Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Guest
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.
Buying anything on Amazon? Please use the Geekzone Amazon aff link.




3084 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 33

Trusted

Topic # 95733 11-Jan-2012 20:35 Send private message



Apologies that this post is so long-winded.  I haven't had a good rant for a long time now, but
have to get this off my chest, in the hope that it will save someone else going through what I've
just gone through.  Don't read any further unless the topic is of interest to you.  You have been
warned...

The first time I ever heard of Northland Connect Limited (NCL) was in June 2008 when they popped up
here on GZ and started this thread:

http://www.geekzone.co.nz/forums.asp?forumid=49&topicid=23028

On page 2 of that thread, you will see my very eager response; it really did seem like the answer
to my prayers would soon arrive in our neighbourhood.  NCL mentioned the possibility of setting up
a small repeater on our property and I replied by PM that I was very keen and invited them to visit
and have a look at the hilltops which were available.  I never received any further reply and the
rest of 2008 rolled by with nothing much happening apart from a WiFi hotspot being established in
Paihia.  A further thread was started on GZ promising a December 2008 release, and asking for
comments on proposed plans:

http://www.geekzone.co.nz/forums.asp?forumid=42&topicid=26107

During 2009, I talked with NCL again and they expressed further interest in setting up a repeater
on our property.  Despite my enthusiastic response, nothing further happened.

It wasn't until late 2010 I heard by chance that one of our neighbours had a NCL repeater site installed at their house.  I was a bit stunned to say the least, because none of my enthusiasm had been reciprocated, yet they had done a deal with a neighbour without telling me about it.  I phoned the neighbour, and she couldn't speak highly enough of NCL, saying that the speed, reliability and service were excellent.

After the holiday season was over in late January 2011, I contacted NCL again.  For the first couple of days, I got very fast replies, with this being the first one:

Thanks for contacting me regarding this, was just thinking about your site 2 weeks ago and thought id must get in contact. we have installed and now operating a cell site at ******, depending on your location we will be able to offer you a service now.


I replied with my location and then got this response:

good news you zone is in perfect coverage aslong as you are not too low from you neibours "***** and *****" if you know them? they have a cell site on their property

im sure you will be able to im just concerned about the trees
however the mapping software says 100% from the address you gave me

If you wish I can have ***** send you all the sign up info and can have you on by the end of the
week if you like?


It was all sounding wonderful, and at this point I mentioned that I would prefer to do the installation myself because the equipment needed to be located up on a hillside 100 metres from our
cottage, so a clear line-of-sight path existed to the repeater, clear of the trees.  I pointed out that I had around 20 years experience with RF and computer equipment, so was confident of being able to complete the install.  Again, this didn't seem to be a problem according to the following reply:

Im more than happy for that to proceed however the gear would be shipped to you ready with the go-codes and SSID for the area.

please note that if a self install is done, no guarantee can be offered in the way of reliability as the technical department has not installed the gear and used the tools and cable gauge that would normally go out.

I do think tho with 20yrs exp you will have no problem


That was the last reply I got from NCL in spite of repeated emails and phone calls.  Often the phone went unanswered, but finally, another person at the office explained to me that the technical staff were very busy with a network upgrade, and it would take some months.  Another NCL customer had encountered similar problems with lack of response, and told me that the only way he could get any service, was by going into the internet cafe in Paihia mall, and standing there until someone came out.

At this point I decided to put the project on the back-burner and keep a watchful eye on NCL's website for any sign that their network upgrade might be progressing.  On August 31 I saw a mention on NCL's Facebook page that the work was now complete, so I sent another email, which elicited a response that I cannot post in a public forum, since:

"The information transmitted is intended only for the person or entity to which it is addressed and may contain confidential and/or privileged material. Any review, retransmission, dissemination or other use of, or taking of any action in reliance upon, this information by person or entities other than the intended recipient is prohibited".


