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Ongoing Sync Issues...

ianrstewart
Dabbler
Posts: 19
Registered: ‎15-08-2007

Ongoing Sync Issues...

So around three months ago, we replaced our aging but trusty Solwise SAR130 router, Intel 10Mbps Hub and 11Mbps Belkin wireless with one Linksys WAG54GS combined router/switch/wireless my work had going and all was well - or so I thought. What I had failed to notice was that this router had dodgy firmware, and was causing sporadic dropouts on ALL interfaces.
Those of you in the know will know what this would have done to my BRAS profile and subsequently my sync speed.
Over the course of two months, our sync speed dropped from the ~4500kbps we normally see to a staggering 288kbps(!) connection, but as this was a gradual deterioration it wasn't for some time that I noticed this issue and of course the damage is done and it takes at least three times as long for your sync to improve as it does for it to degrade, meaning that what took a dodgy router two months to destroy would take me the best part of six months to repair!
Since this issue was discovered, I've contacted Linksys and obtained the latest, fully functional firmware and the device has been solid as a rock. However, any disconnections at all are causing the line speed to drop, and it's excrutiatingly painful. I've had a ticket open over this of course, but as I'm sure you can appreciate the usual advice has actually done more to harm my connection than heal it. The connection had managed to sneak it's way up to 488kbps when the advice came through to try using the test socket behind the master socket (the router is always plugged into the master socket, and our internal wiring (which is actually completely isolated now to prevent any possible issues there - that's right, no phones at all!) is all new as of the late nineties, being redone to suit the ISDN system we had at the time. After reconnecting to the master socket's test socket behind the frontplate, my line dropped to 384kbps. Digging out and plugging in the old router instead meant a heady 288kbps was once again my connection speed. Given that we'd hit rock bottom, I've since plugged the Linksys back in (it's still in the test socket) as it provides me with greater flexibility than the old Solwise did.
Getting back to the point, the ticket has been open for three weeks now and the only advice I'm getting is that a BT engineer should come out on site to tell me there's no problem, despite the fact that no problems were detected during either Plusnet or BT's remote testing, and despite the fact that no configuration changes have taken place with the telecoms equipment in this house for ten years now and that a stable rate was there just mere months ago. My line speed had crept up to 800+kbps before last night's network difficulties, and is now down to ~700kbps. I'm just about ready to cry - I'm just thankful that the internet is bearable for most things at 700kbps - though obviously, media content is well out.
Basically though, now you've waded through my sob-story I'm hoping you might be able to offer some advice: With my current work schedule, there's simply no way I could accomodate a BT engineer any time within the next two months, and that's a hell of a long time to live with these sync issues. My line is - Plusnet stability permitted - slowly regaining it's sync speed and in a few months time I might be able to once again "use" my internet connection as I'd like to. So my options are:
a) Schedule the BT engineer for my nearest opening, which is over two months away.
b) Request a reset of the training period and hope for stable power on my end and stability on plusnet's end
c) Wait it out and hope the line raises it's speed faster than I anticipate
I'm definitely leaning towards b), though c) is certainly a realistic option. The reason I'm undecided is because as far as I can tell, a) will just lead to b) anyway, which would probably put the timescale for a stable fast connection at the same as if I'd plumped for c)
Any suggestions?
29 REPLIES
VileReynard
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 11,076
Thanks: 278
Fixes: 11
Registered: ‎01-09-2007

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

Why not (in the interests of speed) chuck your Linksys WAG54GS in the bin?
I think rather highly of my Netgear DG834GT.
Currently the cost of a new router (assuming PN have performed all possible checks) is much less than the cost of a BT visit.
There is an undocumented option which allows the Noise margin to be adjusted by software (or by typing in a few simple commands).  Smiley

Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 9,810
Thanks: 1,186
Fixes: 68
Registered: ‎06-04-2007

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

Throwing out the Linksys does seem an attractive starting point - it could save a lot of pain. If the Linksys connection is 'solid as a rock' why do you get disconnections? Or do you really have a line fault, which a BT engineer needs to fix?
It would help those here to give more informed comment if you posted your router stats, sync speed, noise margin and attenuation. I suspect your target noise margin will be sky high if the exchange equipment has been trying to stabilise a line with a dodgy router on it. That would account for the best sync speed achievable now being much less than the original 4500kbps.
Getting the target noise margin reduced requires an absence of disconnections and the behaviour you mentioned when you used the test socket - which is the right thing to do - suggests to me that you don't have this.
David
ianrstewart
Dabbler
Posts: 19
Registered: ‎15-08-2007

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

Sorry, I should have made this point clearer:
Quote
Since this issue was discovered, I've contacted Linksys and obtained the latest, fully functional firmware and the device has been solid as a rock.

