IP address.”
HIM: “I’m glad we could fix your problem.”
ME: “Listen, you didn’t fix my fucking problem, obviously your DHCP server came back up.”
HIM: “You’re right sir, I’m sorry, you fixed the problem.”
HIM: “Is there anything else I can help you with?”
ME: *laughing* “Anything else??? You didn’t help me with anything UP to this point. How could you possibly help me with anything else? I think I can take it from here, thanks.”

I hang up, frustrated to the hilt, but happy for the renewed access. Hooked the cable modem back up to the router, clicked renew for a new IP address. Nothing.


Long story short, I fixed it myself. Seems the DHCP server didn’t want to give my router’s MAC address an IP address. When I changed the MAC on the router to the same as my laptop, I got access just fine and was able to release/renew with aplomb. So, either they were specifically blocking my MAC addy, or they simply HAD A PROBLEM WITH THEIR FUCKING DHCP SERVER!!!!!!

I need a drink.