I was promised further contact inside the next 2 weeks with an update.  The 2 weeks came and went with no further response, so I kept an eye on NCL's Facebook page which on January 6 said the following:

Northland Connect has updated its Network Coverage, take a look and see how much we have
grown :)

I checked the coverage map, and sure enough we are in the zone!  Everything was looking very promising, so I fired off another email and got another confidential response alluding to problems with one of the links connecting to our area.

This was the first I had heard of any problems with the local link, so again I phoned our neighbour to see if she had encountered any problems.  Once again, she couldn't speak highly enough of NCL, saying that the speed, reliability and service were still excellent.

It was at this stage that I became suspicious, because I was being told two stories which were totally at odds with each other.  Did NCL not want me as a customer for some reason?

Suspecting that it might be due to my non-standard installation, I offered to supply all my own equipment if this would help, and to take care of the entire installation myself.  Today I received another confidential response declining to provide me with service under the self-install scenario.   This was completely at odds with what I had been told a year earlier.

An additional reason for wanting to do a self-install, is that one version of the CPE used by NCL has a secondary Ethernet port, normally used for communicating with a webcam.  I had in mind to use that for communication to a water pumping system on our property, which would have saved me running another 100 metres of cable from our cottage.  However, if I want to do that I would need to have the installation overseen by an NCL technician and would also have to pay an ongoing charge for monitoring.

An alternative of a "locked down" installation was offered, pretty much as it says on NCL's website.  Then came the kicker:
Please note clause 11d) of the NCL terms and conditions: Ensure that, under no circumstance, any settings programmed by Northland Connect are changed or tampered with. Evidence of this will result in a fine of $3000.

To say that I was stunned is a vast understatement!  I checked on NCL's website, and sure enough, the same clause is repeated there:

http://www.ncl.net.nz/index.php/en/support/legal-stuff/standard-terms-a-conditions

As with most geeks, I like to tinker with things on occasion.  If I mess it up, I take responsibility for getting it going again, and don't expect any free service calls.  Seriously, even in Telecom's monopolistic heyday, they never threatened their residential customers with anything so draconian as a $3000 fine!

I have my doubts as to whether imposition of a $3000 fine is legal under consumer law, but that's another argument which I don't have time to go into here...

In any case, there is no way I will be signing up to any agreement which contains such a usurious clause!

What are the lessons we can draw from this saga?

1)  If you want to offer your services to geeks, they won't take kindly to the threat of a $3000 fine simply for tinkering!

2)  If you don't want to offer your services to geeks, why start a thread in a forum such as Geekzone?

3)  Keeping responses consistent would also be nice.  Why the complete change of heart from permitting a self-install a year ago?

4)  Next time I should not be so patient!

As with many people, I like to give others the benefit of the doubt until they prove they aren't worthy of it.  Also, I like to support the underdog, and give small local businesses the chance to get off the ground.  However, the signs were there a year ago that NCL would not be a good option for me, and it's just a pity it has taken so long for the whole sorry saga to play out.

What will I do now?

My existing Kordia Extend connection has been extremely reliable for the past 8 years, but only runs at 1Mbps download, hence I was keen to connect via NCL who offer 20Mbps.  Now that this option is off the table, I will probably look at sharing a broadband connection with a neighbour who has ADSL.  In one direction it is 500 metres across a mangrove swamp, and in the other it is 1km over a hilltop and across some paddocks.  In either case an RF link will be required, but at least I will have full control over it, and be able to tinker to my heart's content.



If anybody made it this far -- thanks for reading!





View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic
 1 | 2
BDFL
50195 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 4744

Administrator
Trusted
Geekzone
Subscriber

  Reply # 567583 11-Jan-2012 20:55 Send private message

I read the whole thing. Not sure why you bothered after the second contact went unanswered.






3084 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 33

Trusted

  Reply # 567584 11-Jan-2012 20:57 Send private message

freitasm: I read the whole thing. Not sure why you bothered after the second contact went unanswered.

In hindsight, I'm not sure either.  Thanks for changing the thread title; it sounds better than the wording that I used.





