Swapping ISPs


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billdoor
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I'm with Eclipse on one of their unlimited bandwidth bundles. Until about a month ago, I got around 2-4megs down and 400k up. Then it nosedived. The up speed stayed at 400k but the down speed has dropped to around 80k.

I'm still wrangling with customer support over whether its a line fault (IMHO unlikely as the upload speed isn't affected) or their fault.

So I'm thinking of swapping ISP's.

Problem is my wife is on maternity leave and can't really face being without the net for more than a day or so. What are my chances of managing this? Or am I more likely than not going to be stuck without adsl for weeks on end?

Oh, and can anybody recommend an uncapped package?

Thanks guys
#1 at 16:42:23 - 14/11/2007
Furbs
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Very unlikely for it to be a couple of days I'd say, from experience.

Have you considered going down the cable route? It seems to be a bit of a lottery but I've never had any problems with NTL/Virgin and it means you could arrange an overlap.

They're technically uncapped, although if you do your downloads at peak times (4pm till midnight) they cut your speed for four hours. Not the end of the world though. Plus you get guaranteed connection speeds. None of this "up to" bollocks.

That said, for every pro-cable story, theres a horror one.
#2 at 17:00:49 - 14/11/2007
El_MUERkO
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offcom had a bit of a battle with isp's about mac codes and being able to 'try before you buy' a while ago but i dont know what came of it

check thinkbroadband and the offcom website
#3 at 17:04:55 - 14/11/2007
billdoor
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Bloody hell Furbs- how expensive is Virgin Cable? 25 a month for a 4meg line O_o

Whats the upload speed and is the router ethernet based or USB?
#4 at 17:10:36 - 14/11/2007
Furbs
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I didnt think it was that bad to be honest, but then I've always been of the opinion that you get what you pay for with ISP's, and I've always gone with the more expensive ones (Clara, Zen and Pipex for instance). Remember too, its uncapped which is increasingly rare.

Upload on 4mb is 256k. The modem (not a router unless they've changed the offer) can be used via USB or Ethernet. Theres frequent rumours they're about to do a "free" upgrade to 8mb as at the moment theres a huge gap between 4mb and 20mb (which has a higher upload, I think 512k).
#5 at 17:16:58 - 14/11/2007
billdoor
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Right. So I'd basically need to buy a router as well...

I used to be with Freedom to Surf but their prices went way up after the Pipex takeover. Currently paying 18 for what has been a very good service up til now.

Time to do a hard reset on my router, see if that sorts anything out I think :)

Cheers Furbs
#6 at 17:20:43 - 14/11/2007
Furbs
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Yeah the router thing was the downside to me when I switched to cable. Ended up picking one a Linksys one for about 40 quid but obviously its added cost at an awkward time of year.

You could try calling them and trying to get them to send you one for signing up if you're interested. I know their customer retention team will bend over and take it up the arse if you're threatening to cancel (speaking of which, my years contract is up next month so I should get a good deal!).

A few of the guys at work speak very highly of Be if you want to stay on ADSL. Dont know anything more than that about them though.
#7 at 17:23:46 - 14/11/2007
ilmaestro
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fwiw I agree with Furbs on all points. Never had a problem with Telewest/Virgin in years, and I don't consider it too expensive due to how satisfied I've been with the service, even with the new 'traffic shaping' that Furbs mentioned.
#8 at 17:25:42 - 14/11/2007
Whizzo
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20 meg upload speed is 768Kbit btw, it's on the expensive side of course but when you're downloading at 2.3 megabytes a second I prefer to pay a bit more and get things quicker.

Hosting Live sessions is usually lovely too.
#9 at 17:27:22 - 14/11/2007
HairyArse
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I'm sure Virgin provide you with a router for free as a new customer don't they? They fucking should if they don't.
#10 at 17:28:51 - 14/11/2007
El_MUERkO
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HairyArse said:I'm sure Virgin provide you with a router for free as a new customer don't they? They fucking should if they don't.


they do, only problem is cable routers are a bit shite, NAT problems can slow down the PS3 a fair bit too
#11 at 17:44:05 - 14/11/2007
peej
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I keep getting pestered by BT to sign up for another 12 months (I'm currently letting the bastards sweat because they're constantly hassle-calling) - I know they're shite but seeing some of the problems other people have, I count myself lucky.

