Well, my christmas present from OTE turns out to be a lemon. Let’s re-cap: on December 19th I ordered the upgrade to 24Mbps. The lady at the other side assured me that I qualified technically. By that I understood that the infrastructure of OTE was capable of actually delivering 24Mbps to my house.
On December 24th, a few minutes before 18:00, I was disconnected. No call from a friendly technician to warn me, even though the lady who took the order had noted down both my landline and mobile number “so that we can inform you”. Ha! As we were invited by Lies and Daniel to spend christmas eve with them and a bunch of other friends, I didn’t mind that much.
At 04:00 on December 25th when we came back home the lights on the modem were still out. Just before we got into bed a few minutes later however I noticed through the open bedroom door that the modem was functioning again. I wasn’t going to check it then.
We woke up at 12:00 and after a healthy breakfast I set out to check out the line. It was down again. This didn’t bode too well. The log file showed that the modem had been down on christmas eve for nearly 10 hours, the time needed to switch from 2Mbps to 24Mbps? Since then there had been outages every five to ten minutes, each time for a couple of minutes. Now it was down again and would remain so for 14 hours. Since we were again meeting with some friends it didn’t bother me that much. After all, this was christmas, peace and all that.
On Wednesday 26th the modem was up when we woke at around 10 o’clock. The rest of the day I would see it drop its connection every couple of minutes, lasting for a couple of minutes each time. At 18:00 it dropped completely again, this time for 16 hours. Now it was getting a bit worrisome.
During the few moments of uptime I tested the download speed by downloading some large files from the OTE’s own ftp server. That should give a good indication of the real bandwidth. It never got above 2Mbps, which is what I got before I upgraded. This is also more or less what the various web based speed tests report. Closer examination of the modem settings through SNMP shows that the ATM port is clocked at around 10Mbps, the ADSL port only runs at 2Mbps. I’m not knowledgeable enough in this field to conclude anything from that, though I do understand that 10 ≠ 24. If anyone can explain the difference between the ATM and ADSL ports, and whether the ADSL port should indicate a speed of 24Mbps, I would be most grateful.
Some other statistics from the modem, just in case someone can shed some light on them:
Uptime: 0 days, 1:31:23
Modulation: G.992.5 Annex A
Bandwidth (Up/Down) [kbps/kbps]: 1.023 / 10.179
Data Transferred (Sent/Received) [KB/MB]: 646,00 / 2,81
Output Power (Up/Down) [dBm]: 12,0 / 19,0
Line Attenuation (Up/Down) [dB]: 23,5 / 43,0
SN Margin (Up/Down) [dB]: 10,5 / 9,0
Vendor ID (Local/Remote): TMMB / BDCM
Loss of Framing (Local/Remote): 0 / 0
Loss of Signal (Local/Remote): 0 / 0
Loss of Power (Local/Remote): 0 / 0
Loss of Link (Remote): 0
Error Seconds (Local/Remote): 3.656 / 0
FEC Errors (Up/Down): 0 / 0
CRC Errors (Up/Down): 96 / 20.356
HEC Errors (Up/Down): 34 / 3.758
The line has been stable now for over an hour. It appears that someone might be working on it (though of course I will never find out). If I keep getting these outages and if I don’t see any speed approaching at least 24Mbps, I will be back to OTE next week Monday to cancel the upgrade and give me back my 2Mbps connection.