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188 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 340833 11-Jun-2010 23:20
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insane: 
...
The last mile and backhaul in the country is a lot more congested than many will like to admit. Even with the low 32bkps backhaul per user limits there are areas where congestion is a problem/becomming a problem with all the extra cabinets being installed. Simply removing this limit or raising these dsl backhaul per user limits will cause all manner of pain for everyone if the network is not robust enough to handle the ever increasing amounts of data being consumed. Every DSL user only needs to use 10GB per month on average to completly saturate their ISPs DSL backhaul.


If that's the case, it's some serious overlooking somewhere or simply putting the resources in a wrong place.  NZ must have decent national fiber networks in place and it's just a matter of $ millions to make sure that there is right kind of hardware in place to remove all the bottlenecks between the international capacity and the DSL local loop.

At least over here we have never seen much money of effort spent on maintaining the old copper networks (24 awg mostly).  They exists and they do their job, if a pair is bad they try the next one.  A new residential area will get both copper and fiber installed.  Some people may get just 5-10 Mbit/s on longer copper, some get closer to 20 Mbit/s with their ADSL2+.  However as the regulator is there to regulate the price of this formerly monopoly resource, the incumbent telco's frequently say that is expensive to maintain the copper network -- without any proof, of course -- just a few months ago they ordered a 20% drop in the price.

I like the concept of cabinetisation in NZ -- to bring the fiber backbone closer to the people but leaving out the most expensive part, the fiber local loops.  It gives the future option to build fiber local loops neighbourhood by neighbourhood, perhaps with local efforts to make it happen.  However this 5-year plan to implement the cabinetisation should not stop the development to make sure that the national core(s) have enough capacity (which shouldn't have happened in the first place) and that the international bottleneck will get solved.

I don't understand the 32 kbit/s per user limit.  That sounds ridiculous?


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  Reply # 340867 12-Jun-2010 04:43
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  Reply # 340868 12-Jun-2010 04:56
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Hmm...from memory in about 2007/2008 TCNZ Wholesale allowed this to be dimensioned at either 28, 32 or 48kbps per subscriber. Bit fuzzy on the figures since it was so long ago.

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Master Geek
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  Reply # 340869 12-Jun-2010 04:59
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Ragnor:
ojala:

I don't understand the 32 kbit/s per user limit.  That sounds ridiculous?



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contention_ratio
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Committed_Information_Rate
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Excess_Information_Rate


Yes, I know.  Back in 1995 you ordered a 256 kbit/s FR circuit with 32 kbit/s CIR and ordered international circuits in kbit/s.  But seriously, 32 kbit/s, year 2010 and DSL's 10+ Mbit/s don't quite match or it's out-of-this-world overbooking the capacity.  Not that I'd expect anyone to guarantee the DSL rate further than the local loop but under normal circumstances one should be able to get decent performance to any well connected national site.


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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 340895 12-Jun-2010 09:44
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The 32kbit/s is a bit of a red herring I think, because it's set at the lowest guaranteed level based on lots of different kit in the network, e.g you can't offer the same kind of backhaul from a Conklin way out in the boondocks compared to a fiber fed ISAM ina cabinet, but the product (UBS/UBA) that the ISP buys is still the same, and has SLA's based on the worst links.

The actual level is a bit higher based on the kit you are connected to, and your handover links are something you can have set to whatever size you want (you are paying for them afterall) which is where I think some ISP's are letting themselves down.
Unless I'm missing something and Wholesale have started actively policing 32kbit/s, which would be monumentally silly and get them slapped very hard by the Government.

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  Reply # 341086 12-Jun-2010 23:17
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Cymro: The 32kbit/s is a bit of a red herring I think...

...The actual level is a bit higher based on the kit you are connected to, and your handover links are something you can have set to whatever size you want (you are paying for them afterall) which is where I think some ISP's are letting themselves down.
Unless I'm missing something and Wholesale have started actively policing 32kbit/s, which would be monumentally silly and get them slapped very hard by the Government.


Yup, they are policing them, and have been for as long as the UBS product has been out as far as I can tell. No matter how much $$ you offer then they will not allow you to have more than [(currents users + forecasted additional users for next 6 months) * 32kbps ].

So its really not a red herring, its a MAJOR obsticle to providing larger data caps. Now I wonder if Xtra are subject to the same limits as they use WBS and not UBS/UBA, if not then its no wonder that they want to delay their forced migration to UBA.


