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Router (un)reliability

oxfordjonathan
Dabbler
Posts: 17
Registered: 26-04-2012

Router (un)reliability

Went over to 80/20 fibre a few months ago, with the Pro addon because I use the service heavily for work, and it's been really good - no complaints at all, except that the PN-supplied TG582n router is pretty clunky. It has a horrendous CLI with lousy documentation, and PN won't support anything other than the most basic use of it.  So I've been thinking about replacing it with something better. But I've recently had an experience that leads me to question the reliability of routers generally - and I'm hoping some of you experienced folk may have some suggestions about where I can get a really reliable router for my home-office setup.
Earlier this week, though, while I was away (isn't it always!), the connection became extremely unreliable and dropped out completely for long periods. Disappointingly, PN phone support didn't seem to be able to tell me from their logs whether it was my BT Openreach modem losing its VDSL connection, or the router dropping its PPPoE login - they could just see "RADIUS disconnects". My BTOR modem is unlocked so I can see its diagnostics (see https://huaweihg612hacking.wordpress.com/) and that suggested the VDSL modem connection had been completely solid over that period, so suspicion fell on the Technicolor router. It definitely wasn't anything internal to my LAN - being away from home I could ping my router from afar and see it responding (or, mostly, not).
So, connect a PC directly to the PPPoE port on the modem (thanks for that suggestion, PN support) and all is well. A little fiddling around with a spare unlocked BTOR modem and I was able to use that as a router! Result! I now have a solid connection again. But how long before that router turns its toes up?  Can I find any really reliable router kit, without spending Cisco money?
3 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 19,101
Thanks: 443
Fixes: 21
Registered: 31-08-2007

Re: Router (un)reliability

See http://community.plus.net/forum/index.php/topic,113213.0.html -  it seems to be very popular.
What sort of duration was your PPPoE down and when was this exactly - dates & times may be helpful?
Is the TG582n actually broken? Have you tried it again since? Note you need to login and drop the PPP session before you disconnect otherwise you may have to wait between 6 & 8 minutes for the stale PPP session to time out.
oxfordjonathan
Dabbler
Posts: 17
Registered: 26-04-2012

Re: Router (un)reliability

Quote from: Anotherone
See http://community.plus.net/forum/index.php/topic,113213.0.html -  it seems to be very popular.

Interesting, thanks. That's one of the routers I was considering. Ubiquiti EdgeMax-Lite is my top choice at present (I don't need WiFi on the router) but I'll lurk on that thread.
Quote from: Anotherone
What sort of duration was your PPPoE down and when was this exactly - dates & times may be helpful?

About two hours on Friday 7th June afternoon, then up and down on Tuesday 11th (up for minutes, down for hours), then pretty much defunct since. It's not 100% clear whether the connection was completely down, or perhaps the router was just dropping an awful lot of packets. Because I was away it was hard to get any decent information. The Friday 7th incident didn't worry me at the time, because there was some PN notification about upgrade works at one of their data centres, so I assumed it was caused by that and didn't investigate further.
Quote from: Anotherone
Is the TG582n actually broken?

If I power it down for a few minutes and then start it again, I seem to get about half an hour's useful work out of it before it starts going flaky. Clearly this might be some kind of overheating, so I tried it in a very well ventilated position and got similar behaviour. I'm not prepared to do any more work on it - it goes in the bin where it belongs.
Community Veteran
Posts: 19,101
Thanks: 443
Fixes: 21
Registered: 31-08-2007

Re: Router (un)reliability

Plusnet had a gateway issue on the 7th p.m., not sure about the 11th - of course any work between your Cabinet and Plusnet could have resulted in a loss of PPP.
Have you set up any customised settings using CLI commands at all. If so, have you checked to be sure none of those is causing the problem?
The other thing you could try is upgrade the firmware to 10.2.5.2 and see if that helps. See here but it is no longer demo only.
If the TG582n really is broken, as it's less than a year old Plusnet would replace it FOC.