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Skype / VOIP

shure
Grafter
Posts: 509
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎21-01-2013

Skype / VOIP

Hi all,
I occasionally work from home and with both Skype and Lync I tend to get variable voice quality.  I can always make calls but occasionally in the middle of one my recipient will state that my voice is breaking up, and I get red signal bars showing on screen.  It usually clears itself after a short while.  It can be annoying, particularly if I'm talking to a client.
My setup:
8Mb ADSL Max (unlimited) - my IP Profile is 7.15 and I normally get in the region of 6.72 down and around 0.34 up
Netgear DG834PN set to modem only mode
Asus RT-N66u router
If it helps I am 388m from the cabinet!
When using Skype my PC is wired directly to the modem.  I use Lync on my work laptop, which is located on my desk about 2 feet from the modem, to which I connect wirelessly (usually on 5GHz).  Both PC and laptop run Windows 7.
Is there anything I can do to stabilise the signal or prioritise traffic so I don't get these glitches?  I don't really suffer from many other internet problems and this particular one seems independent of other people's usage at the time (e.g. it can happen when I'm alone in the house).
Any help greatly appreciated
14 REPLIES
Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
Posts: 13,536
Thanks: 252
Fixes: 69
Registered: ‎27-04-2007

Re: Skype / VOIP

Hi shure,
I've just checked your account and everything looks as expected.
The speed profile is set appropriately which means traffic management is working just fine.
You shouldn't need to but you might want to check if your router has QOS, if so try giving VOIP the highest possible priority.
Just wondering do you connect over WiFi or ethernet whilst doing this?
If this post resolved your issue please click the 'This fixed my problem' button
 Adam Walker
 Plusnet Help Team
shure
Grafter
Posts: 509
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎21-01-2013

Re: Skype / VOIP

Hi Adam,
Thanks for the reply.  Skype is on the PC, which connects to the router via Ethernet cable. Lync is on the laptop, which is wireless (5Ghz), on the same desk as the router.  Problems occur on both.
Haven't used the QoS function yet. Will give it  try.  Any specific recommendations?
Thanks
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,824
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎27-10-2012

Re: Skype / VOIP

Your exchange is not 21CN yet?
It might be your upload speed that is an issue - https://support.skype.com/en/faq/FA1417/how-much-bandwidth-does-skype-need
shure
Grafter
Posts: 509
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎21-01-2013

Re: Skype / VOIP

Hi AndyH,
I thought it might be that, but I'm not even talking video calls (well, on Lync, anyway).  According to that table 0.34 should be plenty enough for voice(unless there's a lot of fluctuations, I guess), shouldn't it?  Could it be e.g. a noise issue or is it just an unavoidable consequence of ADSL Max?
21CN is an urban legend as far as my village is concerned.  According to the Where and When website, we are due FTTC in the next 18 months, but even on that there are conflicting dates! 
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,824
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎27-10-2012

Re: Skype / VOIP

Hi
It should be fine for voice - but as long as no one else is using your connection at the same time.
Do you have a static IP? It might be worth setting up a TBB Ping Monitor (http://www.thinkbroadband.com/ping) to monitor your line performance. You'll need to go to the Asus GUI and 'Firewall > Respond Ping Request from WAN > Yes' for it to work.
shure
Grafter
Posts: 509
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎21-01-2013

Re: Skype / VOIP

Thanks.  I did try that, and I have the correct box ticked, but for some reason I can't get the monitor to work - just get a lovely red screen
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,824
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎27-10-2012

Re: Skype / VOIP

Do you have DMZ set up on your router?
Red means it's pinging your router without response.
shure
Grafter
Posts: 509
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎21-01-2013

Re: Skype / VOIP

I have nothing in the DMZ in the router.  Yes I understand about the red and not sure why it's not getting a response, since according to the settings I only need to tick that box.  There's nothing obvious that springs to mind that I can do to change that
Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 6,807
Thanks: 873
Fixes: 56
Registered: ‎30-07-2007

Re: Skype / VOIP

PlusNet firewall set to HIGH perhaps ?
shure
Grafter
Posts: 509
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎21-01-2013

Re: Skype / VOIP

I didn't even know I had a Plusnet firewall!  I use my own (Bitdefender) , which allowed pings before.  How do I allow pings through a firewall?
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,824
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎27-10-2012

Re: Skype / VOIP

Have a look here - https://portal.plus.net/my.html?action=firewall
Is the Bitdefender a firewall on your PC or whole network?
shure
Grafter
Posts: 509
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎21-01-2013

Re: Skype / VOIP

Now that you mention it, Bitdefender is on the PC so it can't be affecting things.  My Plusnet firewall (thanks for the link) is set to Off, so it can't be that, either.
I'm assuming it's something to do with the traffic going through the separate DG834PN modem first, but as it's set to modem only mode I can't access the GUI to view or change settings
Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 6,807
Thanks: 873
Fixes: 56
Registered: ‎30-07-2007

Re: Skype / VOIP

Quote
but as it's set to modem only mode
In that mode it will just pass anything through, so that shouldn't be the problem. Did you have to change the 'respond to ping' setting on the router ? and if so does it need a restart for it to take effect ?
shure
Grafter
Posts: 509
Thanks: 1
Registered: ‎21-01-2013

Re: Skype / VOIP

No, I set it to respond to ping as soon as I got it, which was months ago.  Everything else (apart from TBB, that is) worked OK so I didn't pursue it at the time.  Now it's concerning me a bit because I may be working from home a lot more and I need the phone to be more reliable.  I can do e.g. Speedtest.net which also measures pings, so don't know why TBB in particular would be an issue.