2296 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 222

Trusted
Subscriber

  Reply # 569719 17-Jan-2012 00:32 Send private message

On my network, i would never let a customer do a self install. I have no idea why EOL in tauraunga were allowing it.
Even with 20 years of expierence, if you make a mistake in the programming of the radio, you can cause a slowdown with all other cpe radios running off a repeater.
Eg. If you have 20 customers with a signal of -70, and one customer who pulls alot of traffic and a bad install with an incorrect ACK setting or a bad signal of -85, his one cpe radio can slow down the other 20 customers on that repeater. As you add customers to a repeater, you have to be very mindful on how that customer can affect others.

I believe i also use the same radio system that Northland Connect use, and again, with regard to the second ethernet port - its a powered ethernet port and if you dont know exactly what you are doing with the special POE voltages that those radios use, you can do damage - its not the standard 48v POE that cisco standardised. You are also very limited on how much power will pass through to the second ethernet port.

Then there is programming how you want that port to behave - you have to auctually go into the radios programming interface - where you can see network security settings and passwords which are something an end customer should never be able to see. The reason is because each of those radios share the same network password and a rogue customer can start snooping on other traffic and causing various problems that can be impossible to track down.
Eg. Once a customer has access to the radio programming, they can change their speed profile, and saturate the backhaul to the repeater causing outages for others or change TDMA timings etc. 

I do hate to say it - but even with 20 years of radio and RF expierence, there is still a steep learning curve to using the equipment.
I had to spend 6 months researching in my spare time before i decided to take the plunge and auctually start using it. 

i feel bad about them dropping the ball with the bad customer service skills and I'll mention it to one of their staff (i think one of the managers just added me on facebook the other day) but i would have never expected them to allow a customer to do a self install. If a customer of mine decides to move their antenna without telling me, its an $85 callout charge or whatever the cost of recovery is and disconnect them- I take the quality of service very seriously and if one customer tries to do anything to upset others because they want to move the antenna or change something to suit them, then i charge $85 to go and recover the radio.




Ray Taylor
Taylor Broadband (rural hawkes bay)
www.ruralkiwi.com

There is no place like localhost
For my general guide to extending your wireless network Click Here






3084 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 33

Trusted

  Reply # 569724 17-Jan-2012 01:21 Send private message

raytaylor: On my network, i would never let a customer do a self install. I have no idea why EOL in tauraunga were allowing it.
Even with 20 years of expierence, if you make a mistake in the programming of the radio, you can cause a slowdown with all other cpe radios running off a repeater.
Eg. If you have 20 customers with a signal of -70, and one customer who pulls alot of traffic and a bad install with an incorrect ACK setting or a bad signal of -85, his one cpe radio can slow down the other 20 customers on that repeater. As you add customers to a repeater, you have to be very mindful on how that customer can affect others.

Thanks very much for your explanation Ray.  Your comments have given me a great deal of insight into why NCL may have acted in the way they have.  If only they had thought to explain the situation the way you have, rather than threatening me with a $3000 fine, I would probably have viewed things differently.  To me, their approach seems arrogant and dismissive.

raytaylor: I believe i also use the same radio system that Northland Connect use, and again, with regard to the second ethernet port - its a powered ethernet port and if you dont know exactly what you are doing with the special POE voltages that those radios use, you can do damage - its not the standard 48v POE that cisco standardised. You are also very limited on how much power will pass through to the second ethernet port.

Yes, I noticed that the POE supplies only 24V at a fairly small current.  To get around this, I was planning to use the POE voltage to switch a low-current relay, and then use the relay contacts to switch 48V to the water pumping system.  As well as having 20 years experience with RF equipment, I am also an Electrical/Electronic engineer, who has designed a considerable amount of hardware over the years.

raytaylor: Then there is programming how you want that port to behave - you have to auctually go into the radios programming interface - where you can see network security settings and passwords which are something an end customer should never be able to see. The reason is because each of those radios share the same network password and a rogue customer can start snooping on other traffic and causing various problems that can be impossible to track down.
Eg. Once a customer has access to the radio programming, they can change their speed profile, and saturate the backhaul to the repeater causing outages for others or change TDMA timings etc. 

