on December 11, 2011
When my GT784WN showed up, I called Centurylink to get my account name/password. The rep was friendly and when I told her the modem was not purchased through them she told me what settings to use to make it work (pppoe, VPI at 0, and VCI at 32). She was even going to walk me through setting it up, but I didn't need my hand held.
It took ~5 min to change the settings in the modem and reboot, then it connected and worked perfectly. The wifi has good coverage throughout the house, and fast speeds. I have had it for almost a week and have not had to reboot yet.
I checked the firmware when it came in, and it already had the latest version.
Very pleased with this purchase. The built-in router with wifi eliminates the need of having a second box connected to your DSL modem. The price is $30 less than a similar offering from CenturyLink that is still using "g" wifi.
on November 18, 2012
This small yet insanely terrific creation is what I have been seeking for the longest of time to come! To make it short and simple for those who casually stroll through Amazon comments trying to decide if what they are planning to purchase is eitheir a good idea or not, let me put a resting halt to your decision.
I have been stuck with the casual AT&T 2Wire Modem Router 2701HG-B for almost 8 years now and I surely can't believe what kind of trash I have been putting up with until now. I finally bought this new Actiontec as a replacement to see if any changes would result and sure enough, changes have been noticed!
Before hand, with the AT&T 2Wire Modem Router 2701HG-B, I would occasionally get random resetting every half an hour during daily use and the little led lights would nearly always flash red then return to green for another repeating half an hour. This constant cycle was absolutely ridiculous! It seemed to get worse and worse every single day and to top things off, whenever I would play PS3 online and connect my Mac Book Pro to the 2wire, the router would become so unstable in keeping a fluent connection that both devices would cancel each other out! (Imagine trying to give an old man 2 sets of weights to lift and watching as he collapses from the weakness that his age can't withstand anymore. This is an exact idea I think of when the 2Wire gives out). So after receiving all these problems, I finally contacted At&T. The technician came to do a diagnostic check with the wiring in my house and ended up telling me that "Seems like you need a replacement AT&T 2Wire Modem Router 2701HG-B". Surely enough, I agreed and paid $100 for yet ANOTHER exact replica router of the AT&T 2Wire Modem Router 2701HG-B. After setting up a replacement, problems returned quicker then ever! It was madness! Nothing changed and on top of that, AT$T just took $100 of my hard earned money and completed nothing!
After enough frustration, I realized that when something needs to be done, it's best done when completed on your own time rather than a technician *Pretend* checkup. I stumbled upon Amazon and found this router. Read some reviews and felt that the amount of good ratings overpowered the bad and I decided to take one more chance for $63.
After receiving the router and setting up the configuration following easy provided steps, I was on my way to updated technology! No more lag, interrupted connections, disconnections, or any nonsense baloney garbage. I had even noticed about .5-1 Mbps more speed then my previous 2wire!!! Simply amazing what research and "doing your homework" can do! I only wish At&T would simply use these for their customers. Too bad... It's all about money these days.
Anyhow, If you are one of many that can relate with me or connect slightly and feel like "Should I?" I say "YES!!!". Suffer no more! Get this and feel less stress in your life. No more hearing your brother cry because "I just got disconnected on PS3 Call of Duty!" or "Hey! Facebook is not working mom!" or even "Youtube buffering is slowwww! I hate our internet!".
Life saver... Enough said ^.^
on August 31, 2011
I bought this to replace an old DSL modem/router for my Verizon service. When it was time to install it, I could not get it to work. I called Verizon, and they verified that I had the right settings, but reassured me that I didn't have to wait for a release on my ip address. They suggested I call Actiontec. I did, and let me tell you their customer service is AWESOME. We still couldn't get it to work, so he offered to replace it, but I went through Amazon instead. Amazon sent me a new one without waiting for the return of the first one, which was also great.
I got the second one, and had the same exact problem. So I turned off my old router overnight, even though Verizon said I didn't need to wait for a release. Turns out I did. I hooked up the Actiontec the next morning and I was off and running - kinda. I had to call again because my Win7 computers hooked up, no problem, but my WinXps were not connecting. Turned out I needed a different security setting. That fixed it. Again, Actiontec customer service should be a model for the whole tech industry.
I'm still having a problem with my iPhone connecting, but that's an Apple problem. Since I used the same SSID for my new router as my old, but the security type is different, the iPhone won't let me reconfigure it, even after a frustrating hard reset. I could redo my router settings and work around that, but I decided to use yet another awesome feature of the Actiontech - it allows up to 4 different SSIDs with different settings. For our iPhones, I just created another unsecured, non-broadcasted SSID, and we're up and running.
