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ISPs for the Little Guy?

Cliff posted more than 10 years ago | from the getting-the-service-you-want dept.

The Almighty Buck 118

jjshoe asks: "While access to the Internet varies greatly, depending on where you are in the USA, I recently went on the hunt for an ISP that provided me the ability to have a 'broadband' link to the Internet. I am looking for would be the ability to lease/rent static IP's, so I could host my own DNS/WWW/E-mail server. I was wondering what ISP fellow Slashdot readers use for themselves, as well as what they pay. I have gotten quotes for $50 a month for a single static IP on top of my monthly DSL fee. This seems slightly outrageous to me. Colocation is not an option as it generally runs $150 a month and does not provide me Internet access. I am open to any other ideas the community might have."

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Remember (3, Informative)

igabe (594295) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325421)

I apologize for patronizing you, but definitely make sure that the ISP you choose does not block ports required for hosting email, dns, or web servers.

I know I once payed Verizon ~$70/month thinking I would host my own site, only to find out they don't allow home website hosting.

Re:Remember (1)

igabe (594295) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325525)

Shoulda commented that just because the ISP's tech rep. says you can run a web server does NOT mean you really can. Please don't make my mistake.

I am semi-aware of being able to choose what port to host your site with, but I gave up on that. But of course, if you are determined, then you can probably work around this.

Re:Remember (2, Interesting)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326015)

strictly speaking, since the ISP tech rep is (or should be) more knowledgable about the service than you, anything he tells you is warrantied under fitness of service. Not that it means anything when it doesn't work.

Re:Remember (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7332473)

That's why you should always tape record your phone calls to companies. It's gray whether wiretapping laws apply when it's a business - they likely already monitor their employees so if you do it's just more of the same. Note that they are addressing the "this call may be monitored..." message to you and your privacy rights rather than their employee's (beyond threat for QC, at least). Even if you can't use it court (it's worth a try anyway) you can use the tapes to damage them into compliance or simply to damage them in retribution.

Re:Remember (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325573)

With each isp i have been making sure about what i can and cant do, asking for copies of the TOS as well as asking if i can speak to someone more familiar with the technical side of the service, definatly not the lacky who wants to just make some quick comission.

Re:Remember (1)

ctenet (602204) | more than 10 years ago | (#7334471)

Most ISPs don't allow this.
Optimum Online blocks 80 and others I think.
22 is left open, I know.
SMTP and FTP are almost definetly blocked

ISP's for WHO!?! (-1, Offtopic)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325422)

Isn't that racist calling for answers for ISP's for midgets?

That's like Gnaa selling an ISP service for its' members (yuck).
Yeah. It was a joke. Now laugh.

Powweb (-1, Offtopic)

Futurepower(R) (558542) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325433)

For web serving, try Powweb [] . You can't run your own web server nearly as well. It's $7.77 a month.

Re:Powweb (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7325463)

Dumbass, this is so obviously not what the original poster is asking about. Jesus what a moron.

Re:Powweb (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325588)

I am looking to host my OWN dns/mail/www for complete control of what i do, i want to be able to scalably add domains. please read my post again.

Re:Powweb (2, Interesting)

PD (9577) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325768)

I have SBC/Yahoo DSL ($65/month). Used to have DirectTV DSL ($49/month). I would still have DTV DSL, but they are out of the business.

So, my SBC DSL account gets me 5 static IP's (I use just one), about 1 megabit down, 128Kbits up, and no blocked ports whatsoever. They don't care what services you run on the line.

I have my own web server (, my own e-mail server, and anything else that I want to have.

I can add domains through virtual hosting, or I could make use of the other 4 static IP addresses that I have.

The static accounts do NOT use that PPoE that their dynamic accounts use. My static account does not require a login - it's plain old ethernet coming out of the DSL modem.

Maybe some who read this will want to re-consider. (-1, Offtopic)

Futurepower(R) (558542) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325877)

Sorry, I thought the point of my message would be clear. Someone wrote a long article about why people should not host their own web sites. It's scary to see all the reasons together. Unfortunately I'm working on something for a customer, and I don't have the link easily available.

Powweb provides 650 email addresses.

Powweb provides control over DNS [] . I have run programs I've written on a Powweb server. However, it is not clear to me if you could have complete control and run your own DNS server on their computer. You must be able to provide a program that runs under FreeBSD, the Powweb OS.

When all is considered, it is a huge hassle to run your own server, if you want reliable operation and you aren't just using it for learning and testing. Do you want to get out of bed at 3 AM when someone finds some vulnerability that you didn't patch yet? If the answer is no, let the web hosting company do the updates.

Maybe this reply is not of use to you, but I'm guessing that it will be of use to many that read this Slashdot article. Comments must be written for everyone, not just the original poster.

The functionality and the security updates all cost only $7.77 a month. Ping times are low. 65 Gigs of transfer. One Gigabyte of storage.

I don't have any connection with Powweb other than as a customer. Here is another of Powweb's customers, one of the largest sellers of contemporary art in the world, a company with the odd name of The Real Mother Goose [] .

Re:Maybe some who read this will want to re-consid (1)

Sevn (12012) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326385)

Yeah but he doesn't want Powweb. He wants to run his own services and server. So your post is absolutely pointless. Are you affiliated with them or something? Because your post reads like a sell.

Re:Maybe some who read this will want to re-consid (0, Flamebait)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326497)

My home server has low ping times, over a terrabyte of storage, dual athlon 1.5's dedicated to me, the little guy. Not some corporate conglomeration getting pushed by some junky who is very offtopic.

