Well, the problem with my internet, that I Ranted and Grred and in general was a daily thorn in Cox’s side about, is now resolved.

The resolution isn’t due to anything Cox did.. it’s due to a relay on my UPS.

I had noticed that my UPS often made clicking noises, but I hadn’t really thought much of it until I got a isolation transformer to try and solve a hum problem in my nearfield monitors. It happened to have a voltmeter on the front, and I happened to leave it plugged in long after it was determined that it didn’t solve the hum problem. And I noticed that every click corrisponded to a 15 volt dip in the line voltage that only lasted a tenth of a second or so, and was followed by a 15 volt spike. (or so)

At some point today, I got annoyed enough about this (because each line voltage dip also made a slight humming noise in my new monitors) that I gave the power company a call. I kind of figured they’d blow me off, since they are after all delivering power to me, but no.. they promised they’d send a tech out tonight.

I had to go out to go shopping, but when I got back, the power to the house had clearly been interrupted, and it no longer fluctuates at all.

And, mysteriously, my internet connection no longer has 900ms ping times to the default gateway, and is now capable of moving many megabits with aboslutely no trouble at all.

Could these two things be connected? Well, consider this – the cable modem does NOT have a switchmode power supply, and any common mode noise getting into the cable modem’s power might very well find its way out the RF jack..

I feel really bad that I harrassed Cox so mercilessly. Although – any of their techs that came out could have stuck a voltmeter on the line and seen the noise in question. But, it is probably generally true that their problems don’t turn out to be power-supply related, so I really can’t blame them for not being able to diagnose this one.

2 Responses to “Ooops…”

  1. anonymous Says:

    If they were using a digital meter would they have seen the spike and dip?

    Perhaps this is why an analog meter is still a good thing to keep around (or one with a bargraph on the display..)

  2. anonymous Says:

    Was it a loose neutral?

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