[SATLUG] Time Warner Cable

Kyle Chrisman kyle at kylechrisman.com
Mon May 23 22:13:27 CDT 2011

DSL without a dial tone is called a dry loop.  I believe it came about 
as a compromise the FCC agreed to during a typical government telco war 
back in 2005.  Major telco's were required to offer it for a period of 2 
years and most of the major ones still do if you know how to ask for it.

Most of the time, the telcos will require you to sign up for a bundle 
first so if you are new to it or even at a new location on the same 
carrier don't bother asking for it.  Sign up for the DSL bundle then 
call them back after the DSL is activated and tell them to drop the dial 
tone since you don't want the POTS line.  You don't need the dial tone 
for DSL and the only reason a carrier requires it is money and 
inconvenience for customizing the loop to your address for as long as 
you have the service.  They don't like doing it because once you cancel 
they have to send someone out to put it back... keep reading...

Dry loops are basically just loop circuits from the telco's CO to your 
address through the neighborhood DSLAM.  In a typical POTS 
configuration, there is a POTS splitter at the DSLAM that splits the 
signal before it travels to the demarcation point at your house.  They 
will have to issue a truck roll to the DSLAM to uncouple the service 
which is another reason telco's don't like doing them because it breaks 
their standard config.  So for the next person to live at your address 
they will have to issue a truck roll to the DSLAM to couple it back.  It 
costs them nominal money and time so it costs you a monthly fee as a 
deterrent.  Its one of those 5 minute changes that takes a week to 

Telcos rolled out DSL in the early 2000's as a way to deliver high speed 
internet WITH phone service.  That is why its bundled because their 
initial build out of the service offering was not meant to be flexible.  
They rolled it out that way because back then that is the way we the 
public required it... high speed internet that didn't tie up the phone line.

Dry loops as a service are often more expensive than bundled service 
because with a bundled service they can get you for more money in 
multiple ways where as with a single service you have limited their 
revenue stream from you.  Therefore you will pay more money for the 
pleasure of being different.  Like I said though, you'll have to sign up 
for the bundled service first then drop the POTS line after the DSL is 

Carriers who don't offer dry loops or who refuse to do a dry loop 
initially will often concede to giving you a metered POTS line bundled 
with your DSL.  Again... take the $7-$10 metered line, wait a month or 
two and then start calling them to drop the POTS line until they give it 
to you.

When it comes down to the bottom line, not the price per service, a dry 
loop is ALWAYS cheaper but you will pay an extra fee for a dry loop with 
no dial tone and most likely for making them order a truck roll to the 
DSLAM to uncouple the service.

Hope that helps.  Sorry for the spam if anyone doesn't care.

I use CLEAR at the house and have been happy with it though I think we 
do get rate limited on occasion.  My wife and I can't afford much more 
right now and I didn't want to deal with latency due to the original 
wiring in our 50 year old house.  For us it was just smarter to go WiMAX 
since we lived mere blocks between 2 towers on the NE side of San 
Antonio.  Signal drops out in really bad weather though... "red" stuff 
on the weather radar maps but I'd rather watch the rain when that 
happens anyway.

Main reason I think we went with CLEAR was because at Christmas they 
offered the modem for free on a 2 year agreement for just the home use 
service ($40 or $45 a month) and because if we decide to break the 
contract... its only $45 bucks as opposed to several hundred in prorate 
fees, etc. with any other carrier.  Until we can get some things taken 
care of, buy a big flat screen TV to mount on the wall and afford 
another high end tv/internet bundle... 4mb down, 1mb up is more than 
sufficient for my wife and I to stream on hulu every night, etc.  CLEAR 
does not presently have a hard cap on this service but I know they are 
not capable of more than about 6mbps so given the over head we 
consistently see 4-5 megs unless they start rate limiting us due to a 
day's worth of heavy downloading.  I suppose it depends on your needs.  
For us, CLEAR was the right fit since we're pretty modest when it comes 
to internet usage these days.  Just so many things I'd rather be doing 
offline I guess.



On 5/23/2011 8:59 PM, Steev Klimaszewski wrote:
> On Mon, May 23, 2011 at 5:20 PM, Me<ftm at satx.rr.com>  wrote:
>> Does anyone have experience with CLEAR?  I was curious about their service
>> and availability?  Most of the channels offered by the cable companies are
>> available online and can fairly easily be routed to your TV set.
> In addition to my 65Mbps down/5Mbps up that I have with Grande, I also
> have one of CLEAR's little 4G hotspot, it's definitely decent to have,
> but you have to be careful with how much you download otherwise they
> can (and will) rate-limit you.  I don't recall how much it is, and
> even after explaining to them why I transfer so much data, they still
> wouldn't un-rate-limit me.  I keep it around because it's nice to have
> an internet connection in my pocket.

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