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Cal.net Announces Merger with Hstar Technology Group

Shingle Springs, CA – May 16, 2016. Cal.net, Inc, an Internet Service Provider (“ISP”) based in Shingle Springs, CA, today announces that it has merged with Hstar Technology Group, Inc., an ISP based in Angels Camp, CA. By adding about 300 square miles of service area in Calaveras and Tuolumne Counties, this merger expands the Cal.net geographic coverage territory to approximately 2,300 square miles in total. Consequently, Cal.net is now able to deliver seamless high-quality broadband Internet services to most of the rural communities of the Sierra Nevada foothills from the northeast to the southeast of Sacramento. The combined entities will operate under the Cal.net name, now making Cal.net one of the largest privately-owned fixed-wireless ISPs in northern California.

Hstar began operations about fourteen years ago, providing not only rural broadband Internet services to the surrounding communities, but also offering a variety of technology consulting and other computer and communications related services. Since that time, Hstar has grown in reputation by not only providing exemplary services, but also by being heavily involved in the community with local staff who volunteer with various community organizations such as Calaveras County Search and Rescue, Calaveras Youth Mentoring program, Public Access TV, and many others.

“We wish to extend our welcome to the customers and the dedicated staff of Hstar into the Cal.net family,” stated John Lane, CEO of Cal.net. “Loyal Hstar subscribers should rest assured that not only will the excellent service they’ve been receiving from Hstar continue, they can also look forward to new services and improved quality under the Cal.net banner. Together with the Hstar team, we will be upgrading the network over the next few months to enable greater speeds, enhanced reliability, and exciting new services such as superior-quality VoIP telephony.”

Tim Hildabrand, CEO of Hstar Technology Group, stated “Over the past decade and more, we have worked hard to open the digital world to the residents and businesses of Calaveras County. But as demand for broadband connectivity exploded over just the past couple years, we realized that as a small company we could not alone muster the resources to effectively meet that need. Therefore, we are extremely delighted to have the opportunity to team up with Cal.net to ensure that the community is well prepared for 21st-Century life, and we look forward to offering upgraded services and becoming the premier customer service experience for delivering Internet to the homes and companies of the area.”

Economies of scale of the combined operations will support rapid development of enhanced network architectures, leading to higher performance and improved quality and enabling valuable new services to be offered. The addition of FCC-licensed microwave communication links and dual independent high-speed fiber connections to the Internet will ensure the utmost in service reliability. Once these improvements are completed, local customers can look forward to the roll-out of superior fixed-wireless 4G-LTE broadband service, crystal-clear Voice-over-Internet-Protocol (“VoIP”) digital telephone service, and digital television services.
Current Hstar customers will enjoy immediate benefits such as seven-day-a-week live customer service with quicker response to service requests. And prospective customers will also be able to receive prompt feedback on sales inquiries.

About Cal.net, Inc.
Cal.net is a privately-held premier northern-California based Internet Service Provider, offering a variety of services to meet the data communications needs of individuals and businesses. The company provides high-speed Internet access and high-quality VoIP telephony services, Web hosting and custom Web design, a local co-location datacenter, and local technical support. The company’s fixed-wireless broadband service currently provides high-speed Internet throughout most of western El Dorado and Placer Counties, portions of southern Nevada and Yuba Counties, northwestern Amador County, and parts of Calaveras and Tuolumne Counties, serving rural communities where no other provider is able to reach. Its facilities-based Voice over Internet Protocol telephony service offers crystal-clear voice service with nationwide calling for one low fixed price.

Changing Your Billing Portal Password

You can change the password you use to login to the billing portal quickly and easily.

