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Networking The Internet Upgrades

Chattanooga's Municipal Network Doubles Down On Fiber Speeds 165

Posted by timothy
from the choo-choo-is-not-the-right-sound-for-this dept.
tetrahedrassface writes "The first city in the U.S. to offer a screaming fast fiber network has now announced customers will get a free 60% boost in speed. If you had the 30 MB/sec service you now will get 50. Mid-range customers get a doubling for free, while the high end consumers of fiber get an average 250% boost. The fiber network recently passed 40,000 members and judging from a test of my business, we are currently over 300 MB/sec." What's the fastest service actually available where you live, and what does it cost?
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Chattanooga's Municipal Network Doubles Down On Fiber Speeds

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  • by ugen (93902) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @10:35AM (#41428041)

    On an end-user end - what exactly do you do with these speeds? I have fairly ho-hum Comcast running at about 15mbit/s. Frankly, I am not sure what to use that speed for. Web page opening speed is now governed by remote server processing capacity, files download instantly, movies stream (and in any case my movie consumption capacity is limited by low information to noise ratio :) ). What else? Am I missing something people really do with this?

    • by BLKMGK (34057)

      In my case I'm working on setting up an Open VPN connection between myself and another so that my media library is accessible remotely. I'm already able to stream to my phone. Lots of potential!

      • by modmans2ndcoming (929661) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @11:11AM (#41428293)

        you know that 15 Mbit down on a cable connection is not the rate at which you upload right? upload speeds are typically 1 Mbit, 2 if you pay extra.

        • Upgrade to fiber (Score:5, Informative)

          by AliasMarlowe (1042386) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @11:33AM (#41428461) Journal

          you know that 15 Mbit down on a cable connection is not the rate at which you upload right? upload speeds are typically 1 Mbit, 2 if you pay extra.

          So true. We have a 100/100 Mbps symmetric link on fiber at home. It's also uncapped, etc. Apparently a couple of km from here, there is a 200Mbps or 350Mbps service available, but not where we live.

          What do we use it for? Well, there are generally two adults and two teenagers at home, and the need for bandwidth adds up. Downloading an ISO does happen occasionally (reaching speeds up to 60Mbps from sites within Finland, dropping to 5Mbps from overseas), but mostly it's just web surfing and viewing youtube or vimeo.

          We also have a web server at home, which delivers - according to its stats package - 15-30 GByte per month, and mostly serves pictures and videos of the kids and adults performing in the local dance school and in the local riding school. Although the average bandwidth is not huge, we get two or three videos being viewed simultaneously just after the server is updated for some new event, and the videos typically require 2Mbps to 4Mbps for streaming.

          The alternative for us would be a 40/10 Mbps link, which would be quite inadequate.

        • by noc007 (633443)

          EPB FTTH is symetrical. Their slowest speed is 50mb up and down.

      • by vlm (69642)

        In my case I'm working on setting up an Open VPN connection between myself and another so that my media library is accessible remotely. I'm already able to stream to my phone. Lots of potential!

        You can do that with Plex outta the box with the integrated myplex service. Takes about 5 minutes to set up, assuming you've already got Plex as a media server or you're willing to run in parallel with mythtv (which is what I do). The fact that I can stream my videos over a slow CELL PHONE connection indicates I have absolutely no idea what to do with 50 megs.

        I know what a business could do with that. What I'm mystified about is given likely "no servers" terms of service, what can a end user do with it?

        • by BLKMGK (34057)

          I'm not running Plex although I may look at it out of curiosity. I'm running multiple XBMC boxes on my home network on ION/Atom hardware with unRaid NAS supporting them. Overall I've had excellent service from this with no special server although for streaming to my iPhone I use PlayOn. I've got spare hardware so maybe this will be the next thing I play with. Working on a firewall upgrade presently - ClearOS - and it's being a pita lol.

        • by BLKMGK (34057)

          Okay took a eek at Plex. Looks interesting in that it can run as an app under unRaid for the server portion but there's no Linux client. Now I'm no snob when it comes to Linux but paying for Win7 or better on my front-ends and then apparently needing a much beefier computer for each of them strikes me as foolish. The IOS client looks great although $5 in the app store. I have no Intel Mac hardware that I could use, none of the MAC stuff I have meets their specs either.

