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Standard User Benjanyan
(regular) Sun 14-Jun-20 14:52:20
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Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[link to this post]
 
I'm under the impression that Smarty have some kind of proxy setup on their network from some of the posts on here. Well, I'm thinking that this thing is pretty damn slow recently.

Recently in the past 2-3 weeks, I've found some pages are very slow to load. Looking in the network tab, the loading seems to stall on mundane things on the page. Javascript scripts, logos and other things from CDNs. The loading of these will just hang for 20-40 seconds randomly holding the whole page up. Example on ThinkBroadband... the background image takes 20 seconds to load.

Needless to say, this is sort of annoying. The problem, of course, disappears when via a VPN. Actual throughput is fine.

Is anyone else experiencing this on Smarty or perhaps 3?

Ben
Standard User clyde123
(member) Mon 15-Jun-20 10:13:53
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Benjanyan] [link to this post]
 
Interesting.
I use a 4G router with a Smarty unlimited sim, using it for things like Windows downloads and updates which otherwise might saturate my normal connection.
Over the past week or more I've had a few times where I got "not connected to the internet" messages.
Haven't wasted any time trying to problem solve this, but interesting what you say. "Might" be connected.
Standard User pipcoo
(learned) Mon 15-Jun-20 10:50:47
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Benjanyan] [link to this post]
 
I`ve been experiencing similar things with my 3 unlimited data sim over the last 3-4 days so it might be a more widespread problem with network capacity.


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Standard User ardmhacha
(newbie) Mon 15-Jun-20 11:26:21
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Benjanyan] [link to this post]
 
I'm in Ireland and just moved to 4G broadband with Smarty and download speeds are x10 faster than my fibre connection. However, I am experiencing the same issue with some pages taking 10-20 seconds to open. Streaming etc is perfectly fine. Also there is a marked improvement when I go through NordVPN. Definitely a widespread problem.
Standard User pipcoo
(learned) Mon 15-Jun-20 12:27:26
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: ardmhacha] [link to this post]
 
I`m in Northern Ireland and have also noticed an improvement when using a VPN, any idea why this would be?
Administrator MrSaffron
(staff) Tue 16-Jun-20 10:17:10
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: pipcoo] [link to this post]
 
Could be DNS is failing i.e. slow or not responding, or some exit routes from a network are heavily congested but VPN tunnels out through one of the good ones by chance.

The author of the above post is a thinkbroadband staff member. It may not constitute an official statement on behalf of thinkbroadband.
Standard User Benjanyan
(regular) Tue 16-Jun-20 11:31:01
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: ardmhacha] [link to this post]
 
I'm in Ireland and just moved to 4G broadband with Smarty and download speeds are x10 faster than my fibre connection. However, I am experiencing the same issue with some pages taking 10-20 seconds to open. Streaming etc is perfectly fine. Also there is a marked improvement when I go through NordVPN. Definitely a widespread problem.

Cheers, ardmhacha. Sounds like exactly the same.

A lot of the more popular websites like YouTube all work perfectly fine. Problems seem to start when you come across less popular sites.

Ben
Standard User Benjanyan
(regular) Tue 16-Jun-20 11:35:03
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: clyde123] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by clyde123:
Interesting.
I use a 4G router with a Smarty unlimited sim, using it for things like Windows downloads and updates which otherwise might saturate my normal connection.
Over the past week or more I've had a few times where I got "not connected to the internet" messages.
Haven't wasted any time trying to problem solve this, but interesting what you say. "Might" be connected.


I haven't noticed this personally. It always seems to be connected. It's just browsing the web that I notice. Could be related though.

Ben
Standard User Benjanyan
(regular) Tue 16-Jun-20 19:33:37
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Benjanyan] [link to this post]
 
Uploaded a video of the issue to make it clearer. Should stream on most browsers.

Seems really bad tonight.

Ben
Standard User syncropatrick
(newbie) Wed 17-Jun-20 14:50:59
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Benjanyan] [link to this post]
 
Changing DNS servers away from Three's own doesn't help.
Large downloads and popular websites such Facebook and BBC are fine.
To make minor websites work OK, only way I've found is to use my corporate VPN.

I agree it looks like their proxy is the holdup.

In USO land.
Standard User Benjanyan
(regular) Wed 17-Jun-20 15:23:35
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: syncropatrick] [link to this post]
 
I think so too but...

I've tried via another cell today on my phone and the issue didn't seem to be present. Smarty support have also said that there's ongoing work at the specific mast I'm connecting to at home since yesterday. They didn't have a completion date for the work.

So I'll give it a little while and see if it improves. And like you, I'm resorting to using a VPN to make it more usable!

Ben
Standard User JackpotUK
(newbie) Thu 18-Jun-20 12:16:10
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Benjanyan] [link to this post]
 
HI all, just adding to this.