First, Login to the Billing Portal at https://myaccount.cal.net

Then follow these steps…

1) Click on the “Edit” button next to the hidden password in the Account Info section of the home page.Selection_251


2) Enter your current password in the “Old Password” box
3) Enter your new password (Must be at least 8 Characters long and contain at least one number)
4) Enter your new password on more time for confirmation
5) Click the “Update” button
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Cal.net Announces TV White Space Based Broadband Service Availability

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: CONTACT:
Mark Herr
530-672-1078, x105
mherr@cal.net
www.cal.net

Cal.net Announces TV White Space Based Broadband Service Availability

Shingle Springs, California – January 16, 2014. Cal.net, Inc, an Internet Service Provider based in Shingle Springs, CA, is proud to announce immediate commercial availability of its new high-quality TV White Space based fixed-wireless Internet service in El Dorado County.
TV White Space (“TVWS”) technology utilizes the unused radio spectrum between local television channels to enable two-way high-speed wireless data communications. Unlike the higher frequencies employed by most other digital wireless systems, TVWS signals are capable of penetrating long distance through dense forests and past terrain obstructions. By leveraging this new technology, Cal.net is now able to provide its broadband services in areas that heretofore have never been able to receive high-speed Internet service from terrestrial sources.
In cooperation with Carlson Wireless Technologies, Inc., the manufacturer of the first commercially feasible equipment able to deliver broadband services using TVWS, Cal.net has been conducting limited local tests of the system under an experimental FCC license since April, 2013. On January 15th, Carlson announced that their product is now certified by the FCC, and as a consequence, Cal.net is now able to deploy this technology on a widespread basis.
Cal.net will commence deployment in the Swansboro, Camino, Greenwood, Pleasant Valley, and Somerset areas immediately, with services to other areas following soon thereafter.
About Cal.net, Inc.
Cal.net is a premier northern-California based Internet Service Provider, offering a variety of services to meet the data communications needs of individuals and businesses. The company provides high-speed Internet access through land-line and terrestrial fixed-wireless channels, Web hosting and custom Web design, a local co-location datacenter, and local technical support. High-speed Internet services include broadband wireless, DSL and other dedicated high speed lines. The company’s fixed-wireless broadband service provides high-speed Internet throughout most of Western El Dorado County. Its co-location datacenter allows other firms to store and access their servers in a secure, environmentally controlled local facility with highly reliable redundant Internet backbone connections. Visit http://www.cal.net for more information.

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Cal.net and Vast Networks Announce Immediate Availability of Services on Vast’s Fiber Network

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: CONTACT:
Mark Herr
530-672-1078, x105
mherr@cal.net
www.cal.net

Mike Stewart
559-554-9111

Mstewart@cvin.com
www.vastnetworks.com

Cal.net and Vast Networks Announce Immediate Availability of Services on Vast’s Fiber Network

