Q: How can I access my shell account?
Pacific Online runs Windows servers so we cannot offer Unix shell
accounts. However, you can still perform many shell account features through an FTP
Q: Do I need to disable call waiting, or how do I disable call waiting?
If you have call waiting, and do not disable it, incoming calls will knock you
offline. To disable call waiting simply place *70, before the local
dial up number you are using. For example, if you were dialing our 56k Santa Rosa
number, you would use *70,581-0170.
Q: Do I need to worry about hackers getting into my computer?
There are many threats on the Internet - viruses, worms &
spyware to name a few. Please visit our Tools
Page for more information on keeping your computer secure. Someone
may not have direct access to your computer, but any of the above
mentioned items can cause you a lot of aggravation.
Viruses and worms are a common problem on the internet. Some viruses
will kick you offline as soon as you connect to the internet. Some worms
may prevent you from accessing certain programs on your computer, other
viruses may corrupt certain critical windows files. Viruses and worms
can cause alot of damage and cause millions of dollars in lost
productivity each year. A good antivirus program is Norton us.norton.com
. A free anti virus program is AVG. www.grisoft.com
Spyware is a type of program that can be auto installed on your computer
simply by visiting a website or opening the wrong type of email. Spyware
are essentially programs that monitor your day to day activities online
- normally so that they can target you with pop up ads based upon the
sites you visit. A classic symptom of having spyware is your "start
page" in your browser changes to a search engine type website. An
anti-spyware program that we recommend is called Spybot, found at www.safer-networking.org
Firewalls are programs that block certain
ports on your computer. Some ports are vulnerable to certain types of
worms and viruses. A good firewall program we recommend is Zone Alarm
found here: Zonelabs
Q: Can I change my dial up password?
For security reasons users cannot change their dial up passwords online. If
you feel your password may have been compromised, or would simply like it changed, please
call inform Pacific Online at 707-636-2000
during our normal business hours.
Frequent password changes, of more than once per month, may be subject to a service
Q: Can I change my e-mail password?
You can change your e-mail password at any time, by going to http://email.pon.net , logging into our web
based e-mail client, clicking on the "settings" tab in the
upper right hand corner - then simply type in your old password and the
new password in the fields provided and click on
Q: Which 56k standard do you support? Will my x2 modem work with
We support the latest in v.92 technology
for these area codes: 408, 415, 510, 650, 707, 831 & 925. Many (but
not all) dialup numbers in our national 56k dialup plan also support
v.92. The main advantage of having v.92 modems is that if you have call
waiting, you can be online and answer or make a phone call and still
Q: Can you recommend any sites for the latest Internet software?
There are literally hundreds of thousands of web sites with software available
for download. Those included below, are ones that Pacific Online has found most
Q: I'm moving and will be changing my phone number. Do I need to
A call to Pacific Online with your modem is no different than calling with a
normal phone You do not need to inform PON of this change. However you should always
keep us informed with your current mailing address (s) and phone number (s) so we can keep
our records updated. You should also verify that at least one of our dial up numbers
will be local to your new residence. In other words verify that you will not be paying
toll charges to connect to Pacific Online. We have instructions for how
to change your phone number HERE.
Q: Does my computer have to be online for people to send me e-mail?
No. All of your incoming e-mail is stored on our mail server, which is
online 24/7. Your email stays in your mail account until you next check your e-mail.
Email is not limited geographically. However as of date, there are no
mail servers located on Mars, so interplanetary email communication
remains a dream of the future.
Q: I receive a ton of Spam (Junk Mail). How can I stop it?
Unfortunately there is no 100% way to keep from getting junk mail (Spam).
Spam is a serious problem on the internet and hundreds of millions of
dollars are spent by the Internet industry to combat this plague.
