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Extremely poor speed

cassuki
Rising Star
Posts: 74
Thanks: 18
Registered: 14-09-2007

Extremely poor speed

I was connected to Broadband Plus on 25th August and until last night had not experienced any problems. However, since last night my PN connection has been so slow that it is unusable. Having connected to PN, the PN Member Centre login page still hadn't loaded after 16 minutes.

Tonight, I eventually managed to run the BT speed test (it took me 1.5 hours to access the web site and run it) and got a result of 50 kbps, so started to raise a ticket. But the wizard says you must run this test at least 3 times over a 24 hour period and at least one test must be between midnight and 7 am. This is going to be very difficult to achieve because I work full time and normally get up at 6am, I'll either have to go to bed far too late or get up far too early (i.e. 4.30 am) if I need to spend 1.5 hours trying to run the speed test!

Then the wizard says:

"IMPORTANT:
In order for BT to investigate further you must leave your ADSL hardware powered-up and plugged in. Also insure that you disable any firewalls that might be in place. This will allow BT's engineers to examine your setup. Failure to do so will introduce delays. "

I'm using the PN supplied Voyager 105 USB ADSL modem which is powered by the USB connection to the PC. Do they really expect you to go out to work leaving everything powered up and disable the firewall? There is no way I am gong to do that, my PC would be crippled within minutes.

How have other people got round this?
8 REPLIES
cassuki
Rising Star
Posts: 74
Thanks: 18
Registered: 14-09-2007

So what's going on?

I got no reply to my first post in here, either from other users or anyone from PlusNet, so I spent several hours running checks and moving furniture (to get to the BT master socket which is behind display cabinet). All to no avail, still unusable connection - BT speed test results were 56 kbps, 36kbps, 40 kbps, and 62kbps. I got BT to check the line and they said the result was 'unsure' so it was passed to technical support who rang me back and said there was no fault, so why had I reported one. I explained and was told there was no problem with the line so I needed to contact PlusNet.

I raised a ticket at 16:26 yesterday (using my dial-up account) and then connected to PlusNet and left it open (as instructed in the wizard). I tried several times during the evening, but there was no change. When I went to bed around midnight, there was still no response from CS.

This morning when I tried to access the PN Member Centre, I couldn't access it at all - I was getting Page Not Found within about 2 seconds of selecting the bookmark. I then tried other web sites, same thing. Couldn't access my work email either but the error message was instanct, so I disconnected and reconnected ... and guess what? Everything is now back to normal, well as good as. Just ran the PN speedtest and got 1.6Mbps (it was regularly 1.88 Mbps before the problem started). But my ticket is still open with no response from CS. So what has happened? Did PN do something? Did BT do something? I certainly didn't, I was in bed!

Anyone else had anything like this happen? Did you ever find out what caused it? Is there anything that can be done to avoid it?
Plusnet Staff
Plusnet Staff
Posts: 12,169
Thanks: 18
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-04-2007

Extremely poor speed

Hi,

Sorry about missing this post earlier. I think I've found the cause of the problem though, it looks like the was a major service outage atyour exchange.

Take a look at

http://usertools.plus.net/exchanges/

enter your phone number and go to service outages section. I think that pretty much ties in with the times you are reporting.

Regarding leaving the PC connected and powered up, this is something that is needed (well the modem anyway, but if it's USB it will need the PC too) because the testing won't work without it.

For anyone concerned about leaving it on you can always log in with one of the BT test logins or the speedtester login which will mean there won't be any danger of infection from a virus.
cassuki
Rising Star
Posts: 74
Thanks: 18
Registered: 14-09-2007

Extremely poor speed

Thanks Dave. You've saved my sanity! I was beginning to wonder if my messages were somehow invisible to everyone else!

Yes, the exchange outage does look as if it was the cause. I had checked the exchange status (several times) but the last time I looked there was nothing listed. When I rang BT to get my line checked, I asked could they check if there was an exchange fault and she said she couldn't check the exchange but that if there was a fault, it would show up when she did the line check. The initial line test was 'unsure' and the detailed tests showed nothing wrong! So much for BT customer service ... should have known better than to trust their response when the second woman questioned me about who my broadband supplier was.

So far as leaving the PC connected to the BT test domain is concerned, it says somewhere in the instructions that it will disconnect after a few minutes and it certainly did that the first time I tried it. It took 1.5 hours to connect and run the speed test because it was so slow and kept failing to find the web page and disconnecting. Isn't there a time limit on the other BT test logins as well?
Plusnet Staff
Plusnet Staff
Posts: 12,169
Thanks: 18
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-04-2007

Extremely poor speed

The test login

bt_test@startup_domain

shouldn't log you out, as far as I know there's no session time limit,
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,229
Thanks: 1
Registered: 12-04-2007

Extremely poor speed

Sorry you had such a lonely experience longridge!

Daves "bt_test@startup_domain" isn't something I thought of last time I had a similar situation to yourself, but sounds like a plausable work around for the obvious security risk involved with lowering your firewall.
What I did back when I was on a USB modem, was to throw a basic install of Win98se on an old 3.5Gb hard drive I had, and swapped it out with my Sys disk.

The last time I had probs and was asked to leave my PC connected was no probs, because I have a router now, so the PC can be switched off and just leave the router on with "ping from the internet" allowed within the router config!

Glad to hear you are able to connect again anyhow! Wink
cassuki
Rising Star
Posts: 74
Thanks: 18
Registered: 14-09-2007

Extremely poor speed

The downside of staying connected with the bt username is that you can't access anything and who knows how long you will need to stay connected.

You can't connect to the Contact Us page to see if your ticket has been progressed or access your email to check for notification of progress! So unless CS ring (and leave a message if you're out), how would you know whether the problem was fixed?

The other issue is that come 16th September, automatic disconnects will mean that staying connected to PN may not be possible.

I'm supposed to be getting a router shortly, so I'll check before it's ordered that it can be configured as you suggest - thanks for that tip.
cassuki
Rising Star
Posts: 74
Thanks: 18
Registered: 14-09-2007

Extremely poor speed

Well normal service only lasted until 21:30 last night. It's now reverted to the sorry state it was in last week. Can't find anything wrong at my end. BT claim there is no 'telephony' fault so I've raised a ticket. I wonder how many days it will take this time for BT to detect the fault and fix it.
N/A

Extremely poor speed

I have had a bt page come up twice yesterday switched off then on and it was gone??
nothing makes sense these days Sad