Shingle Springs and fresno, California – September 2, 2015. Cal.net, Inc, an Internet Service Provider based in Shingle Springs, CA, and Vast Networks, a middle-mile and last mile fiber infrastructure provider based in Fresno, CA, are proud to jointly announce immediate commercial availability of the Vast fiber network services in El Dorado, Amador, and Placer Counties.
The Vast fiber network, which was partially funded through federal ARRA and state CASF grants in 2010, is now complete and ready to supply high-speed Internet services along its route. A portion of this entirely-underground route runs through the heart of the Sierra Nevada western foothills from Jamestown in Tuolumne County to Grass Valley in Nevada County, connecting at each end to other fiber routes running down the spine of the Central Valley. This architecture delivers the following unique combination of benefits unattainable by alternative services:
The “ring” architecture provides a dual path for Internet traffic that enables service to remain functional all along the route even in the event of a fiber cut or failure at any one point;
The underground nature of the network greatly reduces the risk of damage to the network from accidents, acts of nature, or intentional vandalism; and
The modern technology and substantial fiber capacity of the network offer high-quality dedicated symmetric Internet connection speeds from 50 Mbps all the way up to 10 Gbps.
With a three-year history of quietly working together behind the scenes, the companies are also pleased to finally announce that Cal.net is now an official representative of Vast Networks with the ability to design, provision, and support services throughout the Gold Country of California and beyond. With aggressive pricing and a commitment to exemplary local service, Cal.net, together with Vast, is now the go-to resource for high-speed business-class Internet service in the Western Sierra Region. To find out more about establishing a CVIN fiber connection, phone Cal.net on 530-672-1078, and ask for the sales department.
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About CVIN, LLC, dba Vast Networks
Organized in 1995, Vast Networks is a joint enterprise comprised of affiliates of several Independent Telephone Companies located in central and northern California offering a full line of Network Services to commercial, educational, and municipal customers , as well as other telecommunications companies in the area. Born from the Independent Telephone Industry where quality of service has always been stressed. Vast’s services are state-of-the-art, its network reliable, its prices competitive, and its customer service beyond compare.
Offering the best in telecom services and peripheral support technologies, Vast has deployed over 1,700 miles of fiber optic infrastructure throughout California in the past few years and will continue to deliver fiber solutions to both rural and metropolitan areas throughout the state.
Visit http://vastnetworks.com/ for more information.
About Cal.net, Inc.
Cal.net is a premier northern-California based Internet Service Provider, offering a variety of services to meet the data communications needs of individuals and businesses. The company provides high-speed Internet access and high-quality VoIP telephony services, Web hosting and custom Web design, a local co-location datacenter, and local technical support. The company’s fixed-wireless broadband service currently provides high-speed Internet throughout most of Western El Dorado County and northwestern Amador County, serving the rural communities where no other provider is able to reach. Its facilities-based Voice over Internet Protocol telephony service offers crystal-clear voice service with nationwide calling for one low fixed price.
Visit http://www.cal.net for more information.

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Cal.net merges with Central Valley Broadband

Shingle Springs – February 23, 2016. Cal.net, Inc, an Internet Service Provider (“ISP”) based in Shingle Springs, CA, today announces that it has merged with Central Valley Broadband, LLC (“CVB”), an ISP based in Roseville, CA. This merger approximately doubles the geographic service area of each company, broadening the combined coverage to around 2,000 square miles and enabling seamless high-quality broadband Internet services to be delivered to most of the rural communities of the Sierra Nevada foothills east and northeast of Sacramento. The combined entities will operate under the Cal.net name, now making Cal.net one of the largest privately-owned fixed-wireless ISPs in northern California.

Central Valley Broadband began operations as QuikNet in 1998 as the first Wireless ISP in the Sacramento foothills area. Through a series of events, the company eventually came to be known as CVB. Over time, CVB grew both organically and via acquisitions to become one of the premier fixed-wireless broadband service providers in the area, with a solid reputation of excellent service quality.

We welcome the customers of CVB into the Cal.net family,” stated John Lane, CEO of Cal.net. “We want to assure the loyal CVB subscribers that not only will the excellent service they’ve been receiving from CVB continue, they can also look forward to new services and improved quality under the Cal.net banner. Over the next few months we’ll be enhancing CVB’s network to enable the deployment of superior-quality VoIP telephony services, along with higher speed packages. On top of that, additional major services will be made available later on this year.”

William Lawver, CEO of Central Valley Broadband, stated “Over the past decade, we have known Cal.net as a worthy competitor that has continually incentivized us to improve our service offerings. We realized, however, that their superior resources, particularly from the California Advanced Services Fund grants, will ultimately deliver a level of services to the local community that we alone could not accomplish. We are proud to hand over the reins to such a capable organization, and confident that our customers will soon enjoy the benefits of the merged operations.”

Merging the wireless networks of the two companies will enhance overall reliability, while the economies of scale of the merged operations will enable new investments into superior networking and wireless technologies that will result in increased quality and performance for both systems and enable new services to be offered. Due to the geographic overlap of the two operations, improved radio-frequency planning will help to eliminate radio interference, resulting in improved service quality in the overlap areas. Additionally, connecting the two networks will enable higher data speeds and add redundant connections to the Internet to minimize service outages. And later this year, customers on both networks can look forward to the roll-out of superior fixed-wireless 4G-LTE broadband service, crystal-clear Voice-over-Internet-Protocol (“VoIP”) digital telephone service, and digital television services.