I do hate to say it - but even with 20 years of radio and RF expierence, there is still a steep learning curve to using the equipment.
I had to spend 6 months researching in my spare time before i decided to take the plunge and auctually start using it.

Once again, in those few sentences, you have explained far more than NCL have ever bothered to explain to me, and I appreciate your help.

I expected that NCL might raise such an objection and in that case, was going to request that they configure the secondary Ethernet port to a fixed IP address within the range of my LAN.  Then I could simply send the packets I want to be transmitted from that port, and listen for any response.  The intended traffic is going via an Ethernet to Serial converter doing low-speed comms at 9600 baud.  So the amount of data would be very small, and because it would originate from my LAN, I don't expect that it would have any impact on the RF traffic to/from the CPE.

raytaylor: i feel bad about them dropping the ball with the bad customer service skills and I'll mention it to one of their staff (i think one of the managers just added me on facebook the other day) but i would have never expected them to allow a customer to do a self install. If a customer of mine decides to move their antenna without telling me, its an $85 callout charge or whatever the cost of recovery is and disconnect them- I take the quality of service very seriously and if one customer tries to do anything to upset others because they want to move the antenna or change something to suit them, then i charge $85 to go and recover the radio.

So long as you warn your customers of this policy, and don't threaten them with a $3000 fine, it seems quite reasonable to me.  I would be happy to pay an $85 callout fee in the event that I needed to move the antenna.

Being able to occasionally talk to the technical staff at NCL would also be a big factor in reassuring potential customers that they would receive a decent level of service after signing up.  In spite of many attempts, I have not managed to talk to any of their technical staff since 2009.  The mobile numbers of the staff are not disclosed, and the technical staff are seldom in the office from my experience.  Witness my earlier comment about another customer finding it necessary to wait in the internet cafe in order to receive any service, because phone calls didn't elicit any response.

Right now it seems abundantly clear that NCL can't be bothered with meeting my slightly unusual requirements, and really don't want me as a customer.  To put me off, they have outlined some hefty installation charges, involving an on-site technician watching every move I make while configuring my LAN, while at the same time the CTO monitors what is going on remotely.  As if that wasn't enough, they want to charge me for ongoing monitoring of my installation.  All this seems quite ridiculous considering the very simple use I have in mind for the secondary Ethernet port.  I really can't see how a very small amount of 9600 Baud serial traffic is going to have any impact at all on the RF performance of the CPE.  As I say, just give me an IP address in the range that I need, and I will take it from there.  Under the circumstances that you have outlined, I can understand if NCL don't want me to have access to the setup parameters of the CPE.

Given your explanation, I would be happy to pay an extra fee for enabling of the secondary Ethernet port, as it doesn't form part of a standard installation.  But NCL should not be trying to sting me for ongoing monitoring of a problem which doesn't exist!

If NCL really don't want me as a customer, well fine, I will take my business elsewhere.  Given their very poor performance to date, I will take some convincing that I should take the risk in signing up with them.  In any case, I won't be signing an agreement which holds the draconian threat of a $3000 fine over my head!

Once again, thanks for your interest Ray Smile





5973 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 109

Trusted
Subscriber

  Reply # 569733 17-Jan-2012 07:44 Send private message

Hi Ray and Grant seasons greetings to you both. I also agree with Ray having dealt with these radios and installed a very large number in WISP setups you do need to be aware of power control and to randomly send a unit out for a customer to install himself would be non ideal.

What I do think is of note here, is that I from readings Grants notes, his install was not just a simple bolt a hockely stick to the barge board and run 20m of outdoor cat5, but the radio is installed on a separate structure quite some distance from the house. In a situation like this a keen and aware customer wants to be involved and take some ownership of the situation (not all customers do, but many farmers are very resourceful and keen to help with the civil works side of installs).

