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Author Topic: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?  (Read 3393 times)

Offline happypaddler

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Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« on: January 26, 2010, 11:16:31 AM »
Hi all,

We recently moved house within Nottingham. We decided to get the TV, phone and broadband package with Sky. We had this deal in Sheffield 2 or so years ago and it all worked really really well. The house we are in did not have the phone lines connected, so we got them connected (sky had a deal which allowed them to pay the lions share and BT still did the work - but it cost us £60 rather than well over a £100). Then through the door came a new Sagem sky router. Once the line was activated I connected everything in as it should be - connecting the iMac via a 15m cable, and the other devices via the wireless function. I kept an eye on the download and upload speeds. After the first 2 days we were getting a download of between 3.5 and 4.5 Mbs consistently - with a download of 0.75 Mbs. Suddenly a week or so later were only getting an upload of 1.75 Mbs (actually according to the sky routers stats were getting 2047kbps - but 5 other respected speed test website all concur that its more like 1.75 Mbs) and a download of 0.51Mbs. I have done a ping test and I am getting no packet loss and a ping of 61ms and a jitter of 5ms - therefore from my very limited understanding - a clear line.

I have contacted sky who have told me it is my end - they have had me unplug everything and leave only the router in, then unscrew the main telephone input into the house and plug the router into the "test" line which is hidden behind the panel. My speeds and packet loss are all the same, in all the scenarios they have had be try. They are suggesting that they need to lower the speed to keep a consistent, stable line - however by my testing - the line is consistent and stable - all be it very slow!

Can anyone of you far more knowledgeable people on this area suggest anything to help? I am still in the statutory time period whereby I can kick the broadband into touch and go elsewhere - but that would be a major hassle. Could it be something in the exchange - or the router its self (as I have proved by testing on 5 other sites its measuring of the speeds is out by a long way)?

All help very very appreciated.




Offline Oldboy

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2010, 11:54:37 AM »
Don't know about Sky but I suspect they reduce your connection speed at their end of the server. All broadband companies quote speeds which can't be obtained in the real world and is the biggest bugbear for people who sign up for these deals. I'm on AOL via a normal telephone wire and my speeds depend on AOL's servers but it's hard to prove it them who slow your connection speeds. They usually suggest it's a lot of people connecting at the same time that produces the bottle-neck, this doesn't ring true at 04:00 when you know very few people are using the internet but you still have slow speeds.  :(

Offline Jonathan

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2010, 12:10:34 PM »
Sounds like line contention or throttling.

Throttling is when they step the line speed down to "reduce errors" aka because they can ;)  In theory the first several days on an ADSL connection are "training" where they play with the speed until they get the fastest stable speed they can achieve on your wire.  If you're a long way from the exchange or have even one piece of suspect copper you can get signal loss and they stop the speed down until the errors go away.

Contention is when you have too may users on the line.  At the other end of the line is a modem which time slices among the users.  For a decent provider the number of users will be 20 or fewer.  But a big way to save money is to increase the contention ratio and put, say, 50 people on the same line.  This works fine until they all want to use the internet together - say at 4:30 pm.

I'd try the test at different times of day and see if the number fluctuates.  If it holds stable round the clock it's PROBABLY something to do with the wires.  If it tracks patterns of heavy net usage then it's probably contention.

If it's contention then shout at Sky until they improve (or go elsewhere).  If it's the copper then a telephone engineer can work wonders - we had a dodgy extension in the house which stopped the line down from 6MB to 2ish.  He fixed it and it was like turning a tap on.

Oh and apparently, these work - http://www.broadbandbuyer.co.uk/Shop/ShopDetail.asp?ProductID=7256
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picsfor

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2010, 12:19:15 PM »
Um - just about word perfect!

Offline happypaddler

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2010, 12:21:54 PM »
I don't think its contention as I have been testing the speed at different times of the day, evening and when I'm up, night. The speed seems to be consistent. Which is where my annoyance comes in, having had over double the speed consistently for over a week, to see it drop so dramatically. For £5 I may invest in one of those i-plates to see if it makes a difference.

Thanks for the link

skellum

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2010, 12:36:07 PM »
No need to waste money just disconnect the wire in the master socket ( terminal 3 )

Offline stevebedder

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2010, 12:46:24 PM »
Not read through all of the thread as a bit short on time but I have had Sky Max broadband for about 2 years and have been more than happy with their service.