As a result of the combined staff of the two companies, current CVB customers will enjoy immediate benefits such as expanded customer service hours and quicker response to service requests. The company will also be able to respond more quickly to sales inquiries.

 

About Cal.net, Inc.

Cal.net is a privately-held premier northern-California based Internet Service Provider, offering a variety of services to meet the data communications needs of individuals and businesses. The company provides high-speed Internet access and high-quality VoIP telephony services, Web hosting and custom Web design, a local co-location datacenter, and local technical support. The company’s fixed-wireless broadband service currently provides high-speed Internet throughout most of western El Dorado and Placer Counties, portions of southern Nevada and Yuba Counties, and northwestern Amador County, serving rural communities where no other provider is able to reach. Its facilities-based Voice over Internet Protocol telephony service offers crystal-clear voice service with nationwide calling for one low fixed price.  

The Heartbleed Bug

A flaw in the encryption system used by many popular websites is being seen as one of the biggest security threats the internet has seen so far. We have seen no indication of any issues caused by this security flaw on any Cal.net service, and Cal.net has patched any affected servers. Below is a list of services, and whether or not they were affected.

Cal.net Affected Services
Other Popular Affected Services
Security Advice

Cal.net Services Status

Service Name Affected? Patched Action
cPanel Webhosting Server Affected Patched Login to the control panel and change your password
Cal.net Bill Pay Portal Unaffected Not Needed No Password Change Necessary
Cal.net Mail Incoming Unaffected Not Needed No Password Change Necessary
Canit Anti Spam Login Unaffected Not Needed No Password Change Necessary
Cal.net Mail SMTP (Outgoing) Unaffected Not Needed No Password Change Necessary
Cal.net Mail Incoming Unaffected Not Needed No Password Change Necessary
Directcon.net Webmail Unaffected Not Needed No Password Change Necessary
Directcon.net Mail SMTP (Outgoing) Unaffected Not Needed No Password Change Necessary
Directcon.net Mail Incoming Unaffected Not Needed No Password Change Necessary

Other Popular Services

You can find a list of other popular services, and whether they were affected at

http://mashable.com/2014/04/09/heartbleed-bug-websites-affected/

Security Advice

Imagine you use the same key for your home, your car, work, your storage unit, and your safe deposit box. Now imagine that key looks like this

Angelo_Gemmi_simple_key

A password is essentially a digital key, and by using the same simple password on multiple sites, a situation is created where if the password is compromised (the criminal gets a copy of your key), he then has access to your entire online life, the digital equivalent of the all the things our simple key opens in this example. There are some simple, if inconvenient things you can do to prevent this.

  1. Use a password manager like LastPass or KeePassX.
  2. Use different passwords for every site that requires a password.
  3. Use random, long passwords,  the above listed programs will generate them for you.
  4. Change your passwords periodically.

Following this advice will limit the damage done, and the time, money, and effort it takes to recover from a security breech.

 

windows xp logo

Microsoft Ending Windows XP Support

Microsoft is ending support for Windows XP on April 8, 2014, 12 years after its debut.  Cal.net wants our customers to understand what this means for the security of their computers and their personal information.

 

What does “end of support” mean?

  1. Microsoft will no longer patch security holes in the Operating System and related programs.
    • This means the security holes in the operating system hackers and criminals use to gain access to your computer will no longer be patched. Leaving your system permanently vulnerable to these exploits.
    • Office 2003 and older will no longer be supported either, again, leaving security holes un-patched.
    • Internet Explorer 8 is the last version of IE that works on XP. It will not be updated either, leaving you vulnerable when surfing the internet.
  2. Many Software and Hardware Vendors will no longer offer support 
    • This means your new phone, camera, printer, or other device likely will not work with your computer.
    • You will not be able to get phone or other support for your devices or software.
    • New versions of your favorite software will not work on your computer.