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  Reply # 341935 15-Jun-2010 14:49
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Fraktul: Hmm...from memory in about 2007/2008 TCNZ Wholesale allowed this to be dimensioned at either 28, 32 or 48kbps per subscriber. Bit fuzzy on the figures since it was so long ago.

It replaced the original 24kbps aggregation per user and was enforced somewhere near the handover point. Not sure how they enforce it now with multiple handover points, but telecom ditched the original plan to aggregate traffic to local handover points that would allow ISPs to buy their own backhaul. They probably still send Auckland traffic all over the country to various Juniper routers before authenticating and sending it back to the Auckland ISPs. They would have plenty of spare national bandwidth if they didn't waste it. Even more if they got that Ethernet backhaul going, which has been talked about for ages. Do the ISAMs still Ethernet into the ATM backbone?




Qualified in business, certified in fibre, stuck in copper, have to keep going  ^_^

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Master Geek
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  Reply # 341999 15-Jun-2010 16:41
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I start to understand why the situation is what is it.

Is there a regulator that would actually work towards fair terms, lower prices, proper technology, and effective competition? A regulator that would benefit the customers and the ISP's?

It sounds like it would make the most sense to have a number of regional handover cities defined (and a few in Auckland region), based on the population and network infrastructure, so that traffic stays within a "practically unlimited bandwidth zone" (no limit between the DSL and handover points) and there would be competition to provide the ISP's the bandwidth from these handful of regions to their own networks, giving them the option to invest in bandwidth as they desire.

If TCNZ Wholesale pretty much keeps the local loops, the backhaul and the technology itself, no wonder there is no real competition and the network infrastructure in NZ doesn't go anywhere.

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  Reply # 342087 15-Jun-2010 20:40
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Wow this is some seriously annoying information. When you see plans offering 'as fast as your line will allow' and no mention of these contention ratios in any contracts you sign (other than a vague reference to the service not always being guaranteed) no wonder consumers in New Zealand are angry with their residential broadband connections.

I think it should be mandatory for all ISPs to make their individual contention ratios for both national backhaul and international capacity available on their websites.

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  Reply # 342156 16-Jun-2010 03:09
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webwat:
Fraktul: Hmm...from memory in about 2007/2008 TCNZ Wholesale allowed this to be dimensioned at either 28, 32 or 48kbps per subscriber. Bit fuzzy on the figures since it was so long ago.

It replaced the original 24kbps aggregation per user and was enforced somewhere near the handover point. Not sure how they enforce it now with multiple handover points, but telecom ditched the original plan to aggregate traffic to local handover points that would allow ISPs to buy their own backhaul. They probably still send Auckland traffic all over the country to various Juniper routers before authenticating and sending it back to the Auckland ISPs. They would have plenty of spare national bandwidth if they didn't waste it. Even more if they got that Ethernet backhaul going, which has been talked about for ages. Do the ISAMs still Ethernet into the ATM backbone?


ISPs still have the option you use 24kbps per user, I believe this is a cheaper option if an ISP wanted to do that for some reason, who knows. ISP's can choose a layer 2 provider to deliver their DSL handover to them if they don't wish to use Telecom for that, however any rate limiting is done well before that.

Telecom have a number of handover point locations with traffic going directly into their wholesale core so to speak. Also authentication is done by the ISPs on UBS/UBA via some proxy-radius setup on the Telecom side where they forward the L2TP DSL tunnels onto the ISP's BRAS/LNS.

UBS can be delivered over Ethernet, many ISPs do this already, and UBA has to be delivered over Ethernet. As of now there are one one or two ISPs wtill using ATM for their DSL, but this will end shortly as UBS is being phased out now.

ISAMS connect back to excahnges or are first daisy chained before connecting into Telecom's core over Ethernet. ASAMS still use ATM (the names give it away a little). The different RAN numbers ie 20,21,22 are also there for the differenet types of connectivity, <21 = ATM/ASAMS, 21 = Ethernet/ISAMS, 22 = New ISAMS.

sorry a lot of that is probably useless info and purposefully written in a semi understandable way, some minor details have been left out.

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  Reply # 342404 16-Jun-2010 17:36
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Given that the new cabinets (and other ISAMS?) have what maybe ~300 lines/users per 1 Gbit/s (or maybe more) ethernet backhaul you wouldn't expect much contention/congestion there.

