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Network News

GCN developments and announcements

See also: Gustavus News, Gustavus Technicians forum, GCN committee forum, and network status.

September, 2011: New broadband planning effort launched. New GCN Board appointed.

July, 2011: City council hires Corvid Computing to provide GCN maintenance and operations, ending 15 years of "if and when I feel like it" volunteer M&O. State awards broadband planning grant.

March, 2011: State of the Net report: GCN alive and better than ever but community-wide broadband still years away.

September, 2010: Council places broadband question on ballot • Communications tower construction bids opened • GCN expands broadband coverage • Dial-up service outage • GCN committee members needed

March, 2010: State of the Net report: Basically breaking even. Recap of year's network changes.

October, 2009: GCN replaces failing Salmon River Turbocell wireless network with Open-Mesh.

August-September, 2009: GCN submits grant application for community-wide broadband project. Replaces satellite dish with T1 circuit, changes pricing.

September 1, 2008: Bruce Paige resigns after over a decade volunteering as Gustavus representative, committee chair, and administrator of SEAKnet and the Gustavus Community Network. The GCN administrator position is now contracted out to Corvid Computing, ending all-volunteer operation of the network.

August, 2008: ACS responds to regulatory commission of Alaska that there indeed remains phone line quality degradation following its November, 2006 equipment change; pledges to fix by year end.

July 22, 2008: GCN Committee acts to expand broadband

March, 2008: Gustavus receives first draft of Gustavus Community Broadband Plan contracted from Borealis Broadband.

March 1, 2008: Corvid Computing delivers phone line quality report commissioned to quantify degradation originating with the November, 2006 ACS cutover.

July 1, 2007: System upgrades complete. Usage-based pricing now in effect.

April 12, 2007: Broadband Workgroup formed.

November 2, 2006: ACS installs new phone switch, degrades dial-up quality in Good River and Mountain View Road areas.

August 13, 2006: Major system upgrades underway replacing authentication, authorization, accounting, and e-mail systems.

June 9, 2006: Satellite issue resolved. Dial-up users are able to open Hotmail attachments and broadband performance is greatly improved.

July 25, 2004: Update and Proposed changes include new broadband customer, wireless network at library, new rates, GCN becoming a municipal utility, and building a wireless broadband network in the Salmon River area.

October 16, 2003: Last night's power outage caused almost 12 hours of down-time for dial-up users. The Gustavus GCN server did not start up normally so mail delivery was delayed by over 36 hours.

August 11, 2003: 20 modems are now in service.

July 15, 2003: ACS fixed their programming error and 18 modems are now in service.

April 29, 2003: ACS reported it activated two more modems for total of 18. In reality, however, only 17 at a time were functioning during this time due to an ACS programming error.

October 9, 2002: BugBear Virus outbreak causes mysterious e-mail messages.

September 16, 2002: Members approved experimental wireless network. Modem speed test unveiled. Computer class announced.

September 9, 2002: General Membership Meeting, GCA Building, Salmon River Park, 7 p.m.

July 30, 2002: GCN returns to dedicated uplink on satellite connection. GCN seeks proposals for broadband community network.

April 18, 2002: Gustavus Community Network News released.

April 3, 2002: ACS adds two new dial-up lines, for a total of 16. Not sure if the (lack of) busy signal is fixed yet.

March 25, 2002: @Contact technician J.D. Simpson visited Gustavus. With his sophisticated equipment he was able to fine-tune the satellite antenna alignment, getting a very significant 7db gain in signal strength. The antenna is now performing to spec. J.D. put us back on a bandwidth-on-demand connection. Throughput is still not what we are supposed to be getting, and @Contact is working on that problem. J.D. was setting up a television station in Juneau, and he also visited the Hoonah installation while he was in the area. There were a few brief interruptions in service this day while Rocky and J.D. tested, aimed the antenna, and configured the system.

March 19, 2002: Once of the GCN servers has arrived in Gustavus and has been set up. It is now handling dial-up authentication via the RADIUS protocol. For the moment, e-mail is still being handled by the other GCN server in North Dakota. The two servers will soon be synchronized and the Gustavus server will become the primary mail handler. Newly available: Access Your Account on-line to see your connection history or change your password, e-mail handling, or contact information.

March 15, 2002: ACS reports that they have added another two lines to our dial-ups, for a total of 16. We have not yet verified that those two lines are actually in service. The number of modems in use has dropped considerably in response to Bruce's message.

February 27 to March 8, 2002: During this week, there are possible "sun fades" for a few minutes each day between 10:45 and 11:01 a.m. Our Internet access may or may not be disrupted for up to 14 minutes on these days. The February 27 sun fade did not interrupt our connection.

February 27, 2002: From sometime before 7 a.m. to 5:44 p.m., dial-up access was either not working right or not working at all. This turned out to be due to a problem with our PortMaster (modems). We resolved it by re-booting the PortMaster.

February 15, 2002: Satellite service changed to dedicated uplink at 3:30 p.m. for diagnostic purposes. This has greatly improved the reliability of our connection. See 2/15 Update (Word document).

February 14-15, 2002: Dial-up access unavailable from about 11:20 a.m. on 2/14 to about 9:50 a.m. on 2/15 due to problems with our ACS circuit.

February 8-9, 2002: Incoming e-mail delayed due to DNS problems

February 1, 2002: Stopped network monitoring because it is wasting bandwidth.

January 29, 2002: Added network monitoring page to keep track of satellite down-time.

January 6, 2002: Although we have not done anything since January 4, the connection has improved markedly; lost ping packets are now in the <5% range; the connection is working very well. 31 of GCN's 102 members have connected to the new system.

January 4, 2002: Ron Ward flew out today and fine-tuned the dish alignment. As of 1:00 p.m. we are still experiencing difficulties with the connection and are working with SpaceCom to resolve them. Expect intermittent problems until this page says otherwise.

January 1, 2002: Satellite connection down at about 9:50 p.m. due to marginal antenna alignment. Ron Ward to fly out at first opportunity to perform final fine-tuning of dish.

December 31, 2001: The Gustavus Community Network is on-line! Gustavus residents can now connect to the Internet via a high-speed satellite connection instead of the single 56Kbps circuit that Gustavus SEAKnet members shared until now.

For earlier history see the community network timeline.

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