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FTTP 900 slower than expected.

garybaldi
Grafter
Posts: 25
Thanks: 5
Registered: ‎11-08-2007

FTTP 900 slower than expected.

Hi all,

 

Hope you're good.

 

I've finally upgraded to FTTP 900.  After a few issues with the install (collapsed duct, and BT Openreach digging the street), I'm up and running on FTTP.

 

However I'm a little disappointed to see I'm getting around half of the FTTP 900 speeds.

 

My product has switched over on the member centre and shows the following:

  • Product:  Full Fibre 900
  • Estimated Download Range:  900 - 1000Mbps
  • Estimated Upload Range:  104 - 115Mbps
  • Minimum Guaranteed Speed:  500Mbps
  • Current Line Speed (Download):  1000Mbps

I'm using a Netgear Orbi (RBK50) connected to the ONT via Cat6 Eth cable (I've tried two cables).

 

I do speed tests directly from the Orbi router admin page (so no other equipment involved) and it reports a download speed of anything from around 480Mbps to 525Mbps.

Upload between 90 and 110Mbps, mostly just above 100, so upload is fine.

 

I've raised a support ticket but wondering if there's anything I should be asking, or if there are any admins/super users that are able to check things further?

 

I understand speeds can fluctuate but I was hoping it would be better than what I'm seeing given the estimated speeds.

 

I've updated router firmware.  I've read the Orbi RBK50 is more than capable to provide 1Gb internet.

(I never requested the hub2, given I have the Orbi)

 

I've tried speed tests ensuring nothing else is using the connection and at varying times of the day.

I've also done a speedtest from a laptop connect to the Netgear Orbi router via Cat6 and get similar results to that of the router's own speed test.

 

Any thoughts appreciated.

Cheers,

Gary.

8 REPLIES 8
Townman
Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 22,977
Thanks: 9,578
Fixes: 159
Registered: ‎22-08-2007

Re: FTTP 900 slower than expected.

How confident can you be about the performance of the remote test service being used by the router?

FTTP data test speeds not as expected

There have been numerous reports of measured data speeds not fulfilling users' expectations of their shiny new FTTP service. An end-to-end data speed test is a somewhat blunt instrument with which to test the connection speed. In most instances the FTTP service is running at the product's connection speed, but the user's environment or the data speed test service cannot make full use of (saturate) the FTTP connection's bandwidth.

We can no longer have confidence that the cause of slower-than-expected data transfer speed is due to the broadband connection's performance. If there is any doubt that the user's technology, infrastructure or chosen test service cannot make full use of the FTTP link's bandwidth, then a data speed test is likely to deliver misleading results.

Here are a few things to consider / investigate...

  1. Is the ethernet cable between the router and the ONT (Optical Network Terminator) CAT5e or better?
    CAT5 or below will not transfer data faster than 100mbps thus a simple cable could be the cause of slow data speeds. The ethernet link rate between hub and ONT can be observed in the Hub Two GUI under 'Status'. This is a good indicator of router <> ONT cable function.
     
  2. Is the device on which the data speed test is being run connected over (CAT5e) ethernet cable (not WiFi)?
    A device connected over 2.4GHz WiFi absolutely will not get anywhere close to 300mbps. It will typically be less than 100mbps. Typical 'good' 5GHz performance using the Hub Two is likely to be below 500mbps and will get lower the further away the device is from the router. More optimal Wi-Fi performance is possible but involves sourcing your own third-party equipment that is capable of the newer standards. Also Wi-Fi performance is equally dependent on the type of device and the age of its technology standards. Some older devices do not support 5GHz, even the most recent smartphones only have a 2x2 antenna array, which limits the number of concurrent Wi-Fi streams. The Plusnet Hub Two can use more streams (go faster), but most types of device cannot.
     
