Author Topic: Opinions on Broadband providers  (Read 5878 times)

citoyen

  • Occasionally rides a bike
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #50 on: 23 September, 2020, 01:09:51 pm »
I think there's some argument about what a 'proper mesh' is, but basically, the nodes just talk to each other rather than a central hub.

You could set up the Airport devices to resemble a 'mesh' in that there was just one SSID across the network, though as Jaded correctly points out, there was a significant performance loss, which I guess you don't get with modern mesh devices (or at least the performance loss is much, much smaller).

I enquired about installing ethernet when we had the house rewired but the quote from the electrician subcontracted by the builders was ridiculous. Should have taken that as a warning sign really, but that's for another thread.
"The future's all yours, you lousy bicycles."

Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #51 on: 23 September, 2020, 01:16:48 pm »

Your router often does two jobs:

1. Encodes/Decodes the data going to/from the Internet (known as the Wide Area Network or WAN). That’s the modem part - it allows you to communicate with the outside world.

2. It routes this data to the correct devices in your home - your Local Area Network or LAN. So you can suffer 10 hours of Teams while your kids watch Netflix all day.

I would say four jobs, and would add:-

3. Is the hub that connects all the ethernet cables that you need to connect to the different devices

4. Is the wireless access point that allow connects in the WiFi devices

Until recently, we had all four functions in separate boxes, as Plusnet used to send out a modem and a router that were different boxes. We now have one box that is all four, but there is also a separate hub and a separate wireless access point / hub, so that the wires and the WiFi reach the other rooms better.
Quote from: Kim
Paging Diver300.  Diver300 to the GSM Trimphone, please...

ian

  • not a woman, not an american, not a vampire
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #52 on: 23 September, 2020, 01:28:16 pm »
I think there's some argument about what a 'proper mesh' is, but basically, the nodes just talk to each other rather than a central hub.

You could set up the Airport devices to resemble a 'mesh' in that there was just one SSID across the network, though as Jaded correctly points out, there was a significant performance loss, which I guess you don't get with modern mesh devices (or at least the performance loss is much, much smaller).

I enquired about installing ethernet when we had the house rewired but the quote from the electrician subcontracted by the builders was ridiculous. Should have taken that as a warning sign really, but that's for another thread.


When we had the Asbestos Palace rewired the quote for adding ethernet was also very high (I can't remember, but four figures). They couldn't just bodge ethernet cable in the same hole. Who knew? OK, me. It's all wires.

All meshes and extenders have to 'backhaul' – so use up a proportion of bandwidth to communicate with each other. But unless you have super-duper gigabit fibre or somesuch, modern wifi networks are usually sufficient. That said, the more nodes you have, the more bandwidth they'll take for themselves, so more isn't necessarily better. Three nodes cover a decent-sized four-bed detached house in my experience.
Authoritarian Thought Leader, the Pol Pot of Powerpoint, the Stalin of Spreadsheets

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #53 on: 23 September, 2020, 01:33:39 pm »
If they want to have a complex setup like the one you describe, then they kinda need to know how to configure and maintain it themselves!

Quite.  The Ubiquiti access points are lovely, but they're in the class of things designed for people who know (or are willing to learn) what they're doing, who are willing to put the effort in for something that will do exactly what they need, and quietly keep doing it for as long as nobody fucks with it.

Plug and play it isn't.  Other than by the standards of similar non-consumer products.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #54 on: 23 September, 2020, 01:38:26 pm »
When we had the Asbestos Palace rewired the quote for adding ethernet was also very high (I can't remember, but four figures). They couldn't just bodge ethernet cable in the same hole. Who knew? OK, me. It's all wires.