In the end if NCL had welcomed some assistance for some of the install they would have got better engagement with the customer and in return what could have been a 4-8hr install becomes a 1hr one where the installer simply turns up near the end to bolt the radio down align and commission.

I also agree that the $3k is a bit draconian.

Cheers
Cyril

2296 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 222

Trusted
Subscriber

  Reply # 569778 17-Jan-2012 09:29 Send private message

Regarding the ethernet port - its a straight through bridged ethernet port. You cant really program it to be in a seperate subnet unless you get into the radio real deep and start playing around in the command interface.
So, if they dont use the radio for routing, but instead have the radio on a subnet within their network, and use a router inside your house as the customer's gateway, it wouldnt be possible for you to talk to the second ethernet port. This is how most WISP's setup the radios.

With your idea on the relay - thats a pretty good idea. Unfortunatley you do need to get into the main radio programming interface (where the passwords are) to switch the POE passthough on or off.

If you are just wanting to switch a pump on or off, i would personally be looking at a DTMF tone controller hooked up to a UHF cb radio (PRS). Channels 21 and 22 are specially dedicated for this sort of task. And I believe harvest electronics make a kitset tone controller you can buy. 

http://harvest.com/dtmfremote.htm

The other option would be to see if northland connect will sell you a direct point to point link using a seperate pair of their radios - on a seperate channel with other settings to avoid their network. Though that would be more expensive than the harvest option. 

Or if you want to run a cable, 
You can run a cat5 outdoor cable - then at the 90m mark, put in a tp-link 12v 5 port ethernet switch. Then run a second cable the rest (up to 90m) to your pump shed. Send 18v down the cable using the blue pair for + and the brown pair for - to power the ethernet switch which acts as a repeater. Then you will have direct control and full 100mbit speed to your pump shed. The reason i suggest the tp-link model is that it will handle up to 24 volts input and easily take the ~15 volts that will come in after 90m

Then once you get your ethernet signal in the punp shed, connect up a jaycar remote web controller kitset. This kitset has a website and ip address on your lan with some relays on the other side of it. You just login to the website running on the jaycar kit in the shed, and switch on or off your pump. I believe it also has some timer functions as well.




Ray Taylor
Taylor Broadband (rural hawkes bay)
www.ruralkiwi.com

There is no place like localhost
For my general guide to extending your wireless network Click Here






3084 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 33

Trusted

  Reply # 569795 17-Jan-2012 10:12 Send private message

cyril7: ...
What I do think is of note here, is that I from readings Grants notes, his install was not just a simple bolt a hockely stick to the barge board and run 20m of outdoor cat5, but the radio is installed on a separate structure quite some distance from the house. In a situation like this a keen and aware customer wants to be involved and take some ownership of the situation (not all customers do, but many farmers are very resourceful and keen to help with the civil works side of installs).

In the end if NCL had welcomed some assistance for some of the install they would have got better engagement with the customer and in return what could have been a 4-8hr install becomes a 1hr one where the installer simply turns up near the end to bolt the radio down align and commission.
...

Thank you Cyril; that is indeed what I had hoped at the outset of this project.  It isn't a straightforward install, but the guys from Kordia were more than happy for me to "take some ownership of the situation" and save them a lot of work in the process.  During the past 8 years, I have looked after all my own support, including doing an antenna re-alignment some years ago.  The wooden pole twisted as it aged, and I started getting dropouts, so needed to pan and peak the antenna again.  It was a simple enough job really.

I had hoped that NCL would understand my situation in the way you do, but at this stage, it seems not.







3084 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 33

Trusted

  Reply # 569799 17-Jan-2012 10:28 Send private message

raytaylor: Regarding the ethernet port - its a straight through bridged ethernet port. You cant really program it to be in a seperate subnet unless you get into the radio real deep and start playing around in the command interface.
So, if they dont use the radio for routing, but instead have the radio on a subnet within their network, and use a router inside your house as the customer's gateway, it wouldnt be possible for you to talk to the second ethernet port. This is how most WISP's setup the radios.