  3. Is the device on which the data speed test is being run connected over (CAT5e) ethernet cable with no intermediary devices (like Powerline adapters, switches and physical ports) on the LAN side?
    Irrespective of cabling, if there is a 10/100 ethernet switch in the chain then it is going to bottleneck things. Similarly Powerline adapters are highly unlikely to be able to pull anywhere close to 300mbps through electrical wiring. Many Powerline adapters that are rated at e.g. 500mbps, actually have only 10/100 ethernet ports which means the advertised speeds are near fiction.
     
  4. There are no other devices active on the network at the time of the test.
    Other concurrent use of the network will reduce the bandwidth available for the data speed test, thus delivering a misleading result.
     
  5. If on a static IP or using the Plusnet firewall (configured in the user portal) has the Plusnet IP profile updated?
    Data speed tests performed soon after the service has been connected (but before Plusnet's systems have updated) might be constrained by the account's line speed profile. Disconnect the router from the ONT, wait a short while, reconnect then check that the Current Line Speed (Download) reported in PN Broadband Status reflects the FTTP product's profile.
     
  6. If using a third party router ensure that QoS (Quality of Service) and other traffic shaping tools are disabled.
    QoS and other tools have been seen to cause havoc with attempting to saturate FTTP links. Prioritisation and QoS features are very processor intensive and can (probably will) significantly bottleneck speeds.
     
  7. Is the test device configured to use any VPN or corporate intranet connection?
    VPNs and corporate intranets can also be potential bottlenecks.
     
  8. Is the data speed test device capable of moving the data at FTTP speeds?
    Some kit simply does not have the power to make full use of FTTP connection speeds. Whilst undertaking data speed tests, if running on MS Windows, use Task Manager's performance tab to check throughput limitations do not arise from...
    • CPU performance
    • Disk read/write speeds - FTTP will easily outpace a 5400 rpm disk
    • Memory utilisation - the data has to go somewhere!
    • Network performance - unless the machine is reasonably new, the ethernet port will be limited to 100mbps!!
       
  9. Speed test service
    Not all speed test services are dependable nor consistent, so run some comparable tests on different speed test services, at different times of day and night (both on and off-peak) where possible. The following are good points of reference.

Please check out the above factors, to ensure that the perceived data speed is not compromised by some other factor limiting the data throughput-speed of your full-fibre FTTP.

 

Superusers are not staff, but they do have a direct line of communication into the business in order to raise issues, concerns and feedback from the community.

garybaldi
Grafter
Posts: 25
Thanks: 5
Registered: ‎11-08-2007

Re: FTTP 900 slower than expected.

Hi Townman,

 

Thanks for the response.  I have previously read that info, and until now I was fairly confident in the router's speed test.  It uses Ookla Speedtest.net.

 

However, I've just tried my laptop connected via Ethernet (Cat 6) to my Netgear Orbi and I've run a series of tests with the BT Wholesale speedtest, and got the following download results:

 

525Mb
395Mb
667Mb
367Mb
712Mb
379Mb

(Uploads were fairly consistent at 100Mb plus).

 

So this proves I can hit higher than the 520Mb or so I've seen directly from the Router.

 

I appreciate, speed tests can be a nightmare for support, especially with Wifi/various other network components that people may have, which is why I was using the Router's own test to keep the number of variables as low as possible,

 

So although t's opened my eyes a little, the results still seem a little inconsistent.

I'll also give the large download files a try

 

Cheers for your help.

Gary.

Townman
Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 22,977
Thanks: 9,578
Fixes: 159
Registered: ‎22-08-2007

Re: FTTP 900 slower than expected.

Hi Gary,

I would also look at the performance profile of the test PC.

Does your router have any means of looking at its performance profile?

Could this Solved: Re: QoS Orbi RBK50 Problems - NETGEAR Communities be relevant...

"I have checked this forum and other internet sources to try and find a solution. I have concluded that it is probably related to the QoS bandwidth prioritization feature that is part of the Netgear firmware. Previous versions of firmware, specifically for my Netgear Nighthawk R8000, allow for easy off/on selection of QoS, and modification of individual priority statuses for individual devices connected to the router. The current firmware as of 5/21/19, V2. 3.1.60, does everything automatically related to QoS. Basically to use it, you run a Speedtest, and BAM!, it's supposed to work. (Most users don't even know this, as there is no notification that you have activated QoS, or that you have done anything other than run a Speedtest.) It doesn't work!"