I think there's something in the regs about power and non-power wiring not sharing conduit, holes through joists and similar (and it's probably bad practice to run certain types of data alongside power for interference reasons).  Given that electrical work is about 10% knowing what you're doing, 40% woodwork and 50% dust and spiders, it's not surprising that it multiplies the cost.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #55 on: 23 September, 2020, 02:05:01 pm »
I think there's some argument about what a 'proper mesh' is, but basically, the nodes just talk to each other rather than a central hub. So the one in my office is talking to the one in the bedroom upstairs, which is talking to primary node in the living room (that then links via a powerline adaptor to the cupboard under the stairs where the BT homehub has been confined, for its sins, in modem-only mode).

The downside, of course, is that the mesh nodes have to use up bandwidth to talk to each other (like extenders). But there's no shortage in most home scenarios. Three nodes cover my house and ensure I get a full signal in every room (and the back garden) and I've not had a single drop out since I installed it.

Yes, mesh allows the nodes to comunicate through each other, with multiple possible routes, to get back to the router/wan/lan connections.

The better current kit uses three bands, allowing one (5GHz) band to be dedicated for 'backhaul'. It's impressively fast - my asus kit is much faster than my broadband connection or my NAS drive. OTOH that allows anything and everything to work concurrently.

Mr Larrington

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Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #56 on: 23 September, 2020, 02:09:37 pm »
Wot Jaded said.  I've got a (wired) Airport Express, purchased for box-tops from the Bay of Thieves, in the kitchen for channelling Musical Tunes thereto.  I ent averse to running cables around skirting boards, which helps.
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Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #57 on: 23 September, 2020, 02:15:08 pm »
If they want to have a complex setup like the one you describe, then they kinda need to know how to configure and maintain it themselves!

Quite.  The Ubiquiti access points are lovely, but they're in the class of things designed for people who know (or are willing to learn) what they're doing, who are willing to put the effort in for something that will do exactly what they need, and quietly keep doing it for as long as nobody fucks with it.

Indeed, but it keeps me in the occasional beer and also helps neighbourly relations.
"Yes please" said Squirrel "biscuits are our favourite things."

ian

  • not a woman, not an american, not a vampire
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #58 on: 23 September, 2020, 02:31:16 pm »
I think there's some argument about what a 'proper mesh' is, but basically, the nodes just talk to each other rather than a central hub. So the one in my office is talking to the one in the bedroom upstairs, which is talking to primary node in the living room (that then links via a powerline adaptor to the cupboard under the stairs where the BT homehub has been confined, for its sins, in modem-only mode).

The downside, of course, is that the mesh nodes have to use up bandwidth to talk to each other (like extenders). But there's no shortage in most home scenarios. Three nodes cover my house and ensure I get a full signal in every room (and the back garden) and I've not had a single drop out since I installed it.

Yes, mesh allows the nodes to comunicate through each other, with multiple possible routes, to get back to the router/wan/lan connections.

The better current kit uses three bands, allowing one (5GHz) band to be dedicated for 'backhaul'. It's impressively fast - my asus kit is much faster than my broadband connection or my NAS drive. OTOH that allows anything and everything to work concurrently.

The price differentials mostly seem to revolve around the number of radios and whether or not there's a dedicated one for the backhaul. Some also let you use wired connection, though that seems a little self-defeating unless you're just using the node for roaming devices.

For a non-fibre connection, the basic stuff seems to work. I get around 867 Mbps wireless and full speed internets on every connected device that supports that speed (some of the older kit only does 300 Mbps).
Authoritarian Thought Leader, the Pol Pot of Powerpoint, the Stalin of Spreadsheets

Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #59 on: 23 September, 2020, 03:57:47 pm »
Honestly, I wish I'd got the bloody wifi mesh thing years ago (ok, they'd probably not been invented or cost a million pounds each), it would saved many hours of effort, months of frustration, and several rants about getting decent wifi throughout this bloody house.

I wonder what the max distance it can cover is? The Sonos mesh I have can reach the shed some 30m away down the garden. It would be perfect if the Deco could do the same, and I could retire the powerline adaptors.
We are making a New World (Paul Nash, 1918)

citoyen

  • Occasionally rides a bike
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #60 on: 23 September, 2020, 04:17:57 pm »
Given that electrical work is about 10% knowing what you're doing, 40% woodwork and 50% dust and spiders, it's not surprising that it multiplies the cost.

