Looking for ISP with no traffic shaping / bandwidth throttling

Discussion in 'ISPs & The Internet' started by RandomLee, Sep 19, 2007.

  1. RandomLee

    RandomLee
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    Hi folks,

    I'm currently looking to change my broadband provider as I'm really not happy with Bulldog.

    I am currently on an old deal of theirs (pre-Pipex takeover) which is 8MB unlimited for £19.99 p/m (I actually pay around £26)... although I can only get 2.2MB which Bulldog claim is because my line wasnt updated when I took out the contract with them (?). Apparently my local exchange can do a max of 6.6MB however I appreciate that this doesnt mean I will get that speed.

    For the new provider my main concern is bandwidth throttling / traffic shaping as I seem to use the net most at times when this is in effect. It's like going back to dial-up :(

    I dont need unlimited usage anymore however something around 20GB would be ideal, just in case. Certainly nothing under a 10-15GB monthly allowance.

    I'm not bothered about wireless either as all my stuff is in my living room and I can hide the cables easily enough. That's not to say I wont go with a wireless package, I just dont want to pay any extra for it.

    I live in Aberdeen (AB24) and there is no cable service available. Also, Sky do not provide broadband in my area either. I'm away to cancel their TV service anyway as the quality of programmes is simply not worth the subscription fee, but that's another matter.

    Monthly bugdget would be around £15 - £25, although since I no longer require an un-capped line I would prefer to keep it as close to £15 as possible.

    I know there's various comparison websites, and I will be checking those over the next few days, however I thought I would ask on here too.

    I think that's enough but if not just ask.

    Any suggestions would be welcome.

    Many thanks :)

    Lee

    Edit:

    Just did a test on Samknows and it said:

    I presume the other service it refers to is my current BD service?

    It also say my exchange is now enabled 8MB or more.

    EDIT 2:

    Apologies people, I just checked Sky and says the following:

    Not too clear on what this means. I'm away to look into Connect now.

    I should have checked all this before posting. Last time I checked was about 3 - 4 months ago but obviously things have changed since then.

    Still interested to hear suggestions though.

    Cheers,

    Lee
     
  2. Vivaciti

    Vivaciti
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    You could get a 30gb peak and 300gb off peak package for £19.99 about in the middle of your budget.
     
  3. Rygar

    Rygar
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    Avoid Sky connect as it is a BT Wholesale based service that is indeed shaped.

    However all of the other Sky services (base/mid/max) are not shaped and are actually very good services. In order to get these good services Sky have to unbundle your exchange. Sounds like they have not did so yet, but plan to do so soon. Even if you just kept the basic Sky TV package for £15/month you could get their mid package @ £5/month. For £10/month you could get their max package which will give you speeds up to 16Mb dependent on line quality.

    I also live in Aberdeen and I'm on the Sky max package. Living fairly close to my exchange I get 13Mb on max. Unlimited, unshaped & no evening slow down.

    The downsides to Sky broadband are rubbish customer support (should you need to use them) and it is a 12 month contract.

    If you need a good ISP in the meantime then an Entanet reseller like Vivaciti (there are others too) would be an excellent choice & they only have a one month contract.

    In the interests of fairness I should tell you that they do employ a form of traffic shaping; their Anti Loss Tool (ALT). However it is actually beneficial & nothing like the shaping you get with BT, AOL etc. It kicks in for short periods of time when the network is very busy (usually from 10PM to midnight) to ensure latency is kept low & everyone gets an equal share of bandwidth. This can have the effect of slowing down your connection slightly but as I say it is usually only for short periods of time. In the absence of LLU providers Entanet are easily the UK's best ISP in my opinion.

    One last piece of advice: Avoid broadband comparison sites like uswitch etc. They really are not very good & despite their claims they are not really impartial. You will get far better advice from users on forums like this & the ones at thinkbroadband etc.
     
  4. RandomLee

    RandomLee
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    That sounds good, cheers! Will definately consider it. Would migration be free as a home user?

    Thanks :)

    Many thanks for the reply Rygar, that's a great help.

