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Slow internet connections speeds and drop-outs


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#1
jeremygex

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Hello

I have an 8MB broadband service but I've had a terribly slow connection (close to dial-up speed) with a regular loss of connection for over a month. Before this problem started, my IP Profile usually averaged around 5000 kbps; it has been stuck at 135 kbps for over 4 weeks with an IP throughput of around 10 kbps.
I replaced my internal phone extension cable, router and filters and have used the test socket as well as the master socket on several occasions.
I've reported a fault with both BT (British Telecom) and my ISP's Home/Office Support technical advisors on several occasions. I had been experiencing a hissing and crackling noise on my phone line for several months - the noise seemed to have gone in the last few days, but has now returned today.
A BT engineer was going to visit my house, but one of my ISP's technical advisors told me to cancel the visit and leave my current setup for a few days. The good news was that 2 days later my IP Profile finally rose back to 5000 kbps but my IP throughput remained at around 10 kbps. I got through to the same technical advisor, and he reported the fault to BT again. Yesterday evening (23 July) I finally started to get faster speeds until my connection cut out at around 10pm. I rebooted the router and found that the connection speed had slowed down once again. My IP profile is now 3500 kbps with an IP throughput of 43 kbps.
My DSL connection is usually around 3000 - 5500 kbps. Why is my IP throughput so low?

I've gone onto various forums and one answer that I found was this :
What you have here is a fault b-RAS, which is the result of a faulty line card issue at the exchange. What you need to get your ISP to insist on what is called "Lift and Shift" with BT Openreach which will get your line changed to a different line card, which will resolve the throughput problem."

Is this good advice or should I do something else? Please help because this problem has been going on for weeks and there has been little sign of a solution.

Thank you

Jeremy

Router Stats on 23 July 23:46
Downstream Rate : 4192 kbps
Upstream Rate : 448 kbps
IP Profile for my line : 3500 kbps
Actual throughput achieved during BT Speedtest : 43 kbps
Line Attenuation : 30.0 db (downstream) 19.5 kb (upstream)
Noise Margin : 17.0 (downstream) db 26.0 db (upstream)

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  • myrouterstats_2009_07_23_2346.jpg

Edited by jeremygex, 24 July 2009 - 12:31 PM.

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#2
Neil Jones

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This'll probably be an ISP issue.

Your attenuation speeds are good, working on the basis that lower is better as it means you have a cleaner line and are probably closer to the exchange.
The noise margin (or Signal To Noise ratio) is good, the higher the better. This is effectively the amount of interference on the line, causes of which are too numerous to mention but typically electromagnetic noise is introduced by means such as turning things on, etc.

A lift and shift will not solve an ISP issue, what lift and shift does is effectively physically disconnect your broadband from one port at the exchange and reconnect to another one. Since you have line interference you should take the issue up with BT since you've eliminated all the causes on your side of the master socket and BT are responsible for everything up to the top part of the master socket. Once BT have verified there is nothing wrong with the line, your only option then is to shout at the provider a while and then some more.
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#3
jeremygex

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Thank you very much, Neil, for your advice. I contacted BT and they are sending an engineer to my place in the next few days. If nothing is wrong then I'll be charged for the service, and I will take up your suggestion of shouting at the provider and then some more!
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#4
jeremygex

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The good news is that the BT engineer replaced our 30-year old external telephone wire at no cost. The bad news is that since then I have plugged the phone into the master socket / test socket, and on 3 out of 5 BT quiet line tests (using 2 different telephones), I've heard hissing and crackling. Can you give me any information and / or advice before I contact BT, again? (BT can sometimes seem like an opponent rather than a service!)

Edited by jeremygex, 28 July 2009 - 03:16 AM.

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#5
Neil Jones

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Exposing the test socket under the master socket disconnects any extensions you have which rules them out interference wise.
Replacing the external cable from the house to the telegraph pole is one thing but BT are also responsible for it up to and including the master socket.

That being said it may be worth contacting your provider and have them knock you down to a slower broadband speed which should make the line more stable. Nobody gets the full 8Mbps anyway on a BT line considering the entire network was built decades ago and is made out of copper at a time when you and I speaking down it was the most use it would get. These days it carries voice, broadband, dial-up, other internet communications, etc so things do get a little crowded on what is effectively an outdated network.
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