Today was installation day for our Virgin Media broadband and phone. At about 10am, a couple of nice chaps came round and reconnected the broken cables outside, set up the modem, and then left, leaving me with a router and a CD.
I connected my laptop up to the modem directly with a network cable, and restarted my network. Excellent, thought I, as I saw the IP address get assigned. This is going to be easy.
But no - going to bbc.co.uk I'm rerouted to a virgin page to "help me get set up". This page then says that my computer is substandard, and offers me a pound a minute helpline where they will tell me how to get a more recent version of Windows.
I do not call this number, I instead call the standard virgin media number and enter the "I'm thinking of leaving" option: as usual, this gets me a human being. After 5 minutes of explanation that I don't want an email address, don't want any personal web space, but just want to be able to see the sodding internet without being redirected to Virgin, he gets on to the technical helpline who remove the offending route. I don't mind being offered an email address, etc, but I think it is pretty stupid to make it so you can't get to the internet without signing up for it.
Excellent, we're sorted, I thought. I plugged in the router, and had another go at getting to beeb. Instead, I get a configuration page on the router (this is claiming to be www.routerconfig.com, but pinging it reveals that it is in fact 192.168.1.1 - good). I am allowed to choose an SSID, and passphrase, for my wireless network, and can save it, since the admin password for the router has been filled in.
I can't, however, configure the router, since I don't actually know what the username and password are. Back on the helpline I go, and they tell me that they don't support linux. I don't want support, says I, I just want to know the default admin username and password for the router (since remote management, etc, is turned off by default, I think I can reasonable reveal that username=virgin password=password, in case anyone else finds themselves in the same situation).
Things are now sorted. Hurrah! It could have been worse, but it could also have been much easier if virgin had included a piece of paper with the settings on rather than (or as well as, I suppose) a CD with a windows exe file on it.
I miss Zen