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Internet servers


CGS 1000

Assignment 1


Internet Servers

Here is a list of four common and not so common Internet servers, the list contains the basic features pushed by the servers, price of the service, and the basic software and hardware requirements to access the Internet.



the MSN has a very user friendly environment, everything is done in an easy customized format, customers can send and receive e-mail, access to chat rooms, specialized interest forums, and news groups. They also offer online shopping and the MSN BC on line news.


To start the Microsoft Network has a free "one month" unlimited access trial plan, after that period of time they will start the first billing period. With the MSN the customers have a few choices on how they want to pay their bills and get their access, such as:

MSN premier plan: It is the easy way to get the best of the Internet, the premier plan provides exclusive MSN programming , plus five hours to explore everything the MSN and the Internet has to offer, for $6.95 per month plus $2.50 each additional hour.

MSN premier annual plan: the customers get twelve months of service for the price of ten, a single payment of $69.50 gives the annual membership, with this plan the customer still has to pay $2.50 for each additional hour after the first five hours each month.

MSN premier unlimited plan: the premier unlimited access gives everything the MSN and Internet has to offer for a flat rate of $19.95 per month. No hourly charges.

Customer support:

Service is very friendly and helpful if you are available to hold for up to twenty minutes, otherwise you are not going to be able to get in touch with them.

Hardware and software requirements:

-PC with 486dx or higher processor.

-Windows 95.

-CD-ROM drive.

-14.4 kbps modem.

-Mouse or compatible pointing device.

-VGA or higher resolution graphics card.

-8 Mb of memory required, 16 Mb recommended.

-50 Mb of additional hard disk space.

-Sound card recommended.

-Software is provide by the MSN free of charge.

Comments: Very user friendly interface. The new MSN is a little slower than the older version, because it has more graphics to load, the customer support is reachable after a substantial wait on hold, thereafter the people from MSN are very helpful.


NETCOM is a nationwide company. Their emphasis is on business and productivity seeking individuals, NETCOM subscribers get unlimited access to the Internet over a high speed digital network. It also offers over 330 access points nationwide. They only have one unlimited $19.95 access rate available for the moment.

Netcom claims that they have a very user friendly software. For a beginner using Netcom, it will not take that person more than ten minutes to have it up and browsing. Packaged browsers include Netscape Navigator, Microsoft Internet explorer, and their own NETCOMPLETE browser. NETCOM also partners with various software companies, such as McAfee web scan, Eudora pro, Easy Photo, and Surf watch to name just a few. This company also claims that it is easy to send and receive e-mail. With their own Internet kit customers can connect to news groups, chat rooms, and web sites.

If a customer encounters any kind of problem related to NETCOM, there is a customer support available seven days a week, and twenty four hours a day at no charge. Over the phone the customers will be dealing with an automated system, and to deal with a person it has to be done via e-mail.

Main features:

Personal Services Portfolio:

It is offered to netcom customer as an extension of their base subscription rate of $19.95 per month. Some of these services are offered free of charge, and others require a nominal service fee. The current are the available pieces to the personal service portfolio.

Personal pages: It will enable a customer to create a home page on the world wide web at no additional cost. On this feature there is also available a tutorial to walk trough each step of the home page making.

Two ways to get news: The Personal News page direct will enable the customer to receive an e-mail of the top twenty headlines and summaries based on the news profiles predefined by the customer, and full text of the stories can be found on the news page web site. The other method to retrieve the news will be through the News Web Site. Up to the minute news feeds on the web, the customers can browse the top ten stories or make use of the Clarinet Newsfeeds wich are searchable by key word and category.

Personal Finances: is a set of customized financial foots, design to provide the means to make intelligent investment decisions. Information is available on over 77,000 stocks, mutual funds, options, and industry groups, the customer can get a listing of the best and worst mutual funds, and set up a personal portfolio with up to 150 entries.

Surf Watch: Allows the customer to block certain material on the Internet, this service is specially beneficial to parents who will like to keep their kids away from certain material on the Internet. It can also block the WWW, FTP, Gopher, IRC, and other sites likely to contain objectionable material.

Hardware and Software requirements:

-PC with a 486dx or higher processor.

-Microsoft windows 3.1 or Windows 95 operating system.

-CD-ROM drive.

-Above 9600 baud modem.

-Mouse or compatible pointing device.

-VGA or higher resolution graphics card.

-8 MB of memory required.

-15 MB of additional hard disk space.

-The software required is provided by NETCOM.

Comments: Customer support did not take more than three minutes to pick up the phone, and they were very helpful, I am not familiar with their interface, but judging from the looks of it seems to be very easy to use.


To start with COMPUSERVE, you get thirty days and ten hours to explore for free, the free month includes e-mail, news, weather, stock quotes, Internet access, and hundred of special interest forums, from cats and dogs to entertainment. The price plan that they are trying to push is $9.95 for a month with five hours, each additional hour will cost $2.95 per hour, that is called the standard plan, they also have another plan called the super value plan that costs 24.95 per month with twenty hours, each additional hour costs $2.95 per hour.

Main features:

Redesigned Interface:

COMPUSERVE features a redesigned interface called COMPUSERVE 3.0, the new extensively tested user Interface helps members to find contents and features more quickly and easily, this interface can even be customized.

Multitasking: COMPUSERVE claims that this feature will save their customers time and money, the customer does not have to wait for a task to be finished to move on to another, for example, the customer can chat while downloading a file. A to do list enables start up to do multiple tasks in a background session, making it more efficient than ever to retrieve files on line.

COMPUSERVE forums: COMPUSERVE forums are gathering places of people with similar interests, such as animals and fish, home computing, health or business. The forum conference room is a more intimate chat room environment than the conference center, and more interest specific than the chat sites.

COMPUSERVE no modem e-mail: The COMPUSERVE communication card lets the customers use any telephone to listen to e-mail via text-to-voice synthesizer, the COMPUSERVE card also allows to forward e-mail messages to a fax machine, receive voice mail, set up conference calls, use speed dial, and access information services, such as news and travel. When it is used as a traditional calling card, the COMPUSERVE card allows savings up to 58% compared to the rates of other calling cards.

Hardware and software requirements:

-486 DX or higher processor.

-300 baud modem with local access.

-8 MB of ram memory.

-10 MB of additional disk space.

-Mouse or equivalent.

-VGA or higher graphic resolution.


-Free software is provided by COMPUSERVE.



News groups and chat channels are available, as well as free e-mail addresses, TLC offers their customers free disk space for their own web page at no additional cost. The local access number is a free local call for Orange county and most of Seminole county, and TLC's modems are all 28.8k bps or faster. TLC's support is available Monday through Friday from 9:30 am to 7:30 PM, and Saturday from 10:00 am to 7:30 PM.


A flat rate of $10.95 per month for unlimited access service.

Hardware and software requirements:

-PC with a 486 dx or higher processor.

-VGA graphics card.

-mouse or other pointing device.

-9600 bps modem or faster.


-8 MB of RAM memory.

-10 MB free hard disk space.

-Free software is provided by TLC.

Comments: I found that TLC's customer support was very helpful , they walked me through the installation process, that I found it to be more complicated than than the one of any other server, their system seemed to be faster than any other that I have tried, but their interface was not user friendly at all, TLC and their users have to give up comfort for cost.

Service Recommendation: Personally I will go with TLC, because once I get used to it, it will be just like any other server, I will get the same basic services for half the price.

Source: Essay UK -

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