Apparently Demon Internet are still going (!) and offer a great service. One of my colleagues at work switched a while back and he's always bleating on about how lax they are about checking people's download limits.

Peej
#12 at 17:46:05 - 14/11/2007
Tiger_Walts
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Oddly I don't have any problems with my f2s connection. I too was a bit miffed with the Pipex thing but all that's done is left the service they provide static whereas before you'd logon to find that your website quota just got doubled for free.

Can't say I'm too happy with the range of connections they provide, especially with what BT offer. Nevertheless as a service I have had no problems whatsoever.
#13 at 17:47:11 - 14/11/2007
Nuttah
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Demon are owned by THuS if i'm not mistaken, and are therefore a complete shower of shits.

I'd offer something from my company, but you can get cheaper domestic services from other companies, so i'll leave that for the moment.


Whizzo said:20 meg upload speed is 768Kbit btw, it's on the expensive side of course but when you're downloading at 2.3 megabytes a second I prefer to pay a bit more and get things quicker.

Hosting Live sessions is usually lovely too.


I'm curious if you have ever reached the magical 2.35 megabytes a second from either a single point on the internet or multiple?

Bill, being in the 'business' so to speak, this would almost certainly be a ADSL problem. What i'm curious about is what your ADSL 'syncs' at. this would give an indication of whether its a BT wholesale ADSL problem, or a capacity issue. If it is the former, then swapping ISP's will make fuck all difference, the problem would likely follow you.



#14 at 18:17:01 - 14/11/2007
JimJam
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Bill - I've had exactly the same problem this week, and it's happened one too many times, so I'm going to jump ship from Pipex. D/L speeds have been as low as 25kbps this week, so I've requested my MAC code and will be going elsewhere.

I've checked this out, and as long as you have ADSL already (which you do) and a MAC code, you should only lose your service for 2 or 3 hours on the day of the switch.
#15 at 21:19:06 - 14/11/2007
Dougs
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Tiger_Walts said:Oddly I don't have any problems with my f2s connection. I too was a bit miffed with the Pipex thing but all that's done is left the service they provide static whereas before you'd logon to find that your website quota just got doubled for free.

Can't say I'm too happy with the range of connections they provide, especially with what BT offer. Nevertheless as a service I have had no problems whatsoever.


I'm with f2s too, and find the connection pretty rock solid, and the tech support veru good, when I needed it after a house move. My only concern is that I get a lot of DNS errors, meaning a restart of my router. Dunno whether it is the line, or my router. Given that the same thing happened at my old address, I'm inclined to think it is the router. Don't know enough about this sort of thing to know though. Only a minor inconvenience anyway.
#16 at 09:13:38 - 15/11/2007
billdoor
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I had huge problems using xboxlive with f2s- it kept on resetting the connection. Also had problems with moving house (they didn't understand we had taken the number with us even though I explained it to them 1bn times). And they introduced caps IIRC.

Nuttah Said
Bill, being in the 'business' so to speak, this would almost certainly be a ADSL problem. What i'm curious about is what your ADSL 'syncs' at. this would give an indication of whether its a BT wholesale ADSL problem, or a capacity issue. If it is the former, then swapping ISP's will make fuck all difference, the problem would likely follow you.


This is what my router status page has to say on the matter.

Downstream: 160k O_o
#17 at 09:20:06 - 15/11/2007
Rhythm
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HairyArse said:I'm sure Virgin provide you with a router for free as a new customer don't they? They fucking should if they don't.


Not on the ADSL side, no. Having said that, I've been with 4 broadband ISPs now and only one provided a "router" (BT, but that Homehub thing can hardly be called a router, even once unlocked). Supanet provided a USB ADSL modem but it was a shitty one-PC thing (being a modem and not a router)
#18 at 09:49:25 - 15/11/2007
Legion
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I'm due a change now, Pipex are royally shafting me with price and download speed, so I'm off.

My choice at the moment is between

-sky (10 a month, unlimited, 16 meg download).
and
-Bethere (18, unlimited, 24meg down, 1.3meg up)

My issues with Sky are that it's slower than Bethere, and I'd be tied into a 12 month contract (There's no contract with Be).

