TAC "noise"

Frank J. Wancho (WANCHO@SIMTEL20.ARPA)
Wed, 5 Aug 1987 22:22 MDT

     Apparently some readers of my message about TAC "noise" inferred
that we had reported this bug and received no action. We have not yet
reported this problem, although we believe others elsewhere may have
reported something similar with no resolution.
     My intent in sending that message was to try to gather some
hypotheses to present when I do report the problem to give the problem
more credibility and a higher likelihood of receiving attention and
maybe even getting fixed. After all, the "true" nature of the problem
is often easily misunderstood.
     It was also an attempt to discover if anyone else has experienced
the same problem - TAC users are an individually isolated contigent of
users with no one to represent them and no forum to bring up their
problems, except, maybe NIC folks who mainly handle TAC Access card
problems and refer technical problems to the NOC. Most TAC users
aren't technical enough to push their statement of the problem past
the "well, it must be line noise" answer, and the problem is not
properly surfaced.
     However, the readership of this forum, not necessarily the forum
itself, is, as hoped, quite technically knowledgeable. I immediately
received several detailed responses basically supporting my suspicion
that clock tolerances are the most likely culprit. In fact one
respondent was actually able to prove the point by using an old 300
bps modem with a clock heavily suspected of having drifted over the
years and observing the same "noise" characteristic as I described.
     So, with apologies to BBN for not having made my message clear, I
will now go off and report the problem through conventional channels.
Thank you all for bearing with me while I interrupted your discussions
on the more esoteric aspects of TCP/IP.


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