Friday, 17 July 2015

My phone is dead, but ADSL is (barely) up

Three weeks ago I got burgled, and the bastards cut my phone line. My permanently temporary fix involved stripping the wire ends and twisting corresponding ends together. It had also rained plenty the two days before the burglary, and usually rain has meant phone line problems. So it was this time; the phone worked a day or two after my repairs, then it died for a few days. Then it worked for another day or two, but then died again, and has stayed that way for the last week plus change. There is nothing on the line as far as my telephone is concerned. No dial tone, no hum, no buzzing, no hiss. If I still had a multimeter I could measure the on-hook voltage between tip and ring, but I now don't, so I can't. Just to be sure I jury-rigged a 1mA meter with a 47kΩ resistor in series to try and measure the voltage, and again, nothing there. The needle didn't even move.

I'm so glad my ADSL (just about) works though. I really depend on ADSL more than on my telephone, although especially now after the burglary I would have liked to be able to call people to make fire under their arses (I'm looking at you, Hollard / Ooba / 1000 other "partners", it's been three weeks and I've had an army of people come and look at the damage, but the only doing that's happened is what I've done myself).

Better watch that ADSL then, since it's important. So I wrote a script to monitor the ADSL modem's stats. Just some screen-scraping, although I'm sure there's some neat way to do it with SNMP. Add some Gnuplot and I get a nice graph of SNR margins, up and downstream. Red = upstream margin, green = upstream power, the others for downstream.

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