Yeah, the builders told us they would have to chase new conduits into the walls separate to the power lines, and I guess that's what accounted for most of the extra cost rather than the wiring itself. Even so, it was excessively high.
"The future's all yours, you lousy bicycles."

ian

  • not a woman, not an american, not a vampire
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #61 on: 23 September, 2020, 05:12:08 pm »
Given that electrical work is about 10% knowing what you're doing, 40% woodwork and 50% dust and spiders, it's not surprising that it multiplies the cost.

Yeah, the builders told us they would have to chase new conduits into the walls separate to the power lines, and I guess that's what accounted for most of the extra cost rather than the wiring itself. Even so, it was excessively high.

Yes, they told us it couldn't go into the same conduits. It would be like mixing up tagliatelle and spaghetti in the same meal. Plus I think they added more just because it's computers innit.
Authoritarian Thought Leader, the Pol Pot of Powerpoint, the Stalin of Spreadsheets

Mr Larrington

  • A bit ov a lyv wyr by slof standirds
  • Custard Wallah
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Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #62 on: 23 September, 2020, 05:14:38 pm »
When we had the Asbestos Palace rewired the quote for adding ethernet was also very high (I can't remember, but four figures). They couldn't just bodge ethernet cable in the same hole. Who knew? OK, me. It's all wires.

I think there's something in the regs about power and non-power wiring not sharing conduit, holes through joists and similar (and it's probably bad practice to run certain types of data alongside power for interference reasons).  Given that electrical work is about 10% knowing what you're doing, 40% woodwork and 50% dust and spiders, it's not surprising that it multiplies the cost.

Does this mean that now I've relocated various bits of networky hardware to a cupboard, with the power and network cables going through the same 'ole, disgraced former International Development minister Piggi Patel can sent her Arrest-o-Bots round with 14lb hammers ;)

The 'ole was there long before the hardware, BTW.
External Transparent Wall Inspection Operative & Mayor of Mortagne-au-Perche
Satisfying the Bloodlust of the Masses in Peacetime

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #63 on: 23 September, 2020, 05:15:59 pm »
I hope not, in case she sees what's going on under our bathroom floor.  Fortunately, the non-compliant wire-stuffing is well protected by spiders.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

ian

  • not a woman, not an american, not a vampire
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #64 on: 23 September, 2020, 05:20:52 pm »
Honestly, I wish I'd got the bloody wifi mesh thing years ago (ok, they'd probably not been invented or cost a million pounds each), it would saved many hours of effort, months of frustration, and several rants about getting decent wifi throughout this bloody house.

I wonder what the max distance it can cover is? The Sonos mesh I have can reach the shed some 30m away down the garden. It would be perfect if the Deco could do the same, and I could retire the powerline adaptors.

I only tried briefly, but I didn't have much luck with the Sonos using the mesh (admittedly, this was 20 minutes of research). It could have been down to the powerline adaptor which they don't recommend. It's all very timing signal sensitive.

For that matter I didn't have much luck with Sonos as its own mesh either. It currently lives on a Boost (it's own wireless network) for now (I still can't get all the speakers simultaneously, but other than for educational value, I don't really need that and I got bored jigging things around).

Sonos doesn't always like extenders (it did work with the Deco M5, but wasn't especially stable). Note that Sonos only uses 2.4 GHz.
Authoritarian Thought Leader, the Pol Pot of Powerpoint, the Stalin of Spreadsheets

Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #65 on: 23 September, 2020, 07:22:23 pm »
The rules about mains and low cables sharing conduit or holes is for safety. All the cables should be rated to the highest voltage present. Having mains appear on an ethernet plug can spoil your day.

If cables are pulled through conduit or holes, one can give a friction burn to the other. A sharp object could pierce both cables.

