Subject: modems
From: "Cepek, Marta" <marta -at- M3ISYSTEMS -dot- QC -dot- CA>
Date: Thu, 20 Jul 1995 22:54:55 -0400

Michael Uhl said:

>break open the piggy bank and go for a 28,8 modem and make sure it
>has a good data flow controller. I bought a Hayes High-Speed Serial

>Also, if you plan to do a lot of online work/play, I suggest an external
>modem. You can troubleshoot problems much more easily and reset it if
>you get into trouble.

Sorry to disagree with you, Mike, but unless your PC has a 16550 UART
(Universal Asyncronous Receiver/Transmitter, which is a buffer for data
flow) on the COM port your modem uses, an external modem is not necessarily
the best solution. (I have no clue about Macs). My 386/DX40 and 486/DX66
both have 8550 UARTs, and when I was using an external [Viva] 14.4 modem I
sometimes ran into problems (and longer connect times and slower CPS rates).
However, you're right that on an external modem you can see the flashing
light indicators and reset the modem easily.

Most name brand name internal modems have 16550 UARTs built in, so you don't
have to worry about this buffer on your existing COM port, since the modem's
on-board UART overrides it. Since I bought my USR 14.4 internal (wish I'd
bought a 28.8 now), I haven't had a glitch. With PCs, it's easy to check
what UART you have. Just type <MSD> in DOS and you'll get the diagnostic on
the last line of the COMS option. The $10-$30 difference between the
internal (cheaper) and external (more expensive) model of the same make and
model of modem is negligible to some, the deciding factor for others.

My 2K of bandwidth.


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