          A neat idea and I may yet try their IOS

    • by Joehonkie (665142)
      Yes. Yes you are. I do a lot of downloading and uploading of decently sized files, as well as streaming HD video and playing online games, and I'd like to be able to do the latter without it being affected by the former, and I'd like the former to happen as fast as possible to make it more convenient.
      • by ugen (93902)

        So what you are saying is that there are additional lifestyle choices I would need to make (like watching more video content and playing online games) to make full use of higher speeds? That can't be healthy, but oh well, I see your point.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          a.) Backing up remote servers (in addition to the backups running within the data center)
          b.) Trying to stay ahead of the bandwidth consumption of my kids!

          The latter is the difficult part. If it was just me it would be enough to have about 10-15 Mbit/sec. Add in some kids and you're suddenly in a world of pain!

          • B) Don't I know it. If there weren't 4 computers on the home network I'd be able to get by with a meager 512k u/d speed. What I want is lower ping times insted of the ever growing crap I've been seeing to various servers. Hell this would even improve the VOIP experience (triple play package) if they'd fix the damn Lag. Proper QoS might be of help there.

        • by LinkX39 (1100879)
          I don't get your hang-up here. That's like saying "Yeah, my car can do 65 miles an hour but I only ever drive in the city where the speed limit is typically 45 or lower. Do cars actually need to be able to go faster than that?" Just because YOU only do things that make use of the lower end of the spectrum doesn't mean it's "unhealthy" for other people to take advantage of the higher end, or even "unhealthy" for YOU to take advantage of them at times. Your reaction to their explanations confuse me......
        • by sjames (1099)

          More likely, if such speeds were available, you might making lifestyle choices that aren't open to you now. People didn't get electricity in their homes because they wanted to stay up later watching TV in primetime, but they DID choose to stay up later (and eventually get a TV) because electricity in the home became nearly ubiquitous.

          Going back further, people didn't get indoor plumbing because they wanted a nightly shower rather than a weekly bath, but once they had indoor plumbing, they did mostly make th

    • by MightyYar (622222) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @10:47AM (#41428137)

      For me, it would be remote backup and video streaming. Video streaming lets me get rid of cable (or would, if it weren't for live sports). Before you say, "but 15 Mbps is fast enough for HD video", consider that there are 4 people living in this house - and a remote backup could kick off at any time as well. Remote backup is awesome at high speed if your upstream can handle it. For my roughly 2TB of data from 3 computers, it takes (best case) 3 months to upload on a Comcast 2Mbps uplink. The 50 Mbps minimum speed that they quote in TFA applies upstream as well, so that's only 4 days!

    • by buglista (1967502)
      I've got 20mb/s down - ISOs for example do NOT download "instantly" as you put it. On Virgin cable (what I'm on), you can get 120mb/s - which I don't need, but the upstream bandwidth that goes with that would be welcome - takes ages for me to upload a VM to someone else.
      • I had the WORST time with Virgin... 3 are faster - and more stable - and are not picky about the amount of bandwidth you use, unlike a certain cable provider.

        2010 I kicked Virgin to the kerb for the last time as I was getting 50% uptime at a VERY generous estimate (having to restart the fucking router every half an hour did NOTHING for my disposition nor my work rate) and never any more than 2MBit down. On a 30MBit contract.

        • by buglista (1967502)
          I think this is because they are an amalgamation of (literally?) every cable company in the UK. What can I say? I get the advertised speed in general, and good uptime - but it does seem to vary a lot with area from what I hear. (I'm in Bristol)
      • by xaxa (988988)

        Virgin (UK cable) upgraded me to 60Mbit/s a few months ago. An ISO downloads in less than two minutes at that speed, and they generally did.

        However, I've recently moved house, and can't get cable here. but hopefully I'll be able to get the new FTTC service that should be available at the end of the month. The upstream on that is 9Mbits/s, which will be nice. At the moment, I've got normal ADSL (16Mbit/s or so, down, 0.0000001Mbit/s up), and my phone's 3G uploads faster.

        I'd really like this service: https [hyperoptic.com]

    • One of the big problems with DSL and to a lesser extent cable connections is they often have lousy upstream. Fine if all you do is consume content but painful when you produce something big and want to upload it.

      Also while small files may download "instantly" at 15 mbit/s large files certainly don't. Grabbing a new version of an install CD/DVD still takes noticable time.

      Having said all that I don't do any of theese things often enough to justify the higher cost of a faster connection.

    • I was directly interrogating massive databases for massive amounts of information on a very frequent basis. A fast connection was, at the time, absolutely essential to maintaining my work rate.

      Unfortunately, Virgin Media did not deliver. Looking elsewhere, I found a cellular provider that did. In spades.

