BT is throttling all of its broadband customers' bandwidth at peak times, not just heavy users, according to independent monitoring data. Early findings from a new hardware-based monitoring project by ISP analysis outfit Samknows show that even customers who use their connection lightly have non-port 80 traffic slowed to about …
@AC Re: Sigh!
"And dont get me started on ISP's and "unlimited", I don't know any that have an unlimited broadband service...For all the people that are about to say "oohh me oohh oohh, I have an unlimited service" what happens if you go over your allotted amount?"
My, you're an idiot aren't you? There are services without an "allotted amount". What they do have (and it's common sense, before you shout "see, I was right!") is the right to see a user who is actually impeding on other users service and take action about it. For my ISP (Be, since you asked), there has not been a single reported instance that I'm aware of for "excessive use". And my monthly totals are in the 100s of GB and I'd be considered a light user by some.
"You are already being throttled in the big phat pipe to the ISP and your connection is going to go a lot slower when you hit that limit. Thats called throttling whatever you think of your ISP"
Please come back when you learn the right language. It's called contention. It exists on every network in the world - technically you could be "throttled" on the backbones if they become too busy. Every network has a bottleneck somewhere, but ISPs actually state what there's is.
@AC Re: Sigh!
If you sell a service you had better be prepared to honour the agreement.
By your reasoning you'd be prepared to be offloaded 500 miles short of a holiday destination because some people had too much luggage? Despite the fact the airline let them on in the first place. You wouldn't accept that so why should I accept a castrated service?
Contrary to the spin you wish to put on it, when ever a fair use policy cuts in your service will be limited.
As for Be, one of my colleagues "used" to be with them he got a warning letter 2 months ago. He used to DL during the day. I guess he's not the typical "direct line" customer the ISP's want.
rock n roll
i'll continue to kick ass on UT and Q4 militia for 9hrs with a 12pack
@ Anonymous Coward "Re: Zen Internet"
Perhaps you should check Zen's product pages, you seam to be under the impression that the Home product range is all they offer. They also offer a totally 100% unlimited Office Max product the drawback that puts most people off is that its got a more suitable price tag attached.
The thing is providing a quality connection over the BT Wholesale network is expensive, most ISP's out there (not counting LLU operator's) sell the connection to cheaply, meaning that they dont have enough bandwidth to go around. They count on most people not using their connection to a fraction of its potential. Now other protocol's such as p2p (legal or illegal) means more people are using more bandwidth so there's less of an already grossly short supply of bandwidth. If everyone on a BTWholesale based ISP decided to use a lot of port 80 traffic it would cripple them just as p2p would.
Even zen's price's arn't the true cost of the bandwidth, they to take advantage of the fact that not everyone will max out their connection's all of the time. But they do however act a lot more realistic and don't pile on way to many user's on the network. Plus they don't pretend that its the protocol that's the issue, instead its pure bandwidth, so they give a clear limit (on the limited connections) of whats fine for your package, and if you want to use more bandwidth you can simply buy more.
Its rare to find an isp that's realistic, give's you the option to use what you want (so long as your willing to pay for what you use). Doesn't lie and shape your traffic or sell your browsing habits.
While im no fan boy, you will be VERY VERY VERY hard pressed to find a BTWholesale based who offer's everything they can, Andrew's and Arnold do but then if you are baulking at Zen's reasonable prices check their's out :)
Mines the one with the leased lines running into it :)
Another BE fan
Consistent 10Mb download speed and no discernible cap. If you live within one of their exchange areas I don't know why you'd go anywhere else.
@ andy gibson
I use p2p to distribute software updates for an OpenS app I wrote a couple of years ago which helps kids with learning difficulties. Now tell me, how exactly is that wrong?. Why, in your mind is it the customers fault that they are using the bandwidth that has been sold to them?. You, like many ISPs' seem to think that the TCP/IP starts with port 80 and ends with 443, which is all well and good, if the service is being sold as sole use of those ports. But hey, it's not so shut the f*ck up.
Me thinks you're mostly interested in http speed as you like your p0rn like you like your women/men, fast and selfish!.
For the record...
would someone post on here a list of the non-80 ports used by legitimate (i.e., non-file-sharing) programs? Like movie trailers, MMORPGs, YouTube, Microsoft Update, FilePlanet, etc.? Oh yeah, TCP/IP services, too. That way, you'll get a (potentially huge) list of people hit by the illegitimate throttling.
BT throttles bandwidth
So BT says that throttling does not affect streaming services such as BBC iPlayer. BT always tells the truth as we know from the Phorm episode so that means that BT is throttling bandwidth for streaming. And that explains why I can watch the iPlayer during the day but not in the evening!
new Eclipse packages not throttled
I have switched to the new "Home Select" deal, you get to do your own traffic shaping so you can optimise it for web or P2P or gaming etc.
I'm running the web option, so far its been great. Running speedtest.net at different times of day I consistently get 7Mbps download (router synch is 8Mbps). The downside is for 17.95 you get 10GB if you want more pay per GB or switch to the more expensive "Home Pro" deal, though from the comments on here I guess Be would be better if you're on one of the exchanges they support.
