D & P BLOG

How much speed do I need? Category: Blog

FriPMUTCE_March+0000RMarPMUTC_0C5

For Residential Customers, D&P Communications offers a few different levels of high-speed internet. But at first glance, it can be pretty hard to tell what kind of connection you need. You don’t want to overpay for your service, but you also don’t want to end up with a connection that’s too slow. So how can you tell what speed is best?

Of course, when you sign up for service, our customer service representatives will be happy to provide advice. But you can also get a pretty good idea on your own by reading each of these statements and deciding which fits you the best.

In addition to email and web browsing, I sometimes use Netflix or watch YouTube videos, but there isn’t usually more than one person in my house wanting to do it at the same time. Some people don’t stream a lot of video or music and only have one internet user in the house, in this case, our 10M/2.5M package is probably your best bet. (10M stands for 10 megabits per second and is the download speed, 2.5M stands for 2.5 megabits per second, and is the upload speed)

I like watching videos and listening to music online, and I want to be able to use Netflix while somebody else is watching YouTube or listening to Pandora. If you or your family want to stream video or music to more than one device at a time, for example if someone wants to watch Netflix on the Smart TV while someone else is listening to Spotify on their mobile device, you’re looking for our 25M/5M package.

In addition to watching videos or listening to music, I like to play video games online or use video chat services like Skype, Google Hangouts, or Facetime. Online gaming and video chatting use a lot of both Upload and download speed. If this describes you, you also probably don’t want anything less than a 25M/5M package. For the best experience with these activities, we would recommend our next tier.

I’m a heavy internet user. I want to be able to play online games or use video chat services; I also want to be able to do things like view footage from my home security system remotely. If someone in your family is watching Netflix, while someone else is playing online games on their Xbox One or other gaming console, you will want our 50M/10M package. This will ensure no one misses a beat while the bandwidth demand is high. If you want to view home security cameras in real-time, this Tier or higher is a must-have.

Everyone in my house uses the internet a lot — for movies, music, gaming, video chats, you name it. We have multiple computers connected to the internet, and they’re frequently all in use at the same time. Do you have a 4K TV and want to take advantage of Netflix’s new 4K streaming subscription, all while your kids are playing online games and video chatting, while streaming music from their phones? For households with multiple heavy internet users, or for users who require speedy downloads of large files, such as those purchasing video games digitally (A 20GB game will download in as little as 26 minutes!), try the highest speed package we offer at this time, the 110M/25M package.

These speed tiers are for Residential Customers. Since no two businesses are the same, we offer custom solutions for Business Customers to fit the needs of each individual business. If you have any questions, just ask! If you’re interested in signing up for service, just give us a call at 800-311-7340. You can also go to our website and chat live by clicking on the red “How can we help?” box in the lower right corner of your screen.

Never mail us another check again! Category: Blog

ThuPMUTCE_February+0000RFebPMUTC_0C5

Did you know that you can receive and pay your D & P Communications phone, internet and cable bill electronically? Say goodbye to stamps and envelopes — you don’t need them when you can pay your bill online anytime. By default, we mail your bill to you, but that’s easy to change. Through our website, you can sign up to receive your statements by email every month.

How to sign up for paperless statements

  1. Go to d-pcomm.com. On a computer, hover over “My D & P” in the upper right corner of your screen and click on “My account.” On your phone, look for the red bar just below the D & P logo and click on the white menu icon; “My account” will be near the bottom.
  2. On the next page, you’ll see a box labeled “Existing Users” and a box labeled “New Users.” If you have not previously registered to access your D & P account online, go to the “New Users” box and click “Register.”
  3. You will be asked to input your account number, your service ID. Both of these can be found on your statement: if you have phone service with us, your service ID will just be your phone number without dashes. Otherwise, it will be your phone number and begin with a “C”, “I”, “W” or “T” and can be found on page 3 of your statement, It will also ask for the account holder’s last name, and your last statement balance.
  4. Once you have registered, click on “My online profile,” then change the “Bill delivery” dropdown menu from “Paper” to “Electronic.”
  5. From this point on, instead of receiving your bill in the mail, you will get an email once a month telling you your statement is ready to view.

How to sign up for automatic payments

  1. Log in to your account through d-pcomm.com (if you haven’t registered yet, see steps 1-3 above).
  2. Click on the “Payments” tab and find the “Auto Payments” button; the system will walk you through all the steps needed to set it up. You will need to provide a Visa, Mastercard, American Express or Discover Card number.
  3. Your card will automatically be charged for the full amount of your current bill on the 15th day of every month.

How to use Quick Pay

You don’t need to be signed up for paperless statements to pay your bill online. Here’s how to pay your bill with just a few short steps.

  1. Go to d-pcomm.com. On a computer, hover over “My D & P” and then click on “Online Bill Pay.” On your phone, use the menu icon just below the D & P logo and find “Online Bill Pay” near the bottom of the menu.
  2. Underneath the “Quick Pay” heading, enter your account number and service ID. Both of these can be found on your statement: if you have phone service with us, your service ID will just be your phone number without dashes. Otherwise, it will be your phone number and begin with a “C”, “I”, “W” or “T” and can be found on page 3 of your statement,
  3. Again, you can use Visa, Mastercard, American Express or Discover to pay your bill.

By going paperless and paying your bill online, you can save time, energy, and paper!

