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Connecting via an ethernet cable

Community Veteran
Posts: 1,012
Registered: 01-08-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

I currently have a ticket (22223170) dealing with my broadband connection dropping particularly around midnight. PlusNet have switched on interleaving which hasn't made a significant difference.

Currently I connect via a wireless connection to my Belkin F5D7630-4A router but they have suggested I update my firmware and check my connections using a wired connection.

I have connected a Belkin RJ45 cable but don't seem to be able to get a connection with a wired connection. If I 'disable radio' I lose my internet connection.

PlusNet's answer is
Quote
Regarding the ethernet cable, I would strongly suggest to disable your Wireless adapter to see whether you can connect via Ethernet.


Can some please explain to me in simple terms what I have to do to conect via a wired ethernet connection. I know it can be done as when my son was living here the router was in his bedroom and he was connected via the ethernet cable whilst I was connected via wireless.

It isn't a big deal but as PlusNet have suggested I try a wired connection to test the set up I want to give it a try.

Any help would be appreciated.
14 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,469
Registered: 30-07-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

Start -> control panel -> network Connections

Make sure your Ethernet connection is enabled (usually called Local Area Connection) and set it to obtain its IP address automatically - to change the latter right click on the connection icon, select properties, in the main window select TCP/IP and select Obtain IP address automatically & obtain DNS automatically.

On confirming the changes you should see it allocated an IP address in the details section, bottom left.

You must not have your wireless connection AND Ethernet connection enabled at the same time as it confuses Windows. So disable the wireless connection.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,012
Registered: 01-08-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

Thanks Peter. I have tried that but it just doesn't work. When you say disable the wireless connection, as it's built into this Dell 6400 laptop I just 'disable radio' - is that correct?

My Local Area Connection is showing as Broadcom 440x 10/100 Integrated Controller. Is that the problem? Because I would have thought it should have shown it as Belkin router or similar.

After following your instructions and when it locates the IP address is says 'Limited or No connectivity'.

As I said earlier it isn't a big deal but I really can't see what I have to do to make a 'wired' connection.

PlusNet have suggested I update my router's firmware and you need to have a wired connection to do this. When I have tried via wireless I get this message:

Quote
Incorrect user interface image


Any further help would be much appreciated.

Maybe I should forget the whole thing, continue with my wireless connection and turn off interleaving and go back to how it was before which was fine apart from dropping the connection several times at around midnight, which I could live with, as it was easy to reconnect.
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,469
Registered: 30-07-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

Quote
Thanks Peter. I have tried that but it just doesn't work. When you say disable the wireless connection, as it's built into this Dell 6400 laptop I just 'disable radio' - is that correct?

You should have a wireless option/icon on the Network Connections page which you should be able to disable by right clicking on it.
Quote
My Local Area Connection is showing as Broadcom 440x 10/100 Integrated Controller. Is that the problem? Because I would have thought it should have shown it as Belkin router or similar.

That is the network controller chip on your laptop motherboard that control your network port.
Quote
After following your instructions and when it locates the IP address is says 'Limited or No connectivity'.

What IP address has it allocated?

Is the router configured for DHCP operation?
Quote
PlusNet have suggested I update my router's firmware and you need to have a wired connection to do this. When I have tried via wireless I get this message:

Quote
Incorrect user interface image


Any further help would be much appreciated.

Most routers only allow a firmware upgrade via a wired connection. Either that or you have not specified or downloaded the correct firmware file for your router. Remember you need to download a UK version.
Quote
Maybe I should forget the whole thing, continue with my wireless connection and turn off interleaving and go back to how it was before which was fine apart from dropping the connection several times at around midnight, which I could live with, as it was easy to reconnect.

You should be able to get it working wired and I recommend you continue trying as it can be helpful when diagnosing problems that you have an alternate connection option.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,012
Registered: 01-08-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

Thanks Peter for your help. It is up and running now. The problem was when I right clicked on the Local Area Connection it came up with a different MAC address to that when I connect via my wireless connection.

On my Belkin router I only allow 2 MAC addresses to connect (this Dell laptop and my other Dell laptop both via wireless). Once I disabled the MAC filtering on the router I was able to connect. I have now added the wired MAC address to MAC address filtering list and all is well.

In my ignorance I just assumed that the MAC address was assigned to the computer and it was the same whether you connected by wire or wireless. It obviously isn't so. That's the problem with being a novice!!!!

Incidentally one further point, which I would be interested to here your views on. Prior to interleaving being switched on my speeds were around 5500 kb/s,then when interleaving was switched on last week my speeds dropped to 3500 kb/s. Just now with the wired connection and interleaving still on my speeds are 6050 kb/s. I didn't realise that an ethernet connection was so much faster than wireless.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,258
Thanks: 432
Fixes: 39
Registered: 30-07-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

I used to use a Belkin F5D7630 and my experience is that it was not good at holding a DSL connection at low SNR values. If as you indicate you are synching at something like 6050kbs then your SNR will be about 6db ( the normal BT target ). At this value the Belkin will regularly lose connection, usually in the evening as noise increases. I discovered that it is possible to 'tweak' the target SNR on this router by up to 3db though a hidden page in the web interface. Although providing a more stable connection the downside is that increasing the target SNR reduces the DSL synch speed. For example my line would synch at 7100kbs at 6db but reduced to 6200kbps at 9db. So there is a decision, a faster connection with occasional dropouts, or a slower one with no dropouts.
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,469
Registered: 30-07-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

coastergrotto,

Are the speeds you are quoting your sync speed or the results of a speed test i.e. your data throughput speed? Can you post your full line stats; sync speeds, line attenuation and SNR.

