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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I am new to this board and I was wondering if anybody else out

there has experienced this problem....


Late last year DirecTV sent out new access cards for "security purposes". Up to that point I had owned my RCA/UTV unit for over a year without experiencing a single problem. After switching the access card, my UTV receiver no longer recognizes the dial tone from the phone line connected to the box (says "no dial tone" when you run a system check). I have tested the line with a telephone and it works fine, and I am using a hard-wired phone jack NOT a remote jack. After speaking with techs from both

DirecTV and Thompson (RCA) each company blames the other for the

problem (at least they do acknowledge that it is a known issue).

First Thompson said that it was the chip in my new access card &

DirecTV should replace the card. After DirecTV replaced the card

(twice) it still will not work. Because of this, I can no longer

take advantage of many of the features such as Web TV, Caller ID

(recently added) and I can no longer order Pay Per View programs

through my receiver (DirecTV disables this feature if your box does

not dial in for more than 60 days). The only solution that they have

offered, is that if I send my box in to Thompson, they will mail me a

new one, but for a considerable fee. Why should I have to pay for

this when my box was working fine up until they messed with it?!?

Regardless of who's "fault" it is, I paid for a product (which I

continue to pay a monthly fee for) that promised DirecTV with

UltimateTV capabilities and this is no longer the case. I feel that

this is an outrage, but unfortunately there is little I can do about it.


Sorry to run on and on, but as you can imagine this is a very

frustrating situation and I was wondering if any of you had a similar

experience or any advise for me regarding this issue. Any help would

be greatly appreciated, thanks.
 

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Try checking the box for:


Settings -> Phone Options -> Outgoing Calls -> Stay connected.


Under certain circumstances, UTV won't see the phone line unless you check this box.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks to both of you for the advice:


kevind - I tried your suggestion and no luck...still no dial tone.


watching - I know I'm probably going to sound like a total idiot, but I don't know what you mean by "code 411", how (or on what screen) can I enter this code? Please bear with me, I am a novice, but I would love to try it.


I even tried switching my UTV box with my other 2 DirecTV boxes in other rooms (they are non UTV boxes and they are also both connected to a hard wired phone jack)...still no dial tone. Every thing else worked like normal.


I was wondering, is it possible to just switch the access cards to see if that works or will that cause more problems?
 

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Try Unchecking the box for:


Settings -> Phone Options -> Advanced -> Wait For Dial Tone


I'd also check temporarily check the box for Audible Dialing, to see if you can hear it going off hook.


Also, you should closely inspect the phone jack on the UTV, it may be that one of the contacts is bent out of position.
 

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I had the same problem. I did a quick reset and my receiver now recognizes my phone line. Simply unplug the receiver from the electrical outlet for 30 seconds and then plug it back in. I hope this works for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks again for all the suggestions, unfortunatelyb the saga continues.

I have tried unplugging the receiver (I even left it unplugged overnight), but even after it reset it still wont recognize the dial tone. Here's a weird one...as kevind suggested, I have been trying out all sorts of different phone option settings, the strange thing is that if I check the box for "audible dialing" I CAN'T hear it try to dial, but when I uncheck that box I DO hear it dial, but then after a rather long pause while it tries to connect, I get either one of the following type of error messages "MSN could not be contacted...try again later" or "your phone line appears to be disconnected or is in use..check the connection and try again". As I stated in my original post, the phone line checks out fine (I even hooked a phone to it and called tech support from that same line to prove it works). The phone jack on the UTV box also appears to be ok (no bent connectors that I can see). I guess I'm running out of options here, I either have to live with it the way it is, or pay Thompson to replace the box. Man, I don't want to do that but since I can't seem to fix it I may have to....arghhh!
 

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Hi,


Sounds like you have a modem that works but is unable to connect properly. I was going to suggest you use a "reset" code to enable the modem. I had a similar "no dial tone" issue with one of my UTVs and using a code like 12357 or 32768 to reset things to default worked for me.


To enter codes like 411 (system info) or 12357 and 32768 (both reset codes of a kind) you need the UTV plugged in and the power "off" (UTV is in standby mode)


From the remote enter the # code... the unit will flash multi-colors to confirm a code. On power up it will perform it's function.


The above reset codes may reset some custom settings,but you will not loose recording either existing or future...


Let us know if those don't work...


Later,
 

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Take another phone and check that line... remove it from utv and coonct phone.


Leave it unpluged for 10 minutes and disconnect all other items connected to your phone. Now connect it and on your utv settings reset to defaults..