Router not working? Here are five quick DIY troubleshooting tips Category: Blog

WedPMUTCE_March+0000RMarPMUTC_0C5

Having your internet access stop working can be frustrating — but if it happens to you, there’s a good chance that you’ve simply experienced a minor glitch in your router that can be easily fixed. Here are five easy things you can do yourself before picking up the phone and calling for help.

The first step: Power-cycle your router. “Have you tried turning it off and turning it back on again?” has practically become a tech-support cliché. But there’s a reason this is the first thing you should try if your router has stopped working: after extended operation, your router really can develop minor problems that are easily solved by restarting the device. Just unplug the power cable, wait 10 seconds — this is because the capacitors in an electronic device can carry a residual charge that keeps it powered for a few seconds even after you unplug it — and then plug the cable back in again. Wait for the router’s indicator lights to come back on, then try connecting again.

If that doesn’t work: Check all your cables. A coaxial cable that isn’t screwed in all the way can easily work itself loose. Or someone might have accidentally pulled on a cable or bumped the router while vacuuming, causing a cable to come unplugged. Check anyplace there’s a connection: not just the spot where the cable plugs into your router itself, but any other place where a plug could have gotten disturbed, like a wall jack or a signal splitter.

Make sure it’s not overheating. Electronic devices can overheat, causing damage. Place your hand on the router and see if it’s hot. If it is, the air vents that keep its components cool might be blocked. A router that has overheated may be permanently damaged and need to be replaced, but first, try positioning it in the open where air can easily flow through its vents and see if that makes it perform better.

Plug your computer directly into your Internet source. Whether it’s a modem or a wall jack, connect it directly to your computer using an Ethernet cable. If you still can’t connect, you probably have a problem with your Internet connection; if you can, the problem is with your router.

If your Wifi signal is spotty, try repositioning the router. Your router can be working perfectly, but you still won’t get a good wireless signal if it’s positioned wrong. Your router should be out in the open (not tucked in a cabinet or a closet). If you want to be able to connect from anywhere in your house, it should be as centrally located as possible. And if it has an external antenna, make sure it’s extended and pointing up. (See our previous blog post, Eight Ways to Speed Up your Wifi at Home, for tips on improving your wireless network.)

Why you should have a password on your wireless router Category: Blog

ThuPMUTCE_February+0000RFebPMUTC_0C5

Do you have a wireless router in your home? If you do, is it password-protected?

Just like you wouldn’t let a stranger use your email account or borrow your driver’s license, you shouldn’t leave your home wi-fi unprotected. Keep reading to find out why … and how you can keep your wireless connection private.

Why does it matter?

There are three main reasons to keep your wireless router protected by a password.

  1. It saves your bandwidth. If your router is unprotected, anyone within range can use your internet connection and hog your bandwidth, making your internet connection much slower. If you live in a town, you could easily have a dozen neighbors within range of your wireless signal — plus anyone who happens to be driving or walking by. That’s a lot of potential for people to leech off of the internet connection that you’re paying for.
  2. To the rest of the internet, anyone using your wi-fi looks like you. Every internet user has a unique address, known as an IP address, that can be used to identify them. Anyone who connects to the internet using your router will have the same IP address as you — which means that if they do anything illicit or illegal, it will look like you’re the one responsible. People who plan to commit crimes online have been known to seek out unsecured wi-fi connections to cover their tracks, so leaving your router unsecured puts you at risk of being blamed for something you didn’t do.
  3. An unsecured router gives hackers one more weakness to exploit. Just leaving your router unprotected generally isn’t enough to give the average passerby access to your computer, but it is a vulnerability that a smart hacker can find a way to use — and you don’t want to give identity thieves any more opportunities than they already have.

How do I tell if my Wi-Fi is unsecured?

When you go to connect your computer or smartphone to your home’s wi-fi, you’ll see a list of available networks. If a picture of a lock appears next to your home network’s name, it has a password set. If there’s no lock, it’s open and anyone can access it.

How do I set my password?

This varies depending on what kind of router you have, but the owner’s manuals for some of the most common wireless routers can be found on the D&P Communications Help Guides page. If you don’t see your router listed, and you can’t find your owner’s manual, don’t worry — you will almost certainly be able to find a downloadable owner’s manual for your router by typing its name (such as “Linksys E1200”) into Google.

What else can I do?

Setting a password isn’t the only way to make your home wi-fi network more secure. If your network’s name includes the brand name of your router — such as Linksys or Netgear — change it to something else. Knowing what kind of router you’re using gives would-be hackers one more tool to use against you.

Another option, if you only use a few devices (such as computers or smartphones) to connect to the internet and you don’t plan to use anything else in the near future, is to program your router to only accept connections from those specific devices. Every device has a unique identifier known as a MAC address, and you can set your router to only accept connections from MAC addresses it “knows.” This adds a layer of security, but also can be inconvenient, because if you buy a new computer or phone, bring a laptop home from work, or have a guest who needs to use your network, your router’s settings will need to be changed before you can connect any new device.

Finally, make sure your password is something hard to guess. Passwords like “admin,” “password,” “qwerty,” and “123456” are among the first things a hacker will try if they’re trying to gain unauthorized access to your network. Using your children’s names or your high school mascot is also a bad idea. Pick something that’s easy for you to remember, but hard for anyone else to figure out based on readily available information about you.