Daily Archives: 2/26/2008

PPPOE and Password Change Notifications

So I have to wonder: Is there any purpose behind PPPOE or is it just to increase the total cost of ownership. With Adelphia and our cable modem the only times we had problems connecting was when their servers were done. With AT&T/Yahoo it seems that every time we turn around there is something new. It turns out that they reset our password when we called a few weeks ago about not being able to send email. Fortunately, they were kind enough to send an email notifying me that the password had been changed. There were instructions in the email about if I didn’t change my password, such and such.

Here is the brain teaser for this evening: Let’s say I have an account, which has a password. That account and password are tied together for my DSL modem, email account and online/support login systems. Now, let’s say that someone – not me – changes my password. They are kind enough to send an email informing you to your email account. We’ll ignore the fact that people don’t actually check their DSL email accounts because all they do is collect spam, and continue down the road of pondering. Let’s examine option A: I changed my password or at least know of the new password. I can now login to my DSL, member center and email. The bonus I receive for this is an email telling me that my password has been changed. Great. Obviously I knew it had been changed since I had to type in the new password. Now, Road B: Someone changed my password and I didn’t know about it. Since I didn’t know about it, they were kind enough to send me an email to inform me. Ahh… but you say “WAIT!” You’re probably wondering how you’re supposed to login to your DSL, the member center and your email to find out your password has changed when none of the systems will accept your password because it has changed. I know I’m lost, how about you?

So, back to the real question at hand. What is the point of PPPOE? Why can’t AT&T keep track of the mac address of the modem I have or figure out that I’m coming through the copper they ran to my house? Heck, they could have double security and have both – requiring me not only to have a DSL connection at my house, a valid modem in their MAC address pool, but also to be at the physical location that the MAC address was assigned to! Can anyone figure out what I spent time doing this evening?

The rest of the day went fairly well. I don’t honestly have much to report, or at least don’t have anything to rant about.