If you are having trouble with your MAIN Connection

Disconnects are due to some kind of communications problem - with your modem, with the phone line, or in the way they are interacting with our network. If you still have a warranty on your modem, you may choose to use it immediately, but be prepared to be insistent that your modem manufacturer provide you with a working product. This page details some other steps you may take to try to solve the problem yourself.

There's a chance that the problem is coming from another device on the phone line, or internal wiring in your home - try taking a long phone cord and hooking directly from the modem to the gray Network Interface box (usually on the outside of the house.) If that helps, then you can start to isolate the culprit. You should be especially suspicious of the tiny "splitters" that make two or more phone jacks available where only one was present beforehand.

Some of these problems may be solved by setting your modem so that it allows more time to establish a strong connection before it gives up and disconnects.

Apple Macintosh users

You can look on the Apple website for an updated driver program that may fix the problem. Alternatively, use a search engine like Google.com to find "scripts" for the modem which will improve performance.

Windows users

First, go into the control panel and then open Modems (Start-Settings-> Control Panel-Modems-Properties, or if you have Windows XP, Start-> Control Panel-Phone and Modem-Modems tab-Properties.) Write down the name of the modem as it's listed in case of difficulty, and the COM port number, clicking the Diagnostics tab to see it if required, then OK. Finally, click Remove, and confirm the removal if requested, then close everything and shut down the computer (Start-Shutdown-Shutdown-OK.) Turn the power off on the tower if that has to be done manually, then wait a few seconds and turn it on again - the modem will be reinstalled by Windows and oftentimes will then work better.

Other possible fixes for those using Windows include:

1) Use Google or your favorite search engine to search for the name of your modem (written down in the steps outlined in the first paragraph of the Windows section.) Whenever a new driver for a modem is released, it's an indication that there were problems with the prior versions (which may be common in our rural service area, though not so much so elsewhere.)

2) Research that modem at www.modemhelp.org - they have an enormous list of modems, with links to other pages on the web, including manufacturer (and other) sites with download-able driver software (which contains fixes for known problems.)

3) Click Properties in the Modem Properties window and change the maximum speed setting to 38,400, then click OK. You can come back to this point and adjust it up or down repeatedly as you test the performance of each possible setting. Note that some modems ignore this entirely, and you'll need an INIT string to do this (see #5 below.)

4) In the same Properties window as #3, click Connection, then in Windows
   a) XP or 2000 -- click the Advanced tab->Change Default Preferences and change the Compression entry to Disable.
   b) 95,98, or ME- click Connection->Advanced and turn off the check mark in the upper left called "Compress Data".

5) If no driver is available, or it doesn't help, then look for an "INIT string" that will disable (or force) the various protocols (e.g. V.92, K56Flex, V.90, V.34) - basically, the older, well-standardized protocols V.34 and V.90 are more likely to work properly, regardless of conditions. Write down or print out all the strings recommended for that modem type and try each one individually, using the instructions available on that page of their website.

There are a number of other tricks that might be useful if you are unable to resolve the problem satisfactorily with this information. Please let us know if you need further assistance, or have a different Operating System.

- Email:
help@main.nc.us, phone HELP LINE (inside Buncombe county) - 255-0282, TOLL FREE (outside Buncombe county)- 866-435-7517

If you leave a message, we will return the call in the order in which it was received as soon as possible.
- Administrative Support (inside Buncombe county) - 255-0182, TOLL FREE (outside Buncombe county) 866-WNC-MAIN (962-6246)