    • by Shinobi (19308)

      As an end-user, me and my family uses our 100Mbit/s connection to watch HD streams, play games(including downloading them.... it's at the point where installing straight from the net is faster than from DVD's), I also use it in my work, downloading huge datasets from clients etc, as well as uploading.

      I am actually considering upgrading to the 1Gbit/s option.

    • by Kookus (653170) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @01:02PM (#41429127) Journal

      I just don't get why memory manufacturers are making such large capacity modules. Why would anyone ever need more than 64kb of memory?

      I don't get why people make short-sighted statements about why an existing limitation isn't a problem,

      People don't build sites, or applications, or services very often that have requirements that exceed things like memory, or network speed. If they do, they learn real fast that people call their product a piece of crap.

      If network speeds were fast enough, then there'd be a way for us to store all of our information in "the cloud", and not have to worry about things like backups, or virus scanning on a at home basis. We could write operating systems that were designed to be run centrally, just like the good old mainframe era and dumb terminals. Then we wouldn't have as many grandma's out there running windows 95 in the year 2010.

      Hell, you could ask the browser makers if they like the sounds of that! (Not the windows 95 crap, but the operating system in a cloud, aka web browser with apps).

      Seriously. Everyone with a desk job (or student) doesn't need to drive into work. Get some good video conferencing solutions, a huge pipe to your office files, a cheap-as-dirt dumb terminal in your living room (or home-office), and now you actually have a fighting chance at staving off unimportant things like global warming (less gas for travel).

      No need for schools to pay for buses, more money for teachers. Unfortunately, probably a lot less teachers). More stay-at-home professionals, everyone get's to gain an extra hour of their life back per day (less travel). An extra hour means later wake-up times, which would probably have a better impact than daylight savings time.

      So what could people do with a fatter pipe? Oh, man, I don't know. Let's go back to 64kb of main memory. Or how about something a little easier to think of, let's go back to pre-cellphone times. Everyone doesn't need a cell phone. What can people not do with their existing land-lines?

      I'd rather think on the order of, if it's not infinite/instant, it's not good enough. Once you get there, then you can question why anyone would need anything more.

      • by hawguy (1600213)

        If network speeds were fast enough, then there'd be a way for us to store all of our information in "the cloud", and not have to worry about things like backups, or virus scanning on a at home basis. We could write operating systems that were designed to be run centrally, just like the good old mainframe era and dumb terminals. Then we wouldn't have as many grandma's out there running windows 95 in the year 2010.

        My 15mbit connection speed is already fast enough to let me store my data in "the cloud", 100mbit or 1gig wouldn't make any difference. The cost of cloud storage, plus the question of how I can access my data when my high speed internet connection is down for a week is what keeps me from storing all of my data in the cloud.

        Seriously. Everyone with a desk job (or student) doesn't need to drive into work. Get some good video conferencing solutions, a huge pipe to your office files, a cheap-as-dirt dumb terminal in your living room (or home-office), and now you actually have a fighting chance at staving off unimportant things like global warming (less gas for travel).

        No need for schools to pay for buses, more money for teachers. Unfortunately, probably a lot less teachers). More stay-at-home professionals, everyone get's to gain an extra hour of their life back per day (less travel). An extra hour means later wake-up times, which would probably have a better impact than daylight savings time.

        There are lots of good video conference systems that don't need 100mbit or more -- there were decent video conference systems 10 years ago that ran on 256kbit bonded ISDN lines. Bandwidth

        • by Kookus (653170)

          A 52x cd-rom drive is faster than your internet connection.
          Go download a linux live cd.
          Imagine that your cd rom is actually a substitute for your internet connection, and the cd is "the cloud". Kinda sucks doesn't it?

          So what can people do with a fatter pipe? My company has multiple gigabit connections to the internet, but we don't do anything significantly different with the internet than I do at home.

          In relationship to your job, maybe they don't do anything that drastically different...
          But, if you ever hear of someone using something like... ohhhh remote desktop, so they can get into their work computer from home, then you just hit the whole point of my argument.

          Remote desktop is a hack for

          • by hawguy (1600213)

            A 52x cd-rom drive is faster than your internet connection.
            Go download a linux live cd.
            Imagine that your cd rom is actually a substitute for your internet connection, and the cd is "the cloud". Kinda sucks doesn't it?

            So what can people do with a fatter pipe? My company has multiple gigabit connections to the internet, but we don't do anything significantly different with the internet than I do at home.

            In relationship to your job, maybe they don't do anything that drastically different...
            But, if you ever hear of someone using something like... ohhhh remote desktop, so they can get into their work computer from home, then you just hit the whole point of my argument.