The concept of this article is which isp allows you to use them like you should be able to. The internet is becoming more and more commercialized and i want to know what fellow nerds are doing to in-expensively make they're own nich. Not what commercialzed service you think i should dump more money into.

Wow! Hostility. (1)

Futurepower(R) (558542) | more than 10 years ago | (#7327100)

"... pushed by some junky."

It is amazing to me that Slashdot commenters become extremely hostile if they don't like something someone else said.

Re:Wow! Hostility. (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7328520)

I apologize for being hostile but it is upsetting when someone posts something incredibly offtopic.

slashdot koan (1)

jtheory (626492) | more than 10 years ago | (#7331089)

The master saw the student responding to every unhelpful and offtopic comment on Slashdot.

"Come with me," he said, and led the student outside where the miller was threshing the wheat to separate it from the chaff, so that he could grind the wheat to make flour. The separated chaff was quickly blown away by the wind.

The master rushed in, and began to collect the chaff instead, gathering it into a pile protected from the wind and criticizing it harshly for not being wheat.

"What are you doing?" the miller asked, confused. At that moment, the student was enlightened.

Re:Powweb (2, Informative)

qqtortqq (521284) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326402)

Speakeasy [] encourages you to run your own servers on thier dsl lines, a static IP costs $3 or $5 extra a month, and they'll change your reverse dns for ya too. I have never been happier with an ISP than I was with them.

Sounds like Speakeasy might be the choice... (1)

Nick Driver (238034) | more than 10 years ago | (#7330076)

... and has about the best "on-paper" offering. I'm in the same boat. I have my own server(s) at home for hosting my own vanity domains, web servers, email servers, and game servers. Right now I've got a combination of RR (residential, dynamic IP and prohibited to run servers) cablemodem for high speed websurfing and client-side game playing where I don't need fixed IP address and a hobbiest-friendly wireless ISP connection for hosting my servers. Problem is, that I'm paying a total of about $100/month for two broadband providers, and the wireless connection is a bit flakey due to it just being wireless and signal dropouts in bad weather, wind blowing the outdoor antenna around, 18-wheel trucks going down the highway in front of my house reflecting the RF signal out of the Fresnel Zone, etc, etc.

Just reading this AskSlashdot story and seeing all the folks praising SpeakEasy has got me interested in their service, which is now available in my town. I used to have 1.5M/768k ADSL for $60/mo which worked great until my old DSL ISP went bankrupt about a year ago. SpeakEasy is offering 1.5/768 here with 4 fixed ip addrs for $80/month and I'm seriously considering them.

Omsoft (4, Informative)

BrynM (217883) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325453)

You're probably going to get a lot of this particular answer (or at least I hope), but if you live in California Omsoft [] is incredible. Not only do they allow you to run your own server, they encourage it. They are responsive to user requests and very knowledgable. Sure it's only a DSL connection, but my site's been happy about. Good luck!

Re:Omsoft (2, Informative)

BrynM (217883) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325559)

Forgot to post the rates [] Omsoft charges. Sorry. I pay $52.95 per month for the whole shebang - known to them as "Static IP Address Pricing". Repeat after me (and smile): "No blocked ports"...

Re:Omsoft (4, Informative)

HotNeedleOfInquiry (598897) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325700)

I was torn between modding BrynM up and making my own post. I'm very happy with Omsoft as well. For my business, I have 768 SDSL and 10 fixed IP's. I've never had a bit of trouble with them, 100% uptime since I was connected. $169/month.

Re:Omsoft (1)

mattOzan (165392) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326710)

I have also used Omsoft for over three years. They are great! Even when I moved out of their DSL service area I kept my shell account for my webspace and email. Customer service is top-notch and reliability is fantastic.

Re:Omsoft (1)

ctenet (602204) | more than 10 years ago | (#7334484)

biggest problem is price. Here in NY I can get cable and DSL for $35 (of course both with port blocking and not being allowed to host stuff) Perhaps I'll convince my parents to pay $20 extra a month. Yeah right.

Ask Slashdot (4, Funny)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325486)


I want something that's exactly like a T1, except I only want to pay $60 a month. TIA.

Re:Ask Slashdot (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325611)

Your trolling, but i'll bite. Speed is not an issue. I just want something reasonable where i can do what i want. If im paying for the connection i should be able to do what i want with it. I am willing to pay considerably more then $60 a month if the service is right. My main point of this question was finding out what other nerds are doing.

Re:Ask Slashdot (1)

dissy (172727) | more than 10 years ago | (#7329425)

> Your trolling, but i'll bite.

That isnt a troll what so ever, its a perfectly valid point.

> Speed is not an issue. I just want something reasonable where i can do what
> i want.

Those are called T1's. T1's are resonable for what you get. DSL is resonable for what you get. Expecting one service for another services super low price is not resonable however.

> If im paying for the connection i should be able to do what i want with it.

But you arnt paying for it. You dont want to pay $400, you want to pay $60.
The $60 line does not include those abilities, that is WHY its $60.

> I am willing to pay considerably more then $60 a month if the service is right.
> My main point of this question was finding out what other nerds are doing.

Personally, I have a 56k dialup which my ISP routes a /24 and a /26 to me over. I have no ports filtered and can run any services I want over it. The dialup is 24/7 as well.

I have a special deal worked out with the ISP, however if one was to pay normal prices for this, it only runs about $150/month.

My connection is also alot more stable than the cable or dsl line of everyone I know, many times over.
My modem may disconnect and redial once every 30-45 days, but the redial takes under 2 minutes, and besides the 2 minute 'lag', nothing gets disconnected or dropped TCP wise.

