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Vodafone Sure Signal V3 and PPPoE vs PPPoA on Fibre

mikeb54
Hooked
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎21-06-2016

Vodafone Sure Signal V3 and PPPoE vs PPPoA on Fibre

I have been trying to get a VSS V3 working on my Plusnet Fibre Broadband config for weeks now. After many chats/posts etc over 4 weeks VF are asking me to check the router/bband config. Plusnet Support are unwilling to help with 'non-std' configs. The first thing VF say is...

Vodafone sure signal Service is only guaranteed on a PPPoA internet connection type.

I am not a networking techie. I am told that for Fibre you need PPPoE type and if changed to PPPoA then it will stop working! Is this true?? 

They also request that VPN Type set to IPSec. How can this be done on my router if PPPoE is fixed? The router is a SAGEMCOM 2704N with the usual Plusnet interface.

Thanks

9 REPLIES
Andrue
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Re: Vodafone Sure Signal V3 and PPPoE vs PPPoA on Fibre

I can't see why PPPoA v PPPoE should make any difference since the SS3 traffic will be travelling through the PPP tunnel anyway. In theory you could see low level fragmentation on PPPoE that you might not get on PPPoA but any service that sensitive has no business being sold to consumers in the first place. BT's ADSL wholesale service supports both but I think FTTC might be PPPoE only. All in all I suspect you are just getting the usual mindless drivel that Vodafone support staff are so good at.

 

Are you using any VPNs yourself? The SS3 apparently creates one and some routers get huffy about trying to run more than one VPN at a time. What router are you using? I'm using a Billion 6300NX and my SS3 didn't require me to change anything. I just plugged it in, waited half an hour and there it was. The only hassle I had was navigating their screwed up website to find the SS3 registration page. The menu shortcut was where the manual said but it didn't lead anywhere. Turned out they'd moved the page and hadn't bothered to update the link. Another example of how useless Vodafone are.

 

I swore in the late 90s that I'd never go back to them but unfortunately the SS3 is (or was last year) the only signal boosting option available to me. Ironically I got a text last week saying they'd upgraded my mast and I'd get better reception. My phone still couldn't connect without the SS3 and when I used a meter app the signal strength was the same it's always been. So probably just another Vodafone lie.

mikeb54
Hooked
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎21-06-2016

Re: Vodafone Sure Signal V3 and PPPoE vs PPPoA on Fibre

Thanks for the response Andrue. So it appears I may be the ping pong ball batted between Vodafone and Plusnet. I don't use any VPNs on my router which is a Sagemcom 2704N. To be fair I have mentioned I am on a Fibre connection several times to VF support and nobody has picked up on it. Also, I recall my SS2 was working ok on my BTHomeHub and later Plusnet both on fibre connections, so can't see why this one doesn't work.

If I wasn't tied into my 12 month sim only contact for another 6 months and not have to pay the large early termination fee then I would switch to Three. They have their WiFi Calling app that works well in my house and is free.

Superuser
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Re: Vodafone Sure Signal V3 and PPPoE vs PPPoA on Fibre

There's an interesting discussion on the possible problem being  fragmentation due to the slightly lower MTU over PPPoE here https://forum.pfsense.org/index.php?topic=34387.0

Andrue
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Re: Vodafone Sure Signal V3 and PPPoE vs PPPoA on Fibre

But if it's packet fragmentation issues the puzzle is why it works at all for FTTC and why there aren't more people experiencing problems. FTTC is always PPPoE (because the link between router and modem is Ethernet).

 

There's a thread on the Vodafone forums here (https://forum.vodafone.co.uk/t5/Vodafone-Sure-Signal/Vodafone-Sure-Signal-and-PPPOE-on-BT-Infinity/t... that suggests it may be down to the router. Some routers must be doing something (or not doing something) that others don't do (or do). But I've also heard of people getting it working by manually forwarding ports. There's a post at the end of that thread from someone who got it working by putting it in a DMZ.

mikeb54
Hooked
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎21-06-2016

Re: Vodafone Sure Signal V3 and PPPoE vs PPPoA on Fibre

Well, this product is sold as a consumer device and every user should not have to have a degree in networking to use it. Thanks anyway but I'm leaning towards getting a refund, ditching Plusnet and then ditch Vodafone when I'm near end of contract.

mikeb54
Hooked
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎21-06-2016

Re: Vodafone Sure Signal V3 and PPPoE vs PPPoA on Fibre

Andrew, I tried putting the SS in it's DMZ and setting up port forwarding. Unable to change MTU on my router and PLusnet don't care. Over the last 4 weeks I've read more conflicting information on the SS than the EU Referendum debate. I won't be a ball bounced between VF and Plusnet. I think they are both at fault.