With your idea on the relay - thats a pretty good idea. Unfortunatley you do need to get into the main radio programming interface (where the passwords are) to switch the POE passthough on or off.

Once again Ray, many thanks for explaining all of that.  On reflection, I think I would be best to forget about using the secondary Ethernet port then, and use a 12V powered hub as you suggest.  At first glance, the secondary port seemed ideal for my needs, but I would be wanting to switch the POE on and off occasionally, so the need to enter setup to do that, means it will be a non-starter.

It's a pity that Ubiquiti don't do what Cisco/Linksys do, and make selected setup parameters available to the end user, according to a downloaded profile.  The way that WxC allow end-users to program a few parameters in their ATAs like Rx/Tx Gain is ideal for people like me.  Having to enter setup mode just to turn on/off the POE passthru is not ideal at all.

raytaylor: If you are just wanting to switch a pump on or off, i would personally be looking at a DTMF tone controller hooked up to a UHF cb radio (PRS)
...
Or if you want to run a cable, 
You can run a cat5 outdoor cable - then at the 90m mark, put in a tp-link 12v 5 port ethernet switch. Then run a second cable the rest (up to 90m) to your pump shed. Send 18v down the cable using the blue pair for + and the brown pair for - to power the ethernet switch which acts as a repeater. Then you will have direct control and full 100mbit speed to your pump shed. The reason i suggest the tp-link model is that it will handle up to 24 volts input and easily take the ~15 volts that will come in after 90m

Then once you get your ethernet signal in the punp shed, connect up a jaycar remote web controller kitset. This kitset has a website and ip address on your lan with some relays on the other side of it. You just login to the website running on the jaycar kit in the shed, and switch on or off your pump. I believe it also has some timer functions as well.

My pumping system already has flow metering, voltage monitoring for the solar panels, and the ability to monitor/override the float switch.  This has been done with some Advantech ADAM modules using RS-485 comms.  Total distance from our cottage is around 1.5km, which is why I didn't use Ethernet.

What I need to do now is finishing laying the cable and hookup the 48V power from my broadband installation to the end of it.  Originally, I was going to run a second cable to the cottage for RS-485 and then connect an opto-isolated RS-232 to 485 converter to the end of it.  But after looking at the Ubiquiti gear, I realised that I could effectively share a single cable by using an Ethernet to Serial converter (device server) in my weatherproof broadband equipment shelter.  Regardless of the path I end up pursuing, I think I will still try to do that, using a 12V-powered Ethernet hub as you suggest.

Once again, thanks very much for your suggestions Ray.





2296 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 222

Trusted
Subscriber

  Reply # 570214 17-Jan-2012 23:53 Send private message

Awesome.

Two notes. The radios are 24v max - you cant feed them with 48 volts unless you convert it down to 24v. If you go slightly over 24v you blow them.

Also the ethernet hub must be a switching hub otherwise it wont repeat the signal. Ethernet goes a maximum of 100m. Using an ethernet switch will repeat that signal up to another 100m - you can keep going to something like 20km doing that - but an older ethernet hub wont repeat the signal.

So make sure the box says ethernet switch or switching hub. Not just hub.




Ray Taylor
Taylor Broadband (rural hawkes bay)
www.ruralkiwi.com

There is no place like localhost
For my general guide to extending your wireless network Click Here






3084 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 33

Trusted

  Reply # 587815 28-Feb-2012 13:15 Send private message

Just noticed that NCL's website has now come back online after being down since January 27.  The $3000 fine clause is still there, but the link in my original post no longer works.  Instead, the T&Cs page has moved to:

http://www.ncl.net.nz/index.php/legal-stuff/standard-terms-a-conditions

So long as the $3000 fine clause remains, I won't be signing up, but will wait for Vodafone's RBI upgrade which is scheduled for our area during June this year.