A few months ago, I too joined smarty and found them to be really good. Using it through a Huawei B525-23a router, I would often get 4G+ and thus, speeds up to 60Mbps.

Then, one day, I noticed that I couldn't log into my Dropbox and my wife couldn't access some of her Uni books.

To cut a long story short, after about 40 emails over a 6 week period to a very nice man called Graeme, today my Dropbox is back. His 'networking team' obviously did something to rectify the problem, so I suggest you all put a similar complaint in as it could rectify your problems.
Standard User Tempbemp
(newbie) Fri 17-Jul-20 20:24:48
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Benjanyan] [link to this post]
 
I googled my problem with smarty and found your post so yes I agree! I change my mobile provider frequently and whilst 3 I have no problems with (re network) - they are fast and plentiful. Smarty have something going on that I doubt they are even aware of. Something is wrong. Too slow waiting for the lightest of pages to fully load.
Standard User ZombieWorm
(newbie) Mon 20-Jul-20 22:41:27
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: syncropatrick] [link to this post]
 
Yes I am glad only because I am not the only one pointing the finger at the 3 network now. I done lots of testing, and my day job is a sys admin for a SMB so I know how to do reasonable troubleshooting.

I had to bite the lip when it was classic "reboot your phone" and "take the SIM out and pop back in" advice as they dont believe you when you flag it up with them.

Numerous "local unscheduled maintenance in your postcode" excuses as I think they dont know what to tell you.

The last service personnel that replied to my complaint basically said if you dont like it try another provider - so I have not renewed it.
Standard User ZombieWorm
(newbie) Tue 21-Jul-20 14:25:36
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: ZombieWorm] [link to this post]
 
Today has been horrendous to get bulletin board and web pages to load.

I even setup a VPN to test in the router and it didnt get better.

As some have said popular sites seem to load normal, its a strange balance mechanism they have setup prioritising streaming for example.

Items such as captcha get very confused and really frustrating for users.
Standard User buggerlugs
(member) Tue 21-Jul-20 16:30:28
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: ZombieWorm] [link to this post]
 
I don't think its three's network but a combination of outdated mast tech and the way the masts talk to their backbone provider, So when there is a lack of available bandwidth at the mast to and from their backbone provider it starts the page hanging issue.

I base this conclusion on the fact when I'm getting the highest levels of contention (slowest speeds) the page load issue shows itself far more frequently.

The way this issue only arose when three launched 5g on their "New core" probably has a lot to do with it too. Whether that is part of their network or not is anyone's guess.
Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 21-Jul-20 17:16:41
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: buggerlugs] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by buggerlugs:
I don't think its three's network but a combination of outdated mast tech and the way the masts talk to their backbone provider.
That sounds like a fair guess.

From Peter Clarke on twitter comes this statement on Three's network: Nokia/Samsung Core. Nokia (3G), Samsung (4G), Huawei (4G+5G) RAN.

We know Three was removing Samsung and adding Huawei 4G, to allow for Huawei 5G to sit alongside. This seems to be continuing until end of this year, when they'll have to switch based on Government news last week.

So perhaps there is a problem with the Samsung 4G equipment in high load areas? I don't think any other UK network used Samsung equipment.

20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM
Standard User buggerlugs
(member) Tue 21-Jul-20 18:10:16
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
So does it mean they'll have to remove all existing 4g and 5g Huawei mast hardware?
Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 21-Jul-20 18:33:08
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: buggerlugs] [link to this post]
 
I’m not an expert but I believe the govt ruling is for 5G hardware only.

However since 5G needs 4G to work (today) the networks may choose to swap both at the same time to a new vendor.

They have until 2027 !!

20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM
Standard User buggerlugs
(member) Wed 22-Jul-20 08:54:24
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
Interesting, so that'd explain the way Three's 5g rollout affected the quality of the 4g service. Seems a daft way to implement a newer technology, by taking bandwidth from existing technology.
Standard User ZombieWorm
(newbie) Wed 22-Jul-20 09:05:34
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: buggerlugs] [link to this post]
 
It is and considering from what I have read the 5G masts are going to be cherry picked areas I can only hope the less dense rural users that need the bandwidth get factored in first.
Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Wed 22-Jul-20 09:14:04
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: buggerlugs] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by buggerlugs:
Interesting, so that'd explain the way Three's 5g rollout affected the quality of the 4g service. Seems a daft way to implement a newer technology, by taking bandwidth from existing technology.


Uhhh?? Nope, you've got that wrong. 5G does NOT take bandwidth from 4G, in fact in the UK it is using the 3.5 GHz band, which is not used for 4G

5G today in most of the world is "non stand alone" which means it only works alongside 4G, and today it needs the same vendor of hardware. So that Three can add 5G they need to replace the Samsung 4G hardware with Huawei 4G hardware, which enables them to add 5G.

The Samsung hardware does not seem to be working very well in a lot of places. Unfortunately I don't know how to tell which hardware your local mast has.

