broadband Business

It’s Nice When Someone Impresses When You Are Not Expecting It – BT Wholesale Broadband Performance

My home ADSL has occasionally been causing me issues with the broadband performance dropping right off. I know it isn’t the Timico network because I can see our network utilisation and when I have problems at home there is plenty of capacity available in our backhauls.

So gnashing my teeth I blamed BT and pulled a favour. As a one off they took a look at the Lincoln exchange to see if it was suffering congestion. Blow me down if they didn’t send me a graph showing that usage never get near capacity.

BT Wholesale buys its capacity (via SVLAN) off Openreach and it isn’t in its interest to over provision the bandwidth as it has to pay for it, used or not. However I can clearly when traffic has spiked in the past the bandwidth has been upped.

The BTW capacity management process ensures that each SVLAN has a trigger point (normally 80% utilisation) at which point the SVLAN is upgraded (by how much depends on service type i.e. FTTP has a higher increment than adsl2+) so there is always (in theory) enough capacity to meet demand. This also gives me confidence for the Olympics. Nobody knows how much traffic to expect, other than “a lot” but a BTW committee reviews the capacity needs by exchange every three days so whilst there may be occasional congestion this should be relatively temporary – 3 days wait at the most.

This is very heartening and I have to say I was impressed. Of course it still leaves me with the problem of intermittent broadband performance. However I believe my wife inadvertently solved this when she told me that our phone line has been getting quite crackly (palm to head scenario – I very rarely use the phone in our house!).

It reminds me of the time when I was driving her car and it virtually ground to a halt but then started again. When questioned about this she said “oh it’s been doing that for ages!” It must be one of the reasons I love her 🙂

So now I’m going to have to get the analogue line sorted but at least we know why the broadband has been playing up.

PS sorry I can’t show the graph BT sent me – it’s a bit busy and has commercially sensitive info. I thought it would be ok but you know what BT are like – committees for everything 🙂

Trefor Davies

By Trefor Davies

Liver of life, father of four, CTO of, writer, poet,

4 replies on “It’s Nice When Someone Impresses When You Are Not Expecting It – BT Wholesale Broadband Performance”

I can recommend the free RouterStats (Google’s your friend) software to easily monitor your home connection! I use it to keep an eye on my sync/attenuation/snrm/errors/etc.

That way you can easily tell if your line has a problem 🙂

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