At this late date most of the bigger outlets' PC2100 RAM is generic brand at premium-brand-prices, but I found some 1 GB Kingston bricks at a smaller dealer and ordered four at ~$17 each, including shipping. This would be enough to generously outfit both computers.
Finding a decent ISP was more difficult, as there aren't many options in my area. The only offer that seemed workable was a DSL connection from my telecom provider, whose service and infrastructure shortcomings have been mentioned previously
. They were thrilled to sign me up, and said that the modem would be sent by mail and should arrive within two weeks.
And they wondered if I wanted to purchase a subscription to their internet security suite at an amazing low price, with free online backup.
So my dial-up days were finally coming to an end, but they weren't over just yet. Having already made a financial transaction using my unpatched computer, it was time for a visit to Microsoft Update via my phantom dial-up connection, which was sure to be dis
-connected, like, any time now
I've had dial-up internet for over six years, and by now most people know better than to call my land line. So with my computer down and the connection freed up, it was still a surprise when the telephone rang. It was my Internet Service Provider, calling to say that they were dumping me!
According to their customer service rep, the number that I connect to had been turned off two weeks earlier!
I protested that I'd been online within the last 48 hours, but he stuck to his story - the number had been turned off at the end of the previous month.
They wondered if I wanted to continue using their service, but now their nearest number would be outside of my local calling area. Downloading 24/7 at 56k with long distance charges.
I told the rep to keep the account open until I found a new provider and, putting down the phone, got back to the business of setting up the newer computer.
That done, I dialed up my usual local number and found, contrary to what the rep had said, that it did indeed still work. But I knew it wouldn't last, and so in haste hit the web in search of RAM and a new ISP before my uncertain connection finally gave up the ghost.