TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Time Warner Digital Phone Question

Re: Time Warner Digital Phone Question

Linc Madison (
Thu, 31 May 2007 13:36:08 -0700

In article <>, John Mayson
<> wrote:

> I hope this isn't too inappropriate a question for the digest.

Not at all; it's right on target.

> The Time Warner website is rather sketchy and I'm having trouble
> finding an answer to this, so I'm asking here. I understand I can
> continue using my existing telephones and jacks with digital phone.
> But can I use my computer to make/receive calls on my digital phone
> number? I have both Windows XP and Apple Mac OS X at my disposal.
> Note, I'm not talking about using Skype. I would like to be able to
> place and receive calls on my home number from my computer regardless
> of where my computer may be. Is this possible?

I don't think you can. I have cable telephone from Comcast, but I
would guess it's nearly identical to Time-Warner. My cable comes into
my apartment building, and then over the in-building coax cable wiring
to my apartment, where I have a special cable modem that splits out
the Internet signal to an Ethernet cable and the telephone signal to a
wire that feeds into my existing in-home phone wiring. Without the
special cable modem, with its serial number registered on Comcast's
system, I don't have telephone service; however, if I take the cable
modem with me and plug it in somewhere else, it wouldn't work. (I
would guess that even if I plugged it in on a cable belonging to
another Comcast customer with the same services, it would still
generate an error because of the mismatched serial numbers.)

I used to have RCN, also with cable/net/phone service. Their setup was
a little bit different. The cable came into the building, but the
phone signal was split off at the demarc into the existing in-building
phone wiring, allowing me to use just a regular cable modem in my
apartment for the Internet part.

I also haven't tested how or whether the phones work in a power
outage. I think the Comcast system, since it relies on the cable
modem in my apartment, probably wouldn't.

Linc Madison * San Francisco, California * Telecom at Linc Mad d0t c0m
URL: < > * North American Area Codes & Splits
Read my political blog, "The Third Path" <>
US, California, and Washington State laws apply to LINCMAD.COM e-mail.

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: VOIP services _will_ work when there
is a power interuption assuming that you have a battery backup on the
line. You would need to have your router and ATA get their power from
the backup supply; something that might kick in when the power other-
wise fails. Or perhaps you have, like myself, a power supply
sufficient for your entire network, but only to allow for an 'orderly
shutdown' of your computer system as needed. I experimented with this
one day recently. I went over to the circuit-breaker box on the wall
and flipped off the circuit serving my computer area. Instantly I
heard something sounding like a 'click' as the battery backup started
going. (Oh, on my battery backup I also have the telephone network
wired in to it also.) After flipping the circuit breaker 'off' I went
over immediatly to try this test: Dial '8' for the Vonage line; I
heard dial tone, and dialed a number. Now, it would not work for very
long; the battery is not that large, and it is mainly intended for
the 'orderly shutdown' of my computers, _not_ to just keep on using
them. But you probably see my point. Now, if the cable service went
out, that would be a different matter entirely. But if your telephone
central office went on the blitz, you would not be able to use your
landline phones very long either. Typically, when my power goes off
for some reason or another (which would also affect my telephone
system) I 'cheat' by plugging the phone line directly into the central
office line, enitirely by-passing the mini-PBX I normally run
everything through. Its not a trivial effort in any event. PAT]

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