What it does not mean…

Your PC will continue to work, and you will still be able to access the internet, email, programs and  documents.

Will my Anti-Virus continue to work?

Below is information provided by av-test.org about popular AV Software vendor support.

Note: Anti virus software is very important, but it will not protect you from all possible exploits.
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Anti Virus Support by Vendor

Manufacturer Support Information
Agnitum No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
AVG No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
Avast No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
Avira Support will end on 8th April 2015 – further details…
Bitdefender Support for home-user products available until January 2016; support for corporate products available until January 2017 (2)
Bullguard No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
Check Point / ZoneAlarm No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1) – further details…
Comodo No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
Emsisoft Support available until at least April 2016 (2)
ESET Support available until at least April 2017 (2)
Fortinet No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
F-Secure No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
G Data Support available until at least April 2016 (2)
Ikarus No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
K7 Computing No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
Kaspersky Lab support will continue at least until 2018 for consumer and at least until 2nd part of 2016 for business products (2)
Kingsoft No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
McAfee No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
Microsoft (Security Essentials) Support will end on 14th July 2015 – further details…
Microworld No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
Norman Support available until at least January 2016 (2)
Panda Security No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
Qihoo 360 Support available until at least January 2018 (2)
Quickheal No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
Sophos Support will continue at least until 30th September 2015 (2) – further details…
Symantec / Norton Products support Windows XP, no end-of-life decision has been made yet
Tencent No end of support announced; support available for at least 2 more years (1)
ThreatTrack / Vipre Support available until at least April 2015 (2)
Trend Micro Support will end on 30th January 2017 – further details…
Webroot Support available until at least April 2019 (2)

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What Browsers will be supported?

Some browser makers will continue to support updates for  Windows XP for a period of time. Below is the list of the most current information at the time of writing.

Internet Explorer 11 Not Supported
Internet Explorer 10 Not Supported
Internet Explorer 9 Not Supported
Internet Explorer 8 No Updates or Patches
Google Chrome Supported until April 2015
Firefox No Plans to discontinue support, although Service Pack 3 is required for updates

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Cal.net Support Policy for Windows XP

Cal.net will extend Windows XP Support for 90 days, until July 8th, 2014. This includes Office XP, and Office 2003. After that date we will no longer support these products.

The Bottom Line

All major software and hardware vendors, security experts, and Internet Service Providers agree that the machines running Windows XP present a security risk to their owners, and the the internet eco-system as a whole. Therefore, Cal.net advises that those running Windows XP take the computer offline for use, or replace or upgrade the operating systems on their computers.
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MS Front Page

Microsoft Front Page Extensions No Longer Supported

As of February 2014, Cal.net Webhosting no longer supports Microsoft Front Page Server Extensions.

Why Has support been Discontinued?

Microsoft stopped making new version of Front Page in 2003, this means that they no longer create new versions of the “Server Extensions” that allow the front page program to connect to the web server and allow publishing. The last release of MS Front Page Extensions was in 2002, more than 12 years ago,  the age of the extensions makes it incompatible with newer, more secure versions of the Web Server software.  Cal.net has to consider the security of all its customers, and Front Page Extensions constitute a threat to everyone.

How do I publish my website?

There are many methods available to update your website. The simplest would be to use Front Page with FTP, Instead of Front Page using Front Page Extensions.  Please See this Tutorial on using Front Page with FTP.

(please note: Cal.net support does not have a copy of MS Front Page, and cannot help set up your software beyond providing you with lost usernames and passwords)

Are there any Alternate Programs I can use?

There are many freee WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) web page editors available.

Here are a few…

  • Kompozer (Free) - KompoZer is a complete web authoring system that combines web file management and easy-to-use WYSIWYG web page editing.
  • Microsoft Expression Web ($125.00)- This is the replacement for Front Page that MS released.

