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Standard User FarmerGilesUK
(learned) Thu 31-Mar-11 10:37:13
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Viable alternatives to ADSL?


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Hi again everyone.

I'm nearly at the end of my patience with 12 months of continual phone line/broadband issues. I really *need* a stable broadband service but out here in the sticks at 7km from the exchange that seems an impossibility - the exchange is not LLU so its BTw only.

What are the viable alternatives to ADSL these days and what speeds/latencies should I expect?

I've been doing some digging about and it looks as though 3 may be able to provide a 3G service here so that is one possibility.

I'd need the 3G dongle plugged into a router to get access points to both ends of the house, so what hardware might I need to purchase?

Sorry about the raft of questions.

Regards Jon
Standard User yarwell
(sensei) Thu 31-Mar-11 10:50:27
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Re: Viable alternatives to ADSL?


[re: FarmerGilesUK] [link to this post]
 
three do a "mi-fi" gadget which receives the 3G and acts as a wifi hotspot. 50 quid from memory.

Other more upmarket routers are available that support 3G datacards or USB dongles - just Google 3G router

Phil

MaxDSL - goes as fast as it can and doesn't read the line checker first.

MaxDSL diagnostics
Are your kids pirates ? Limewire, Bearshare, Kazaa, BitTorrent, eMule are all tools of the trade.
Standard User Andrue
(knowledge is power) Thu 31-Mar-11 10:52:03
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Re: Viable alternatives to ADSL?


[re: FarmerGilesUK] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by FarmerGilesUK:
I'm nearly at the end of my patience with 12 months of continual phone line/broadband issues. I really *need* a stable broadband service but out here in the sticks at 7km from the exchange that seems an impossibility - the exchange is not LLU so its BTw only.
That depends how important it really is.

If your livelihood depends on it then there's only option:Get a leased line. It'll cost you a few thousand to install and prolly a couple of hundred pounds a month rental but it'll be reliable and fast.

Alternatively a satellite link might be a cheaper option. Latency is a bit naff and there are usually severe speed or usage restrictions but it should be more reliable than ADSL.

3G..meh. Unless you happen to live right next to a mast I wouldn't recommend it. Based on the description of your location it'd have to be a mast for something like a motorway. Otherwise it's the same problem - no-one wants to spend vast sums of money erecting a mast that serves half a dozen goats and a couple of hay bales. Still - it's fairly cheap to buy a dongle and it might be good enough.

Andrue Cope
Brackley, UK

Just because he can smile


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Standard User FarmerGilesUK
(learned) Thu 31-Mar-11 11:27:14
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Re: Viable alternatives to ADSL?


[re: Andrue] [link to this post]
 
Only important in as much as because of where we are, I feel really cut off without it. We use Skype a lot to keep in touch and email, plus shopping on-line etc etc

For the most part the ADSL is reliable enough that it works most of the time, its just the frustration and time involved when I do have to report yet another line fault. Trees, squirrels, rats etc are responsible for most of the problems. We're lucky to see the line in good working order for more than a month or two. At the moment there's a continual buzz and intermittent crackle on it. When it crackles the router logs thousands of FEC errors. It'll be a mission to convince Plusnet/BTw that there is actually a problem though.

Regarding 3, we're quite high up and I can see the mast from here about 10 miles away with no obstructions. (At night I can see the red light on top of it!).

Satellite is a no go because of the latencies I think.

Thanks for the quick replies.
Standard User smurf46
(learned) Thu 31-Mar-11 12:10:23
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Re: Viable alternatives to ADSL?


[re: FarmerGilesUK] [link to this post]
 
You could try the (remote) possibility there might be a local wireless ISP - best list I know of is on the ISP Review site (by area): I get 11Mbps/5Mbps down/up enough for everything, at over 5 miles from a transmitter, but speeds and costs can vary a lot between operators depending on age and type of infrastructure and their policies. Disadvantage is need for line of sight to their transmitter, install cost for an aerial and requires a cable router.

Just a thought, is the mast a radio or TV mast (though may also have a mobile phone install), I recall there is an (out of date) mast finder on the Ofcom site which shows the location and operators with service on specific masts, (which I think is updated now only for 3, voda and O2). Most specific phone masts are I think limited to 15m height or so? The ops have coverage checkers, though they have seem to have quite high margins of error. Three manage (from a dongle without any signal amplification) from my small rural mast at about 2 miles (through a housing estate) a speed of up to 2.5Mbps/0.3Mbps) and seems to be consistent.

Edited by smurf46 (Thu 31-Mar-11 12:15:07)

Standard User expipexer
(learned) Thu 31-Mar-11 12:41:36
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Re: Viable alternatives to ADSL?


[re: FarmerGilesUK] [link to this post]
 
Why noy buy a 3 payg dongle from carphone warehouse which will give you 1gb enough to try it out over a month to see what speeds you can get throughout the day/night
Standard User MHC
(legend) Thu 31-Mar-11 14:08:33
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Re: Viable alternatives to ADSL?


[re: FarmerGilesUK] [link to this post]
 
You need a router with diversity - connected to ADSL and a 3G dongle for back up. They are available.

As for satellite - once you get used to the latency it is not an issue. I regularly run 500K bidirectional and never really a problem for me. The worst part will be cost - but then I do not pay!

The line crackle is voice related - report it to your voice provider as such and do not mention ADSL whatsoever. Who is your voice provider? If you really are out in the sticks with long lines and frequent problems caused by weather and vermin NEVER move from BT or you will have issue getting problems resolved.





~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


M H C


taurus excreta cerebrum vincit
Standard User FarmerGilesUK
(learned) Thu 31-Mar-11 14:39:57
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Re: Viable alternatives to ADSL?


[re: MHC] [link to this post]
 
@expipexer

That was what I was thinking about doing. I think a month is about 10-15 quid.

@MHC

I can't afford both a DSL and 3G connection. The 250-500ms additional latency of satellite will kill some of the stuff I need to run unfortunately. So probably 3G, if it works, is the only way forward. BTW there aren't any wi-fi providers covering this area.

My ISP and voice provider is PlusNet.

Thanks for the replies.
Standard User jchamier
(knowledge is power) Thu 31-Mar-11 20:13:46
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Re: Viable alternatives to ADSL?


[re: FarmerGilesUK] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by FarmerGilesUK:
So probably 3G, if it works, is the only way forward.


The 3 MiFi doesn't have much range as is battery powered and intended for small areas:
http://www.three.co.uk/Mobile_Broadband/MiFi

The alternative is a router with a capable USB slot, such as the Zoom:

Review:
http://www.expertreviews.co.uk/wireless-routers/2753...

Price:
http://www.broadbandbuyer.co.uk/Shop/ShopDetail.asp?...

or an expensive Draytek equivalent:
http://www.draytek.co.uk/products/3g_solutions.html

but you'll need to fit a Three USB modem:
http://threestore.three.co.uk/broadband/

Note that 15gb per month is the max at £15.99 - and generally in good reception areas speeds can get to about 3.5mbps with 1.0mbps uploads - but it is vary variable depending on others using the local cell site and weather etc.

A USB modem that supports an external antenna could be a good buy - or a third party USB modem from Zoom or one of the other vendors could replace the 3 one if needed.

James - be* pro - on THFB - sync about 17.2mbps - BQM
Standard User FarmerGilesUK
(learned) Thu 31-Mar-11 21:09:09
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Re: Viable alternatives to ADSL?


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
Thanks jchamier

Is there not a router about that will just take a Three SIM?
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