If I didn't have bad luck... (30 Jun, 2014)

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If I didn't have bad luck... (30 Jun, 2014)

Postby aardvark_admin » Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:24 am

This column is archived at: http://aardvark.co.nz/daily/2014/0630.shtml

Cursed again! :-)

It seems that the numbers associated with my VDSL connection have gone from "the best" (according to sales staff) to "impossible" (according to the folk that have to actually do the install).

What the?
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Re: If I didn't have bad luck... (30 Jun, 2014)

Postby enerider » Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:39 am

Hmmm.

I was of the understanding that VDSL was a "800 - 1000m of phone cable" sort of range. This is largely to do with how rapidly the signal degrades as you travel more copper.

Do you happen to know your ADSL attenuation figures?
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Re: If I didn't have bad luck... (30 Jun, 2014)

Postby enerider » Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:49 am

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Re: If I didn't have bad luck... (30 Jun, 2014)

Postby ThrashCardiom » Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:53 am

We moved to VDSL recently just for the improved upload speed. We haven't seen a 10x increase though. We have gone from being around 0.7Mbps to about 3.5Mbs which is way better but still not what I was hoping. Download speeds are around 15 - 17Mbps.
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Re: If I didn't have bad luck... (30 Jun, 2014)

Postby rossnixon » Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:53 am

Still worth risking the upgrade, IMHO. And your PC DNS settings will overrule the modem/router ones.
One of these might work over 4km. http://www.bectechnologies.net/main/ima ... /vdsl2.pdf But at what cost?
Last edited by rossnixon on Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: If I didn't have bad luck... (30 Jun, 2014)

Postby enerider » Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:54 am

Sounds like you've got a higher attenuation figure on your phone line, Thrash.

Any crackles and pops on the phone line?
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Re: If I didn't have bad luck... (30 Jun, 2014)

Postby Stevesub » Mon Jun 30, 2014 11:01 am

You may be able to get these figures from your old modem if you still have it.

Think yourself lucky with 0.98Mbps upload, when we are at home, we are lucky to get 0.3Mbps, yes 300Kbps because we are on ADSL1 and Telstra only provides ADSL1 to our area and all resellers only resell Telstras crappy service, they cannot put their own gear into the cabinet. We are lucky to get that speed as we are 200m from the cabinet, it is worse down the street.

Even worse, Telstra has me on a ADSL2+ plan so they say that I am on ADSL2+, even though the hardware is ADSL1 - go figure. No difference in cost though.
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Re: If I didn't have bad luck... (30 Jun, 2014)

Postby hagfish » Mon Jun 30, 2014 11:05 am

It may be that your local DSLAM is only ADSL2, and the nearest VDSL one is 4Km away (guessing).

Also, you probably can use your own DNS settings, but you may have to Telnet into the modem like it's 1980. I shit you not.
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Re: If I didn't have bad luck... (30 Jun, 2014)

Postby enerider » Mon Jun 30, 2014 11:15 am

Hagfish - you made me smile with that one.

My VDSL modem is a Planet VC-231. The configuration interface? 4 DIP switches on the back of the unit. It simply converts VDSL to Ethernet and back again. http://www.planet.com.tw/en/product/pro ... p?id=26448

From that point on, you will need to do two things:
1) Set a VLAN tag of 10 on the NIC you're connecting to the VC-231
2) Set up PPPoE information as appropriate

I've been using this setup for quite a while now. Any issues in the connection are usually to do with me mangling the firewall box :D

So I don't have to put up with Telnet madness - the router config is easily handled :)
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Re: If I didn't have bad luck... (30 Jun, 2014)

Postby honestbob » Mon Jun 30, 2014 11:26 am

I had exactly the same experience. I live around rural Albany, Auckland. The Telecom website checker tool said I should be able to get VDSL. The nice lady on the Telecom helpdesk said yes too and booked the Chorus tech (2-3 week wait from memory). I was very surprised given my ADSL downlink speed was around 4MBps and I knew I was a fair way from the cabinet. But I was very pleased they were going to come through, install a new master filter, and let me try it out. Even a doubling of uplink / downlink would have been great.

On the day of the install, the Chorus tech phones up and says "What is your address? You are way too far from the exchange. No point in even coming out to your house."

So it looks like all Telecom do is check to see if your phone is attached to a VSDL enabled cabinet. They don't do any line length checks to see how far you are from the cabinet. I believe Chorus have a policy of 900m to 1000m max from the cabinet. I am approximately 3km-4km from the cabinet.

So Telecom just connected me up on standard ADSL2+ that afternoon. I got to keep the modem they gave me. It sounds like yours - nice consumer grade modem. Very easy to set up, and supports ADSL, VDSL, and Fibre through LAN connection. However I've since gone back to my original TPLINK 8960 because it has much better line stats and stronger wifi signal (and it connects at a slightly higher rate).

Since subsequently installing a ADSL master filter / splitter myself and getting Telecom to fix the crackle on the voice line, I now get around 6MBps downlink, and about 1MBps uplink with the standard chorus 12dB SNR target once the cabinet is loaded up with other subscribers.

However the line can tolerate much higher downlink rates if you either tell your modem to lie about the reported SNR margin, or after a power cut as the SNR margin improves significantly for a short time as I'm guessing that everyone else's modems in the region all dropped and did not reconnect as quick as mine thereby dropping crosstalk. eg. I've been running for the past 2-3 weeks since that big storm on about 7.2MBps and my SNR downlink shows in the mid nines despite being measured as mid 12s during handshaking. Minimal RS uncorrectable errors. I haven't yet seen how far it can be pushed, but I had a stable 7.6MBps link for several days with a 7.5dB SNR margin the one time I did try SNR tweaking. That doesn't help uplink, of course.

But getting back to Telecom / Chorus. I was pretty annoyed with them initially. They should be able to do better than that on ascertaining whether VDSL is going to work or not without having to book and send out a Chorus tech. It took the Chorus tech all of about 30 seconds to figure out it wouldn't work without even visiting, so I don't know why Telecom / Chorus can't get that bit automated correctly. I also want to be fair to the tech - not his fault. He was just the messenger.

Having the faster uplink would have been great. Although now at least a solid 7Mbps downlink is good enough for viewing streaming video (I used to get more like 4MBps). But that's mostly down to me doing a lot of background research into how to improve the crappy rural line and monitoring the adsl line stats religiously.

Best of luck finding a better uplink solution for your videos.
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