I'm sure you wont need mad IPs like I have, but you can generally find dedicated dialup for at or under $100/mo, and get some IPs thrown on that.

My next upgrade will be to a T1. I am waiting until I move, as i'm not paying install charges twice in the same year :P
But I refuse to use cable or dsl, because those are not the level of service I require. On the other hand, I dont complain that the cheaper options that dont apply to me are cheaper.

Re:Ask Slashdot (1)

elemental23 (322479) | more than 10 years ago | (#7330219)

The $60 line does not include those abilities, that is WHY its $60.

On the contrary, if you can get service from the right company, it absolutely can include those abilities. See my post further down re: this type of service (static IP address, servers, etc) for only $50/month.

You're not going to get it from any of the major ISPs but, in more populated areas at least, it definitely is available if you look for it.

Re:Ask Slashdot (1)

wesmills (18791) | more than 10 years ago | (#7333548)

I'm dying to know what ISP routes a /24 across a dial-up link (no, really!). I have a couple clients for which that would be incredibly useful. Care to provide a pointer to the ISP?


Re:Ask Slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7325742)

There's no reason except for the artificial scarcity of upstream bandwith created by asymmetric "consumer" connections that a T1 couldn't cost $60 per month. But the telcos aren't about to cannibalize their overpriced T1 business, so they restrict "consumer" connections artificially.

Re:Ask Slashdot (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326504)

I agree. This whole article is based around the concept of the internet turning into a giant comercialised pit. I want to know what the little guys are doing to make they're own home on the web w/o paying an arm and a leg for it. I dont think that the internet should be all about the big buisness.

Re:Ask Slashdot (1)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 10 years ago | (#7329984)

There's no reason except for the artificial scarcity of upstream bandwith created by asymmetric "consumer" connections that a T1 couldn't cost $60 per month. But the telcos aren't about to cannibalize their overpriced T1 business, so they restrict "consumer" connections artificially.

And the thing is, I agree with you. It's still unrealistic to ask for T1 quality service for $60 a month, until something changes to break the telco price fixing.

Re:Ask Slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7332627)

Concur. The quality of service being the rub. Of course, most people (and businesses, for that matter) would put up with only 95% reliability vs. an SLA for a savings of over $300 per month. And the telcos know that!

Re:Ask Slashdot (2, Informative)

Kidbro (80868) | more than 10 years ago | (#7328471)

I want something that's exactly like a T1, except I only want to pay $60 a month. TIA.

Funny thing is that this exists. Dunno about the US, but my ISP in Sweden offers a .5/2.5 Mbps line (soon to be upgraded to 26/26) and several static IP-numbers. No ports blocked.
Well, the differance is that it's more like $40 a month.

Could be a scam, but . . . (0, Offtopic)

base3 (539820) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325493)

. . . 1&1 hosting [] is claiming to offer 3 years of hosting free. Since TANSTAAFL, there must be a catch; I just haven't figured it out yet.

Re:Could be a scam, but . . . (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325628)

This is simply webhosting, nothing near what i was asking about. I am more intrested what nerds are doing to support their home brew solutions.

Re:Could be a scam, but . . . (1)

base3 (539820) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325712)

For some reason, I hadn't parsed that you wanted to host your *own* services. (The 1&1 claims to offer DNS, WWW, and email--but hosted with them, of course.)

As others have suggested, I'd look into Speakeasy. For now, they're pretty reasonable to folks who run their own services. And the extra $50 you're paying should put you into the price range of 3.0 Mbps/768 Kbps service.

Re:Could be a scam, but . . . (0, Troll)

jazman_777 (44742) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326129)

This is simply webhosting, nothing near what i was asking about. I am more intrested what nerds are doing to support their home brew solutions.

You obviously asked the wrong questions. This is /. The right question for /. is 'why does M$ suck?'

Go to a hosting provider. (1, Offtopic)

isaac (2852) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325515), just to pick an example, charges $1 per gigabyte transferred plus $0.02/day for DNS service that includes email forwarding.

You cannot host a site off your own internet connection as cheaply or robustly as a dedicated provider. I don't recommend hosting your own site unless you already need "fancy" service (multiple static IPs, fast upstream) for other reasons.


Re:Go to a hosting provider. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7325565)

If you have ever actually run a web site, you know that it is pretty easy to beat the $5 a month people. Their service is horrible, and god help you if they have something you actually need out of them, like data from a server that vanished from the web, a bill refund, or a DNS transfer.

Like everything else in life, if you want reliability you have to provide it yourself. For the price of a co-lo'd box, here in Texas I can get RoadRunner business class, DSL business class, a dialup backup on separate line (NOT owned by SBC), and administer my own DNS with a short lease to facilite switching from one connection to another.

However, to answer the original poster's quesition, I don't know how to get a fixed IP in your house that cheaply. Grande Communications might offer it, but they don't put their business deals on the web.

Re:Go to a hosting provider. (1)

PD (9577) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325834)

I host my own domain ( on my DSL line.

1) Most people don't need robust. When my mail goes down, everyone just queues it up for me until I fix the problem. It's never my server, it's always the Linksys router or the DSL modem crashing.

2) Cheap. It's the cheapest solution that I could find that meets my needs. It's hard to find someone who will provide a service where the server is located in my bedroom. I pay $65 a month for the ability to open that server up in my own bedroom, at 3 AM, naked. Do you know of another provider with the same access? And if they won't allow naked, will they allow smoking in the server room?

See, some requirements are, ummm, unusual. This is what geeks want from their hosting provider.