Interleaving can reduce your sync and data throughput speeds.

Unlike a wired connection, wireless can be affected by interference (and walls), especially if you have other wireless networks around using the same channel. Even though the wireless runs at up to 54Mbs, encryption overheads and interference can reduce the overall data throughput quite a bit and packet corruption can also cause lots of retries, reducing the throughput speed again.

Also if your sync speed dropped recently then your BT IP profile would also have dropped affecting your data rate. You can see this figure via connection settings (menu on the left) -> high speed broadband.

So it is not unusual to get a data rate speed on a wired connection compared to wireless, it really depends on the signal quality of your wireless network.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,012
Registered: 01-08-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

Peter: Unfortunately you are getting too technical for me.

These are the tests I have just carried out using my wired connection:



The following one from the BT Speed Test

IP profile for your line is - 6500 kbps
DSL connection rate: 448 kbps(UP-STREAM) 7712 kbps(DOWN-STREAM)
Actual IP throughput achieved during the test was - 5577 kbps

Not sure how I obtain the full line stats; sync speeds, line attenuation and SNR that you asked for.

Thanks also warrilow for your input. Connection dropped once last night at 11.30pm so there is still a problem.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,258
Thanks: 432
Fixes: 39
Registered: 30-07-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

The full line stats are available on the F5D7630 by browsing to http://192.168.2.1/ADSL_status_main.stm ( replace 192.168.2.1 with the IP address of your router ) after logging into the router. Make a note of the SNR (Noise Margin) , Attenuation and Speed for the Downstream link ( you can ignore the Upstream )
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,012
Registered: 01-08-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

Thanks so much warrilow. Here are the stats:



448 (Kbps.) Upstream 7712 (Kbps) Downstream

Noise Margin 25 dB Upstream 8 dB Downstream

Output Power 11.5 dBm Upstream 20 dBm Downstream

Attenuation 15.5 dB Upstream 27 dB Downstream
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,258
Thanks: 432
Fixes: 39
Registered: 30-07-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

coastergrotto,

Those figures look very similar to the ones I had with my Belkin 7630. Basically your line is not quite capable of 8mb and so the 7630 tries to synch as fast as it can whilst maintaining a minimum 6db SNR. The 7630 tries too hard to synch at a high speed and does not seem to be able to hold the DSL link up as the SNR gets towards 6db, it just gets too many errors.

Check your line stats again later this eveing and see if the SNR drops, it usually does by about 1 or 2db. You can also see the error counts on that stats page, check if they are increasing significantly.

The problem is that this situation is not actually a fault, its the way MAXDSL is designed to work. I know it can be a bit of a pain that your connection drops occasionally. However if you are prepared to tolerate a slightly slower connection speed then the line can be made more stable by increasing the target SNR margin.
This can be done either by:-

1)Plusnet requesting BT to increase it at the DSLAM
2)Adjusting it locally if your router supports it
3)Changing the router for one that gives a better SNR.

As I said in my earlier post the 7630 does support adjusting it locally, and thats what I did originally with mine. Its not difficult and if you want to try it, drop me a PM and I will dig out the information on how to do it. I ultimately changed my router to a 2WIRE 2700HGV and now synch rock solid at the maximum 8128 with 8db SNR but I'm afraid that router is not for the faint hearted!
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,012
Registered: 01-08-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

Thanks warrilow for all your help. I'm not going to change my router as, apart from the connection dropping which isn't such a big deal really, I'm quite happy with the speeds attained.

I'll certainly check the line stats again later this evening though. One other question would you recommend me leaving interleaving switched on as PlusNet suggest?

I basically only use the internet for surfing these days, with some MSN use and the odd film download from Sky Anytime.
p_w_d_stone
Grafter
Posts: 315
Registered: 05-04-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

Unless latency (ping time) is a big issue for you, I'd leave it in. Essentially interleaving introduces error checking onto your line and should give a much more stable browsing experience as a result.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,012
Registered: 01-08-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

Thanks. I'll leave it switched on then.

Thanks once again to everyone who has posted, I really appreciate your help.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,258
Thanks: 432
Fixes: 39
Registered: 30-07-2007

Connecting via an ethernet cable

Glad to be of help and yes I agree with Peter, its best left on.

As you say the occasional connection drop is normally no big deal. My main problem with the Belkin was that it was reluctant to automatically reconnect after the drop and I had to manually attempt to reconnect it. What really caused me to sort the problem was that it always seemed to happen when other (non-techy) members of my family were using it and I got the 'why isnt the internet working again' moan.

In case you do want to try 'tweaking' the SNR in the future the page you need on the router is http://192.168.2.1/adsl_para_main.stm
You should see the advanced ADSL Parameters page. The value for 'Address C4' is the one you need to change. 0 is the default, each adjustment in value of 1 gives a 0.5db change. Values between FA and 06 are valid, FA(i.e -6) gives -3db and 06 gives +3db adjustment on the default 6db target SNR. Dont change any other values on the page. Each time you change the value and click 'OK' the router will save the data, reset and retrain the DSL link to the new SNR target. So dont do it frequently or BT's system will see it as though you are having problems.
Adjusting the target SNR will affect the sync speed, as an example I set a value of 06(+3db) and my sych speed dropped from 7200kb to about 6400kb but the connection drops stopped completely.