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Broadband speed


Problems with Broadband in Gulberwick  

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  1. 1. Problems with Broadband in Gulberwick

    • Oh YES!
    • Oh NO!

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My quoted speed (in Lerwick) was 2.2 Mbps/sec until Dec 01 last year.Then TalkTalk did something to my line and the quoted speed now is 7.4Mbps/sec


Actual speed test (this morning)

2432kbps download (304kBps)

372kbps upload (46.5kBps)


I don't know what my speed tested at before the upgrade but it's a damn sight faster now.

Is this with a Windows machine? In particular a pre Vista Windows machine? If so then I'd suggest trying the same test with a Vista / Windows 7 machine and seeing if it gets closer to your quoted 7.4 speed. They have automatic network tuning whereas older versions of Windows don't. This can easily mean your not getting the full speed available from your ISP.


Assuming a Vista+ machine gets nearer the quoted speeds you could then use a freeware app called TCP Optimizer to adjust your pre Vista machines network settings. It's not for the faint of heart - just make sure you use the program to store a backup of your default settings (IIRC, it does this anyway) before you ask it to make an changes. It's worked a treat on two XP and one 2000 machines at home.

Windoze XP machine. I tried TCP Optimizer. It gave me about a 10% speed boost but then started dropping the connection every 5 mins, so I've restored the defaults. I don't have a Vista machine to try on my line, but I think I'm getting about as good as my line can handle.


TalkTalk have some kind of dynamic throttling thing on their system to deter torrenting during peak hours. I'll have to try the speed tests during the night (4-7 am seems to be when things are at their fastest.).

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o2 are probably one of the better ISP's. £17.50 if you're with o2 on Pay as you go or contract, or £20 otherwise.


No caps, a very fair "fair usage" policy, day time and night time internet speeds are good and at peak are usually around 4mbit.


Thanks for that, but unfortunately they don't include phonecalls. My OH is currently shopping around for the best deal.

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My test came out at this:




Dad is with Pipex and is supposed to be 2mb. I've tested it at different times and this seems to be average. He's also paying about £40 for broadband and phone. I do think this is a bit of a rip off but not having been up here for x number of years not sure.


Any advice?


We're about 1/2 mile from exchange in Bressa.

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  • 1 month later...

Nice to hear that the SIC & Enterprise Co are seeking ways to get better broadband speeds for shetland but what I found hard to grasp a year or so ago when I signed up for the fantastic offer from Virgin broadband was how they are allowed to get away with selling broadband speeds of up to 8 Meg when after testing your line they ken you will only get 1 or 2 meg at best.


I took this up with SIC Trading Standards as a fraudulent claim & followed it up with our politicos without any progress. My argument was if Safeway offered a bag of tatties containing up to 16 tatties & there were only 4 in the bag or you bought a secondhand Ford Focus that should have done about 35 mpg but you only got 10 mpg Trading Standards might have had some interest.


What's the point of a body charged with overseeing trading standards that picks & chooses what it likes & ignores blatantly incorrect sales hype?


(***Mod Edit - Merged with existing thread***)

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^^ thats the same as BT's package. Certainly with them, it's always made clear that 8 is the maximum, and the IP profile of the line is regularly updated to provide optimum speed.


I'm sure Virgin are offering you what you are paying for, an 8 meg connection. If the state of the infrastructure means you can't make use of that service, it's hardly thier fault.


As always I find motoring to be the better analogy - a Ferrari F40 doesn't lose performance just because the road to your house is narrow, winding, and full of potholes. Its just that you can't use it to full effect..

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Yes up to 8 Meg indeed. If a line can only support 1 or 2 Meg at best and you only get 1.5 most of the time & the ISP know it, shouldn't there be some rationale to see that folk are charged for the service they receive? If this sales philosophy were to creep into other areas we would be in a real mess.


As to Ferrari - they don't check the road you want to use before you buy it so the analogy doesn't apply.

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That would be fine for me but is not flawless in itself. As the speed obtainable on the line can fluctuate it could mean that you would end up with a bigger bill at the end of some months due to getting a better speed than normal.


The ISP would then need to cap your speed at whatever you are paying for. Some ISP's already do this, offering a 1 or 2 meg service at a reduced cost.


As most of the cost of providing your broadband line comes down to what the ISP pays BT for the ports in the exchange then it ultimately means that it costs the ISP the same whether or not you get half a meg or 8 meg. Therefore upto 8 meg is a bonus not a hindrance.


As an aside, from Virgin Broadbands homepage:-


Broadband speeds: We'll make sure that you receive the highest broadband speed your phone line can handle, however the actual speed you receive can be affected by factors such as phone line quality or distance from your local exchange. This means that you could actually receive up to 4 Mbps, 5 Mbps, or 6 Mbps - basically anything up to 8 Mbps.
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