Re:Go to a hosting provider. (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326442)

This is exactly the nature of my question. No more corporate conglomerate. The internet is for everyone. Why are we the people who dictate the internet getting screwed? If we want to sit naked and update dns entries we should be able to. Why should big buisness be the only one allowed to 'run' the internet

Oh how cute idealists can be.... (0, Troll)

NDPTAL85 (260093) | more than 10 years ago | (#7328420)

He who has the gold, makes the rules.

The corporations have the money, and thats why they get to tell us how its gonna be.

Any OTHER questions?

Re:Go to a hosting provider. (1)

WayneConrad (312222) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326010)

Reliability isn't always everything, at least for me. I host my own site because I like using odd languages on the server side. Just try to find someone who'll let you run Ruby and Python CGI scripts. There are a few cutting edge hosting services that have heard of Python, but nobody seems to know what Ruby is. And even if they have, what about tomorrow when I decide that my Apache needs mod-lisp or mod-brainfuck or whatever?

For me, it's about learning and experimenting as much as it's about reliability.

Of course, my site is up nearly all the time anyhow. Yeah, once every six months something happens (fan goes out, etc.) and the site is down for half a day while I deal with it. I don't do anything fancy for reliability, either. My floppy-based router just keeps working, and the server has a 2nd hard drive that I do backups to. I've got a closet full of parts I can whip up another server with if need be. Oh, and I've got a pile of these cheapo Belkin UPS's that a local hardware store sold for $15 or $20 each. So even though mine is truly a closet operation, I'm not convinced my reliability would be any better if someone else were hosting my site.

Re:Go to a hosting provider. (2, Informative)

canthusus (463707) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326542)

You cannot host a site off your own internet connection as cheaply...
That kind of depends... If you've already got ADSL, with static IP, then the added cost of hosting is very small. If you want to host several hundred MB of MP3s or JPGs you're not going to find a cheaper commercial solution.

...or robustly as a dedicated provider.
I've had some pretty poor experience of dedicated service providers. They go offline for a week, every day promising it will be up in 2 hours. They lose backups. They arbitrarily change hosting software and interfaces. Expensive ones may be robust, but "cheaply" and "robustly" don't seem to go together. If I host it, I control it. If my server goes up in smoke, if I care that much about reliability I'll go out & buy another one today (or swap over another old PC).

I don't recommend hosting your own site unless you already need "fancy" service (multiple static IPs, fast upstream) for other reasons.
Depends where you're coming from. I host my own web and email. I've learned a huge amount doing so. I have far better access to the server than I'm used to with commercial services. It means that MB stored data cost nothing (so all my music & all my photos are there, available from home or office, but pw protected). I can play with different languages. I can learn about virtual hosting. And yes, it opens up the possibility of home-based webcams, home automation etc.

Hosting your own can be great fun. Start with a limited-functionality webserver such as tinyweb [] - less to learn, less to go wrong, fewer security holes. Don't host an email server until you're certain you understand about open relays, and then test it at []

Back to the original topic. I'm in the UK, so can't help with US providers. But I use Zen ADSL [] . GBP23.82 per month, single static IP. No blocked ports.

Re:Go to a hosting provider. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7328528)

That kind of depends... If you've already got ADSL, with static IP, then the added cost of hosting is very small. If you want to host several hundred MB of MP3s or JPGs you're not going to find a cheaper commercial solution.

Again, it depends. My hosting provider has a great reputation, great service, and I've had one outage in a year. It lasted a couple of hours over a weekend. My DSL connection needs to be reset more often. Those DSL modems are super cheap and aren't really all that reliable.

Depends where you're coming from. I host my own web and email. I've learned a huge amount doing so. I have far better access to the server than I'm used to with commercial services. It means that MB stored data cost nothing (so all my music & all my photos are there, available from home or office, but pw protected). I can play with different languages. I can learn about virtual hosting. And yes, it opens up the possibility of home-based webcams, home automation etc.

DynDNS can give you all this, but I would probably be more inclined to run my server at home off DynDNS and keep the live site up on a hosting provider. Cheap cheap, and offers you all those benefits and more.

Speakeasy (1)

mcowger (456754) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325543)

Check out They have really good prices, good servers, and are geek friendly. They even have a 'sysadmin package'. (2, Informative)

kinema (630983) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325586)

Check out Speakeasy [] . I have never come across a single unhappy customer. They allow the customer to use their connection for pretty much anything, even WiFi hot spots. They even offer symetric DSL up to 1.5Mbit. (1)

Urgoll (364) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325614)

I agree with this post. I was a Speakeasy customer for a while until the DSL provider decider to cut service to my CO. Now I'm with, a local provider.

Both providers were roughly the same: $45 per month for SDSL 384Kbps (symmetric) with 3 static IP addresses and no filtering. Pretty good tech support, too. (1)

BrookHarty (9119) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325745)

True, speakeasy is the same price as other DSL type providers, but they offer "Sys-Admin" packages with 8 IP's to host with, and a shell account on the server, even access to a fast RPMFind server.

Prob one of the most linux friendly ISP's in the world. (1)

nellardo (68657) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325779)

Speakeasy has my undying loyalty.

When I couldn't get a dial tone after September 11th, 2001 (I lived a mile from Ground Zero at the time), Speakeasy still had service. (1)

WayneConrad (312222) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325949)

Agreed. I also like Speakeasy.

I only get 144k (18,000 feet away from the switch, darn it), but my bandwidth is mine to do what I want with. No filters, no restrictions.