One house I owned had a live skirting board nail for a decade or so due to a nail going through into a hole which contained five 2.5 mm2 T&E cables. It wasn't found until I needed to move some of the T&E cables, but then people don't go around touching skirting board nails very often. Had it contacted a low voltage cable, that could have made something else live.
Quote from: Kim
Paging Diver300.  Diver300 to the GSM Trimphone, please...

Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #66 on: 23 September, 2020, 10:27:03 pm »
We once stayed in a house in France that had a live wall - our parents, for I was a wee one at the time, spent a long weekend keeping us on the other side of the kitchen. There were also electrical storms outside I believe.

The electricians came on the Monday and made the problem go away.

Wowbagger

  • Sylph
    • Musings of a Gentleman Cyclist
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #67 on: 28 July, 2021, 11:53:40 am »
I have an ongoing dispute with Virgin. Unfortunately they are the only show in town as far as I'm concerned, even though there's a "Citifibre" cable going past my front gate. The connection is fine, but I was paying too much for it (£88 a month for 250Mb, some TV package that we never use, and free calls of up to an hour in duration). I wanted to ditch the TV and change the phone to VOIP. Virgin don't do VOIP. I decided to go for one of their "Oomph" packages - 350Mb straight with no TV or phone line for £56. Then the retention team got involved and offered me what I had before for £44. They sent me a contract tying me in until Jan 2022 but are buggering me about with charges, and when I have a look at my account, they still haven't got it right.

I had a look at Andrews & Arnold but they reckoned the fastest connection they could offer me was 9Mb.

My dispute with Virgin celebrated its first birthday yesterday.

Actually, that's not quite true. The contract they have failed to honour celebrated its first birthday yesterday. The dispute is slightly less advanced in age, but it's old enough for them to have been referred to the "ombudsperson" (cisas@cedr.com), to have been found at fault, to have written to me accepting that they are at fault, and to have done nothing in the intervening 5 weeks to rectify the faults.

In a nutshell, my contract states that for £44 a month, I will receive:-

unlimited broadband at 350mb
free mobile phone sim with unlimited 4G, calls and texts
a landline offering free evening and weekend calls
a TV package that I'm not interested in.

They have failed to connect the landline and, because they have failed to connect the landline, they decided I wasn't sticking to the contract and started charging me for my mobile phone use.

I have never known a company so utterly useless at delivering its core business.
Bach without a doubt.

Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #68 on: 28 July, 2021, 03:19:29 pm »
I was a happy user of Virgin Media (originally Telewest when I started about 20 years ago). Then it was flogged off to Liberty Global, a US company, since when the rate of price increase was exceeded only by the rate of deterioration in the level of service. I eventually gave up when they "lost" my email address for nearly a month.

Seems standard practice for US companies, in order to maximise short term profits.

woollypigs

  • Mr Peli
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Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #69 on: 04 August, 2021, 12:28:27 am »
Been with SKY for 8 years. Got it because it was the best deal around back then. Have had 1-2 drops of service per year since. One drop because the postman knocked on the door, dog went mental, fell of sofa of pulled the cable out, which damaged the cable and I had to run and get new between meetings.

Area got flooded on 2.4Ghz that WiFi was unusable, even with daily channel hopping. Called up SKY to see what we could do. They said new router with 5Ghz should do, which it did, oh btw you can get fibre for less, so you want it? So our bill, only phone and internet, dropped to about £25 a month. For about 45 down and 5 up.

Oh yes we had some low speed and random drops about 3 years ago and it was a thing in the green box down the hill that was broken, SKY.gave us a free month for that issue.

I've asked them a question online via twitter and it took a week to answer, where they are keen at showing they are on social media they aren't the best with dealing with issues on social media.

Our contract came up in April I called and talked to them and got a new deal £18.50 a month. After I said I've been with you for long and it's silly that new users get better deals and it's cheaper to have a telly option on top of phone and internet.