Pacific Online does run Spam filters and we literally catch hundreds of
thousands of Spam emails a month. To see the spam we catch visit the
quarantine tab of your webmail: http://email.pon.net
All spam we catch is held for 10 days before being automatically
prevent yourself from becoming added to additional Spam lists, avoid using your real
e-mail address while posting in newsgroups or chat rooms because many mass mail programs
simply strip the e-mail addresses out of messages and store them for future use.
You can also add filtering to your email program or to your webmail.
Please visit the Spam Filtering section on our support page for more
Please make a note of any e-mail abuse and report it to email@example.com
Q: I have children, how can I
make sure they don't access inappropriate sites while online?
There are many third party software programs available that will do just
that. Check with your local software retailer or computer store, and ask them for a
program to suit your specific needs. Net
Nanny is a good inexpensive 3rd party software you can use which
can be setup to restrict inappropriate sites and monitor your child's
try and connect to the Internet, but it tells me "No Dial tone" What do I do?
You or someone else in the household may be using the phone line, or it may be
off the hook. If this is not the case, check to make sure that the line is plugged
into the slot on the modem that says "line" and not
"phone". If the problem still persists shut the computer off, and then
restart the computer and try again.
Q: I try and check my mail, but it won't let me. What next?
Check your mail settings. Make sure you have the proper POP3 and SMTP
settings entered. If you aren't sure what those are click here. Next
if you have an @pon.net email, make sure that
you are using your userid for the POP3 Account, and not
your real name or full e-mail address. For instance, if your e-mail address was firstname.lastname@example.org the user id would be john.
However, note that if you have a domain name email (i.e. .com or .net,
your userid NEEDS to be your FULL email address.
Q: My US Robotics modem frequently disconnect or I cannot
connect. What can I do?
We have found that USR modems may have trouble with compression called LAPM.
Until a global solution can be found we have found that the best way to solve this problem
is to turn off that compression using a modem init string (located in your modems
documentation) and turn off Data Compression in your respective dialer. You may also wish
to refer to the US
Robotics Support Section.
Q: What Windows Operating System do you
recommend I get?
We recommend either Windows 2000 or Windows XP. At all costs, stay
away from using Windows Millennium (ME). As techs, we find the most
problems occur with this operating system.
Q: What is the difference between a POP3
and an IMAP mailbox?
The difference lies in how you setup your email on your email
client on your computer. A email box setup as a POP3 will automatically
download the mail from our server every single time you check your
An email box setup as an IMAP on your mail client on your
computer will leave the mail on the server every time you check the mail
box. IMAP boxes are good for those who have multiple people checking the
same mailbox from different locations.
As an additional note if you are using Outlook Express; if you
have multiple email boxes and you want to set them up on the same
computer (ie, multiple people will use the same computer for checking
their individual email boxes) you may want to set them up as Identities.
More information about setting up identities in Outlook Express is found
Q: You are receiving anti-virus or anti-worm notifications in your email indicating that a virus was sent from "you" - However you know that you do not have a virus or worm on your computer. What is going on?
Your email address was found on a virus/worm infected computer (probably belonging to someone you know or have emailed or received email from in the past - it does not necessarily mean you have a virus on your computer). In addition to the virus attempting to send itself to email@example.com, which was most likely stopped by our server side anti-virus software, it sent itself to others using your email address as the FROM. (i.e. it faked your email address).
In other words, once these worms/viruses find a list of emails (usually in people's address books) - they use that persons computer and those emails not only to send "To" people, but will also to use the "From" address. So if your email address is on a computer that is infected the virus may "fake" the From address as "your address" and try to
propagate that way.
When those emails reach their destination, some mail servers will try to send a notification back to what they "presume" is the correct email address. In the past a virus would actually show the real FROM and sending back notifications made more sense, but these days the FROM is almost always forged using either the method mentioned above or just a completely fake email address. This is why most mail servers no longer send out notifications when they find infected emails, but some still do.
In a nutshell the worms/viruses infect computers and turn the computer into a mail server
propagating itself by sending itself to any emails that are stored within that computer.
