My 14 year old son plays with friends on an Xbox Series S and keeps getting booted off games (as he puts it). He tells me it is something to do with deliberate saboteurs and having a fixed VPN with our Virgin router. He has tried switching to modem configuration for our router, but this hasn’t worked. He now claims that he will need to buy a separate modem just for his XBox.
So - all of the stuff I have written above is completely incomprehensible to me. Truthfully, I hardly know what I have just written!
But I really just wanted to know if my son is right that he will need to spend (a lot) of his saved pocket money for a modem (and if so, what should he buy?); whether it will actually stop his issues; and why he is having these issues in the first place - surely Virgin have a way of allowing the VPN to change when you log on (my son claims that they don’t, unlike other providers, and that this would solve things...???)
What your son means is that he believes rightly or wrongly that your connection is being targeted by more malignant gamers for a "denial of service attack" (DOS). They do this using your Internet Protocol address (that's the IP numbers that are your "internet home address", looking something like 99.99.999.99), and uses software to flood your connection with incoming data, making the hub drop connections because it is swamped. DOS attacks do occur, but are rarer than many gamers believe, and it could just be a shonky broadband connection. If it DOS, then that's usually self inflicted, because there's a certain effort to setup a DOS attack, and it would mean that the perpetrator wants to spoil your son's gaming sufficiently to bother. Possible triggers are simply being such a red hot gamer that somebody else wants him out of the league (limited probability), cheating (limited probability, most games have anti-cheat technology), and rudeness or other insulting behaviour in real time gaming chat (very high probability, in my opinion).
Buying a new modem won't help, customers can't connect their own modem to a VM connection. Connecting your own wifi router to a hub in modem mode won't help either. You can switch between modem and router modes with your hub as already tried, that changes the IP address, but these IP addresses are "sticky" and don't change often, so it is in effect a single try solution and doesn't help. And until whatever behaviour is causing somebody to DOS your son stops, it's always a case of needing a new IP address. VM won't routinely change customer IP addresses, and rightly so - if a customer has "polluted" an IP address by inviting a DOS attack, why should it go back in the pool for some other customer to end up with it?
There's only three options I can see.
The first option is that this may not be a DOS attack, and you (or he) need to examine the connection quality, and see if there's a fault that VM can fix. As a start, (get him to do this) connect to the hub and pull up the log in page for the hub. But don't log in, just click on the link "Check router status" That'll bring up a window with five tabs. Open the Downstream tab. Select all the text (Ctrl-A if using a keyboard), copy it (Ctrl-C), then paste it (Ctrl-V) into a reply here as text, not screenshots. Post that, do the same for the Upstream and Network log. You'll get an error message when you post the Network log, just click on "post" a second time. Then we can check for any obvious problems with power, noise or error counts. When he's done that, he needs to setup a BQM over at https://www.thinkbroadband.com/broadband/monitoring/quality that'll show what's going on with your VM connection. Post a link to a live, shared graph here and we'll see what's happening. Usually needs to run for 24 hours before we can draw reasonable conclusions, but the live graph will continuously update so he can post that link immediately.
The second option, if the VM connection is not faulty is to take a subscription (his fault - out of his pocket money) for a gaming-compatible Virtual Private Network. For a long contract that can be as little as £3 a month, eg with Nord VPN. What that does is take his/your data traffic and disguise it's origin, and every time he connects the IP address is different. Adds a small ping overhead, but again, his problem.
The third option is to get an Openreach ISP connection. These usually allocate a new IP address when the hub is power cycled. Download speeds will be lower, and some people have concerns that the Openreach modems have to settle down for a day or two after being power cycled if they are to deliver optimum performance. If you're in a fixed term contract with VM this may be prohibitively expensive due to exit penalties.
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BQM doesn't look too bad at all - I'd be concerned about the PostRS errors (these are the uncorrectable ones)
Usually VM ask you to power off the hub for 5 minutes to reset the errors and keep an eye on them - if the PostRS errors are climbing - it can be a symptom of noise ingress and VM would need to book a technician to investigate!