            I use remote desktop to work from home because I don't want to (or am not allowed for licensing reasons) to install the programs I have on my work computer. I could install MS Office on my home computer and work on docs from home, but I find it much more convenient to rdp into the terminal server at work to work on them.

            Remote desktop is a hack for a network problem. It's too slow to ship the actual programs running on the remote computer to your desktop. So instead, we duplicate unnecessary hardware (your computer), then ship over only the graphics, user input. The graphics try to only send the differences between screen transitions, and then do more hacks like limiting the amount of colors it'll actually represent on the other side.

            The people at my workplace have a slightly better hack for that problem. They use laptops and then sneaker-net the programs they need back to their home. Then hope they have everything they need while they are "remote".

            if they are going to drag their laptop home, why not just use the VPN to access the network share from home instead of taking the time to copy it to a flash drive? If they keep everything on

      • by tehcyder (746570)

        Seriously. Everyone with a desk job (or student) doesn't need to drive into work. Get some good video conferencing solutions, a huge pipe to your office files, a cheap-as-dirt dumb terminal in your living room (or home-office), and now you actually have a fighting chance at staving off unimportant things like global warming (less gas for travel).

        What a pile of old toot. You can work or study from home perfectly easily with a very modest internet connection already. It's just that most people don't want to, and most companies don't want them to. It's a social, not a technical issue..

    • by noc007 (633443)

      For starters, not having any lag on remoting into my home computer from wherever I am via RDP over SSH tunneling. Being able to upload and download a file at the same rate would be nice; I have had to upload a file to my home server from one place and download to another place to get around some routing or ACL issues. Running a mini-datacenter would be nice too.

    • by Espectr0 (577637)

      Me? Nothing. But if everyone increases their speeds, older/slower ISP's will be forced to at least try to catch up.

      I live in Venezuela, and the standard connection is 1Mbps. I can't even watch youtube at 360p any more, and 240p also stops while buffering.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    3mbit down. Just doubled from from 1.5mbit. $30/month.

    Central California.

  • I have FiOS and the fastest we can get (residential) is 300mbps down with 65mbps up. This is part of their new FiOS quantum package it seems. In Boston MA.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      FIOS in PG county, Maryland

      $214 / mo :: 300/65
      $105 / mo :: 150/65
      $95 / mo :: 75/35
      $85 / mo :: 50/25
      $75 / mo :: 15/5

      * The top 4 are branded "Quantum"
      * This is for bare internet, the price per service drops substantially in bundles (i.e. TV/Internet, or TV/Internet/Phone)... i.e. 50/25 + 210 TV channels is only $89 + rental for STB

  • 200Mbps/30Mbps upload, at $200 per month for the first three months. Other than that, 100Mbps/50Mbps upload Oh, don't forget about the 250GB Cap (Combined upload and download), it's $1 /GB after that. My ISP called me out of the blue and said they were changing their pricing, and I was using 450GB of data. My next bill "was going to be $300" but they were waiving it where it was a new policy. Fucking Canadian Duopoly.
    • heeh... that's where they get you on contracts... cellular is worst for this. 3 have unlimited data on prepay for £15 a month, but if you go contract, that same £15/mo gets you 3GB data - go over that and you're charged 1p/MB (remember this is overflow data on contract but you are getting a guarantee of service which you do not get on prepay - anywhere). That's £10/GB - $16 Can. You pull 450GB on a plan like that, you're looking at over seven thousand Dollars. With "normal" usage on contra

  • by Anonymous Coward

    To get the First Post.

    EBP Fiber is great. Love my service.

  • For $90 my local WISP will sell me 1.5 Mbps bursting to 3 Mbps for a psuedorandom period of time they will not explain which is limited not just by availability but also by some bullshit criteria they have invented to try to motivate me to pay for more access. Even at 0200h they still cut me down to the base 768k (bursting to 1.5 Mbps) after 20 minutes-ish. I pay $46/mo for this.

    I live within a bowshot of mediacom cable and AT&T DSL, but I can't get either.

    • by jwm2pi (2737163)
      wow and I thought I had it bad at 5Mb down for $70 per month. It was like pulling teeth to get that kind of speed out of our local municipal utilities. You gotta love a monopoly its good for everyone :)
      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        I felt compelled to comment because of all the people who can get something better than satellite, I'm probably one of the worst-off in the USA... but I'm willing to be proven wrong

        • by volmtech (769154)
          I feel your pain. I live one mile from the end of dsl and cable service. I pay $80 a month for 1.5 Mb capped at 475 MB a day. I have lived in the same house for forty one years. There is no prospect of growth in my area so I will be long dead before any new services are available on my road.
          • by drinkypoo (153816)

            Ouch, with that cap, you "win".