The only burp I've ever had with them is that they switched my IP once without telling me, and had no record of it when I called. *That* was annoying, but their phone support was quick and accurate, as always. I only wish I'd have known so I could have put my DNS records on a short leash beforehand. (1)

Judg3 (88435) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326020)

Alas, I knew of the wonders of SpeakEasy at one time - but no more. Where I currently live the most they can give me is 384k SDSL, which sucks. So I'm toughing it out with good ole Time Warner cable. To tell the honest truth, of all the places I've lived and all the cable modem services I've used, Time Warner out of Milwaukee seems to be the best. They just bumped up my DL, so now I'm getting a consistent 3100/365. Upload sucks, but oh well. They don't block any ports and it has gone down on me.

I'd still rather go for SpeakEasy again, but I'll have to wait until I move closer to a CO to get them again. (1)

cmowire (254489) | more than 10 years ago | (#7330858)

I use Speakeasy even though I get crappy transfer because I appreciate a quality connection.

That's how good they are, I guess. ;) (1)

TheDarkRogue (245521) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326043)

SpeakEasy one called me, on the phone, personally, to appologize for a small outage, and that was the only outage i've ever had. It was one of the best things i've done. I Use more upload then download due to the various things I host and have not yet once had a complaint or even a slowdown, the speed is acctually usually above what the plan says I get. (1)

semprebon (61779) | more than 10 years ago | (#7327258)

I, too, will vouch for Speakeasy. I have had few problems in 4 years of service, and even the couple of times I did call them, their tech support was available, friendly, and helpful. (1)

coneill (27602) | more than 10 years ago | (#7330509)

Very happy with Speakeasy ADSL. I have 1.5/768 service with a single static ip for $90/mo,and it's been very reliable other than the DSL modem just locking about every 2-3 months. I imagine I could replace it with another brand,but afraid it doesn't bother me enough to deal with.

August.Net (1)

DAldredge (2353) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325587)

Try August.Net in the DFW area. They are great! (1)

mapMonkey (207912) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325597)

Speakeasy [] has been a very Linux-friendly ISP who has allowed me to host all the services I ever wanted. They are pretty affordable [] , too, with "plus" packages offering such goodies as 4 additional static IPs, or low-ping goodness for gamers.

Use a virtual hosting company for your servers (1)

DDumitru (692803) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325599)

I will try not to advertise too much here, but you should try to run your servers at a hosting facility that offers low-cost virtual servers. My company does this starting at $150/year including 3Gig of disk and 10Gig of transfer running "User Mode Linux" w/ RedHat 7.3. We are not alone and there are a number of vendors that can give you small "dedicated" servers for much less than $50/month.

There are two "classes" of virtual servers. Companies that offer shared hosting, and companies that offer true "virtual" server. With shared hosting, you don't really have the flexibility of a whole machine. With virtual servers, you get ssh root access into a Linux or BSD system and can load your own packages etc.

The User Mode Linux based servers work very well and are really complete servers with their own dedicated file system, network, and RAM. Other than being small (32Meg of RAM, 32Meg of SWAP, and 3G of disk) that are 100% complete systems running 2.4.22 with gcc, emacs, vi, perl, php, apache, bind, ... Plus you can load anything else you want.

Our servers are 100% open sitting on dedicated 100Mbit lines with truely public and unfiltered IP addresses. We pre-configure iptables based firewalls, but you can open up whatever you wish.

The downside of true "virtual" servers versus shared hosting accounts is that you have to configure the software yourself. If you don't know how to setup apache and bind, then a complete server is probably not a good idea.

The bottom line is that this lets you use any old DSL/Cable modem line and still have your 100% accessible server on the net.

Speakeasy's pretty good (1)

nyamada (113690) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325610)

They give you a static IP, and allow you to host your own mail server, web server, the works...

I've been a pretty satisfied customer over the last three years. (3, Informative)

hawkfan (11267) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325624) [] . they're not cheep but you get what you pay for:
  • Static IP is the default.
  • They not only allow but encourage running servers. They're even reasonable about secondary DNS and MX pricing.
  • Free reverse lookup changes.
  • Encourage sharing your connection [] .
  • Don't block ports.
  • Provide NTP services on all their local POPs
  • Heck they even host game servers on the local POPs
I have no affiliation with Speakeasy other than being a more than satisfied customer. Go check out [] . (3, Informative)

base3 (539820) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325734)

Speakeasy's good, but static IP is no longer the default. The inexpensive plans (e.g. $49.95) come with a dynamic IP and use PPPoE. Good plans are still available from Speakeasy, but you have to make sure to order the right one. (1)

jshare (6557) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325809)

I concur. Speakeasy owns. I now have (for $140ish/month) 3mbit down and 768 kbit up. With 4 static IPs.

And no blocked ports.

I can't believe people settle for anything less. (I also can't believe other posters think that "no blocked ports" is that unusual. Speakeasy's been that way for at least 3 years (as long as I've had their service))

Is Speakeasy really that unknown?

Lanminds (1)

linuxwrangler (582055) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325636)

I have been a customer of LMI [] for many years. They are quite geek-friendly. Things may have changed but when I got DSL they didn't even offer DHCP - if you bought an always-on connection you got a static IP. They don't block ports or have funny bandwidth caps either. They will run email/DNS for you or, of course, you can run your own. I don't think they operate outside the SF Bay Area, though.

DSL Extreme (1)

molo (94384) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325672)

In California? Try DSL Extreme [] . I'm getting 1.5 Mbit downstream, 256 kbit upstream plus one static IP for $65/month. No blocked ports. Additional IPs available at $8/month. I'm running SMTP, DNS, HTTP.. no problems.

Routing is good, just a couple hops from major backbones. I often ping 100ms to the east coast.