Same speed as above and plenty for two to stream meetings etc at the same time.
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Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #70 on: 04 August, 2021, 12:30:59 am »
Been with SKY for 8 years. Got it becyit was the best deal around back then. Have had 1-2 drops of service per year since. One drop because the postman knocked on the door, dog went mental, fell of sofa of pulled the cable out, whic damago the cable and I had to run and get new between meetings.

That sounded like the setup for the old "dog barks before the phone rings" urban legend for a minute.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Wowbagger

  • Sylph
    • Musings of a Gentleman Cyclist
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #71 on: 28 September, 2021, 12:48:16 pm »
I have an ongoing dispute with Virgin. Unfortunately they are the only show in town as far as I'm concerned, even though there's a "Citifibre" cable going past my front gate. The connection is fine, but I was paying too much for it (£88 a month for 250Mb, some TV package that we never use, and free calls of up to an hour in duration). I wanted to ditch the TV and change the phone to VOIP. Virgin don't do VOIP. I decided to go for one of their "Oomph" packages - 350Mb straight with no TV or phone line for £56. Then the retention team got involved and offered me what I had before for £44. They sent me a contract tying me in until Jan 2022 but are buggering me about with charges, and when I have a look at my account, they still haven't got it right.

I had a look at Andrews & Arnold but they reckoned the fastest connection they could offer me was 9Mb.

My dispute with Virgin celebrated its first birthday yesterday.

Actually, that's not quite true. The contract they have failed to honour celebrated its first birthday yesterday. The dispute is slightly less advanced in age, but it's old enough for them to have been referred to the "ombudsperson" (cisas@cedr.com), to have been found at fault, to have written to me accepting that they are at fault, and to have done nothing in the intervening 5 weeks to rectify the faults.

In a nutshell, my contract states that for £44 a month, I will receive:-

unlimited broadband at 350mb
free mobile phone sim with unlimited 4G, calls and texts
a landline offering free evening and weekend calls
a TV package that I'm not interested in.

They have failed to connect the landline and, because they have failed to connect the landline, they decided I wasn't sticking to the contract and started charging me for my mobile phone use.

I have never known a company so utterly useless at delivering its core business.

This is still dragging on. CEDR seem to be pretty much as useless as Virgin. I can see the dispute ending up in the small claims court.
Bach without a doubt.

TimC

  • Old blerk sometimes onabike.
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #72 on: 28 September, 2021, 01:21:53 pm »
I've been with BT since forever. I had a number of disputes with them several years ago which resulted in some very low subscriptions. I've been on FTTP since 2016, and now have 300 down/50 up for about £30. The line will currently support 900 down, but at silly money - and I can't (yet) think of any reason to need it. They moved me to VOIP for the landline a few months ago, with a free (and quite good) phone, so the scam callers are at a rather better quality of sound than they once were.

Wowbagger

  • Sylph
    • Musings of a Gentleman Cyclist
Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #73 on: 28 September, 2021, 01:44:27 pm »
I've been with BT since forever. I had a number of disputes with them several years ago which resulted in some very low subscriptions. I've been on FTTP since 2016, and now have 300 down/50 up for about £30. The line will currently support 900 down, but at silly money - and I can't (yet) think of any reason to need it. They moved me to VOIP for the landline a few months ago, with a free (and quite good) phone, so the scam callers are at a rather better quality of sound than they once were.

A move to BT would reduce my bandwidth to something derisory, according to Andrews & Arnold, else I would be there like a shot.

Edit: I just checked.

Quote
New Home::1 ADSL up to 11.5Mb/s
ADSL service with forecast download sync speed of 6.7-11.5Mb/s from £35/month for 500GB/month, including line rental
Bach without a doubt.

Re: Opinions on Broadband providers
« Reply #74 on: 28 September, 2021, 04:04:10 pm »
Have you checked Cityfibre? It is available from Vodafone Gigafast.