Q: I get an error in Win95/98 when trying to connect:
"Dial-up Networking could not negotiate a compatible set of network protocols you
specified in your Server Type settings..." What do I do?
Either something has gone wrong with your Dial-up Adapter or TCP/IP Protocol. The
first thing you can try is doing a cold boot. Completely shut your computer down,
leave it off for at least 2 minutes and then turn the computer back on and try it
again. If that does not fix it your Adapter or Protocol may not be installed or may
be corrupted. You will need your Win95/98 disks and/or CD-ROM.
1. Go into your Control Panel, and double click on Network.
In the window that appears, there should be a list of network components which are
installed on your machine. Dial-up Adapter and TCP/IP should be installed. If one or
both of them are not there, skip ahead to step 5.
2. Click on the Dial-up Adapter and then click remove, also make
sure you remove the TCP/IP Protocol. When everything is removed click OK, and
when your computer asks you to restart say "No".
3. Now close Control Panels, and open up My Computer, then
double click on the Dial Up Networking folder. In it you should find an icon named
Pacific Online, right click on it, and then click on delete. Make sure that you do
not delete the "Make New Connection" icon.
4. Now close the Dial Up Networking folder, and close the My
Computer folder. Click on the start button, and then click Shut Down, then
restart your computer.
5. Open the Control Panels, then open the Network control
panel. Now press the Add button. In the next window scroll down the list of
manufacturers until you see Microsoft. At that point, click on Adapter, and highlight
Dial-Up Adapter, then click Ok.
6. You should now be back at the Configuration screen. Once
again click on Add except this time choose Protocol. Select Microsoft then
TCP/IP Protocol then click ok. At this point you will be back at the Configuration
screen. Click ok, and when prompted supply your Win95/98 CD or disks for the files
to be copied from.
7. Restart the computer when prompted to do so, and open Dial Up
Networking which is located under My Computer. Next follow the instructions
for creating a Dial-Up Networking icon for Pacific Online, as provided in the Win95/98
instructions supplied by Pacific Online.
Q: How do I get Win95/98 to save my password?
In order to save your password you are required to have "Client for
Microsoft Networks" installed on your system. To make sure you do, open Control
Panels, and under the Configuration tab, look for Client for Microsoft Networks. If
you do not have it, simply click on Add, select Client, and once again select Microsoft.
Highlight Client for Microsoft Networks and click Ok. You may be prompted to
insert your Win95/98 disks and/or CD ROM. Allow it to copy files needed and then
restart your computer. The next time you open up the Connect To screen for Pacific
Online you will see that the "Save Password" option is now available. In
order for it to take effect however, you must click on the box, and then connect to PON.
If you do not connect, and then disconnect, it will not save your password.
Q: How do I change my Dial-up Number in Win95/98?
Open Dial Up Networking which is located in a folder under My Computer.
Inside you will find an icon that says Pacific Online. If you double click
upon that icon it will open a "Connect To" screen. There you will find the
number that your modem is going to dial. Simply change that phone number to match
the dial up number that you normally use to connect to the Internet. For
more instructions on changing your dialup number click
Q: I get online, however I cannot view any web sites. Why
You may be missing the TCP/IP protocol or it may have become corrupted. The first
thing to try is to shut the computer off, leave it off for a few minutes, then restart the
computer and try going to a website again. If that does not fix the problem, open
"Control Panels", and open the "Network" panel. Under
configuration you should see TCP/IP. If you see a TCP/IP or TCP/IP -> AOL you
will need to remove them. Also remove any Dial Up Adapter -> AOL that might be
present. Click on Add; you want to add a protocol. The manufacturer will be
Microsoft and you want to select the TCP/IP protocol. Once it appears in the Control
Panel, close the Control Panels, and it should copy files and tell you that a restart is
needed. Restart your computer, and return to surfing the web as usual. If that
does not fix the problem please contact Pacific Online for Technical Support.