            I'm gradually collecting access points that run Linux, solar panels and charge controllers, etc. I hope to move way into the boonies and build a mesh network one day soon :p

    • I pay $20, for 50mbps down and 25 up, 250Gb per month. I use Novus, which is available in select buildings in Vancouver.

      • by vlm (69642)

        I pay $20, for 50mbps down and 25 up, 250Gb per month. I use Novus, which is available in select buildings in Vancouver.

        So you can only use it for eleven hours per month. Which brings up the question of what you can do for "less than 10 hours per month" at that high speed.

        A new "super duper WOW like MMORPG" that requires 50 megs complete with smell-o-vision sounds cool, but you can only play for 10 hours a month, so maybe not so cool... Watch extra super triple resolution streamed hi def TV? Sure... just keep it under 20 minutes per day...

        The good news about the future is eventually we'll all have 10Gig ethernet fiber to

  • by Anonymous Coward
    I am really amazed at how the city has really gotten on the ball with this. I was back home a couple of years ago and wandered around downtown. I was really surprised to see the buses running around broadcasting wifi. What's more, with a population of less than 200,000 in the city and less than 500k in the metro area, as well as being one of the most conservative places you could ever visit in the U.S., I am truly amazed. Now... if only Baltimore could do this...
  • by pnot (96038) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @10:49AM (#41428149)

    ... as to how much of a boost you get for your business when you manage to sneak a link to it into a /. summary.

    Well played sir.

    • by watice (1347709)
      i'm more curious as to why you need 300mbits for a restaurant that doesn't accept reservations because they seat "family style". I sincerely hope you're some kind of webhost and all that broadband isn't going to waste.
    • by LinkX39 (1100879)
      Well, since no one actually ever clicks the links no boost whatsoever. ZING!
  • Where I live I can get 400 Mb/s up and down (symmetric).
    The price? $1000/mo. I guess you will really have to need it to spend that kind of money...
    • Afaict you can get any speed you want pretty much anywhere you want if you are prepared to pay enough.

      OOI Is that price for a "boardband" connection or for a serious connection with dedicated bandwidth, service level agreement etc?

      • Afaict you can get any speed you want pretty much anywhere you want if you are prepared to pay enough.

        I think my employers networking people would love to see that in Siberia or in Africa... without spending our entire network budget, that is.

        OOI Is that price for a "boardband" connection or for a serious connection with dedicated bandwidth, service level agreement etc?

        This is for private use. The bandwidth is real, as the ISP has really good lines. This is not in a low cost country, by the way...

  • by carlhaagen (1021273) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @10:49AM (#41428159)
    ...an ethernet socket in my apartment. The maximum I can subscribe to is 1000/100 - yes, that's gigabit ethernet down - for 70 EUR/month. What I'm currently buying via the same socket is 25/10 mbit/s, which costs me about 24 EUR/month, which is just over $30. I get this through this building being connected to my municipal city network in which multiple operators can do business. This method is getting very common here in Sweden.
  • 100Mbps/10Mbps fiber for R$ 500/month (about USD 250/month). Currently I have 10Mbps/1Mbps ADSL, but then I need to pay for a phone line that I do not use. Totals about USD 60/month. And then, I still consider myself lucky: some smaller cities have nothing better than WISPs which cost an arm and a leg and provide very bad service.
  • TW is the only ISP in my neighborhood. Officially we get 1MB/s up, 8Mb/s down. And ever since I signed up for the federal SAM speed testing program I heard about here on /., I've actually seen those speeds more than half the time. Before that, and now on weekends, we're generally at 50Kbytes/s (so 400 Kb/s) down, around 5% of the advertised "speed."

    People say you get what you pay for, but not with Time Warner.

    And those of you pissing about "well, whaddya need it for?" That's not the point. (In my case
    • by guruevi (827432)

      Same here, they (TWC) charge nearly $70 for 10/1 which blows out every so often (frequently the modem restarts and has to re-sync) and I barely get 8Mbps. YouTube test site tells me I get 8Mbps but the statistics shows me it actually averages out to 5 Mbps, the well-known SpeedTest and SpeakEasy test sites say I get up to 25Mbps down, the federal test sites say I get 15Mbps but that's ONLY to those sites, even my job which has 500 Mbps synchronous directly connected to the TWC PoP which I am terminated to m

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I have 100Mbps/100Mbps for about 75 sek (~11$ usd) per month though my housing cooperative.
    Could probably get substantially faster if I wanted to pay for a business-connection but it would probably cost a lot more.