Now my exchange isn't exactly local, so I'll not get full speed out of either service, but does anyone know if I'm more likely to get a faster speed if I go with Be's ADSL2 solution over Sky's?

I'm sorry if that sounds like a silly question but what I'm trying to figure out is, knowing that my top speed will be limited by my line length and quality will my max speed be in Megs or as a percentage of the total - So will I only get, for example, 4 megs whichever service I used, or will I only get, again for example, 40% of the potential speed. If it's the latter then I'll go with Be, if it's the former than I may as well go with Sky.

#19 at 11:50:55 - 15/11/2007
Rhythm
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SamKnows seems to think that ADSL2+ will give you faster speeds ADSL at certain distances. I'm graded for 7meg (when the max would be 8) in ADSL terms but they suggest 24meg shouldn't be a problem at that sort of distance.
#20 at 11:56:07 - 15/11/2007
HairyArse
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Mike - I'm with SKY and supposedly on their 16mb connection. However, I only actually get 3mb - they did warn me of this though but I insisted on still sticking with the extra costs because I didn't want any limits.

We got a nice netgear wireless router for free and while the download speed isn't brilliant, I get 82kb upload which is great for maintaining torrent ratios. You've already got SKY tv haven't you?

We're on the 3 for 25 package which gets us basic tv, free evening and weekend landline calls and the broadband which isn't too bad.
#21 at 11:59:25 - 15/11/2007
Nuttah
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billdoor said:

This is what my router status page has to say on the matter.

Downstream: 160k O_o


thats defintly a ADSL problem, or rather issue. If it's stuck at that with a 17 + db rating for either direction would point to the interleaving process that monitors all MAX connctions, I've seen this get stuck down at a low sync because this process has probably seen your line disconnect repeatedly over a period of time.

If your ISP uses BT as a wholesaler for the end points, they should certianly be able to ask BT to change that, or even force it to connect at 6 db (which should improve your line speed, but possibly at the cost of reliability). The interleaving process I *think* has 3 or 4 settings all in DB values. 6, 12 and 15.
#22 at 11:59:57 - 15/11/2007
Legion
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HairyArse said:Mike - I'm with SKY and supposedly on their 16mb connection. However, I only actually get 3mb - they did warn me of this though but I insisted on still sticking with the extra costs because I didn't want any limits.

We got a nice netgear wireless router for free and while the download speed isn't brilliant, I get 82kb upload which is great for maintaining torrent ratios. You've already got SKY tv haven't you?

We're on the 3 for 25 package which gets us basic tv, free evening and weekend landline calls and the broadband which isn't too bad.

Yeah, we've got sky, but for an extra 8 I am tempted by Be's offering. Basically if Be turn out to be crap at least I can go elsewhere and pay less for slower broadband, but if Sky only gives me 3MB then I'd struggle to leave under contract, what with them being cunts and all.

Be it is. I think...
#23 at 12:45:35 - 15/11/2007
Ginger
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I had real trouble when I left Eclipse - they accidentally did "something" which meant my migration didn't go through and I was stuck with them for an extra month, and had loads of hassle working out where the problem was. I actually jumped over to F2S which gave me an immediate speed bump -I'm now up to about 6Mbps on the same phone line.

Not unlimited, but hey, it's got off peak unlimited overnight for all that torrent swapping goodness if that's your kind of thing.
#24 at 13:37:21 - 15/11/2007
billdoor
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Thanks Nuttah, and everyone. Have emailed them my ADSL log to see if they can sort it, other wise, cable here I come!
#25 at 15:32:20 - 15/11/2007
billdoor
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Argh- ten minutes into filling out the Virgin Media application form and the fuckers want my BT account number despite the fact I only want broadband from them.

Eclipse kindly want to send a man round and charge me if the phone lines not at fault. They also want to charge me 100 if I'm not in when he turns up but don't want me to charge them 100 if he's late for his appointment.

Since I can get the cable up and running in a week, I might as well do that as it sounds like it will take at least that long for eclipse to sort my problem out.
#26 at 12:06:10 - 16/11/2007
billdoor
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Okay- ordered Virgin Media Broadband :D

Now, can anyone recommend me a nice wireless router/cable modem. Since I use homeplug, I wont need that many ethernet ports on the thing (in fact 1 will probably do).
#27 at 13:08:32 - 16/11/2007

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