DSL Almost Derailed

The other day I signed up for DSL service through Ameritech. Today they left a message on my voice mail saying they don’t support Windows Millenium Edition, the OS of the computer I told them I was going to use for DSL access. Had to call them back quick to make sure they didn’t delay the installation — told them I had a Windows 98 machine. Which, of course I do, but they didn’t ask so I didn’t tell them I actually plan on hooking the DSL up to a LinkSys DSL router.

Not very honest perhaps, but what sort of vendor actually thinks that given the number of 2+ computer households that they can get away with stipulating that you can’t run both DSL and an Ethernet network (that is one of Ameritech’s stipulations for service — that you not network the computer the DSL is on.) They really hate things like the LinkSys DSL router, but I really want a firewall between my computer and an always-on DSL modem without having to dedicate a separate computer running something like BlackIce (it’s interesting that so far, neither the literature I’ve received from Ameritech nor in my conversations with the DSL sales representatives did anybody alert me to any of the security problems that might come from having DSL without some sort of firewall or similar software).

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