    • by shking (125052)
      I was just about to post something like "wait until the Europeans, Koreans or Japanese start posting their speeds". The USA is so far behind that average speeds elsewhere seems screaming fast at home... Then there's Canada, which was amoung the fastest 10 years ago, but then stopped improving. Now they're trailing.
  • I can get 1 Gbps fiber for $300/month through EPB, as stated in TFA. But I'm happy with the 50 Mbps (formerly 30) for about $60, since my only alternative is AT&T, as Comcast never wired this part of the county.

    It's really funny when AT&T calls to "win us back", usually with an offer for something like 5 Mbps at about the same price as EPB's 50. One guy wanted to know how we were using that much bandwidth, and another just kind of sputtered and apologized for calling.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    ADSL, from www.prisjakt.nu, for Stockholm, Sweden:

    1000 Mbit/sec: 750-900 SEK/month (USD 115-140/month)
    250 Mbit/sec: 350-400 SEK/month (USD 65/month)
    200 Mbit/sec: 370 SEK/month (USD 65/month)
    100 Mbit/sec: 225-400 SEK/month (USD 35-60/month)

    Conversion 6.55 SEK = 1 USD

  • These sorts of speeds are something to be ashamed of.
  • ... until I realised that "30 MB/sec" should have been "30 Mb/sec". Bits, not bytes.

  • Megabits, not megabytes? A minor point, but when it comes to network speeds, it makes all the difference...
  • I get 768k/512k for $90/mo with a 600MB/day cap over WISP. Alternately I could get satellite for the same price, but I'd have to deal with the 2000ms latency.

    The best phone service for my area is 2G with the choice of AT&T or T-mobile.

    Go 10 miles in any direction and you could have 5MB/sec cable.

    The broadband initiative did provide funding for infrastructure building in my area. 1 year of planning and 1 year of work and they're not done yet. I expect that I won't see any physical connection to my home

  • Pay as you Go on 3 UK:

    300 minutes any network voice (excluding 101 and premium numbers)
    3,000 SMS texts (excluding 5-digit text codes)
    the only truly unlimited data plan of ANY carrier in the UK (and free MSN/Facebook/Skype (which doesn't count toward any data even if you use your gear for video calls!) ...on top of that you're allowed to tether!

    All for £15 a month.

    I have about 0 downtime on it (not including computer restarts and moving around and occasionally rebooting my phone), and I can (and do mos

  • Bandwidth is great (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Meeni (1815694) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @11:26AM (#41428409)

    Latency is better.

    I have comcast, I can download at some 20Mbit/s, for around $65/mo. Its expensive but if it worked properly, I'd be happy. But...

    Latency is catastrophic. On benchmarks it's great, on anything real it sucks. Actually, that's the story of that Comcast subscription. It does everything useless fast, but anything useful feels crippled. Skype? Unusable. Netflix? Never in HD. Youtube? Choppy. ssh? horrible latency. Web pages? super fast, but who cares?

    • by girlintraining (1395911) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @03:45PM (#41430329)

      Web pages? super fast, but who cares?

      Comcast employs a rather complex quality of service system that isn't configured like any QoS system you've seen before. Essentially, it's designed to act fast for the casual user who rarely does anything but look at Facebook.

      Many people have tried to research the system and find a pattern, but it varies by region and tier of service. There are some things that have been routinely found, however. Services like hulu (aka XFinity), Speedtest.net, and several others receive the highest priority. TCP/IP Traffic on port 80 and 443 get a bump, but only for the first 5MB of transfer per connection. Host-based filtering can pre-empt this however, like youtube.com, netflix.com, etc.; They receive no priority. UDP traffic receives a lower priority than TCP. Services like Skype and other services that compete directly with comcast get lumped into the lowest QoS tier -- any other connection on your line will max out, starving these out. It's the same story with SSL connections on any port other than 80 or 443.

      There is also active interference with certain connection types; Trying to upload a torrent to a tracker (not seeding, actually creating a new torrent) results in a deluge of fakes reset packets. When a torrent completes and switches to seeding, the incoming connection count and amount of bandwidth drop instantly and significantly. This is due to their "sandvine" software being installed at their border routers. They also transparently proxy HTTP in some locations -- on popular sites like Facebook, data is cached and even after it's updated and live on the internet, anyone accessing it through plain HTTP will get a cached copy. It appears to be based only on the top 100 or so websites, though anecdotally, some people have reported other sites seem to get cached as well. Windows updates also get cached, which was only noticed when Microsoft deployed XP service pack 1, and then re-released it as 1a due to a serious bug -- the buggy version continued to propagate for almost a day after the update was posted onto comcast customers' systems.

