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202 posts

Master Geek

# 28064 17-Nov-2008 15:55
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Hey All,

I've recently moved back home after being away at Uni, where we currently have an XNet 256k (Stream, off the top of my head) plan, capped at $30. Now that I'm back and working, I was considering upgrading to the FS/128k plan (Minus the cap). We had an Orcon FS/128k plan back at my flat at Uni, which was all good.

However, I have some concerns about XNets speeds. We have absolutely abysmal performance at the moment, even at 256k. Pings to the likes of returning in seconds. Speedtests barely scraping in under half of what we should be getting. I know it *used* to be fine, when I was home this time last year we had full 256k/128k (until throttling obviously). I haven't been back long enough to determine if this is just a transient issue or not, but it's terrible. It feels just like dialup, which is really shouldn't, at least for basic web browsing.

I see there are quite a lot of leaving XNet threads around at the moment, so is this a common issue? What do you guys recommend, upgrading to FS or moving ISP (Dont realllly want to do this, was always a bit of a fan but I also expect a reasonable level of performance)?

Of course, it could be my router, but it's been fine before. But here's my stats anyway:

DSL Modulation Mode:        GDMT
DSL Path Mode:            INTERLEAVED
Downstream Rate:        6592 Kbps
Upstream Rate:            160 Kbps
Downstream Margin:        12 db
Upstream Margin:        26 db
Downstream Line Attenuation:    40
Upstream Line Attenuation:    21

I've never been an expert with those, so feel free to call me out there.

I guess it can't hurt to just try out FS/128k and see how it goes?


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3267 posts

Uber Geek


  # 178404 17-Nov-2008 16:51
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Modem looks fine.  Going to FS/128k will give you a maximum speed of about 3.5Mbps, because the upload speed still limits your download speed.  Going FS/FS should get you around 5Mbps, more if you were closer to the exchange (or had better wiring, whichever is the culprit).

I would try an upgrade and switch back if not good enough.  But first ask if there will be a fee involved.  It used to be free, but perhaps that has changed.  They should charge you more only for the days you are on a more expensive plan.

Other things can be causing your speed issues, for example my brother had Metacafe installed which claims to use the internet only when you are not, but actually it brought everything to a grinding halt even when you quit the program (and tray icon).  I always enable the network tray icon (in network connection options) so I can see if something is accessing the internet while there is supposed to be no/little activity.

You can never have enough Volvos!

62 posts

Master Geek

# 178418 17-Nov-2008 18:48
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   Going to FS/128k will give you a maximum speed of about 3.5Mbps, because the upload speed still limits your download speed.  Going FS/FS should get you around 5Mbps...

Could you clarify why 128k up limits the downlink speed? I am not doubting you, I am curious of the technical reason for this.

I must admit, however, the fact that both 128kbps up and unlimited up options list the same downlink speed (ie max) strikes me as misleading. This has got to be stated when advertising speeds


3267 posts

Uber Geek


  # 178429 17-Nov-2008 19:14
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Normal TCP/IP requires that you acknowledge receiving data.  There is a bit/flag that can be set to say that it is not important data (e.g. live streaming) and loosing data does not matter.  You can also acknowledge a range of packets rather than each individual packet.  But normal TCP/IP requires that each packet be acknowledged and thus if you limit the speed at which you acknowledge packets you effectively limit the speed that you receive packets.  This is also why FS/FS is so much more expensive than FS/128k, you (normally) gain a lot by going FS/FS.

As said there are ways of overcoming the limitation, but it is a deviation from the normal.

You can never have enough Volvos!

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