No questions asked, they just provide the pipe. Works great, fast installation. I don't work for them or anything, I'm just a satisfied customer.

Pricing varies by local telco and region.


Thanks (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325681)

I would like to thank most of you for your honest feedback. I will be checking into speakeasy tomorrow to see what they offer.

But wait! thats not all (1)

Lord Prox (521892) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326352)

I was hunting for xDSL service 2 years ago and could not get speakeasy so after some hunting found LinkLine.
  • Static by default
  • Servers OK
  • no ports blocked
  • Knowledgable staff
  • extra IP @ 5 bucks
  • Primary and secondary DNS

If Speakeasy is not available, talk to linkline

Linkline (1)

elemental23 (322479) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325737)

You don't say what part of the country you're in, but Linkline [] offers pretty good DSL packages [] .

I'm paying $50/month for 768/128, but I get up to 1.5 downstream easily, I've got a static IP address, and I have their blessing to run whatever servers I want. They even set the reverse DNS on my IP address to my own host/domain name. Additional static IP addresses are $5/month each.

Also, they're small enough that if it goes down or something, once you've shown that you know what you're talking about it's fairly easy to get a sysadmin or network engineer on the line. That's so much nicer than dealing with three levels of tech support in a cube farm somewhere.

Wow... (1)

Guspaz (556486) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325827)

My ISP charges 4$ canadian per month for a static IP... I get mine free, I'm grandfathered.

Seriously though, if you can't afford a dedicated server (80$ at RackShack or ServerMatrix), maybe a virtual server (10$/mth), like here: []

10$ a month, unlimited transfer, 100MB storage space, and it comes with:

One domain name hosted (purchased separately)
Unlimited email accounts
Unlimited email aliases or forwards
Unlimited FTP access
FrontPage 2000 extensions
Unlimited bandwidth usage
CGI, PHP and Server Side Includes

Which seems to be everything you want, though you only get 1 domain name, so it's not really a full DNS server. Additional ones hosted are 2$ per month though, and most registrars like GoDaddy host it for you, and even let you edit the records themselves.

For more info on it, check out here: t=Virtual+Hosting []

I'd list some more virtual server providers, but I can't remember any off the top of my head :p A google search [] for "virtual server host" turns up a few places with similar plans.

Re:Wow... (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326460)

again, i wish you would have read my actual question. Colocation is not an option at this point. It may be some day.. but not right now.. (1)

Brandybuck (704397) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325884)

In the SF Bay Area, look up They're more expensive than SBC or Earthfink, but what you get for the price of DSL+hosting compared to the other guys is (besides the usual):

Something you can actually run a server with, like 250MB storage, 10GB transfer per/month, up to 384Kbit/sec upstream, a real router and not a broadband "modem", no PPPoE, support for all operating systems, routed subnets and firewalling by default, extremely minimal restrictions on usage.

The guys running it are very helpful, and know what they are doing. You're not going to get 24/7 support, but you will get a call back within 30 minutes during normal hours. They run FreeBSD and if you want a particular "port" installed on the host machine just ask.

The best part about it, is that it's a "business" class service, even though it's a non-commercial account. You won't be sharing a subnet with 253 napster freaks. In five years with them I've never seen them down once.

Here's the best story I have about them. Last week a coworker was trying to belittle me for paying so much. He said I should go with instead for $7.95. This guy was an intern under my care, so I felt it my duty to set him straight. So I brought up the netcraft uptime page and checked meer net. Looked pretty damn good. A smooth upward slope ever since they switched the front server from IRIX to FreeBSD. Then I pulled up doteasy. You can check for youselves, but I have to warn you, it's not a pretty sight!

Limitation of ADSL line w/ running servers (1)

tin_the_fatty (464704) | more than 10 years ago | (#7325903)

1. Depending on the ISP, you might not be able to obtain more than one IP address w/ your line. Needs two to run DNS.

2. Uplink speed generally sucks, at only around 50KB/s.

Something like virtual (machine) hosting would be a better bet. I am a happy customer of You need the Linux package to run DNS thou.

Re:Limitation of ADSL line w/ running servers (1)

toast0 (63707) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326407)

You don't _need_ two ips to run dns... few registries require that anymore... it's of course a good idea, but not required. Even if a second ns is required, you could always do something stupid for the second ip, like an ip you know is not used.

I just switched to these guys (1)

mpechner (637217) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326059)

They seem resonable so far.

Comcast in the Dallas Area (1)

JoeGuitar (719592) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326182)

I am using comcast cable in the dallas area, and im not too impressed. My connection is down about twice a month, and sometimes the lines get really cluttered and i get insanely slow download rates and gaming pings. My parents pay for it, so im not going to complain to them. If you want the connection for hosting, just google for a web host company. There are thousands who will charge $5 to $10 a month for a dns, web server, and email server like you need.

Re:Comcast in the Dallas Area (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326467)

Please re-read the origional question.

What's your use? (1)

jfisherwa (323744) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326419)

Depending on what you're planning to use it for, I'll just give you some space on my server. No big deal.. Just send me an email. :P

Re:What's your use? (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326478)

Colocation. Not what i am looking for as stated in the article.

Try isomedia (1)

ipb (569735) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326429)

My service is with isomedia I pay $22.50/month plus an additional $5 for a static IP on top of my verizon DSL line. No hastles, no problems with servers etc.