I also like that this has parental controls - I was concerned since I couldn't find any documentation on line before I bought it. It does have parental control, and even though it doesn't come with documentation to configure it, it's pretty intuitive, so I got that part set up relatively painlessly, too.
The reason I bought a new router was that the old one kept needing to be reset. I haven't had any dropped connection yet, and the Actiontec has been up and running 24/7 for a few weeks now.
on January 21, 2012
In 2006, I moved into my condo. Having only two options for hi-speed internet dictated to me by the condo association - Comcast and AT&T, I chose the lesser of the two evils. AT&T threw me a deal with their 2wire wireless modem/router and away I went. It ran without incident, until one day in 2009, the router side started to break down. The first to go was the #1 Ethernet plug. That took all hi level programing functions from me, but I could still use it on a day to day basis. Then the wireless radio started to act really weird, especially when I attempted to connect with Apple products (iPhone 4).
After dealing with this noise for several months, many times the wireless failing to connect to anything, it was time for a replacement. I really didn't want to go back with a 2Wire hunk-o-junk again through AT&T, so I really poured time into finding a all-in-one replacement. That is when I came across this modem/router.
Purchasing this unit back on March 17, 2011, this was a new unit that just came to market. I read about the older Actiontec modem/routers (hereinafter: Modem) that were only b/g wireless speed, but this was the first combo unit sold by Actiontec that also included Wireless "N" speed capability. Taking the plunge, I purchased it. Here is what I have experienced over the last 10 months of ownership and use:
* Wireless "N" speeds.
* Wireless maxes out my DSL speed with 625K bits/second transmission and receive.
* Max transfer speed computer to computer - Wireless "G" is 1.9M/sec.
* Max transfer speed computer to computer - Wireless "N" is 4.1M/sec.
* Max Ethernet speed computer to computer is about 8M/sec.
* One step set up for wireless devices made it simple.
* Pre-programed by running a wizard to connect with AT&T service *(see below for additional info)*
* Compact size - can be mounted in almost any direction or configuration.
* 2 - 3 dbi antennas to aid in boosting range of wireless.
* The antennas are screw-in DIN mount, so you can replace them with larger antennas, if needed for longer wireless range.
* On an Ethernet connection - it was plug and use - Windows XP or 7, Max OS X Tiger or any number of Linux distros.
* There are 4 Ethernet ports on the back of the modem.
* I have had up to 2 Ethernet and 7 wireless devices connected to this router w/o any problems (other than speed).
* Setting up your personal WPA2/PSK AES security code was a snap.
* Your personal code use was far better handled than on my old 2Wire system.
* I was able to rename my wireless SSID to my old 2Wire SSID.
* I'm still running the original firmware NCS01-1.0.1 -- there has been several upgrades since (discussed below).
* Set up and maintenance screens for this unit is clearly laid out.
* MAC address security also included.
The less desirable:
* By nature, Wireless "N" takes up two channels of broadcasting.
* This modem only broadcasts on the 2.4 GHz band, so you may interference issues with microwaves, cordless home phones and BT devices.
* The modem runs a modified version of Linux OS and needs to reboot every so many days (see below).
* When I cannot connect with my iPhone, I have to reboot the modem/router to reestablish wireless again.
* AT&T will NOT support this modem. If you have problems, you are on your own.
* There is no provision to program static IP addresses for your devices in this model All are dynamic addresses.
* You can only block a specific IP address from your network - kinda stupid I think, since they are dynamically assigned.
* To have decent wireless signal around my condo, I have to have the broadcast power set to 100%
* Change the default broadcast channel - I had major interference from other wireless networks in my complex.
* Extended time is needed when restarting this modem to sync with the internet through AT&T - is it hardware or the network?
AT&T Replacement for 2Wire modem/router:
If you replace your 2Wire modem, you will need two pieces of info (this is MOST critical)
1) The root/main account holder email address, and
2) The AT&T system password (not your email password) - it is a combo of upper/lower case letters and numbers. Mine is 11 characters in length.
If you do not have this now, call AT&T DSL/Internet CS and obtain it. This will save you a whole lot of grief in the set up process. Using the Actiontec set-up wizard, the program will ask for both the primary email address and your AT&T system password. Without it, you will not get logged into the system. One additional point, don't copy and paste if you have it stored electronically - there are some control characters that copy over, unseen by you and causes havoc, rejecting you password as invalid. You must manually ket it in.
Again your email password is NOT the system access password for your account.
Using this modem for extended periods of time, modem utilization and free memory will increase and decrease, respectively. As utilization increases, the modem will slow processing of IP traffic across the network. On it's own, the modem will reboot to refresh utilization. This normally happens between 30 and 45 days. I see my Ethernet connection drop, go check and see why and I see the modem is self-rebooting. My 2Wire did the very same this. It must be a normal thing for DSL modems.