    The Sky packages (base/med/max) do sound good so I will give them a call and see if they can give me an estimated date as to when my exchange will be unbundled (it's the Denburn exchange btw). I'd be happy enough to keep Sky TV if I was getting broadband through them too as they deals do seem very good. I think I would go for the max package.

    Depending on how long they estimate it will be, if they even know, then I can look into something like Vivaciti. The ALT you speak of doesnt sound bad at all.

    Have you been on the Sky package long? It's good to know that they are getting round to sorting out the exchanges here.

    Oh, and cheers for the tip on the comparison sites :smashin:

    I'll reply back with how I get on, just in case anyone is interested.

    Thanks again,

    Lee
     
  5. Vivaciti

    Vivaciti
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    Hi, migration is free in and out and the contract is monthly, so always an option you could go for until sky un-bundle your exchange, then you can move over to them if you wished.
     
  6. RandomLee

    RandomLee
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    Excellent!

    I'm definately interested in the option you mentioned above as it does sound an ideal solution until I can get a Sky package, depending on how long they take.

    So, all I would need to do is get the CBUK code from Bulldog, tell them I wish to cancel and then head to the Vivaciti website to sign up with them?

    Is there anything else I would need to do to enable the migration to go as smooth as possible?

    Also, this is general question... the free modem I got with Bulldog doesnt strike me as being that good... it's a Thompson SpeedTouch 330. Would it be worth upgrading to something else? I see a wireless router comes free with the Sky package but that would mean getting the wireless adaptor for my 360 so I would be quite happy to stay wired as I would get no other benefit from wirelss in my flat.

    Apologies for all the questions, but I'd rather know everything I need to before I go calling Bulldog / Sky etc.

    Cheers,

    Lee
     
  7. Vivaciti

    Vivaciti
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    Hi,
    Its not a CBUK number you need anymore, it's a MAC you will need to migrate over.
    The modem you have at the moment will work with our service, the wireless one that comes free with the sky service is also a wired router as well (i believe it's a netgear DG835G) so you can choose to use it wireless or with an ethernet cable, with the same router.
     
  8. RandomLee

    RandomLee
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    Cool, I'll make a note of that for when I call Bulldog.

    Good to know about the Sky router too.

    I cant do anything until Monday now as I am at work so dont have my account details for Sky or Bulldog.

    Thanks again,

    Lee
     
  9. Rygar

    Rygar
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    To be honest it's a lottery when phoning Sky with a question like "when will my exchange be unbundled". They really are pretty clueless I'm afraid and will often give you duff info. Your best bet is to keep an eye on SAM KNOWS.

    I've been with Sky for about 2 months and have found the connection itself to be very good (I'm on the Lochnagar exchange). One thing to remember though is that an ADSL connection can be a very different experience for 2 different users, even with the same ISP. So if you do change to Sky test everything like mad for the first few days to make sure you are happy. You can change your mind without penalty in the first 8 days.

    I expect they will unbundle Denburn soon as it is very central & serves quite a lot of people. My dad is actually on Denburn & I will be switching him to Sky when they unbundle it.

    I was with Entanet previously and they really are a very good ISP. Very open too, they allow you to see the STATUS OF THEIR PIPES so you can jump onto a less busy pipe when things get too busy on the one you are on (if you are so inclined...it never got congested enough for me to bother with to be honest). The ALT is actually a plus as far as I'm concerned, especially for gamers. I've seen shaping al la BT etc on friends & families connections and there really is one or two ISPs who could learn from Entanet's approach to the problem of limited bandwidth.
     
  10. SupaTed

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    There are ways around Bandwidth shaping. I or should I say my parents for some reason decided to choose BT as there supplier. I dont know if this works for other ISP's but it definately works for me.

    During the day my download speed would reach 3k if i was lucky then after 11pm would jump uptp 25k then after 12am all the way upto the full 60k.

    The way in which I got around it was to change my peer 2 peer programs to use either port 21 usually reserved for FTP or port 80 usually reserved for http.

    I would recommend that you change ports every few hours, just to keep them guessing their are other ports available that are standard ports, i.e. email ports, VPN ports etc that are not victim to bandwidth shaping.

    They seem not to have implemented the new software thats detects .torrents or p2p software and are just restricting ports at certain hours.

    Hope this helps.
     

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