Trouble Shooting

Use the information in this chapter to resolve problems you may have using the modem or transferring files. In all cases, check with your modem manufacturer to make sure that you have the most current firmware revision level. Firmware is the software in a ROM chip that makes your modem work.



Getting your Modem to 'Wakeup'

The wakeup process will fail if TeleFinder does not get the "OK" response from your modem. Below are some common causes of, and solutions to, the problem:


- Using incorrect modems settings is the most common reason for this failure. Try selecting a different modem setups option.

- Sometimes a "locked-up" modem will cause this problem. Turn the modem's power off for several seconds. Then turn it back on. This will "re-boot" the modem.

- A missing "DTR" signal may cause your modem to ignore commands. This is more common with hardware handshake cables. If your modem has a DTR dip switch, set it to the "Ignore DTR" or "Forced DTR" position.



Fixing Connection Problems

Connection problems occur because the modems do not connect, or have problems communicating after they connect.


Modems did not Make a Connection

TeleFinder reports "The connection failed." when the modem returns the "NO CARRIER" response. Below, are some common causes of, and solutions to, the problem:

- The phone cord is improperly connected to the modem.


Make sure one end of the phone cord is securely plugged into the modem's "line" jack. Do not plug the cord into the modem's "phone" jack.

- Some 1200- and 2400-baud modems cannot connect to high speed modems. The only solution to this is to lower the baud rate of the high speed modem to match that of the other modem. When the low speed modem finishes its call, raise the baud rate back to the normal setting.

- Overseas calls may take a long time to connect. Add S7 = 60 to the "Initialization" string to give the modem a longer time to connect.

- The modem's auto answer function may be active. Make sure that "S0=0" is part of the modem string. This turns off the modem's "auto-answer" function. Auto-answer must be off in order for TeleFinder to answer the phone.

- You may need to dial "9" to place an outside call. Add "9,," ( nine, followed by two commas ) to the beginning of the phone number.


Host does not Start the Logon

TeleFinder/User displays the message "The host did not start the logon" if the modems make a connection, but messages from the BBS do not get through. A similar message is : "The host did not respond." Both messages are usually caused by one of two problems.

- A "noisy" connection can cause this problem. When there is too much noise on the line, data transfer is not possible. Hang up and try again for a better line.

- Using the "hardware handshake" setups with a standard modem cable will cause this problem. Try using the standard setup we provide for your modem.



Solving File Transfer Problems

File transfer problems are those that prevent the fastest possible transfer of files, or prevent the transfer from completing altogether.

TeleFinder corrects errors that occur during file transfers by re-transmitting the block until it's received without an error. You can see the effect of this in the transfer status window. This window shows the number of re-transmits during a file transfer. Re-transmits also reduce through-put (characters per second ), and increase the amount of time it takes to transfer a file.

Here are some common causes of, and solutions to, file transfer problems.


Network Interference

PROBLEM: Using network services, like file sharing, interferes with receiving data through the built-in serial ports. When there is network activity, the serial ports "drop" characters because they do not have an adequate buffer.

You can solve this problem by:


- Disconnecting the receiving computer from the network. ( This problem does not affect the computer that is sending the file. )

- Using a buffered, serial port expansion card. Creative Solutions and KeySpan both manufacture cards that work very well. You can purchase these cards from Spider Island Software, or your local computer dealer.


Interference from extensions

PROBLEM: Using too many System extensions that "patch" the operating system at the interrupt level. Extensions that operate in the background, like screen savers and file servers, often rely on this kind of patch.

- You can solve this problem by removing the interfering extensions, or putting the extension on a different computer from the one TeleFinder is on.


Noisy "A-B" Switch

PROBLEM: Connecting your modem through an "A-B switch." These switches may create problems at speeds higher than 2400 bps.

- You can solve this problem by connecting the modem cable directly to the computer's serial port.


Wrong Modem Cable

PROBLEM: Using the wrong cable with a high-speed modem.

- Use a "shielded" cable, preferably with hardware handshake pinouts.


Noisy Telephone Line

PROBLEM: Connecting through "noisy" telephone lines. The most common source of persistent noise is the connection between your phone line and the telephone system. This connection is usually in a telephone closet, or the phone company's street box.


- Make sure that your cables and internal wiring are sound. If after trying the above suggestions, you still have file transfer problems, call the phone company to test your lines.


Transfers do not Start

PROBLEM: File transfers do not start. This problem sometimes happens to users of the BBS's terminal interface. File transfers are not automatic in the terminal interface like they are in the graphic interface.


To resolve this problem:

- Make sure your terminal software supports either the XMODEM or ZMODEM file transfer protocol.

- Make sure you configure your terminal software to use XMODEM or ZMODEM.

- Make sure you select the same protocol from the BBS's file transfer menu as you configure your software for.

- Make sure that you select the local "send file" or "receive file" command in your terminal software when the BBS prompts you to do so. Failing to do this is the most common mistake among terminal users.