20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM
Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Wed 22-Jul-20 09:14:58
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: ZombieWorm] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by ZombieWorm:
It is and considering from what I have read the 5G masts are going to be cherry picked areas I can only hope the less dense rural users that need the bandwidth get factored in first.


Most rural areas won't need 5G, but need solid and working 4G, which seems to be the problem. For some people switching to another network has proved this.

20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM
Standard User ZombieWorm
(newbie) Wed 22-Jul-20 16:57:33
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
I am pretty sure I am served from the same mast. I cant rule out though who owns the equipment and then prioritise their service (if they can).
Standard User Anonymous1337
(newbie) Tue 28-Jul-20 09:51:19
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Benjanyan] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by Benjanyan:
Needless to say, this is sort of annoying. The problem, of course, disappears when via a VPN. Actual throughput is fine.

Is anyone else experiencing this on Smarty or perhaps 3?

I can confirm the same issue. I use Smarty in an old 4G mobile and tethered for internet. Page loads don't even occur, or are very slow. If I turn on a VPN - everything is fine.

Interestingly enough, if I TURN OFF 4G and force the phone to 3G, page loads are fast again, and it isn't an issue of 4G congestion in my area as I get at least 60mbps most of the day!

Something is seriously wrong with Three's/Smarty's 4G APN or something. I won't hold my breath on them fixing it however.
Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 28-Jul-20 10:35:55
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Anonymous1337] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by Anonymous1337:
Something is seriously wrong with Three's/Smarty's 4G APN or something. I won't hold my breath on them fixing it however.

You might find a real Three SIM is better. Smarty is a discount service, and I wonder if they are rate limiting, which would explain why a VPN is able to bypass?

20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM
Standard User andynormancx
(member) Tue 28-Jul-20 10:48:20
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
When my Three connection got really bad it didn't look like anything to do with rate limiting.

The problem appeared to be around starting new TCP connections. If you had a TCP connection setup or where using UDP (like your typical VPN or some video streaming) then everything worked well.

When you were doing something that involved creating lots of TCP connections, like browsing complex webpages then things started taking a long time to load or failing to load.

The problem occurred for me on both of Three's APNs, so it can't have been the CGNAT part of the network that was having problems. Somewhere else in their network didn't seem to be giving TCP syn/ack processes the appropriate priority.
Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 28-Jul-20 11:05:07
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: andynormancx] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by andynormancx:
When my Three connection got really bad it didn't look like anything to do with rate limiting.
I wonder if it is load, or the (perhaps legacy?) equipment in your area is cannot cope at that percentage of load?

20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM
Standard User Benjanyan
(member) Tue 28-Jul-20 18:37:05
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
I can't really make sense of it to be honest. I agree with most of what's been said so far.

I don't think it's totally random though - I feel static parts of a page (CSS, js, HTML) and notably things from CDNs suffer from the issue far more if you're watching in developer tools. This is why I've suggested it's some kind of caching proxy that just isn't performing sometimes. Popular sites seem to suffer far less. If you're googling something obscure and looking at a lot of random sites, it's painful.

But then again, I didn't see the issue on another mast further down the road... So perhaps more like jchaimer's theory.

I did raise this with Smarty and requested that they raise it with their network team. After determining that I was using no data (because they were looking at the wrong mast), I've not heard from them since.

I no longer actually need the connection now so I've not been using it since the weekend. I don't plan to use it or chase Smarty now.

Ben
Standard User Anonymous1337
(newbie) Wed 12-Aug-20 13:23:44
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Benjanyan] [link to this post]
 
Do people still have this issue even when they have turned off the content filter?

This is what I was going to test next.
Standard User Benjanyan
(member) Fri 14-Aug-20 20:04:23
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Anonymous1337] [link to this post]
 
I did

Ben
Standard User Anonymous1337
(newbie) Mon 24-Aug-20 13:01:02
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Benjanyan] [link to this post]
 
I gave up in the end and just decided to use a VPN like PIA.

50 quid for two years, and I just terminate at a London PoP so I don't see any issues with latency or throughput.

Through a VPN or some form of tunnel, Smarty/Three is perfectly fine.

This would be the same issue that Three MBB people are having as well: https://forums.thinkbroadband.com/mobilebroadband/f/...

Edited by Anonymous1337 (Mon 24-Aug-20 13:01:51)

Standard User richi
(member) Tue 08-Sep-20 16:29:29
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Re: Smarty slow/stalling page loading


[re: Benjanyan] [link to this post]
 
Quick pointer to this thread, where I describe how it's fixed for me: Three is finally working properly OMFG.

70/30 Three unlimited SIMO, replacing 3 km ADSL line.
Previously: BT ISDN, Nildram, Plusnet, 186k, EFH, Be*, Plusnet (again), Pulse8, Sky, Plusnet Business, TalkTalk Retail.
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