Shaw (0)

future assassin (639396) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326551)

Well I run a few sites and a shoutcast station on my cable connection from Im paying about $75CDN for it per month and have a 50gig transfer limit with about 2MbitDL/400+MbitUL speed . Although you are not allowed to run DNS/WWW/Mail servers on all but one of their accounts they dont block any ports and as long as you dont abuse the bandwidth limits they leave you alone. I did decide to go for a business account just to make sure they wouldnt bother me like they might if I was running a redisdential account. I also asked a local LUG if anyone has been contacted about running servers and all replies where that if you dont abuse the system they wont bother you.

Roadrunner business class... (1)

ffsnjb (238634) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326743)

I use RR business class for my home connection. $109.95/month for 2 statics in a dmz, 1 meg down, 128k up. It's the cheapest service they have, more bandwidth costs more money, but it is available. I run mail and host for a couple domains (one being the URL above.)

Other than some problems with shit Cisco routers, which they fixed this past Saturday (weekend tech trip to my apartment, for free, can't beat that for service,) I haven't had less than 3 9's downtime in more than a year.

Colo cage (2, Funny)

smoon (16873) | more than 10 years ago | (#7326856)

Get a cage at a colocation facility. Sell all of your stuff, get a sleeping bag and a laptop then move in.

100MB+ internet access and it's only a few $hundred a month, but since you will live there (cm'on -- you're probably on IRC 19 hours a day anyway -- right?) you can eliminate rent.

Just get a few boxes of 'wet naps' -- maybe from your local KFC and you don't need to worry about showering or whatever.

Hey -- where else is it 70 degrees all day every day? Hawaii? San Diego? Who can afford to move there? Plus you would have major geek bragging rights at the local starbucks.

Good luck!

Re:Colo cage (1)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 10 years ago | (#7334427)

Heh, someone could turn that into a very lucrative business model.

Throw in some communal showers and bathrooms, make each room the size of a small dorm room....

A geek hostel. It'd be great.

DSL (1)

raminator (635306) | more than 10 years ago | (#7327354)

I pay $46.95 a month through Mikrotec which mainly serves Kentucky. They give me a static IP address and all ports are open. Great deal for me.

speakeasy... (1)

1eyedhive (664431) | more than 10 years ago | (#7327588)

unfortunatly, here in Sarasota, FL (50 mi. S of Tampa), we don't get speakeasy DSL (anyone know how to twist the arms of speakeasy/verizon to get a connection down here?) I used for hosting for over 2 years, $14.95 for basic hosting, no PHP/MySQL or anything fancy, then i learned the stuff and suddenly needed it :-/ grabbed an account with a friend of mine, who runs the local LAN gaming group , and used to run a BBS in town but now runs said group, and manages the network for a locally based furniture company. Has redundant setups (three-four, depending on the config), main server, backup at the other co-owner of the BBS/LAN group's house, and a tertiary connection if necessary on the WiNET link for the furniture store (wireless T1 ;-) ) Pay him the same $15/month, get personal service, all the trimmings on the server, shell access, PHP, MySQL, mail, the works, and a reliable connection, plus it's located 1/4 mile from my house, :) he uses Internet Junction out of Clearwater, only decent DSL ISP down here (Verizon blocks SMTP/POP access, bastards) runs $150/mo for a 768/768 SDSL link after you add verizon's charges, pretty shitty if you ask me, but until speakeasy gets around here, it's all we've got.

DSL In Idaho (1)

ONOIML8 (23262) | more than 10 years ago | (#7328133)

Here in Sandpoint, Idaho I've got DSL. The way they provide it is a bit strange. Verizon handles the transport at $32.50 per month for 768x128 but then you also have to choose from a list of about a dozen ISP's. The ISP I use gives me a static IP for only $22 per month. I think they also give me some mail boxes and http space but I do my own so I wouldn't know.

So for $54.50 per month I've got static IP and 768x128.

I do have numerous problems with my ISP as everything they do is Winblows based. They go down all too often for a variety of reasons. They are also a choke point that keeps me from full bandwidth, I know other people using other providers in the area who get faster service. Then again they're paying $5 to $20 more per month than I am.

AVOID PrimusDSL (1)

BigGerman (541312) | more than 10 years ago | (#7328235)

They have decent speeds and allow static IPs / servers but once something goes wrong their support people are completely and totally clueless.

I'll throw in one more vote for Speakeasy (1)

DuckDuckBOOM! (535473) | more than 10 years ago | (#7328599)

Not the cheapest, but absolutely the closest thing to a pure "Internet dial tone" out there. Unabashedly hobbyist-friendly. Customer service is relatively prompt, courteous, and knowledgable. Customer over 2 yrs now; two brief outages (not counting the time the tree in my backyard fell on the wire); d/l throughput has increased about 40kb/s since I signed up.

While I'm at it, I can recommend [] for DNS service. Relatively high but one-time cost; dynamic and static routing; servers are fast and reliable; good / powerful maintenance pages. (1)

wpc4 (169892) | more than 10 years ago | (#7329894)

I've been very happy with Speakeasy, have had 1.1mb SDSL as well as ADSL with them. They allow you to run whatever you want, as long as its legal, with no problems.

? standard reply (1)

Telastyn (206146) | more than 10 years ago | (#7329941)

Best ISP known to man or beast. Standard $50-60 for 1.5/384 dsl and a static IP. More static IPs are like $2 per month per IP. No blocking, no unreasonable terms of service, no unreasonable outages, excellent service, excellent web service interface. What an ISP *should* be.

Disclaimer: I do not work or recieve compensation from speakeasy. I have been a customer of theirs for 3 years now, and currently enjoy 1.1mbs sdsl home connectivity through their service.

Look at Britsys and Covad (1)

kentborg (12732) | more than 10 years ago | (#7330096)

I use Covad at home and they have been reliable.