Sometimes, the reboot doesn't happen. I first notice this on my iPhone when connecting to WiFi. It will not connect, even standing right next to the Modem. Wireless "N" is next to take a performance hit when utilization reaches near the reboot point. I then either have to restart or unplug and plug back in the modem to gain WiFi access. Wireless speed and connectivity then returns to normal.
I have yet to experience any performance issues on the Ethernet side of this modem. The performance hit is on the wireless side.
Actiontec Firmware Updates:
I know of two firmware updates that have come out on this model modem since my purchase. I have seen them out on the Actiontec support site. The problem is this: Actiontec gives the end user NO information as to what the firmware updates correct/modify/enhance. That bothers me. I always want to know what I'm installing on my equipment. Since the original firmware works for me, why should I take the risk of putting new firmware on that may just break something. My adage: if it ain't broke, don't fix it! (see below)
Is it worth the upgrade from AT&T 2Wire?
In a word - Absolutely! I was getting really frustrated with AT&T using my old 2Wire modem. The dropped wireless connections, inability to wirelessly connect with multiple wireless devices, re-key in PSK passwords to access wirelessly, Ethernet ports dying and the list goes on. I was ready to dump AT&T. Making matters worse, AT&T was absolutely NO help in offering any kind of hardware allowance to me. Had I left for 6 months and gone to Comcast and returned, I would get a new 2Wire modem for free. I didn't want to invest in all new cable model hardware. The upside by remaining with AT&T, DSL service is up virtually 100% of the time. Comcast cannot even come close to that claim. That is why I stayed with AT&T DSL service.
Therefore, if you have DSL service and don't mind only one band of broadcasting (2.4 GHz), forgoing the ability to have the second band of broadcasting (5.0 GHz), this is an excellent upgrade path for you. I left the AT&T 2Wire modem behind me and I am never looking back and you should too.
2/27/2012 - Update
Two nights ago, my wireless dropped again (like I discussed above). No big deal, reboot the modem and things will be alright, like a number of times before, since modem utilization was 70% after 19 days since last reboot. Did that, wireless worked for about a minute and dropped again. This time a cold restart - same thing. One minute working and then drop. This time the router didn't allow any wireless devices to connect. Ethernet connection remained solid. I was able to get onto the net with my desktop plugged into the Ethernet port. The drop of wireless was very frustrating to say the least.
Support on the Actiontec website is bad. Wrote them about my problem (Friday after support closed for the weekend). Poked further in other forums and decided to upgrade firmware, as a last ditch effort, not really sure if this would correct my problem. It acted like some hardware issue related to heat from the unit. Updated the firmware from NCS01-1.0.1 to NCS01-1.0.8. It is a 6.5 Meg download in an image file. Started the modem, went to advanced tool and performed the firmware update. 6 minutes later, the modem was up and running, fully updated.
For 48 hours now, all of my wireless devises connect right up. When the modem rebooted, Modem utilization was at 44%. Now, with two days of hard pounding, the modem utilization is only at 45%. Wireless ping time also dropped (from an average of 148 ms to 52 ms) as a result of this firmware upgrade.
Actiontec gave a warning about all settings and data will be lost when the firmware was updated. Mine was completely intact after the update. All settings and log ins were correct. Only the IP address table was wiped out - all devises received a new IP address from the router after the update. It is good to follow the advise, but it may not be needed.
I'm still upset that Actiontec doesn't give Release Notes about firmware changes on their download page. That prevented me from doing any firmware upgrades until a real problem surfaced. I'm going to follow up with tech support on the firmware release notes point when they respond to my support question.
If you are having any wireless issues with this modem/router combo - update firmware immediately. That may just correct your problem, just like what happened to me.
I'm lowering my star rating to 4 stars, based upon the lack of real help on the Actiontec website for Release Notes on firmware upgrades. This is inexcusable by the manufacturer.
3/5/2012 - Update
9 days post firmware upgrade. Version NCS01-1.0.8 solved several problems I had with my modem. Ping times continue to remain low. Modem utilization 9 days post update is currently at 47%. Pre-update utilization would be over 50% and pushing closer to 60% by now. All wireless devices remain connected while running, no intermittent drops and full speed of my internet connection. I have had 5 wireless connections running at the same time without any stalls or dropped connections (the internet ran slow, due to the limit of my DSL speed).
Just after I wrote this, the modem self-rebooted. 9 days and 12 hours of up time. Memory utilization is back down to 44%. It appears to be fine.
If you are having any problems with this retail modem - update the firmware. It appears to have fixed my problem, even with my finicky iPhone 4 and WiFi signal being dropped or unable to connect when called upon.