Now try it again..??
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well, I tried the codes (411, 12357 and 32768) and they all reset the box, but still no dial tone. As for the above post from wrb, I am a little unclear on your instructions. I have already checked the line (numerous times) by disconnecting it from UTV and connecting it to a phone...the phone works fine. I have also left the phone line disconnected from the UTV box for well over 10 minutes at a time and I do not have anything else connected to the phone line besides other phones in different rooms. I have not tried disconnecting the other phones as of yet, but I will certainly give it a shot (tomorrow afternoon, after work). I will try just about anything at this point...I must admit, I am starting to give up hope on this one. UltimateTV is becoming an Ultimate pain in the butt. Thanks again for the tips, I will post tomorrow with my results.
 

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What did it say about your modem status when you ran the 411 code?


Can you move your utv & a small monitor to where the phone lines connect to the house? There is usually a box/panel there where you can disconnect your house phone wiring & connect directly to the line in. You don't need the satellite cables connected to test this.


Success connecting now?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
errr...ok, but why would this be different from hooking it to a jack inside since all the phones work fine? and why would it have worked perfectly for over a year hooked to the exact same jack that it is connected to now. Nothing in my current set-up has changed EXCEPT for the new access card, and that is precisely when the box stopped recognizing the dial tone (coincidence...I think not). The only problem is that I've had DirecTV replace my card 2 more times since then & it didn't help. If they would have just left well enough alone with my old card then there would be no problem. As for the modem status when I enter 411, I'll have to check again when I get home (currently on a break at work). Thanks.


Oh yeah, since I am new to these forums, can someone please fill me in on why there is a little icon next to this thread in the topic list that looks like an envelope with a hole in it???? What do these envelope icons mean???
 

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Hi,


Phone line conditions change everyday... (every second actually but who is counting)


It is possible one of your phones is causing a glitch, or maybe a wire is loose or dirty. There are so many things that could be going on with your in house wiring it isn't funny.


Not to be paranoid but things are happening in your house as we speak. Phones are emitting noise which other devices (like UTV) must take or go haywire!


Using or checking your interface box isn't a bad thing. When I upgraded to 33.6/V.90 from an old 14.4 modem I wasn't getting very good connections. Simply checking the jack and blowing off some "fuzz" on the contacts improved my connection speeds. I also found my house wiring was good because I didn't get any better connection outside then I got inside (no major line quality problems inside)


ALSO, you may want to try using those reset codes again and try pulling the access card before doing the reset. Try dialing out without the access card. It probably will not work but try it anyway... Install the card after reseting the UTV...

Good Luck,

David T.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by magoo1967
... Oh yeah, since I am new to these forums, can someone please fill me in on why there is a little icon next to this thread in the topic list that looks like an envelope with a hole in it???? What do these envelope icons mean???
The legend for "basic" envelopes is at the bottom of the screen. The "hole" in the envelope means that you have at least one post in that particular thread (to remind you that you are "interested" in it) ;) .
 

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magoo1967, if you're still at work, pick up some electrical contact cleaner on your way home if you don't already have some.


When you get home, take a magnifier & a light & take a real good look at the phone plug socket on the back of your utv. Make sure those thin copper contacts are totally straight & seem in good position. If all looks well then spray them with the contact cleaner & spray a little bit too on the phone wire ends.
 

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Let me just add that I agree with you that your problem is most likely a software/firmware problem due to a glitch that developed at the time of your card upgrade but the solution to that is pretty severe. It is important to rule out all the hardware causes first; they are usually tough to identify but easy to rectify.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I didn't have much time tonight to test too much, I tried disconnecting all the other phones (didn't help). When I do the 411 code, next to modem it says "AltoCom SoftModem Version 3.1.63". I am also going to go out and get some contact cleaner when I get the chance as suggested. Too be honest, I've been living with this problem for a while and although its annoying, the PVR features is really what I use the UTV for(obviously). It was just that with the recent upgrade to 3.7, it started to grate on me that I couldn't use the caller ID feature and the whole WebTV thing. I guess its more of the principle of the matter at this point..but I shall keep on trying to fix it. Once again, thanks for the suggestions...I am starting to sound like a broken record here...or better yet, a broken recorder (I know, dumb joke, but I'm half asleep at this point).


Oh yeah...thanks TexasJames for explaining the hole in the envelope deal, one less mystery to solve.
 

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you could verify its the access card by putting your old HU card back in the receiver and attempting to dial in.


I suppose you could also attempt to dial without an access card, too, although I've never tried it. :)


Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
yeah, I thought of that too, unfortunately I didn't even realize there was a problem until nearly 2 months after I changed the cards (this is when they disabled my ability to order pay-per view programs, which is what brought the problem to my attention) and by that time I had long since thrown out the old cards (I learned the hard way not to do that again). I'm pretty sure that I can't dial in without a card but as always, I'll give it a try. Thanks.
 
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