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Error message with AmiPPP; software suggestions

 I am using AmiTCP and AmiPPP to connect to my internet provider.  AmiPPP
 brings up a message box every five minutes or so saying "Echo failed!" and ask
 giving me the choices of "Restart," "Close," or "Ignore."  I've only tried
 Ignore.  When I do, the requester goes away and the system works fine until th
 the message box comes back a few minutes later.
 Has anyone else seen this?  What's the problem?  Is there a fix?  I am using A
 AmiPPP version 2x.
 Also, is there a decent newsgroup reader?  How about a telnet client?
 One last thing.  I got VooDoo, but the install script didn't work.  When
 I try to send an e-mail, I get a message saying that it can't find my
 mail daemon(demon).  Would that have been set up with the install script?
 Is VooDoo simply a GUI sitting on top of another program?  Is there an e-mail
 program that does not require a daemon?  Why haven't I seen this i
 problem in PC software?