Disabling in-built QoS is one of the recommendations for obtaining optimal performance.

Superusers are not staff, but they do have a direct line of communication into the business in order to raise issues, concerns and feedback from the community.

garybaldi
Grafter
Posts: 25
Thanks: 5
Registered: ‎11-08-2007

Re: FTTP 900 slower than expected.

Interesting.  I don't remember seeing anything relating to performance profiles, but I'll check again.

 

I did have a look around the Orbi UI, and found the only QoS type settings were for WiFi as per that post.

 

I'll follow that posts suggestions and I'll update with results.  Might be a day or so.

 

I wish I'd taken up the offer of the new Plustnet hub, it would be interesting to see the differences and useful for troubleshooting like this.

 

Thanks again for your input, much appreciated.

Townman
Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 22,977
Thanks: 9,578
Fixes: 159
Registered: ‎22-08-2007

Re: FTTP 900 slower than expected.

You could well still get a Hub Two for the P&P.

There is nothing to be lost from calling COTS...

Contact Customer Options Team (aka COTS)

COTs is the place to go to if you want to find out anything to do with your contract in respect of leaving, renewing or simply enquiring about early termination charges (ETCs). They have their own number and tend to answer quicker than the general customer service number.

Direct dial numbers

  • 0800 013 2632 or 0800 079 1133(from within the UK)
  • +44 330 123 9197 (from abroad)
  • Available...
    • 8am - 8pm Monday to Friday
    • 9am - 7pm Saturday
    • 9am - 6pm Sunday


 

Superusers are not staff, but they do have a direct line of communication into the business in order to raise issues, concerns and feedback from the community.

garybaldi
Grafter
Posts: 25
Thanks: 5
Registered: ‎11-08-2007

Re: FTTP 900 slower than expected.

Thanks Townman,

 

I may well do this.  Especially given this thread:

Slow speed on RB50 on BT FTTP 900 - NETGEAR Communities

 

In short:

Orbi connected directly to ONT = ~450Mbps

Orbi connected in AP mode to BT hub to ONT 900Mbps.

 

Cheers again, most helpful.

garybaldi
Grafter
Posts: 25
Thanks: 5
Registered: ‎11-08-2007

Re: FTTP 900 slower than expected.

Hi Townman/Anyone else who might be interested.

 

Today I received a Plusnet Hub Two router.  Got it connected to the ONT, and I now have my Netgear Orbi set in Access Point mode, connected to the Hub Two.

 

I ran the speed test as before directly from the Netgear Orbi's admin page, and it's now consistently hitting over 850Mbps.

(whereas with the Orbi connected directly to the ONT, the same router speed test tops out at around 550Mpps often a bit lower).

 

So the moral of the story, is don't assume your fancy router is not to blame.

 

I've yet to delve further into the why the Netgear behaves like this, but as mentioned on the forum you found Townman, it may be QoS related.  Or further thoughts, maybe how it handles the PPPoE connection.

 

At some point, I'll factory reset the Orbi and try again directly to the ONT.

 

But I've found quite a few forum posts where users of Netgear Orbis (and other Netgear models) are finding that they don't see the full speed/bandwidth with the router connected directly to the ONT (but do when it sits behind a BT or Plusnet hub).

 

Thought I'd update with my results, and again, thanks for your help.

 

Cheers,

Gary.

Townman
Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 22,977
Thanks: 9,578
Fixes: 159
Registered: ‎22-08-2007

Re: FTTP 900 slower than expected.

Hi Gary,

Thank you for returning and confirming a resolution of sorts.  Delighted that something in the thread helped you find a solution.  I will incorporate your experience into my standard FTTP speed does not match expectations guidance.

Superusers are not staff, but they do have a direct line of communication into the business in order to raise issues, concerns and feedback from the community.