      In addition to all of this, comcast has massive buffers on all your IP traffic -- the classic case of buffer bloat. If you're using more than about 25% of your rated capacity, you're going to start seeing latency, and there are clear thresholds if you do TCP "pings" (rather than ICMP) with full payload packets (typically MTU = 1500). And then there's the clamping they do based purely on capacity used -- which is based both on the amount of traffic on your local segment AND the total rated speed for your tier of service, with the magic numbers being the "top 10%" for the former, and more than 75% for the latter. I put the previous in quotations because many report that throttling appears persistent, rather than transient, and may be based on billing cycle, despite customer services' assurances to the contrary. This is another one of those "region-specific" throttling problems.

      As you can see, there's a reason the FCC chose Comcast first on the list of ISPs to try to enforce network neutrality on: They are by far the worst offender.

      • When a torrent completes and switches to seeding, the incoming connection count and amount of bandwidth drop instantly and significantly. This is due to their "sandvine" software being installed at their border routers.

        I appreciate your post, but you're either misinformed or woefully out of date. Comcast dropped Sandvine years ago.

  • My house has FTTH. Except its dark, ever since the firm providing it went bankrupt and was bought by another that promptly went bankrupt itself. It *was* sold at 10mbits and 20mbits when they were in business, at a time when DSL was usually 512k or 1mbit. So I'm stuck with 3mbit DSL, due to the estate having been connected to a second-string exchange as the telco never thought anyone would want DSL with FTTH. The rest of the town gets either 8mbit or 24mbit depending on who they get service from. Then, to
  • My SpeedTest after the announcement had me at 60 Mbps down and 30 Mbps up. More importantly, in two years I have had exactly zero downtime, as compared to my former monthly visits from Comcast. Topher
  • by OneMadMuppet (1329291) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @11:35AM (#41428477) Homepage
    ...though real-world benchmarks give me ~800Mb/s both ways. It's also native IPv6, so I don't need my tunnel anymore. Internet is dirt cheap here, you can get 30MB/s for about $3/month with TV and phone.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Living among the Canadian sticks, (Fiber / Fibe / DSL isn't available here, so I use Fido's 3G) and upon having a craptastic LOS to the tower, I can pull about 200KB/s down, can't really upload crap (A 2MB picture to FB times out on upload) and for about 10GB/mo equates to $100. Better than dial-up, sure, but wow. It's quicker (and cheaper!) to mail somebody a USB key if you need to get a chunk of data out.

    Having an Autodesk Flame here (it was a gift!) I'd certainly have fun with some of the speeds and ca

  • Shaw covers quite a lot of Canada and the prices are the same wherever they cover:

    http://shaw.ca/Internet/Broadband-250/ [shaw.ca]

    and $190/mo for "unlimited" though you'll want to check the fine print on that word. And speaking of loopholes, for this you get "up to" 250 Mb/s...where "up to" includes the number zero, not to mention every number lower than 250.

    This isn't bad, but whatever is decent in Canadian services are due to regulation as the competition is pretty thin. There are perhaps two services in any lar

  • by Anonymous Coward

    We are in the middle of the construction of the OpenCape fiber backbone being built on Cape Cod & The Islands. It will connect every town, most of the libraries, schools with a 100 gig pipe. Construction will be completed by Jan. 1, 2013. It is available to private companies to lease and offer commercial service to residents. Many businesses are getting their laterals connected as well as neighborhood associations. Anyone want to move their business here? We are typically ten degrees warmer than B

  • Megabytes? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by HaZardman27 (1521119) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @12:21PM (#41428841)
    Submitter needs to turn in his geek card for confusing Mb with MB multiple times in the summary.
  • In the area I live in, there are multiple options:

    Multiple *DSL options
    Cable up to 500Mbit/s down/200 up
    FTTP/ethernet up to Gbit/s down and 250-500Mbit/s up

    I'm currently on 100Mbit/s symmetrical, and pay SEK379/month(roughly $57/month), but I'm considering the Gbit/s option, which is SEK899/month(roughly $137/month)

  • The best plan I could get is 200/30 for 200$/month, and that's when combined with another service from the ISP like TV or mobile.