I was getting 1.7MB\s download over the weekend, which resulted in 736Mb downloaded in 6 minutes!!! We are quite close to the exchange though which I think helps.

I have a Sky Netgear router which I've never had any problems with.

Not sure if this helps...

Steve

Offline happypaddler

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #7 on: January 26, 2010, 01:06:06 PM »
No need to waste money just disconnect the wire in the master socket ( terminal 3 )

I am rubbish at this - I am guessing you mean unscrew the front plate on the master socket and remove the third wire? If so from which direction? If I do that, will the landline phone connected to it still work, and the extension socket upstairs - which has the router connected to it?


Offline happypaddler

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #8 on: January 26, 2010, 07:43:18 PM »
Some more information for anyone who knows what it all means:

First, the router plugged into the telephone line upstairs(where my office is) and connected to the mac via a cable:



And then the direct link into the "test" socket behind the front panel of the main BT phone port - again plugged into the mac via ethernet cable:



I hope my links worked.

Offline jimthetrain

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #9 on: January 26, 2010, 10:01:45 PM »
I've just done a speedtest on my laptop (windows vista) and my imac.Both are positioned in the same place in the room and both pick up the internet from a wireless router provided by sky.
Upload to both machines was 660kbs but download to laptop was 4742kbs and imac was 1160kbs. Not tried ethernet cable as the telephone point is at the other side of the house. Strange how one is 4 times faster than the other. As you have a mac, I wonder if there is something we've not set up right.
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Offline Trickee

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #10 on: January 26, 2010, 10:07:18 PM »
Been on sky broadband for over 2 years and i live in Nottingham. find it really fast not got any tec speeds though. Recently the line keeps dropping altogether and it seems like it has to redial.
probably BT messing with the line as they phone up every other week trying to get me on their package.

Offline happypaddler

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #11 on: January 26, 2010, 10:25:12 PM »
Fingers crossed I have it sorted. I put the details on some broadband forums I found and I was told by a sky engineer (who said he would do usually offer to do it himself - but was going on holiday in the morning) to (and were getting into areas I do not understand) get a sky CST to see if there is a DLM on the line - if so get them to remove it. I have not spoken to anyone, just emailed them all the information and this sentence. I had an email from sky a few mins ago and they say they have reconfigured my connection. I knew they were doing something as the network dropped out. Currently we are getting 5760 Kbps downstream and 768 upstream - and a noticeably faster connection! Hopefully this will continue.

Thanks for the suggestions.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2010, 10:29:17 PM by happypaddler »

Offline happypaddler

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #12 on: January 26, 2010, 10:34:18 PM »
I've just done a speedtest on my laptop (windows vista) and my imac.Both are positioned in the same place in the room and both pick up the internet from a wireless router provided by sky.
Upload to both machines was 660kbs but download to laptop was 4742kbs and imac was 1160kbs. Not tried ethernet cable as the telephone point is at the other side of the house. Strange how one is 4 times faster than the other. As you have a mac, I wonder if there is something we've not set up right.

That is interesting - my wifes silly County Council windows laptop has had the internet connections doctored - it will only work with an ethernet connection which is on a council site - so I can not see if there is a discrepancy between the mac and PC. I wonder if anyone else has this?

Offline Jonathan

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Re: Sky broadband - does anyone else use it?
« Reply #13 on: January 27, 2010, 07:48:34 AM »
Fingers crossed I have it sorted. I put the details on some broadband forums I found and I was told by a sky engineer (who said he would do usually offer to do it himself - but was going on holiday in the morning) to (and were getting into areas I do not understand) get a sky CST to see if there is a DLM on the line - if so get them to remove it. I have not spoken to anyone, just emailed them all the information and this sentence. I had an email from sky a few mins ago and they say they have reconfigured my connection. I knew they were doing something as the network dropped out. Currently we are getting 5760 Kbps downstream and 768 upstream - and a noticeably faster connection! Hopefully this will continue.

Thanks for the suggestions.

That's a fancy word for throttling ;)  Google explains all - http://www.skyuser.co.uk/forum/sky-dlm/23760-what-dlm-everything-you-need-know.html

It's worth seeing if things seem faster.  It's nice to see a high linespeed but if it's erroring a lot then it may actually give a slower interweb performance.  But if you're happy then now's the time to stop tinkering :D
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