When asked "What is the brand and model of your router" by 3rd party Tech

  • What do you say when calling 3rd party tech support?

    I have been dealing with an issue with a Drobo device where it is unable to connect at gigabit speeds. Finally I bought a Linksys WRT310N from eBay and connected that inbetween the pfSense box and the Drobo so that I could say "I have a Linksys WRT310N"

    I even have this problem with bottom-tier small business or business class ISPs - they want to know the model of my router and when its not in their tech support manuals the support pretty much ends there.

    What do others do/say in this case?

  • make sure the NIC on the drobo and the pfSense box is set to auto-negotiation

    what NIC is in your pfSense box ?
    what model drobo do you have ?

  • In regards to the original question, I usually tell them it's a BSD firewall using PF. If they are really stupid I just connect a PC directly- 'I don't have a router, It's a Windows XP box, can you fix my line now?'

  • I don't tell them nothing because i don't have problems. :D

    Seriously they only ask, if anything is rebooted and if it's done, then they try to "discuss" with modem(which i own and they have no privileges), and they can adjust some settings at their end.

  • Thx for the replies.

    NICs on this particular PF box are Intel Pro 1000 PT (Dual)
    Drobo is an 8-Bay Drobo "PRO" I believe - its the one that's now outdated and they no longer sell.

    Both the Drobo and the PF box are set to "auto negotiate".

    I'm talking tech support at places like Drobo, D-Link, Netgear, etc. Places where you either reach a generic call center or an overseas call center and they read from a script. Obviously that's a lower level tech support than I need - but usually you can't get bumped up to a tier 2/3 support level without going throuth the basics first.

    Even when I deal with ISPs like Verizon or Time Warner they have zero clue what I'm talking about.

    Its very frustrating at times to have that issue but most times connecting a router or PC directly isn't possible and the issues most certanly are not on the hardware or software end of the PF box. In this case the Drobo seems to be gigabit capable however I think that the firmware updates may have not been done correctly (by the client) and there is an issue with the onboard NIC advertising only 100 not 100/1000. The Drobo tech support guys told me to try a cat6 cable to see if that solves the issue…

  • Just tell them it is a directly connected computer running unix (change to windows xp if you think they might not provide support for non-Windows setups).

  • Agreed - I treat it like the many other times I bend the truth when talking with tech support.  Is the modem plugged directly into the computer now?  Yes.  OS?  Windows XP.  Working?  Nope.

  • As dotdash says, almost everyone will recognize "BSD firewall". I tell companies we have a pfSense box (and sometimes even m0n0wall) and they're like "what?". I have yet to meet someone that knows what they are. I tell them it's a BSD firewall and they say "ohh, ok".

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