    The kicker though is that it also has a 200gb down/50gb up monthly cap. Yes, you read that right: you can bust your cap by saturating your connection for less than 3 hours. You can then buy up to three packages of 60gb per month for 12.50$ each.

    It's absurd.

  • 15/5 @ $70
    50/25 @ $80
    75/35 @ $90
    150/65 @ $100
    300/65 @ $210

    Bundling TV and/or phone brings down the price significantly. Next summer, when my 2 year price lock-in runs out, I'll switch from 25/25 to 50/25, for about the same price. Currently, our 25/25+phone+TV is $125/mo. And currently, Verizon has no bandwidth cap.
  • I pay $60/month for 1mbit dsl and my only other option is satellite. Local telco still has a regulated monopoly because we are classified as rural. I have high hopes for cellular, but those speeds are currently slower than my 1mbit dsl and they are capped.

  • Howling Wilderness of Computerdom [tm], they passed a law against any such shenanigans. The godz forbid we should actually have a CHOICE in our broadband!

    http://www.wired.com/business/2011/05/nc-gov-anti-muni-broadband/ [wired.com]

    http://www.indyweek.com/indyweek/cities-consumers-lose-municipal-broadband-fight/Content?oid=2440390 [indyweek.com]

    Of course they also passed laws forbidding any study of global rising seawater .. outside the limits they felt were politically correct, that is.

    Gotta love 'em.

  • OK all you free market privatization fans, care to explain to us how it's all an illusion and if they would just sell out to AT&T things would be so much better for Chattanooga residents?

    I hear a lot of crickets out there.

    • by matty619 (630957)

      I'm a "free market fan". But I would hardly suggest that at&t is participating in a "free market". It is a state sanctioned near monopoly. This is probably why you hear crickets when you make such an argument ;)

      • by sjames (1099)

        I'm not making that argument at all. I am arguing that the municipal network in Chattanooga has performed far better than any private business in the U.S.

  • by beejhuff (186291) on Sunday September 23, 2012 @08:22PM (#41432169) Homepage
    Of course, we call it a 'parish' but there's no need to split hairs. I'm incredibly proud of my community and local government. They saw an opportunity decades ago when fiber was cheap and ran a lot of it wherever they had rights of way for electrical...turns out it was a brilliant strategy as we have just become self-sufficient - that's right, there's enough customers purchasing Internet, TV, Voice through the new fiber to be self-sustaining at this point. I've got the 50 / 50 mbps plan at home, and it's unbeleivably fast. Even better, whenever you connect directly to someone else on the local fiber ring, you get m,ax 100 / 100 mbps speeds. Which is nice since my office uses it as well as my home....X sessions and rdp back and forth from office to house are about as fast as I can ask for... Of course, we just rolled out 1 GBPS for all homes and businesses in the parish, which gives everyone even more bandwidth. It's one of the reasons my wife and I moved back to Lafayette from Austin. I really beleive these kinds of investments are what are going to differentiate communities who want to attract the best and brightest to build and grow the businesses of the future. Our available consumer plans can be seen here - http://lusfiber.com/index.php/internet/pricing-guide [lusfiber.com]
  • in Taiwan, you can get 100mb/100mb down/up for USD $60-ish if you can get FTTH (Fiber To The Home) installed, otherwise your next best solution would be 100mb/40mb FTTB/VDSL2 for $50 USD.

  • What's the fastest service actually available where you live, and what does it cost?

    Universities pipes are not cheap for the university itself, but they are fat

  • I took my time looking for a new job a couple of years and ended up expanding my search outside of Atlanta. When I found out about the EPB's internet services, I really tried to find a job over there. The IT market over there is quite small and I could only find two jobs that could utilize my skill set. I got a really good offer in Atlanta, but I wish the rest of the country had this level of service.

  • Well .. here I can get

    Time Warner at 15/1 for $50 a month, with various options going up to $120 a month for 50/5
    AT&T Uverse - unsure of pricing, but maxes out at ~18/1
    Everest/Surewest maxes out at 50/50 symetrical .. this is what I'm converting to soon
    and when they build it
    Google Fiber 1Gb symmetrical for $70 a month .. might be a year or so before it's built, but once there -- hell yes

  • AT&T U-verse: 24 Mbps downstream (not sure about up) w/ 250 GB/month for $45/mo (first 12 months; $63/mo after that).
    Time Warner Cable: 50 Mbps downstream (5 Mbps up) (not sure about monthly usage cap) for $80/mo (first 12 months; not sure after that).

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