3566 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 60

Trusted
WorldxChange

  Reply # 587870 28-Feb-2012 15:21 Send private message

Interesting read Grant, always like your reading your thoughts as they are generally non biased and well laid out.

I do understand the lockdown method as we use it ourselves :), with RF perhaps changing settings which could affect the output levels or attenuation could damage the equipment so I am guessing thi si a reason, we lock our stuff down so that it just works, in this case they may be doing it to protect the equipment as I'm guessing it's expensive.

Ex Army Radio Technician by the way ... love my RF :)




Yes I am a employee of WxC (My Profile) ... but I do have my own opinions as well Wink

             

https://www.facebook.com/wxccommunications



3084 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 33

Trusted

  Reply # 587880 28-Feb-2012 15:42 Send private message

maverick: Interesting read Grant, always like your reading your thoughts as they are generally non biased and well laid out.

I do understand the lockdown method as we use it ourselves :), with RF perhaps changing settings which could affect the output levels or attenuation could damage the equipment so I am guessing thi si a reason, we lock our stuff down so that it just works, in this case they may be doing it to protect the equipment as I'm guessing it's expensive.

Ex Army Radio Technician by the way ... love my RF :)

Thanks for your comments Phil.  When writing the original post I was pretty angry, so my thinking on the reasons for the lock-down was probably a bit skewed.  Ray and Cyril have put forward good arguments for the lock-down in earlier posts, so I have come to terms with that now.  Your comments make good sense too, although the Ubiquiti gear is not that expensive.  It seems that the key issue here is interference to other customers, and the wider network, which makes good sense.  It's just a pity that the Ubiquiti gear does not seem to have the ability to lock-down some settings and not others, as Cisco/Linksys does.  It's all or nothing apparently.

Other incidents concerning NCL have happened over the past few weeks, in particular this one, which was posted on their Facebook page on February 8:

!!!ATTENTION!!!

Due to the increase in demand for our services NCL requires changes to the network layout.
These changes are essential to the future growth of the NCL network and will improve all services.

We understand the necessity for a stable internet and phone connection and will be doing our utmost best to make the changes go as smoothly as possible.
Unfortunately we expect some clients may experience issues due to the work being done – these issues will only be temporary and will be dealt with as soon as network improvements have been completed.

Thank you all for your support and understanding and our apologies to all who experience problems during this transition.


Doesn't really inspire a great deal of confidence does it?





1599 posts

Uber Geek
Inactive user


  Reply # 587899 28-Feb-2012 16:13 Send private message

grant_k:
maverick: Interesting read Grant, always like your reading your thoughts as they are generally non biased and well laid out.

I do understand the lockdown method as we use it ourselves :), with RF perhaps changing settings which could affect the output levels or attenuation could damage the equipment so I am guessing thi si a reason, we lock our stuff down so that it just works, in this case they may be doing it to protect the equipment as I'm guessing it's expensive.

Ex Army Radio Technician by the way ... love my RF :)

Thanks for your comments Phil.  When writing the original post I was pretty angry, so my thinking on the reasons for the lock-down was probably a bit skewed.  Ray and Cyril have put forward good arguments for the lock-down in earlier posts, so I have come to terms with that now.  Your comments make good sense too, although the Ubiquiti gear is not that expensive.  It seems that the key issue here is interference to other customers, and the wider network, which makes good sense.  It's just a pity that the Ubiquiti gear does not seem to have the ability to lock-down some settings and not others, as Cisco/Linksys does.  It's all or nothing apparently.

Other incidents concerning NCL have happened over the past few weeks, in particular this one, which was posted on their Facebook page on February 8:

!!!ATTENTION!!!

Due to the increase in demand for our services NCL requires changes to the network layout.
These changes are essential to the future growth of the NCL network and will improve all services.

We understand the necessity for a stable internet and phone connection and will be doing our utmost best to make the changes go as smoothly as possible.
Unfortunately we expect some clients may experience issues due to the work being done – these issues will only be temporary and will be dealt with as soon as network improvements have been completed.