Ideally I'd like a mobile/fixed line/broadband deal that wasn't with some incompetent muppets, probably never be available here.
For the person above who asked for a port list
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_TCP_and_UDP_port_numbers quite a few being used other than port 80 on the net these days.
Bye bye BT
I'll be canceling my BT service because of this action,
They sat (and afaik still sit) on massive amounts of redundancy and then say "ah, well, yes, the rest of the world may be going gigabit but you know that 8mb/s contract you have that never goes over 1mb/s well we're going to throttle it"
I hear Virgin have just lowered their consumer base.
Got my coat, won't be letting the door bang anything on the way out. Bye now.
I moved house recently and switched to 02, excellent service, uk call centers, but use your own router, as thiers is crap. Oh, and BT can kiss my arse for the £546 bill for my old address, don't ask me how they got to that amount either!
Have they run out of anything else to talk about then...
Thought everything about FUP had been discussed to death by now.
Why is BT or any other ISP different - this is commonly known as congestion. When things get busy everyone gets restricted.
Networks pipes are the same as roads. When they're full they're full. They dont just build wider ones because that costs money. But you still have to pay road-tax.
If the M25 gets busy everyone suffers - it doesn't get wider. Some people can go faster, some slower but the main flow is controled by the volume.
RE: BT vs BBC
"I call shinanigans. For example, if I go to watch a video on the BBC news site, my internet connection shuts off. EVERY TIME. Doesn't happen with YouTube or such, just BBC related content. I have to reboot my BT Homehub to get connection back. Methinks BT are targetting the Beeb specifically"
It doesn't happen with YouTube because YouTube uses Flash 7 which has a different video codec to Flash 9. If you got to a site that also uses Flash 9 (such as Hulu, if you bypass the geo IP) the same problem occours.
The same problem also happens with O2 and Be's routers - and that's because all three include Thompson chipsets. So it's obviously a (staggering) firmware problem with the routers rather than any conspiracy.
I am amazed it's not patched yet though.
@ I'd have thought that by now...
I go to an "all you can eat for x pounds", pay my money and am told "some greedy fuckers came in, you'll have to make do with what we've got left" I would be severely pissed off; I'd kick up a fuss, notify local council trading standards, tell every bugger I knew about it.
What I wouldn't do is whine about the 'greedy fuckers' - they were offered a deal, took it and used what the restaurant had to offer.
Hands up who actually looked at the report?
Ok, so reading through the comments (and skimming most) it looks like noone actually bothered to read the report...shocker!
Look at page 11 (section 2.9). The only speed tests even mentioned in the report are various types of port 80 tests. I can't find *anywhere* in the pdf that mentions any other form of speed testing (apart from things like latency and DNS resolution).
Even the FAQ for the project does not list any other tests...so what gives? Where is the actual information that shows us what this article claims?
Did you know BT aren't part of the GPO anymore?
Howabout that! Apparently, they were sold off in 1984, in order to reduce all our taxes and to allow them to get a new phone to us, in less than 3 x weeks.
Apparently, they've got new owners (they're the ones who handed over their money to HMG for drinkies in the private bars at HP) and those new owners (seem to be the people who run my pension fund, probably yours too) actually expect BT to make a profit now and then give the money to the new owners!
Gosh, no wonder those nasty people at BT aren't rushing around putting fibre into my house, in order to allow me to download stolen software.
I do like BT vision though, much cheaper than the offering from those skanky bods who own the squarial company.
BT Aren't That Bad
I use BT for my phone line, BT are my ISP and I have BT Vision, and I have found the service for all three has been fine. I also make it clear from the outset I work for one of the IT services arms of BT, but have nothing to do with the phone or broadband side of things.
Getting my line installed was trouble free. Same goes for the broadband, got it installed ok, had some issues with connection speeds at first where the line would not sync at anything above about 1200Kbps. Now I understand that dealing with a helpdesk in a foreign place can be a bit frustrating at times, but to fix my issue with the broadband service I simply explained what diagnostic process I had been through, at which point they simply said give them 24 hours at their end then call back, which I did and then they said it was most likely a line fault and they would book an engineer visit. A quick visit from a nice Openreach man fixed all that and now my modem syncs at 8128Kbps.
I haven't really noticed any throttling of torrents but as far as I'm concerned they're a background service. They can be left rolling along at whatever speed. Of course I've noticed that outside peak hours the download speeds increase but that's fine by me. I do a fair bit of online gaming during peak hours and I know I wouldn't want my ping times affected by torrents from every machine on the network.
BT Vision does what it says on the box, no issues there.
As for laying fibre, that's a project that would cost billions of pounds which Ofcom would then allow every other ISP to make money off. So please tell me why should BT, who are a business and have shareholders to answer to and staff to pay invest the money required for their competitors to then reap the benefits? Virgin can afford to do it to an extent as they are not forced to allow other ISPs to use their network, but they only do it in areas where they deem it financially beneficial to them, because at the end of the day they too have shareholders to answer to.
