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Aside from documentation, why should I buy the Discovery/PowerPack versions of 2005LE, rather than simply using the download version? What are the differences/benefits? I know they have commercial software included, ...
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    Why Buy? & Conexant Softmodem


    Aside from documentation, why should I buy the Discovery/PowerPack versions of 2005LE, rather than simply using the download version? What are the differences/benefits? I know they have commercial software included, but that's not very specific. If I were to buy, I'd buy the PowerPack, and I find that quite pricey.

    Also, have folks here successfully used Conexant softmodems with Linuxant's drivers and Mandriva? I have a Conexant modem and Linuxant driver, and this will be the third distro I've tried; I have NEVER been able to get the modem to work. (ELX installs the driver, but pppd reboots the computer on connect; ALT installs the wrong driver and it's then impossible to install the correct one.)

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    I may not be the best person to answer your question, but since no-one else has ... here we go:

    To buy or not to buy? Well, commercial Linux vendors are about 'adding value'. Of course, you don't *have* to purchase the Discovery/PowerPack versions, but if you do you'll get support from Mandriva and a certain amount of non-free software: video card drivers, Shockwave support etc. A bit more polish. I think it's good to have that option.

    You also get all available distro packages installed on your hard drive, so they are more accessible. I personally use the download version with few problems, but Mandriva software tends to be more 'cutting edge' (buggy with updates later on).

    As for your modem ... that sounds less promising and I can't give a complete answer. Software support varies in the Linux world, so it might just be that you won't manage to get that one working. Always select your hardware with great care (search on Google and this forum with some good key words) and your problems will be greatly reduced. I think that on the whole, external modems are the way to go.
    I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

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    Unfortunately, the budget doesn't allow for the purchase of a "real" modem right now. (So, obviously, I am not considering the commercial versions of Mandriva immediately, either!) Not too many people are going to be switching to Linux while we still have to replace half of our hardware for it to even work. Just those really stubborn ones, like me, who have decided we're going to get rid of Microsoft if it takes us the rest of our lives. But believe me, I will never buy a softmodem again!

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    download Mandriva / modem issue

    I am no expert, but first post is correct. download version does not have some plugins that are common for web browsing such as shockwave or Java plugins. However you can dload and install yourself. (It's not too bad). By making a purchase, you are helping the opensource cause, but do NOT expect to get cadillac svc in return for your money. I would look at it as more of a philanthropic donation.

    As for for the modem issue:

    Go LAN to DSL
    If not possible, go dialup but first:

    1. check your ISP to see if they are linux friendly (AOL and walmartconnect were not without a special dialer)

    2. Stay away from internal PCI modems WHETHER OR NOT THEY ARE LINUX COMPATIBLE. Both types require drivers. Wait till you have some experience with linux. Some people will tell you that it is a good way to learn linux commands such as:
    make,install, chmod, urpmi <packagename>, urpmi kernel-source, but.........
    It is more likely teach you how to kick the dog or yell at the little old lady across the street. Asking a n00b to do a softmodem install is like giving a fiddle to your plumber and asking him/her to perform the Brahms violin Concerto in D....... WITHOUT the music....... and then being surprised when they instead, find a way to perform hi-speed, non-gentle insertion of the the violin AND a 16 inch pipe wrench into your trailing orifice..............sideways...........while the violin is on fire. It is not appropriate for the learning curve.

    3. Go with external serial port hardware modems - they are generally faster than many PCI modems
    4. They can be had for $5 or less at local thrift shops.
    5. If you want new - google for BestData or US Robotics ($20-$100)

    good luck

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    Re: download Mandriva / modem issue

    Quote Originally Posted by Trio3b
    3. Go with external serial port hardware modems - they are generally faster than many PCI modems
    4. They can be had for $5 or less at local thrift shops.
    5. If you want new - google for BestData or US Robotics ($20-$100)

    good luck
    Yes, that's right! Serial port hardware modems are very cheap now. In the UK a good one costs about 8 which is a lot cheaper than a night out on the town. About the cost of a really cheap deep pan pizza.

    Another point. It's often assumed that Windows users don't have hardware problems as well. They do!
    I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

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    Trio, thanks for the laugh.

    The note about the ISP being Linux-friendly is a new one to me, but it's the best explanation I've heard yet. I actually *got* the Linuxant modem driver installed and, as best I can tell, it is working properly. Given the timing of the reboot (as pppd is starting up and the connection is "logging on"), an ISP issue is likely. And they were pains in the backside when I wrote them to ask for some information my documentation said I would need and that I could get from them. Next question: if that's the case, what do I need to check for, and how do I do it? I have PeoplePC.

    As for the note about serial modems. If I can really get a used one that cheap, I can probably do that. But I have no idea what to look for. How will I know if a given modem is what I need? And can I get one with a decent connection speed, or are they all so old that I'll be connecting at like 9600?

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    I think it's a WinModem. Therefore it's unlikely that it will work with Linux.

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    modem help

    Don't have the experience on a molecular level to tell you which external modems are compatible FOR SURE, but is my understanding and experience that any stand alone external modem that connects via serial port is by default a hardware modem and therefore compatible. ( I'm sure there are exceptions (like USB - they are also winmodems) so DON"T quote me) Look for these names:

    Hayes, Zoom, Bestdata, USrobotics, Diamond SupraExpress.

    Also look for something with V34 or 56 in the model number.

    The only hassle with these thrift modems is sometimes the AC adapters are missing. Takes about 3 minutes to look thru their pile of adapters. Most modem adapters are 6,9 or 12 VDC - any amperage over 500mA should do fine, center is usually "+" (positive)

    Here's a little tidbit - slower v34 and pre v92 56k modems had to be built with better electronics in them because the nations' analog phone line infrastructure is decaying and they had to be more resistant to online "noise". The only downside is these older modems may or may not support newer fax features. I would stay away from anything slower than 34k .
    Also - don't try to set modem speed too high. Webpages will load fine but file transfers will "choke " the modem. Transfer speeds of 3.8-4.2kb/s are good for dialup.

    As for ISP. Many ISP reps will say "we don't support linux" ---meaning they do not provide TECH support, but they don't realize that their authentication or logon process accepts linux just fine. You must speak to a technician over 35 years old if you want to know if they are linux friendly. ( sorry, some of the young kids just do not know).

    Have used Coppernet for linux dialup with no problems so far.

    good luck

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    Linux Guru fingal's Avatar
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    Trio is right really. Any decent straight-up hardware modem should do the job. As for service providers, I'm a broadband virgin (just about to pop my cherry) and I'm using Pipex. They are a true service provider and actually asked - during my registration - 'Will you be using Linux?' .... or words to that effect. They not only support Linux, it forms a part of the service **which they** provide.

    So far so good. As Trio says, avoid USB modems. They use your CPU when they connect and will slow down performance.

    Using analog modems: you won't get a connection speed as fast as the modem says it will support because that's the nature of analog You can expect to lose your connection from time to time (especially if someone picks up the other phone in the house and taps the receiver a few times ... He he, an evil trick )

    Good luck mate
    I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

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    Thanks!

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