I'm not sure if this is the right forum for a tech question exactly, but none of the other forums fit, so I went with this one as the catch all. Be forewarned. This is a long and boring story about stupid computer bullcrap. If this stuff doesn't interest you at all, you will probably die while reading this. Don't blame me if you do. Okay, I'm having internet problems. It's sorta usual. About every three months or so, I have to get a tech sent out here to check the lines to see why my connection is acting flaky. They'll come by, poke at the splitter in the box, maybe tighten the connectors, shrug, and head on. It almost always seems to level out on its own after a couple of days, so the contractors, who always come out about 5-6 days later, end up saying something like "DAR I DUNNO IT'S JUST ONE OF THOSE THINGS I GUESS HURR DUUUR DUR DUB A DUP DEEP DURP DAR". They've never done for a full diagnostic from the tap to the modem. Something that'd make sense to do with an intermittent connection problem that's been going on for about 2 years. Hell, they're rarely ever around for longer than 10 minutes. Now here I am again. Only this time, it's a little worse than usual. It started yesterday. It was up and down all day long, so I call up tech support, and ask if they're having any problems in my area. First, they walk me through the usual unplugging everything spiel, hooking the line directly up to my modem, blah blah blah. It doesn't fix anything. Then she tells me we're having problems in the area, and they'll be resolved in a couple. I say alright, and head on out to do something else in the meantime. Later that night, I head back home, plug in the router, and...nothing. I can't pull an IP address through it. I fiddle around with it for 20 minutes, go through unplugging everything, swapping wires, all that good stuff. Still nothing. Ain't got no IP address. So I call up Charter again. End up talking to a tech who I swear to God must've been doped up to the gills on quaaludes. "Haaallllloooooowww. Thank yooooou for calling Chhhhhaaaarrrtttteeerrrrr". Normally, I don't make fun of the way people talk, but when it takes you 30 seconds to say something that normally takes 5, you just gotta comment on it. Not that I blame the guy for doing heavy downers on the job. If I worked tech support, I know I would. "Hey, my internet connection's still flaky, and I can't get on my router. You all still having problems in my area". "I'm unaawwwwwaaarrreee of any prrrooobbbllleeems, let me....chhheeeeccckkkk. :seasons pass: Nooooooooooooo. We're Goooooodddddd". So anyway, it goes on like this. Long story short, I hook the computer directly to the modem, don't get an IP address after 5 seconds (it takes about 15 minutes to resolve one). Guy doesn't know what's going on. My router's probably bad, and I should be up and running tomorrow. The router thing I can understand. It's 6 years old, and has been giving me the occasional problems here as of late. It's a good excuse to buy a new one. I should also add the guy said "oooookkkaaaayyy" after everything I said. Exact same pitch, tone, and everything. Honestly, I think he was a robot. A drugged up robot. Now I'm about 2 hours back from Best Buy. Got a fancy new router. I plug it in, name my network Surveillance Van to screw with my neighbors, and....nothing. Same thing. No IP address. And yes, naming your router funny things will scare your neighbors. The guy next door came over to my house asking me if he was getting hacked because he kept getting this "Windows Viruses" thing pop up on his network list. That's what my old router used to be called. "I guess as long as you don't click on it, you'll be alright. So that aside aside, I call up Charter again. "Hey, still can't get on my router. I think I'm having problems again". I go through the spiel...again. They tell me I've been dropping my connection every few hours, and that it's my modem at fault. Now here's the thing about my modem. I bought my own about a year ago after a previous internet connection problem, and they've been trying to get me to rent one from them since. I don't even have HD digital in my house right now because they won't let me get the receiver unless I used their modem. Apparently they ones they use are, in their words, "tested". I did my research and paid $90 for the thing, and it's barely a little over a year old. Chances are better that they're having a problem with the line under the house (woodchucks), the box, or the tap on the pole they haven't serviced in 30 odd years than it would be this modem. In in a position where they have better leverage to get me out of my own modem, and into renting one of theirs. What I need is proof that it isn't the modem (or is, if the case may be), and more something on their end. So yeah, after that very long story, it all comes down to that one simple question. So is there a way to do this? What do I need to look for?