It's fair to say Chorus and Telecom Wholesale have significantly improved that part of the puzzle.

Handover links get mentioned a lot as the primary choke point but surely there must be a reason why they have those limits on the hand over links to ISP's?

One thing I have found is that local/national performance on Big Time has largely been exceptional.  I can max line rate on national traffic even in peak time no worries.  I doubt you can say the same on many other ISP's that resell Telecom wholesale connections.

Artifically scarce/constrained/expensive handover links in order to extract monopoly profits or are there real valid reasons core through handoverlink has such low minimim performance levels.  Telecom retail are supposed to be using the same base product as the other ISP's, why aren't there peak time congestion issues on Telecom?  Telecom has a truckload of mom and pop users that don't use much?  What about all the "vampires" on Big Time?

Given these Telecom wholesale services are regulated products should we blame the ComCom for not being smart/savvy enough to spec products properly and/or force Telecom retail to use the same service/product as the other ISP's?

At the end of the day this just highlights why we need a national fibre network on an true open access basis rather than trying to (badly) regulate Telecom.








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  Reply # 342498 16-Jun-2010 23:17
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Well Telecom/Xtra/Retail should be using UBS/UBA but have somehow managed to get an extension to stay on their version of Wholesale BitStream, lets call is BS :) . I understand the differences in the porduct and all but am not sure whether or not WBS is completely void of the 32kbps per user limit.

I know we're told that most ISAM whisper cabinets are fed by two gigE connections but we have to remember that some of these are daisy-chained and ultimately all aggregate on one of the RANs at some point. So it seems that the RANs or the RANs backhaul is where any congestion lies which required the per user restrictions.

Also just because a cabinet has a 1 or 2gig connection doesn't mean that it's actually getting provisioned with that much capacity, that is just the max speed of the link.

Back to Telecom retail, I suspect that if they are infact subject to the 32kbps average per user limit that they have enough users puling < 10GB per month to cancel out the heavy users. I'm sure Telecom has a very good reason for only advertising plans which go up to 40GB.
(Big Time to me was just a way of getting lots of customers fast, I'd be surprised if that plan was designed to last for years.)

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  Reply # 342505 16-Jun-2010 23:36
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I see seveal issues contributing to cost and speed in New Zealand

1) Population & Population Density - New Zealand is not a particularly (densely) populated country. This drives up costs as you end up running longer cables, having under utilised equipment etc.

2) Poor peering - By the look of some of the traceroutes I have done on Telecom to other NZ ISP's, it appears the data actually goes to Australia, or further, before become coming back to NZ. Not only does this cost more, but it also results in higher latencey etc.

3) Monopoly on international bandwidth - SX is acually heavily under-utilised (I've heard average utilisation is under 5%). From a capacity point of view, for current needs, SX has more than enough, it's just as a monopoly, they can charge just about what they like for it. Pacific Fibre will simply bring competition to the market.

Caching will help, but then again we are moving to more and more 'realtime' services where caching is not effective. Facebook for example, as the content is personalised to me, and real time, you can't really cache much.

I don't see prices getting much cheaper anytime soon, as only some of the issues can be addressed properly, but I would expect that if somesome like Pacific Fible put another cable in (Years away), then we wouldn't see overall prices drop so much as data caps increase.




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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 342510 17-Jun-2010 00:06
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ajobbins:
3) Monopoly on international bandwidth - SX is acually heavily under-utilised (I've heard average utilisation is under 5%). From a capacity point of view, for current needs, SX has more than enough, it's just as a monopoly, they can charge just about what they like for it. Pacific Fibre will simply bring competition to the market.


SXC prices are set in-line with the other pipes that go via Australia, so whilst it is a monopoly I'm not sure we can say they are price gouging, unless all the carriers are.

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  Reply # 342515 17-Jun-2010 00:50
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Slingshot speeds for p2p traffic have improved at least double since they introduced caching. They cache http and torrent traffic - so if you download a torrent that is also being downloaded by another few slingshot users at the same time, it comes in at line speed. And this is at 9 in the evening during the peak hours too. The http cache is also capable of caching youtube - and they share an official youtube cache with orcon.
Caching is making big changes in international performance and that shouldnt be understated.




Ray Taylor
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