Crashing modem &ghostly COM ports
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 1999
    Location
    uk
    Posts
    17

    Crashing modem &ghostly COM ports

    I have just bought a 56K PCI modem(GC789PCI) with a PCTEL1789 chipset(I don't know who made the modem itself). On installing the software as instructed I checked that it would respond using the Diagnostics in the Advanced part of the Modem Properties. All seemed OK it responding to the AT commands. It said it was installed on COM port 3.
    However on dialling any number on beginning initialisation it completely crashed(ie froze) the computer!!. The mouse nor keyboard would not respond(even Contro;+Alt+Delete wouldn't work!). I checked everything in Device Manager for conflicts and none were shown. The one strange thing is that in Device Manager it only shows COM ports 1 & 2-There no COM port 3 or 4.This is despite them being shown in the modem information!!!If one tries to install another COM port it comes in as COM port 5!! in the Device Manager.
    I have Windows95 with a Cyrix 300MHz MII processor.
    Any ideas!
    George


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 1998
    Location
    California, USA
    Posts
    2,550
    What you have is a WinModem. WinModems rely on software and your CPU to fuction and therefore consume resources. I have had many problems with different WinModems in the past. I recommend that you don't waste your time with this and get yourself a hardware-based modem for a few $$$ more.
    Just my $.02...
    Kevin-

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 1999
    Location
    uk
    Posts
    17
    None of the documentation on the box or inside it (or on the modem) uses the term WinModem.
    How does one know one has one of these beasts??!!
    George

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 1998
    Location
    California, USA
    Posts
    2,550
    Most PCI Modems are WinModems. Also PCTEL chipset is an indication of a WinModem. Quick way to see if you have a WinModem is to look at the system requirements on the box - if it requires Windows OS, then what you have is indeed a WinModem.
    Kevin-

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 1999
    Location
    uk
    Posts
    17
    You are right it's a Winmodem(they call then "Soft" modems over here in the UK. I can think of something else to call them!!
    The PCTel chipset use a software called HSP which it says uses spare(is there any such thing!) processor time to run the modem. Sounds like its a further thing that can make it difficult to configure and more likely to be unhappy in a wider range of computer configurations.
    The trouble is at all the Computer Fairs over here one finds it dificult to by anything other thanPCI Winmodems(Soft Modems)
    Can one assume all ISA modems are NOT Winmodems?
    The specifications on the boxes of these Winmodems say they can be used on 166MMX processors and above but is this rather like the optimistic claims for Windows95/98 and the systems they can run on?!

    George

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 1999
    Location
    St.Louis, MO
    Posts
    138
    George, I was unfortunate enough to have bought a winmodem, too.Mine is a USR Winmodem 56k v90 internal.
    It is hell to configure, but, once I get it configured, it works ok. Why I speak in present tense is I reinstall it quite often.
    (I'm always reloading my OS software and reconfiguring the system)
    I haven't run across your particular problem,
    (the system freezing up, but would get the
    "can't open port", message, having to reboot and reconfigure the modem everytime I wanted to use it. To fix the problem, I had to remove the sound card and modem, physically and software, reinstall the soundcard only, configure it. Then, install the modem, configure, and keep my fingers crossed. Doing this it will usually configure properly. For some reason, it doesn't want to configure two new devices at a time. Go figure.
    You might try something like this before you toss the modem out the window. But, like someone else hinted, you can waste a lot of time on these winmodems. I agree.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 1999
    Posts
    10
    I think Rodan has it right. It sounds like a port conflict to me. Sometimes windows will list a few devices on a port and say that there are no conflicts. A better way to find conflict instead of searching in the driver info. area is to select properties for the computer in the device manager. It's not full proof though. You might try manually moving your sound card to a different port. Or if you have other peripherals, it might be them. As far as your com ports go, you should only have 1 and 2. Those are the serial connections on the back of your computer.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 1998
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    699
    Two words......Winmodems Suck. I had a USR 33.6 Winmodem and getting it installed took nothing less than hopping around a voodoo doll waving a chicken foot and chanting. I have since bought a USR 56k Faxmodem (hardware based) and installing it was a snap. Piece of cake. Winmodems are just too much trouble to not justify spending a few more $$$ on a hardware modem.
    Intel i5-2500K 3.3GHz
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    Win7 Pro 64-bit SP1

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 1999
    Location
    Denver,Co,USA
    Posts
    2
    Go to the USRobotics site and take a look at there Online help section and FAQ here is the address > WWW.USR.COM/HOME/ONLINE
    This will take you to the FAQ page and most of all your questions ask have answers here. I hope this helps you!!

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