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Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

devsdev
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Registered: ‎24-07-2020

Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

Hello! We have had Plusnet ADSL for a few years - we don't have fibre in our street despite being in SE London. My OH and I are both working from home and the internet/wifi has been pretty slow/unstable. We have limited additional internet usage (no gaming, not a huge amount of streaming) though occasionally we are both on video calls and have a show streaming for kids - in this case the wifi/internet just collapses. I don't even bother connecting my phone to the wifi network so I can reduce the load on the internet! We have the Sagecom router from 2016 (Plusnet sent a new one recently but we haven't swapped it out as it is exactly the same as the old one). We have 2 Netgear plug-in wifi boosters to extend the wifi, but that means manually switching between the wifi networks when I move around in the house. My question is - if we use a mesh (TP Link Deco or Google), is this likely to improve our wifi stability and our speeds? Do we proceed with installation in the same way as for the Plusnet Hub? Thank you so much!

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dvorak
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

Do you get wildly different speeds between Ethernet and Wi-Fi?
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devsdev
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Registered: ‎24-07-2020

Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

I will need to check this. We use Wifi for our laptops and rarely use our desktop. Will get on this today!

idonno
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

It won't increase your speeds if they are already low coming into the house - what are your speeds? This might help to see if you're getting what is expected for your line. It might be you're just expecting too much if both are streaming video calls etc at the same time from a line that simply cannot supply what you are trying to use it for.

 

But a mesh system might help when it comes to staying connected but that is assuming you move around a lot in the house. One route you might take is to download one of the WiFi analysers onto a mobile device and see what the various signal strengths are in the various rooms - even carry out speed tests in such locations.

Ever helpful. Grin Sure, I’d love to help you out. Now which way did you come in?
devsdev
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

Thank you both! So with speed testing these were broadly the results (I repeated the tests a few times - this was with a zoom call going on in the house):

 

1. Wifi standing right next to router: Download 7.10mbps, Upload ~0.40mbps

2. Plugged into LAN: Download 7.93mpbs, Upload 0.45mbps

3. Wifi in room away from router (no more than 8-10 meters away): Download 3.68mbps, Upload 0.22mbps

4. Wifi in loft (using plug in booster): Download 2.40mbps, Upload 0.30mpbs

 

So it seems like the router is further reducing our already terrible speeds?

The BT page said our exchange is on the waiting list for high speed internet. For ADSL the Downstream Line Rate was up to 8.5mbps and Upstream Line Rate was up to 1 (for ADSL2+ Annex M - whatever that means!). So I'm assuming this is what we are stuck with until we get fibre? 

 

Is there anything else I should be checking? I'm really grateful for the advice - I don't want to sink £100-200 on something that doesn't work!

 

devsdev
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

An addendum to that - once the zoom call was over speeds increased to ~8mbps download and ~0.6mbps upload, even through the extension/further away. Again, I assume this means our router just can't cope with too much and a better distribution method for wifi will help?

idonno
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

Unfortunately, WiFi can be like that. Signal loss can happen literally just like that i.e. move a metre and you can lose or gain a fair chunk. A better router 'might' help, it might not. You can get a BT Home hub 6 on Ebay for £20 or so, which seems to come recommended by some. It's WiFi performance seems to be better than PN's offering.

 

At 8Mb's max I really don't think you can expect much. But if you are on a waiting list, like I was; one thing I did do was badger those with a bit of clout i.e. MP's, local council etc about the delays of getting fibre. Whether it helps I don't know but it does give some satisfaction to see how they squirm when they reply.

Ever helpful. Grin Sure, I’d love to help you out. Now which way did you come in?
bmc
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

@devsdev 

When you say your Exchange is on the waiting list for high speed internet is this the page you were checking.

https://www.openreach.com/

 

Brian

devsdev
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

@bmc I used the link @idonno shared, but the Openreach page had the same information - that we are being upgraded to Full Fibre "soon".

@idonno- thank you, am going to get the BT Smart Home 6 as a starter and we may then use the mesh. Fingers crossed we get an upgrade soon!

Thank you all - will update once I set up the BT Smart Home.
bmc
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

@devsdev 

"Soon" is a very fluid term when used by OpenReach. However, full fibre could mean FTTP

 

If so, you would probably have to leave PlusNet as they don't currently offer FTTP products and there's no word of them planning to do so.

 

Brian

devsdev
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

The Openreach website says it is FTTP! This sucks - I just renewed with an 18 month contract. I hope the new router helps because it's driving me batty!
bmc
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

@devsdev 

At least you know the promised land is (probably!!!) coming to you. It's just the timetable that is unknown. The way OR work you could well be near the end of your contract by the time it's available for you to order.

 

Only thing you can do is keep an eye out for physical works in your area. New fibre being laid underground or between poles. Distribution Points (DP's) need to be added to underground chambers or hung from the poles serving houses. Do OR have any street work notifications in your area?

 

Brian

devsdev
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

I've seen some OpenReach cars around the area but not really paid much attention. I will definitely keep an eye out for them. And now that I've googled FTTP - it looks like that's the best option available so I'm happy they are doing that! 

bmc
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

@devsdev 

If your phone line is an overhead feed then you'll see a DP hanging from the pole which supplies your house. On ordering, OR replace the phone line with a hybrid fibre/copper line. All things being well it'll be fed through the existing phone entry to the house.

 

If you have an underground feed you'll not see the DP unless you're about when it's installed. A fibre cable is run though the existing duct and, as above, would hopefully enter your house beside the existing copper cable.

 

Either way an Optical Network Terminator (ONT) is fitted to the wall near a power source. To see the current model have a look at https://www.ispreview.co.uk/index.php/2019/09/a-look-at-openreachs-compact-fttp-broadband-ont-and-mi...

 

Your router connects via an Ethernet cable and can be anywhere you're happy to run the cable.

 

Brian

devsdev
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Re: Plusnet ADSL - will a mesh system help?

@idonno and @bmc - I got the BT SH6 and have installed it over the weekend using all the helpful information on here. Switched off smart set-up, updated details etc. and it's working a treat. WiFi coverage is better (we're not using the repeaters right now as it reaches all the way to the loft) and the speeds have improved marginally (averaging 8.5+mbps rather than 5-6mbps...still not so great!). 

 

One question - how do I stop the HH from restarting? It just did this in the middle of a call which wasn't ideal! Took about 2 minutes to reset and log back on (which is very long when you're trying to present on a call!). Below is the log I found from the Smart Hub manager site, but it doesn't tell me much. Would be very grateful for any ideas/suggestions at all!

 

11:17:45, 03 Aug. :DHCP Confirmation of Request

11:17:43, 03 Aug. wl0:A WiFi device <B0:34:95:E8:F8:E7> has successfully connected to SSID (Device/WiFi/SSIDs/SSID[WL_PRIV5G])

11:17:18, 03 Aug. wl0:IGMP group 239.255.3.22 on interface wl0 ended by 192.168.1.67

00:01:47, 01 Jan. ppp1:TR69 connectivity to (pbthdm.bt.mo) has been closed