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POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

Attila_The_Pun
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Registered: 30-11-2016

POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

Since about 16th or 17th November 2017, my receipt of emails on Outlook over my PlusNet broadband (Unlimited) has been drastically throttled. Around last midnight, for example, it was trying to download 3.88 MB of emails, and after 15 minutes, it had managed 106KB! (12 out of 86 emails.)   Data upload speeds also appear to be severely reduced.

 The email problem goes away altogether if I switch off my Wi-Fi connection to the PlusNet server and instead use tethering to my mobile phone (as a Wi-Fi internet hotspot). Outlook then happily connects to all my email accounts over mobile internet and downloads all the emails in no time at all. So my issue is definitely with PlusNet. [Obviously I cannot keep using my phone to load my emails, as this will make a severe dent in my mobile data allowance, so I need this fixed ASAP.]

 NB There is no problem at all with my normal PlusNet broadband speed. Web browsing is fast, and an Ookla speed test indicates download speed usually in excess of 20Mb/s (pretty good for copper/ADSL). Music and video streaming are just fine. However, my upload speed also seems to have dropped from its usual approx 1 Mb/s to only 128 Kbps, which is awful.

 

I use Windows 10 Home and Outlook 2016 (Office 365), and am accessing three PlusNet POP3 email accounts and one non-PlusNet (OneTel) POP3 email account. The throttling problem occurs across all 4 accounts. All were behaving perfectly normally before this started a few days ago.

 

 I see from the service status pages that PlusNet has been making network changes to make streaming and other media services work faster, and I wonder if this is why my email is now affected so badly.

 

 If this is a fault in PlusNet services as opposed to Microsoft Outlook, it must be connected with the PlusNet broadband service in general, not PlusNet email service, because I get the same slow-delivery problem on the OneTel account as I do on the PlusNet email accounts.

 

I have tried everything I can think of to resolve this. The following have no effect:

  • Disabling all Outlook add-ins (including the McAfee one) and rebooting
  • Turning off all my Outlook rules.
  • Turning off McAfee Realtime Scanning.
  • Starting Outlook in safe mode (Start – Run – outlook.exe /safe).
  • Restarting the PlusNet wireless router.
  • Changing my Outlook setup so that all the email accounts deliver into separate PST files.
  • Using scanpst.exe to correct any errors in the PST files

 I see on the status pages that there have been recent (unspecified) problems with receiving emails on client email products including Thunderbird and Outlook (https://community.plus.net/t5/Service-Status/Mail-Collection-Issues/td-p/1491723). This was on 16 Nov 2017, but was reported by @LouisaMartin (https://community.plus.net/t5/user/viewprofilepage/user-id/32997) as resolved that same day.  Not for me!

39 REPLIES
Community Gaffer
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

let me do some digging for you @Attila_The_Pun and come back to you

Louisa
Attila_The_Pun
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

Thanks SO much.

I also raised a support ticket by phone.  However, this has only resulted in some tweaking of my line parameters (causing a slight loss of download speed in fact but still good for copper, I must say), but has had no effect  whatever on my email receipt speed , and I never thought it would.  This throttling was so sudden and dramatic, that it could not really be accounted for by anything like this,  It was a straw to be clutched at, I suppose.

For the record, this is what the tickets raised say (minus identification details):

Thanks for your time on the phone today. We have carried out some changes to your service.
 Please monitor the connection for the next 72 hours. 
<cut>
 The Customer reported a dropping connection.[I didn't!]

• I have changed the SNR margin from 3dB to 6dB
• I have applied Interleaving. [Y]

- - - - - - -

Thanks for your time on the phone, as discussed,

Apologies for the issues you have been having with the service. I've tested your line and can see there are some automatic settings on your line which are could be causing problems with stability.

This has been caused by the exchange you are connected to trying to cause the line to over perform which then causes data loss (can look like drops in connection) and speed problems.

Ive arranged for the line to be reset to try and fix this. The reset normally takes 4 hours to complete. After 4 hours if you have not seen the speed increase already, your router will need to be powered off for 10 seconds and then turned back on. When it reconnects we'd expect the speed to be normal again, but it can take 24 hours before everything fully updates.

As part of resetting your line, this also starts a fresh "training period" on the line. This lasts for 10 days and you may see your speeds vary a little as the line tries to work out the best balance between speed and reliability for you. You may even see that your broadband connection drops a little over this period, but this is perfectly normal.

