Saturday 6 August 2016

10 Frequently Asked Questions About DSL

What is DSL?
Digital Subscriber Line is a means by which internet service can be carried over a standard telephone line without affecting the phone service itself by separating the two signals. There are several technologies that comprise what is known as DSL, the most common being ADSL, orAsymmetrical Digital Subscriber Line.
How Does It Work?
Voice communications typically use a low frequency range (5KHz and lower), while DSL uses a higher range (>25KHz). It is this difference in frequencies that allows the transmission of both over the same line. The individual signals can be separated by way of a DSL filter.
What Kind of Speed Can I Expect?
There’s a fairly wide range of speeds offered with DSL internet service, with typical speeds being anywhere from 1.5 Mbps to over 50 Mbps with a later generation DSL technology such as VDSL, or Very high data rate Digital Subscriber Line.
How much more expensive is DSL than Dial-up?
In some cases it can actually be cheaper, for several reasons. First, providers offer different levels of DSL at very competitive rates. Secondly, a dial-up service costs you the price of a phone line plus whatever your ISP is charging you. Thirdly, you won’t be paying phone access charges for the time you spend on the internet.
How Does DSL differ from cable?
Cable is transmitted via RF radio frequency over coaxial cable. It typically is rated at higher speeds than DSL. However, cable is a shared medium, meaning the bandwidth is shared by all users on the network. DSL is a more closed medium, where only users on the same DSLAM(Digital Subscriber Line Access Multiplexer) share their bandwidth, so DSL speeds are more consistent. Also, cable providers generally allocate less bandwidth for upstream data than do the DSL providers, so DSL upload speeds are often faster.
What’s the deal with distance from the C.O? Why does that matter?
The nature of DSL technology and the frequency ranges used make distance an important factor in its reliability. So telephone companies will not generally run DSL lines farther than approximately 15,000 ft. from the central office.
Do I need phone service to get DSL?
No. ISP’s that offer DSL might push for bundled services – especially telco’s whose legacy service is POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service) – but it isn’t technically necessary to have a separate phone line in order to have DSL installed.
Is DSL secure since it’s always on?
Security isn’t really any more of a factor with DSL than with other technologies, and most providers are offering suites of security software with their installations. It’s important in any case, however, that users have their own firewalls installed on their PC’s.
Do I need any other hardware?
No. As long as your computer is of recent vintage and has a network interface, or NIC, card installed, everything necessary to install DSL to your home is supplied by the provider, including DSL filters.
What level of service do I need?
The answer to this question depends largely on how you plan to use the internet. If you mainly use it for light web surfing e-mail, and rarely transfer large files, then a basic plan will probably be more than adequate. Higher speeds are generally only necessary – and therefore worth their higher prices – if you are a heavier internet user. That is, someone who streams a lot of video, is a serious gamer, downloads movies, etc. These activities are more speed-sensitive and gobblers of bandwidth.