 

 

WHITE SPACE ARRIVES IN GOLD COUNTRY

The first commercial application of TV White-Space broadband offers residents of California’s Gold Country a ‘wealth’ of opportunities.

 

The rugged landscape of California’s Gold Country has been sought after for centuries, but its enchanting features have also obstructed 21st-Century Internet access.  Newly-released technology is about to liberate these rural environs, as the nation’s first independently-funded commercial-grade TV White Space (TVWS) broadband network is deployed in the area.

 

White-Spaces are unused TV channels, whose powerful signals can travel over rough, tree-laden terrain. This long-awaited broadband solution avails rural customers to all the benefits of today’s Internet.  Thanks to the pioneering efforts of an El Dorado County wireless Internet provider, Cal.net, many Gold Country businesses and residents now have access to these previously unattainable resources.

 

Just ask the local entrepreneur who wants to efficiently monitor her store locations. “I’m finally able to keep tabs on my business from home,” states Mrs. Edwards.  “For twenty years we’ve had no decent Internet service were we live.  Now we have superior remote access to our office computers, and can finally enjoy peace of mind while saving us many hours of driving.”

 

“Over 59,000 residents in our rural service area have had little or no quality Internet access,” explained Cal.net CTO Ken Garnett, who began investigating White-Space technology several years ago. “When I discovered Carlson, their White-Space network equipment was a quantum leap ahead of all other contenders.  This new product allows us to serve a large contingent of these people.”

 

“Carlson specializes in rugged territory,” noted Jim Carlson, CEO of the Arcata-based RF design firm. “Rural broadband has long been the focus of our efforts, and we knew as soon as the FCC set aside TVWS for broadband that this would be the preeminent solution for rural areas.”

 

A brewery in the quaint town of Camino offers a prime example of TVWS advantages. “This is a very effective tool for my business,” states David Coody, owner of the Jack Russell Brewery.  “Video conferencing was smoother than satellite, and I’m not hamstrung by its limitations.  I’d highly recommend this to other businesses in rural areas.”

 

Carlson and Cal.net formed an alliance and set out to tame the wild territory. Armed with an FCC-granted Special Temporary Authority to validate the efficacy of the product in real-world scenarios, the partners have commenced the world’s first large-scale deployment of commercial TVWS products.  The project comprises multiple transmission sites delivering broadband to several hundred heretofore un-serviceable subscribers in El Dorado County. The success of their project will help qualify the potential of TVWS and provide a hopeful outlook for millions of other rural Americans awaiting quality broadband.

 

Late last month Carlson began shipping its RuralConnect system to FCC authorized customers in fulfillment of pre-orders.

 

About Carlson

For more than a decade, Carlson has led the way in engineering high-speed wireless communication solutions for a broad spectrum of applications by using RF technology to deliver full voice and data connections, no matter how rugged the terrain.  More than 20 million people in nearly 200 communities worldwide rely on Carlson radios for their public safety communications needs.  Today, Carlson is considered a pioneer of the revolutionary new TV White Space broadband technology.

 

About Cal.Net

Cal.net is a premier northern-California based Internet service provider, offering services to meet the data communications needs of individuals and businesses since 1996. The company provides wired and wireless broadband Internet access, Web services, and a local co-location datacenter. Cal.net’s fixed-wireless broadband service provides quality high-speed Internet to thousands of rural subscribers in El Dorado and Amador Counties, California.

 

Mt. Aukum Area Outage

Customers served in and around Fairplay, Omo Ranch, Happy Valley, Pleasant Valley, Grizzly Flat, and Somerset are currently experiencing an outage caused by vandalism.  Yesterday afternoon, copper thieves cut and removed hundreds of feet of copper line from a Cal.net tower facility.

Techs are onsite and Cal.net is working to restore service as soon as possible, with a target completion of 1 PM today.  We appreciate your patience as we work to resolve this matter.

Sincerely,
Phil Bosley
Cal.net, Inc.