I recently got my mother-in-law set up on Britsys, and though she hasn't been up for long, they look quite good too--and less expensive than Covad.

In both cases I have a static IP, I know I don't have any blocked ports on Covad, I have to admit I haven't confirmed that for Britsys, but I don't think they block any.

Now if I could only find any decent non-dialup for my parents at 952-472-XXXX...


Don't get sucked into playing amateur sysadmin! (2, Funny)

aquarian (134728) | more than 10 years ago | (#7331034)

Everyone wants to play amateur sysadmin these days. I have to admit, I've been tempted too. It's fun to mess with Your Very Own Server (TM). But when you do the math, it just isn't worth it.

A much better value is virtual hosting, which is getting very cheap these days. By virtual hosting I mean your very own server -- an instance of Linux, BSD or whatever running on a big box via MWare. To you it's exactly the same as running your own box at home, but better. First of all, it's much better connected -- usually with at least 2-3 T1 or better connections to a major backbone -- not some silly upload-capped 128k DSL or cable line. Second, no more hardware worries -- everything is kept running by the hosting company, and all you do is admin your own software. You can even get Microsoft-compatible stuff. Finally, the cost ($20-30/month) is often less than the extra cost of a static IP on your home DSL or cable, and that's not even considering the savings on hardware.

I don't know why anyone messes with home servers anymore, except to satisfy a gearhead fetish.

Cavalier Telecom (1)

Mr. Slippery (47854) | more than 10 years ago | (#7331218)

I'm in Maryland and I get my voice and DSL from Cavalier Telephone [] . 384k DSL, static IP (you can get more than one for an additional fee, I just run my server on the static one and NAT my other boxen), total cost for voice and data about $65/month including all the taxes and fees. I'm quite happy with it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7331494)

I use and they charge about 55$ a month for basic dsl. They charge another 5$ a month for each static IP address. Havent tried the statics but their dsl is fine and the support is good too. Im in Rockland County, New York.

Why, Speakeasy, of course! (1)

dacarr (562277) | more than 10 years ago | (#7331760)

Like everyone else said on here, Speakeasy provides elegant service.

For what it's worth, I'm getting ADSL, 1.5/256, and it comes with a shell account, 2 static IPs, 2 email addresses, 1 GB of Usenet per user courtesy of Giganews, Rhapsody access for music, and a few other bells and whistles. That package alone runs me $59.95 per month plus FUSF, and for an additional $9.95 per month they are also my primary DNS for my domains.

This is the same ISP who, when I was first interested in 2000, asked me if I wanted a shell account to go with my dialup. (I was unable to afford DSL at the time, as where I was living then would only have garnered me SDSL - so I went dialup.)

Expensive? For the package, very, but well worth it - last time I called support it was to ask a trivial question or three, and their network is rock solid. Even then, even their sales people know the difference between TCP and IP for the most part.

Giant Corporation Alternative: Earthlink (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7332404)

I've had Earthlink DSL [] for about two years. I am currently paying $50 a month for the basic residential 1.5Mbps down. I was only supposed to get 256kbps up when I installed it, but it actually clocks at 384kbps. (But note that the basic package offered now only says 128kbps up - not sure what you'd actually get). They offer static IPs for the residential accounts for an extra $15 a month - officially for things like "running your own game server".

Earthlink also have a small business package that's 1.5Mbps / 384kbps + static IP for $79 / month. This is probably what you would want if you were to use them.

I've run an HTTP and FTP server (with a dynamic IP redirect service -, and it worked flawlessly. The only caveat for running your own servers is that outbound mail *must* be relayed through Earthlink's SMTP server - they block outbound port 25 to all other hosts but as an anti-spam measure to prevent open relay abuse. It works and I can still send email from my work address through their servers from home. However, if you run a mailing list you'd want to use something like Yahoo Groups instead.

Earthlink certainly is not *bad* for a giant corporation (they're part of teleco giant Sprint) - the service seems a lot better and more reliable than the DSL service I previously had through Qwest. But I've never had to speak to a human, so I don't know what their tech support is like if I were to have a problem.

If I was starting over, I'd probably see if I could get Speakeasy first, but only because of the more expensive and faster 1.5Mbps / 768kbps service. If you can't get Speakeasy in your area, Earthlink is not a bad 2nd choice.

Blarg (1)

b!arg (622192) | more than 10 years ago | (#7333694)

Here in Seattle I use It's very good. The uptime has been remarkable. It is $50/month for Qwests 640k line. You get 8 routable IPs plus unmetered transfer, which is really nice.

A static IP is cheap in Canada... (1)

geoswan (316494) | more than 10 years ago | (#7333998)

Here in Canada static IP addresses are much cheaper... I looked up the five dozen ISPs that offer DSL in my city, Toronto, using this link [] . And I wrote some of the sites that offer static IPs... The extra cost ranged from $0 to $12 CAD per month. Broadband is, in general, cheaper here than in the USA too.

Why? (1)

adolf (21054) | more than 10 years ago | (#7334124)

At home, I've got normal consumer-grade (Time Warner; somewhere around 3mbps/384kbps, $50) cable. The service is dead-solid reliable, and the IP address has never changed.

Oh, sure - it *might*. But dynamic DNS services are easy to set up, and free [] .

And if you insist on running BIND yourself, there's ways of doing that [] , too, without bothering your registrar every time you hop IPs or costing you a cent.

Once you've got the DNS issues resolved, the rest (SMTP, HTTP, whatever) is cake.

(If this all seems too "hard" or "unreliable" or "hackish," please feel free to contribute $50/mo to your existing ISP for a static address. Thank you.)
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