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21CN system capacity (BT not Plusnet)

Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
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Registered: ‎15-06-2007

21CN system capacity (BT not Plusnet)

http://status.aaisp.net.uk/?incident=319
Quote
It seems that BT 21CN cannot cope - Info
Today 09:35:36
It is quite clear to us that BT's 21CN network simply cannot cope with demand at present. We would not make such a statement without evidence, obviously. We send an LCP echo to every line every second and plot the results. We have clear evidence of a significant portion (around half) of BT 21CN lines that we have showing serious loss and latency problems within BT.
The problems are high latency and some packet loss, mostly during the day where there are any high levels of streaming media. This has a major effect on the performance of internet access generally and is very serious for anyone using interactive terminal sessions and VoIP. The issues relate to specific BRAS/metro-nodes within BT and so are clearly not our end or the link from us to BT.
Sadly BT still do not provide any guarantee or even target for loss and latency on their service. The problems are within BT and so we cannot do much to work around them. Where we get peaks in traffic (e.g. during some of the major football matches) we have been able to prioritise VoIP and customers paying for premium lines - but this only helps on our link to BT. BT have recently admitted that the premium option does not help with congestion within BT between us and the BRAS, so even paying BT for a better service does not help this situation.
We have been chasing BT for this for weeks now, and are getting nowhere. Hopefully this posting will prompt BT to make some formal response to their apparent capacity issues. Either admitting they can't cope, claiming the service is working as designed (i.e. designed not to cope) or if we are very lucky - giving a clear timescale for when it will be fixed.
We challenge BT to actually make a statement on this matter now...
Where we had major issues like this in December, and where BT did not take prompt action then, we were able to report thousands of faults - i.e. each line with high latency was reported as a valid fault and rejected back to BT until fixed. BT have (yesterday) changed their system so that doing this now means having to call them for every fault every time they fail retest as they are now insisting we buy their investigation service (a service which does not investigate back-haul issues) before we can reject a fault back to them. So, instead of fixing the actual problem, they have made it harder for all ISPs to manage faults. It is, in my opinion, very much like putting your fingers in your ears and chanting loudly "No BTW fault" so that they cannot hear us.
In spite of us chasing via the proper channels for weeks we heard recently that the person in charge of 21CN WBC was unaware of any problems. Let's hope he is aware now.
I really hate to have to resort to this sort of public humiliation as a way to get BT to do the right thing. We, as a company, really want to work with BT to resolve issues quickly and professionally. We have tried. We continue to try.
We hope BT can be professional and stop messing about and get these apparent major capacity issues fixed now.
Over to you BT...
Update
Today 09:41:32
By the way - if we do get a sensible response from BT I'll be happy to post details on here. This is not a "BT hate site" by any means and I want to be fair.
Update
Today 15:58:35
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/07/01/aa_bt/
This afternoon a spokesman told The Register: "BT's 21CN offers more than adequate capacity, using the latest technologies."
We are pleased to hear it. This must mean that the high latency and packet loss we are seeing can't possibly be a simple matter of lack of capacity then can it? It must be a FAULT.
Maybe the next step is to report several thousands faults?
Update
Today 16:12:55
I can report that we are working with our BT account team and senior BT management to ensure that they fully understand the issues. We hope to have more detailed updates in a few days.
As I said, it is always regrettable when issues get to this stage and we a keen to work closely with BT in future to provide a smoothly running service to all of our customers.
3 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 26,746
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Registered: ‎10-04-2007

Re: 21CN system capacity (BT not Plusnet)

I've just read this posting on the AAISP site and came here to see if anything had been posted about it.
I'd really like to see a Plusnet comment about this - it's a pretty lamentable situation! Angry
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
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Community Veteran
Posts: 5,472
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Registered: ‎11-08-2007

Re: 21CN system capacity (BT not Plusnet)

And on top of this I seem to remember that 21CN does NOT support IPv6, just when IPv4 addresses are due to run out in 426 days http://www.ipv4countdown.com/
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,031
Fixes: 62
Registered: ‎15-06-2007

Re: 21CN system capacity (BT not Plusnet)

looks as though it is fixed http://status.aaisp.net.uk/?incident=330
Quote
We're pleased to say that BT have taken our concerns over 21CN congestion seriously and have taken major steps to resolve the issues.
They have identified where congestion was happening, and confirmed it agrees with our findings.
They have increased capacity, with the latest increases on Friday 2nd and more in the pipeline.
They have improved monitoring and planning to be more proactive so as to try and avoid congestion like this in the future.
I can confirm that we have not seen this congestion since Friday even where there have been football matches.
Well done BT, and thank you for listening.