Andrue
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Re: Vodafone Sure Signal V3 and PPPoE vs PPPoA on Fibre

mikeb54 wrote:

I won't be a ball bounced between VF and Plusnet. I think they are both at fault.

Whilst I appreciate your frustration I think it's unfair to blame Plusnet. Their service clearly supports the SS3 (there are several of us using it - I can't use my mobile at home without it). It seems to me that the problem lies with your router or the way you're configuring it. I absolutely agree that it should be plug and play as it was for me. But if it isn't for some people that's VF's fault.

I don't consider their router to be part PN's service - it's just a box they give away for free alongside the service itself. Any time an ISP supplies a router for less than retail cost (and last I heard PN only charge P&P for their routers) you have to expect it to be a cheap model with all that implies. There are plenty of routers available on Amazon and any number of them could support SS3. PN are more than happy to let you use your own router. Many of us didn't even take up their offer to have one sent through. I know better than to rely on such equipment so always source my own.

My router is a Billion 6300 so I'd tentatively guess that any Billion would be okay and you can get some of their routers for £50 or less. Most (if not all) have a good reputation.

Based on the phrase 'bog standard' in this review I stand by my comments. It's a fine router for customers with low demands and no technical ability but definitely nothing special.

mikeb54
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Registered: ‎21-06-2016

Re: Vodafone Sure Signal V3 and PPPoE vs PPPoA on Fibre

Hello Andrue

 

My router is the std Plusnet supplied 2704N router. I have configured Port forwarding and even added the SS in a DMZ with a fixed IP. I cannot change the MTU settings even through the Expert login. There is nothing I can do with the router supplied so looks like I may have to buy another more configurable one. My broadband is FTTC with a BT Openreach modem connected to router by Ethernet. Can you confirm that your suggested Billion 6300 router will work in this config? I would need at least 4 LAN ports for SS, Network drive and TPLink power line adaptor. Many thanks for your help/comments.

Andrue
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Re: Vodafone Sure Signal V3 and PPPoE vs PPPoA on Fibre

That config (BTor modem+6300) is exactly what I have. The router has four 1Gb/s LAN ports.

 

You can change the MTU (or at least there's a setting for it - I've not bothered). But I didn't have to do anything to make my SS3 work that I'm aware of. The only possibly related setting is that I run a mail server from home and in order to forward ports you have to disable SPI in the firewall. So I guess it's possible that because I'd already configured the router for my mail server I happened to already have done what was needed for the SS3. I doubt it though because you've put your SS3 in a DMZ.

So the 6300 would work for you but I'd be tempted to go for a newer model. I bought that over four years ago after trying three or four others. At the time I was with IDNet and they were rolling out IPv6. That was the first router I found that was stable and could handle dual-stack IPv6/v4. TP-Link, NetGear and D-Link were the other makes I think.

Ultimately I do agree with you that there's something silly about the SS3. A lot of people have issues with it and yet it's not really doing anything clever. For the price of it (I managed to argue them down to £50 Shocked) it should be far less hassle. You might also want to consider that earlier this year the entire SS system failed and it took them a week to fix it. It only seemed to affect PN and BT users but then Vodafone responses were so vague, useless and at times misleading that it's hard to know what was going on.

Sadly I had no other option. They have a wifi facility but my phone is not supported. I seem to recall there was a problem with the EE solution as well. Believe me I was not happy to be going back to Vodafone. I was with them once back in the 90s and swore blind I'd have nothing to do with them ever again. Still I have to give them points for consistency. They appear to be the same incompetent shower that I remember from last time Roll eyes