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Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

drj
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Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

At the time of the widespread outage ten days ago, I suffered a "cutting out all the time" scenario in respect of my connection that Plusnet reckoned was unconnected with the outage.
After some discussion they said an engineer would have to attend, asked me when I was available (I said Fridays preferred since I don't work on Fridays) and arranged an appointment for last Friday morning. The engineer duly phoned about 10am saying he would be at my house in about 15 minutes. He turned up having already checked the situation in the cabinet, and advised he would both fit a new-style master socket (mine was at least 18 years old - possibly 34 dating back to when the house was built) and change the line I was on.
Apparently - and up to now unknown in the village as far as I am aware (but not for long) - my cabinet is served with three connections to the exchange. These are "slow" "medium" and "fast" - and I was connected to the "slow" one !!!
After fitting the new box he went to the cabinet and switched my line over to the fast one. Then he came back and made some checks which seemed to suggest the hard-wired extension was causing the errors - though I'm mystified as to why it had only just become a problem, having been untouched for 18 years. But he could deal with that by interleaving (whatever that means) and I needn't worry - though might like to rewire at some point (I couldn't have it disconnected since the master socket's really inconveniently located in the kitchen!)
Anyway after 24 hours the net result is that my service, which hovered around 2Mbps, is now speeding along at 4Mbps - though curiously upload speed has dropped from 0.8Mbps to 0.4Mbps - but I can live with that.
He left about 75-90 minutes after he arrived clearly having done a thorough job. Let's hope it's stable now and stays at this speed - which makes online video much more reliable...
33 REPLIES
LukeS
Grafter
Posts: 203
Registered: 09-05-2014

Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

Hi drj,
Thanks for sharing your experience. I don't think it's quite as simple as slow, medium and fast, due to the nature of the Openreach network some of the 'pairs' will be better quality than others. If you have a poor quality line then we won't know about it until the matter is reported to Openreach and investigated by an engineer.
I'm pleased to hear that you now have a better broadband speed.
Community Veteran
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

I had a similar experience 2 years ago, a few months before I upgraded to fibre. The engineer attended to fix a fault & during the visit informed me that I was connected to a very poor line from the exchange. He also informed me that the good line was full. However, he went to the exchange (2 miles away) to make sure & found that in fact there was a spare connection which he gave me. This also doubled my speed. This whole procedure took a couple of hours but the excellent service was much appreciated.
Some 6 hours later he also made a 30 mile detour to return 1 of our cats which had stowed away on his van!! Smiley
Superuser
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

Quote
though curiously upload speed has dropped from 0.8Mbps to 0.4Mbps - but I can live with that.

That rather implies that the engineer did more than just turn on interleaving - makes me wonder if he changed the target SNRM as well as capping the US?
Turning on interleaving seems a strange 'solution' for a problematic extension.  Would you know what kind of cable is used for the extension?  How many wires (and what colour) are connected to the back of the extension socket?
Can you please post your full RouterStats?
drj
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

Apologies for delay.
I haven't a clue what you're talking about - Smiley - but here's the basics:
Modulation : ADSL2+
Annex Mode : Annex A/L
Line State : up
Lan Tx : 8116230
Lan Rx : 5683932
ADSL Tx : 3037553
ADSL Rx : 3753680
CRC Down : 0
CRC Up : 59912
FEC Down : 0
FEC Up : 51940
HEC Down : 59249
HEC Up : 0
SNR Up : 20.8
SNR Down : 9.9
Line Attenuation Up : 27.6
Line Attenuation Down : 53.0
Data Rate Up : 440
Data Rate Down : 4664

Is this what you mean?
drj
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

ASUS DSL-N55U by the way
RPMozley
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

That's the stuff drj.  Wink
Upstream is definitely capped and interleaved (see the FEC number for the up - that means interleaving is happening on that 'stream').
That's RPM to you!!
drj
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

Thanks - I'm not too fussed. The connection is now MUCH more stable and the downstream speed quite a bit faster.
I think the extension was two wires but I didn't take a picture when he was replacing the master socket. He suggested mains wiring proximity might be the issue - and I have to say from the extension socket there's another loose extension 5m metres further running with a mains extension lead alongside to get to the table in the living room where my phone base-station is located. Should I be separating the wires?
Community Veteran
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

I am a bit doubtful as to the accuracy of those stats. All those upstream CRC and FEC errors, but zero downstream CRC and FEC (but a lot of HEC)? And that's with a capped upstream. Doesn't seem likely to me. Although it might be possible that all the errors on the downstream are occurring as HEC errors instead of CRC or FEC.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 31-08-2007

Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

drj, is this "loose" extension purely for phone and that a filter is plugged into the extension socket on the wall and the "loose" extension plugged into that?
Where is the modem/router plugged in? Perhaps try and describe your setup in more detail.
@LukeS
It "can" be as simple as that with a bit of variability between pairs in a given cable. The fast one is probably a newer Copper one possibly with the larger diameter conductors, the medium might be standard Copper and the slow one a deteriorating Aluminium.
Superuser
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