Q: I get these strange Dial Up Networking Error Messages.
What do they mean?
A list of what each error message refers to is far too extensive to post in this
FAQ. However we have compiled a complete list in text format here for you to
review. Some of these messages are fairly self explanatory, while others are a
little more difficult to understand. If you are unsure of why you are getting one of
these error messages or what they mean, please feel free to contact us Additionally if you
type in the following in GOOGLE.com
###" where ### is the error number you get, you will find a list of
sites that will provide you with a lot more information about the
particular error number.
Q: I upgraded to Windows98 and now I'm having trouble getting
online. What can I do?
Consider upgrading to Microsft Windows 2000 or Windows XP.
However, if you have upgraded to Windows98, your problem may be caused by a network component called "Microsoft Family
Login". This is a component that is added to your network control panel by
Win98. To find out if you have it, open the control panels (My Computer - Control
Panels) and then double click on the Network Icon. Listed under configuration, you will
find a list of the install components. If you see MS Family Login, highlight it and click
remove. Components that you should have listed, and that are required to successfully log
on are Dial Up Adapter and TCP/IP Protocol. Once you have removed Microsoft Family
Login (if you have it) click on close, and restart your computer. If you are still
having trouble connecting after that point, you should contact us for technical support.
Q: My Mac Dials to the Internet by itself every 5
hours. What's going on?
This only occurs when using the "ConfigPPP" control
panel to connect. To fix this problem, simply click the "Hard Close"
button to disconnect from the Internet.
Q: Netscape reports "unable to create a network socket
connection" what should I do?
Often times this error means you are simply not connected to Pacific Online.
If this is the case, make sure "Connect Automatically when starting PPP
applications" is selected within your dialing program. If it is not, a file
named MacTCP DNR may be corrupted. To fix this do the following:
1) Open your hard disk, and the system folder
2) Throw away any files named MacTCP DNR
3) Open the preferences folder.
4) Delete the MacTCP Prep if present.
5) Restart your Mac, and try going to a web site again.
Q: I can only connect to the Internet once, then I have to restart the
computer if I want to connect again. Why is this?
This problem is most common with older Macintoshes, however in most cases it can
be fixed. You will simply need to download the latest PPP dialer.
Q: ConfigPPP says "PPP wait time-out, waiting on OK" What does
This error happens when your modem cannot respond properly to your dialer's
commands. Fixes for this may be as simple as shutting off the computer, and the
modem (if external) restarting the computer and trying again making sure that your modem
is turned on, and plugged in. If this is not the case, open the ConfigPPP control
panel and click on the "Config" button. Then change the modem init string
to AT&F1. Click "Done" and then click "Open" If you
still receive the error message repeat the above steps using the following strings; ATZ,
AT&F, AT, AT&F2. You may also try leaving the init string box blank.
If you still receive an error message, consult your modem's manual for an init that will
work with your modem.
Q: How do I change my dial-up number for my Mac?
If you are using ConfigPPP follow the instructions below;
Open the ConfigPPP control panel. Click on the "Config" button, and change
the phone number to the new access number. If you are unsure about which access
number to use, please refer to our online dial up list here . Please verify any dial up
number with the phone company before you dial.
Pacific Online will not accept any responsibility for any toll charges incurred.
If you are using Open Transport PPP follow the instructions below;
Open the PPP control panel. Change the phone number to the new access number making
sure not to enter in the area code unless it is necessary to complete the call. If
you are unsure about which access number to use, please refer to our online dial up list here . Please verify any dial up
number with the phone company before you dial.
Pacific Online will not accept any responsibility for any toll charges incurred.
can not send or get my e-mail properly. What should I do?
Double check your mail settings to make sure they are all correct. If you
are not sure what the mail server settings should be you can verify them here. If that does not fix the problem we
recommend you download Eudora Lite located on our website here.