We believe that this deal is infinitely better than so-called "free" services which are generally awkward - especially for new or occasional computer users - to set up and to operate, and which then recover the cost by charging for access to their help-lines at premium rates.
The OU alumni service charges national rates for its help-desk, so the cost is the same from wherever you are calling.
Hundreds of Open Eye readers signed up when the University's alumni association Internet service was launched in November.
At that time it was costing pounds 1 minimum (for up to an hour on-line) with scaled charges reaching pounds 6.50 for unlimited use thereafter.
But three months is a long time in the world of the Internet and we have been able to bring the price down only this week.
Included for the pounds 1 are five free e-mail addresses - your signature becomes firstname.lastname@example.org - so that all the family can have a personal Internet service, and you can use it for business, too.
There's even 5Mb of individual webspace included in the price, which allows you to create your own personal home page and website.
Connection is by local-dial access from everywhere in the UK, plus "global roaming" which provides local dialling from almost anywhere in the world.
Opening the connection up connects you directly with the OU alumni website, www.openlink.org, for up-to-date news about events and member services.
From next week you will also be able to read edited extracts from Open Eye, which is accessed via the site's Signpost page.
To order a sign-up disk, simply ring 0870 6070797 and ask for a disk for the OU Link.
By return you will receive a CD which you simply feed into your CD drive, then follow the on-screen instructions.
Installation is even easier for Apple Macintosh users - downloading and registration can be carried out over the phone in a matter of minutes.Reuse content