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Marc V

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    Marc V reacted to Peter B in Identifying when speed of connection is not the issue   
    For the last 3 months I have been arguing with my ISP and the cable supplier (copper to the house) that I do not have a cable to the exchange issue, it is data corruption or packet loss further into the network. They have sent 6 engineers over this time ( have had new line to the local cabinet, moved to new port at the exchange but no change), planned to move me to a local fibre connection (but cabinet full), so I finally got a free 4G wifi out of them for this month so at least I now have a temporary reliable service. What the ISP looks at is the Signal Noise Ratio and Line db (up and down) and as I had a record of these from my router I could see the same as them, line was ok, same signal as in the past when good service. Speed tests showed 6Mb download and 0.2Mb upload (dropped from previous good service times of 0.8Mb). They say unless you are gaming or uploading lots of data 0.2 is a working service.
    So I had run other tests, Ping tests and Trace Route, which showed loss of data. Now refining this to the first IP addressable device in the network it showed data loss as well so to me it was going to be an issue between the exchange and this first IP device which in my case was my ISP gateway. Running other tests that ran ping tests and showed packet loss they all came back with 20%-50% packet loss and the only way to capture this was by capturing a screenshot. This still did not get them to agree with my diagnosis, send another engineer!!
    Every discussion with ISP and other users is always focussed on download speed which I do not always see as the issue, I am happy with my 5-7Mb as only usually stream on thing at a time, Email and web pages were quite quick as well.
    Capturing Ping tests and working out data corruption/packet loss has been vital to my argument and is a simple/quick test if it can be run and recorded reliably.This may answer other posts about poor speeds as if the upload packet gets lost you are into a timeout and recover on the applications and communications protocols, which will show up as speed issues.
    The other area is how to really work out what speed is suitable on a personal basis. How to know the speed requirements if you know what sites you visit, Its easy to do streaming tests, speedtests and youtube or TV catchup ( do any of these pause in the middle of programs (not when it switches to adverts) but general sites. I find nearly all sites I use are quick enough with a 5Mb connection. I did accuse my ISP of messing with my service so I would pay to switch to fibre. 
    So would it be possible to select certain sites and time the download of the page, plus record these timings. If we could do this and store them locally we would have evidence when they argue the service is fine. Its a problem when you just do not know if the service/speed you are buying is suitable or not. Upgrade and find that 90% of what you use is the same and its a waste of time upgrading.
    It may be that the ping test to gateway and packet loss recording can build this sites reputation and we can use this to tackle bad service that is not the line from the house to the local Dside cabinet or exchange.
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