A lot of people knock BT, but as far as I can see they do a good job considering the circumstances they have to operate under.
Mmm, I can already feel the warmth from the flames.
BBC iPlayer? - Isn't that just used by freeloaders who want to have the MINITRU* squirt propaganda straight into their brains without having to pay for an annual Telescreen licence?
*wrong contraction? - Winston Smith seems to have withdrawn and burned my copy of '1984'.
All-you-can-eat contracts soon to end
Really, it's just a matter of logic.
The ISP started offering unlimited contracts because everybody said they wanted it. But considering the quantity of comments here rejoicing that heavy users are getting throttled, some ISP should start offering contracts at 1p per Mb (and cheaper during low-use hours). Then we can start paying for internet like we are paying for water, electricity and telephone.
I believe the only reason unlimited contracts exist is that the heavy users are the only people voicing their opinion on the subject, and they are too happy to have everybody pay the same amount.
Another happy Be customer
I moved from Virgin to Be (O2) a few weeks ago. Cancelling Virgin involved explaining that Be were cheaper and faster. Sales droid insisted (lied) that Virgin were the only people capable of offering a faster than 10Mb service to which I pointed out that I had already tested the new connection at 15Mb, and Virgin couldn't currently provide me with better than 3.5Mb anyway.
The difference in p2p performance is HUGE. I'm an occasional p2p user, yet Virgin's method of throttling you after one hour of high use regardless of what you do the rest of the month was frustrating. This did not seem to be in keeping with the claim that throttling only affects the 5% heaviest users.
I use a Draytek modem, following instructions at <http://www.draytek.co.uk/support/kb_vigor100_setup.html>, so those who don't like Be's modem may wish to look there for setting clues.
I read it
So flad Be are not throttling. They just need to fix their damned DNS servers and all will be right in the world!
The reason behind the throttling
The reason BT are throttling the bandwidth of all broadband users is due to BT Vision.
BT Vision needs a bandwidth of 4Mbps to work perfectly. If they throttle everyone, that will ensure the people with BT Vision have a flawless service.
Anyone else...well your stuffed. Paying for broadband only? Well your throttled so that your neighbour can watch BT Vision.
How do I know this? I used to work for BT.
Get what you pay for...
You can't have it all: CHEAP + HIGH-SPEED + CAPLESS. Choose two only!
I want HIGH SPEED and CAPLESS, and I am prepared to pay highly for it (and I do). If you want CHEAP and HIGH SPEED then be prepared for caps, either in monthly usage or traffic shaping during peak demands. If you want CHEAP and CAPLESS then be prepared for a slow speed at all times (kind of like Talk Talk from what I have seen on friend's lines).
All those blathering on about how they MUST have the highest possible speed at all times with no throttling and no caps, etc., etc., etc....that's fine, just be prepared to pay for an infrastructure that spends 50%+ of it's time vastly underutilized. Figure on paying a few hundred pounds a month for it - similar to business broadband if not higher. That represents the real cost of all of that spare capacity to handle a few peak hours per day...
Disadvantaging Open University students
I'm assuming none of those applauding this BT move are Open University students? We have around 250 000 students online using the FirstClass communications system, which has its own internationally registered port (510). It is NOT p2p but a server/client relationship. It actually makes very small demands on bandwidth. Yet it is getting throttled along with illegal and heavy activity.
Since most OU study is done in the evening our students are being severely disadvantaged by BT, Pipex, Tiscali, AOL and others who have instituted this indiscriminate throttling.
I wonder how BT will justify this to the many employees they have studying - at their recommendation - with the OU?
at 200M from my exchange I'm in the 24 club. Couldn't BE any happier!
And Yes I hate that Thompson router too....
anyone got any good recomendations?
Now listen up folks, right here right now...
If you use loads of throughput, you get throttled more as you use it, with dropped packets etc, whatever. So the occasional burst of HTTP isn't affected. The occasional (>5GB) torrent isn't affected. A massive 62GB ST:TNG bulk torrent quickly hits the "bandwidth dampers", at, say, 10GB on that particular day and that user's CONNECTION (not just the torrent) gets throttled. The ISP makes all this CLEAR at signup, and stops using bullshit like "unlimited".
No DPI bollocks. No FUP bollocks. The heaviest users are naturally limited by a fair algorithm.
Basically each KB of data (regardless of what it is, data is data, see "Steal This Film pt 2" for a fairly close representation of my copyright views) decreases a counter in some sort of connection monitoring box. Once the counter reaches a certain low threshold, packets start to be dropped. The amount each KB decreases said counter is multiplied by a value that is some function of "current network load" plus "how cheap-arse their connection package is".
Yes, I've cracked it, I am commonsenseGOD, who wants to touch me?
Poverty in the UK
the only reason why BT would be trying to worm out of transmitting data is that they do not have the capacity to send all of it. They're trying to be selective in what they transmit.
It's not down to them really caring what you're distributing, it's that they can't handle the traffic, so they're capping bits. This on top of contention ratios makes one say.
21CN... ADSL2+ by 2012!!
Piss off BT. I may have to leave the country to get decent ISP. Latvia for example.
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