The root of the problem was a dodgy firmware. This is now resolved, and I'm wondering what the best approach would be to get my line speed back up to speed as soon as possible. I am not experiencing disconnections; I was experiencing them before updating my firmware.
As we speak, that Linksys is solid as a rock. Unplugging it now and plugging my old router in would cause problems (any disconnection *at all* is causing me a drop in sync speed) and would be totally unnecessary as the Linksys on it's current firmware is indeed "stable as a rock".
My apologies that the post was so long and I thank you for the help, but the information was in there! Wink
geewizz
Grafter
Posts: 1,125
Registered: ‎01-08-2007

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

If I could get 700kbps I would probably be terrified and crash.
400kbps is fast enough for everyone except boy racers.
VileReynard
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 11,076
Thanks: 278
Fixes: 11
Registered: ‎01-09-2007

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

ianrstewart
Dabbler
Posts: 19
Registered: ‎15-08-2007

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

Quote
400kbps is fast enough for everyone except boy racers.

With respect, I think you might be getting confused between kilobytes per second and kilobits per second.
Kbps = kilobits per second
KBps = kilobytes per second
400Kbps is then an effective max download speed in kilobytes of 400 divided by 8, or 50 KBps - enough to browse the web effectively or play a game, but about half what is often required to stream media content, and rather slow should you need to download anything significant.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: ‎02-02-2008

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

Upload is normally faster than this though, normally about 1000kbps...

Picked up Vista SP1 in under a minute  Crazy
ianrstewart
Dabbler
Posts: 19
Registered: ‎15-08-2007

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

VileReynard
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 11,076
Thanks: 278
Fixes: 11
Registered: ‎01-09-2007

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

Oh dear!
What's your distance from the exchange?  Smiley

Highlighted
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: ‎02-02-2008

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

Beat me to it Axis!
What prediction do you get if you plug your details into Kitz http://www.kitz.co.uk/adsl/adslchecker.php
And what's the house phone wiring setup?
ianrstewart
Dabbler
Posts: 19
Registered: ‎15-08-2007

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

Quote
What's your distance from the exchange?

less than half a mile. Less than half a kilometre even, and as the original post says around three months ago I was regularly sync'd at 4.5Mbps.
Quote
What prediction do you get if you plug your details into Kitz

2Mbps Fixed ADSL
4.5Mbps DSL Max
scootie
Grafter
Posts: 4,799
Registered: ‎03-11-2007

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

if u read his first post u will know that he has line capable of 4.5mb and dodge frimware has messed his line up.
and now has new frimware and trying to get his 4.5mb back.
i have a prob like this to but not to the extreme they have due to a sky digi box knocking me down to 250kbps back up to 2mb but should get 2.5 - 3mb but my snr jumped to 15db trying to get my snr target back to 6db is like hitting your head against brick wall.
puddy
Grafter
Posts: 1,571
Registered: ‎10-06-2007

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

The last time I had sync problems was when interleaving had been switched on without my knowledge

Puddy
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: ‎02-02-2008

Re: Ongoing Sync Issues...

BT's database (as used by Kitz, Samknows etc.) is based on the history real measurements..
SO if you WERE getting 4.5mbps regularly that could be why it's reporting that as the prediction.
(I just sorted out a friend of mine who had been syncing at 3mpbs and that's what everything reports, but we've now achieved 7872kbps and the IP profile has so far moved from 2000 to 5500 in a few days)
Can you get any detailed stats from your router, e.g. SNRM and downstream attenuation?
Try both if you've got them available still.