Thank you all for your support and understanding and our apologies to all who experience problems during this transition.


Doesn't really inspire a great deal of confidence does it?

Signup, pull the device apart, hook up a serial cable, change the root password and login to the UI and capture the details :D (Probably voids the warranty or contract)

2296 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 222

Trusted
Subscriber

  Reply # 587952 28-Feb-2012 17:44 Send private message

grant_k:

Other incidents concerning NCL have happened over the past few weeks, in particular this one, which was posted on their Facebook page on February 8:

!!!ATTENTION!!!

Due to the increase in demand for our services NCL requires changes to the network layout.
These changes are essential to the future growth of the NCL network and will improve all services.

We understand the necessity for a stable internet and phone connection and will be doing our utmost best to make the changes go as smoothly as possible.
Unfortunately we expect some clients may experience issues due to the work being done – these issues will only be temporary and will be dealt with as soon as network improvements have been completed.

Thank you all for your support and understanding and our apologies to all who experience problems during this transition.


Doesn't really inspire a great deal of confidence does it?


To me it shows that they are spending money on expanding their network and investing in it to keep it working well. Major telco's often dont do this - which is why the government is having to fund fibre to the home when telecom would have been quite happy to keep us all on copper for another 10 years.

I recently had this expierence on my network. I have a radio bridge that runs out to a hilltop repeater. The radio bridge was capable of 16 megabits of transfer. I had to pull down the radios at each end, and replace them with a more expensive set - and now get 40mbits through the link. The 40 customers behind it on sub-repeaters lost internet and telephone for a couple of hours  (so i scheduled the work for sunday morning)
But as a result, the link is nolonger congested and evening speeds are faster for the customers behind it.

And now i am in talks with chorus about becoming a UFB provider and as such will need to move my network core from my current office, to an area where i am closer to the fibre. This is going to require about 5 nights of work between 1am and 6am moving equipment and reconfiguring the network. Not an easy task, and yes some people wont have service during certain times, but its so i can provide a better service to my rural subscribers.




Ray Taylor
Taylor Broadband (rural hawkes bay)
www.ruralkiwi.com

There is no place like localhost
For my general guide to extending your wireless network Click Here






3084 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 33

Trusted

  Reply # 587966 28-Feb-2012 18:36 Send private message

raytaylor: To me it shows that they are spending money on expanding their network and investing in it to keep it working well.
...

I hope you are right Ray, but as you can see from my original post, other NCL network upgrades have taken months longer than expected.  I certainly wouldn't like to be dependent on such a network as my sole internet connection whilst such upgrades were in progress.





 1 | 2
View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic




Twitter »
Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:





Trending now »

Hot discussions in our forums right now:

Gigatown winner town and plans
Created by freitasm, last reply by loceff13 on 26-Nov-2014 23:01 (43 replies)
Pages... 2 3


Click Monday Deals
Created by mrtoken, last reply by Krishant007 on 24-Nov-2014 17:11 (25 replies)
Pages... 2


Gull Employment Dispute.
Created by networkn, last reply by Geektastic on 26-Nov-2014 16:35 (142 replies)
Pages... 8 9 10


Letter from Vodafone Speed Decrease WTF
Created by rokki, last reply by rokki on 26-Nov-2014 21:25 (20 replies)
Pages... 2


HP Stream 7 arrives
Created by gnfb, last reply by gnfb on 26-Nov-2014 22:49 (19 replies)
Pages... 2


The Warehouse pulling R18 games and DVD's
Created by semigeek, last reply by mattwnz on 26-Nov-2014 16:13 (56 replies)
Pages... 2 3 4


Harmoney Credit Offer
Created by rendezvous, last reply by Aredwood on 26-Nov-2014 22:45 (13 replies)

Playing with G.722 HD Voice
Created by aw, last reply by aw on 26-Nov-2014 20:26 (13 replies)


Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.

Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.