Key Tips on Using Cable Internet

by Aeyne Schriber on May 28, 2011 in Cable Internet

Many people use cable Internet due to its high speed capability which is typically faster than a Digital Subscriber Line although some may argue this point. Cable Internet also tends to be more commonly available than DSL. If you are considering using cable Internet and have just started to shop around for a service, you may find the following tips beneficial before you commit to using a cable Internet service.

Choosing a Service

Depending upon the location where you live you may or may not have a choice of different cable Internet services.  Your choice of cable Internet service will also be determined by the purposes for which you will be using the Internet connection.  For example, you may need the Internet connection for streaming videos or using VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol).  In this case, the speed and bandwidth must be sufficient enough to handle these applications.

You may run a business from your home and need extra security features or you may only need a basic service for checking your email.  Whatever your needs you should identify them beforehand so you can choose the service plan that is appropriate for your needs.

Check the Cable Internet Service Agreement

Read the service agreement for each cable Internet provider to ensure there are no strings attached. For example, there may be contractual obligations that may be hidden among the content in the agreement which make it difficult or costly to terminate the contract.  Or, if you plan to use your cable Internet connection to host a Web server but there is a limit on the amount of bandwidth you are allowed to use, this will disqualify you from using the service.  Worse yet, if you do not read the fine print and then set up your Web server you could end up in a lot of trouble with your cable Internet provider.

No Need to Prepare Your Home for Cable-Readiness

If your home is currently not wired for cable television this does not disqualify you from receiving cable Internet access.  Instead, your cable Internet provider will send a technician to your home to prepare it for Internet access.  At this point if you decide you want cable television, most service providers provide a package deal at a discount.

If you are the do-it-yourself type of person and understand the cabling and configuration process you should have no problem installing the necessary software, installing the data outlet, and connecting the network adapter.

Ignore the Descrambler Scams

If you haven’t already seen the ads then you should be aware that there are scam artists out there that try to sell you a descrambler for your cable television. The device supposedly opens up the cable Internet connection so you do not have to pay the extra cost for Internet connectivity.  If you see any ads for descramblers don’t fall for it.  The reality is that the cable service providers deliberately block the feed for cable television from the wire that provides the cable Internet service since the cable provider is not interested in losing money.  Ignore the descrambler scam artists at all costs when looking for cable Internet access.

Use a Provider That Enforces Cable Internet Safety

Since cable Internet is an always on service this places you more at risk for outside intruders such as viruses, spyware, Trojans, and other acts that are committed by cyber criminals.  If the provider offers high quality cable Internet access and service they will also provide you with a firewall that is included in your cable package.  Some of the cable Internet providers may also add a virus blocker program to your package.  Additionally, you should take extra precautions by investing in a quality antivirus/anti-malware program to guard against unwanted intrusions.

System Requirements

Most cable Internet providers such as Time Warner offer tools on their company website that help you check your system requirements for cable Internet access capability.  For example, on the Time Warner website you can find out if you qualify for its Road Runner service by downloading the Road Runner System Qualifier which will test your PC for compatibility with cable Internet access.  As long as the service is offered in your local area you should be good to go as far as system requirements are concerned.

These are a few things to be aware of when you obtain cable Internet access.  It is also a good idea to read the reviews on the service you are thinking of using and talk to other people who are currently using the service.  Also, a few cable Internet services pay a finder’s fee to people who refer customers.  For this reason, make sure the reviews you read are unbiased and not an effort to get someone to buy into the service.

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