Hi Drj,
Quote from: drj
I haven't a clue what you're talking about - Smiley - but here's the basics:

Sorry if I confused you - those figures are what we are looking for.
You said you used to get 0.8 up stream, you now get 0.4 - your stats show 0.4 which implies your upstream speed has been 'capped" whereas before it was not.
Your SNRM is 9.9 which implies a target of 9dB rather than the usual 6dB.  The higher this figure is, the slower your maximum synch rate, albeit the link might be more stable with a higher SNRM.
Interleaving is a type of error correction, it can be switched on / off separately for US and DS - the indicator that it is functioning is the FEC errors reported by the router.  Your router reports ZERO DS FEC therefore interleaving is unlikely to be contributing to your improved streaming.
So to reconclude - interleaving is a strange "fix" for an internal wiring problem, if that were an issue, BTOR would be advising that was your responsibility and indeed might have sought to charge you.  Interleaving is not contributing to the enhancement of your DS traffic.  Other settings have also been changed on your line, neither of which are desirable, though the SNRM might be unavoidable.  The synch speed is excellent for your line's attenuation, however the polarisation of the error counts seems strange.  Zero DS FEC & CRC, DS HEC whilst the other counters are quite sizeable seems rather odd!
Do you have another router you can try?
You said the engineer fitted a new box - does this have a socket to connect the router into?  If yes, is this where the router is connected?

@DCT - what's your view?  Is DS interleaving enabled?  Is there merit in uncapping the US?  Does the polarisation of the errors point to a residual issue?
Kevin
Plusnet Staff
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

I think uncapping the upstream would probably be fine and we could remove Interleaving, but I think the question is, is this something that drj wants us to do, will it enhance the connection and for what he uses it for?
Chris Pettitt
Cloud Environments Engineer
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

I think making sure any "internal" wiring issues are resolved is the first thing to do otherwise errors will continue and the best the line is capable of will not be achieved.
I tend to agree with ejs - for a change  Grin - some modem/router's firmware is sloppy and they report DS & US stats back to front and sometimes get the different errors interchanged Shocked
Quote from: Townman
So to reconclude - interleaving is a strange "fix" for an internal wiring problem, if that were an issue, BTOR would be advising that was your responsibility and indeed might have sought to charge you.

In this case, No. You need to remember that he had a very old style master socket and extension wiring that was originally a BT install. There would be no charge here. It sounds like it was a decent engineer who's just making sure that the connection was as stable as possible considering the internal wiring at this time. It's probably not CW1308. The error rate would be a lot higher without Interleaving. In any event I have asked drj how he has got things set-up.
Quote from: Townman
The synch speed is excellent for your line's attenuation, however the polarisation of the error counts seems strange.  Zero DS FEC & CRC, DS HEC whilst the other counters are quite sizeable seems rather odd!

As I've said it's probably mis-reporting.
drj
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

Thank you for your interest - the connection was dropped early this morning and automatically reconnected. First time for a whole week though.
The current statistics have changed:
Modulation : ADSL2+
Annex Mode : Annex A/L
Line State : up
Lan Tx : 8566235
Lan Rx : 5951154
ADSL Tx : 132392
ADSL Rx : 199132
CRC Down : 0
CRC Up : 34
FEC Down : 0
FEC Up : 9622
HEC Down : 273
HEC Up : 0
SNR Up : 20.2
SNR Down : 8.6
Line Attenuation Up : 27.6
Line Attenuation Down : 53.0
Data Rate Up : 440
Data Rate Down : 4811
I'll post some pictures about the state of the wiring.
drj
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Re: Openreach have doubled my Broadband speed...

Warning - this posting contains images of horrendous wiring - view at your own risk!    Shocked

The master socket is very inconveniently located just inside the kitchen door remote from any mains sockets. Here's the installation in progress. Wire coming in from pole on the right, extension wiring going off to the left:

And here it is completed - the phone plugged in here is my "emergency - for use in a power cut" one - since there's a cordless one in the kitchen too:

The router is located at near first floor ceiling level plugged into the master socket via a good quality 10m long cable.
Here's the other end of the extension, which was already installed when I bought the house 18 years ago and which appears to have been done professionally:

Now I do realise that's rather untidy! The extension is serving (a) a fax machine which I also use as an answering machine and (b) an extension lead leading to the main phone basestation. The house has a paucity of electric sockets - there's only 3 doubles in the 8x4m sitting room. Hence extensions everywhere. The multiple at the back serves three further multiples: the one shown which times the internal lights on this side, one on the desk above (which serves the router), and the one in the next picture.
The engineer looked at this area and didn't suggest I'd need to tidy it up - his advice was to rewire the extension but he did mention electrical interference.
Here's the other end of the phone extension wire:

The main phone basestation is here and then there's yet another phone extension plugged in leading to another phone. More lights on a timer plus two transformers for the phone and a light.
I do really having seen those photos on screen think I should rationalise the extension cables. Do you think it might make any difference to the broadband signal/interference?