Many people use modems and voice telephone lines to connect to the Internet. Sometimes, the modem won't work properly and they can't connect. This can happen for a number of reasons.

  1. Is the phone line plugged into the right port/hole in the wall?
  2. Is the modem plugged into the phone line?
  3. Does the phone line have dial tone (hook up a regular phone, check for dial tone).
  4. External Modems Only
    1. Is the modem plugged into the power outlet?
    2. Is the serial cable connected properly to the modem and the computer?
    3. Does the modem respond to the terminal application (eg. Hyperterm on Windows)
  5. Check the Windows Device Manager. Does your modem appear in the list of known devices, or under the question mark icon for unknown devices?
    1. If the device is not recognized (unknown) you probably need to install the driver for your modem.
      1. Here's how you install drivers in Windows.
  6. Does the modem have the correct configuration string to communicate with the remote modem (have a look at our Hayes AT Command set page)?
  7. Have you turned on the modem's speaker with the AT "M1" command in your modem string? You can troubleshoot issues with dial tone, remote carrier, busy signals, and some communications problems by listening to sounds the modem makes as it connects.


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