Whilst in this training period, please make sure that your router stays plugged in and powered up continuously. If you dont then you will receive a slower speed than your line may have been able to support.

If after the 10 day training period your speed has not returned to the correct download rate please run a speed test at speedtest.btwholesale.com 3x at different times of the day ideally and advise us further, we will continue to investigate further. If we do not hear from you within 14 days we will presume everything is ok.

- - - - - - -

 Regards, AtP (Tony)

Community Gaffer
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

Morning @Attila_The_Pun

 

This definitely isn't related to the mail issues we've been experiencing because it returns to full speed once on the mobile network and you mention having email speed issues on your one-tel account too.

 

@Chris @Gandalf can one of you guys please help on this one, looks like a broadband related problem?

Ta

Louisa
jab1
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

Just to add - this isn't just a problem for the OP, I have found that any email bigger than ~100kb takes ages to d/l, where previously they were relativley quick. I can't quote the previous speed, but a 6.6Mb one this morning was running at less than 0.6Mb/s.

John
Superuser
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

Personally I suspect Outlook 2016.  I have the same email accounts configured on my PC (using Outlook 2016) and on my iPhone.  Frequently the latter down loads emails far faster than the PC ... both over the same wifi / Plusnet internet connection.

jab1
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

Sorry, Kevin, but this time your suspicion is wrong Smiley - I use, and have done for as long as I remember, Thunderbird.

John
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

John,

May be not so much wrong as not unique to Outlook 2016?  As I said, I have two different email devices / applications looking at the same email boxes over the same wifi / Plusnet internet connection and the difference in performance is quite marked.  I accept that I do not know the reasons, but the Outlook interface is consistently slower than the Phone.

Prompted to think this through further, it could of course be the combination of a Win10 update and / or AV software ... which is not present on the iPhone? ... but that would not explain it being faster over 4G - very odd!  Wink

As I posted my previous comment, I had the thought that this rather requires a wire shark trace. Sad

jab1
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

Kevin,

Definitely not unique to Outlook 2016, I'm using the latest stable release of TB, and this is a relatively new problem.

I suspect something other than W10/AV as I am using W7HP and Avast - as Avast updated its program a while back and didn't affect the speed, that only leaves W7 (M$) as a possible culprit in my case. I can't prove it, as I only get the odd 'big' email, and one this morning seemed a little faster, but only reached a max of 1.1Mb/s for very short periods (averaged at about 0.7Mb/s)

Can't help with the wireshark unfortunately - my one and only attempt with it just left me totally bamboozled.

John
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

Attila_The_Pun
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

I have tested with a stack of small emails and they still take ages to download (both on PN and non-PN email servers).

Community Gaffer
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

@jab1 You saw it get slower at about the same time?

jab1
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

@Kelly - I assume you mean after the M$ update? If so, I can't be 100% certain, as I don't get many 'big' emails, but cerainly prior to that they were downloading at near to normal speed.

John
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)

This is just a heads-up post to say that I *might* have the same problem,

but I don't have the time to wireshark or otherwise investigate it at this time.

 

I'm running multiple Linux PCs, each with Thunderbird, using both Plusnet and non-Plusnet email providers, but am using IMAP (rather than POP3 being reported by others).

 

As others reported, mass email downloads used to be at full line speed, but recently are frequently unbelievably slow for ALL sources of email.

 

I assumed that this for me was yet another consequence of the traffic priorities of the "Pro Addon" not being correctly managed,  as the email slowdown appears to be coincident with at least on other user on my network perhaps watching YouTube or similar bandwidth intensive task on my 20CN ADSL connection.

The "Pro Addon" was added to my line about the 4th November.

 

I had just put the slowdown, as another consequence of Plusnet RUINING my broadband by removing the full traffic prioritization a few months ago, when email worked at reasonable speed no matter what else was going on.

 

However, day-to-day the email going slow isn't causing me much problem (once the email client has caught up), except when I want to "Repair Folder" when I just have to start the process and walk away and do something else.

 

Embarrassed

Community Gaffer
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Re: POP3 emails throttled on PlusNet broadband - affects both PN and non-PN email (Outlook client)


jab1 wrote:

@Kelly - I assume you mean after the M$ update? If so, I can't be 100% certain, as I don't get many 'big' emails, but cerainly prior to that they were downloading at near to normal speed.


No, @Attila_The_Pun mentioned: 

Since about 16th or 17th November 2017, my receipt of emails on Outlook over my PlusNet broadband (Unlimited) has been drastically throttled.
Did you see it get slow at about the same time?