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Modem resets, packet loss, high ping

Mendorian
On our wavelength

Hello all,

Little bit of history to this:

  • We had some mild connection issues in the last few years, but nothing spectacular.
  • About two months ago, a construction worker cut our (and our neighbour's) connection from the street to the house.
  • We were reconnected the following day by a Virgin tech.
  • Following that, our connection was horrible - constant cut-outs, modem resets, bad ping spikes, packet loss, etc.
  • We had another Virgin tech come over to check everything. The tech found that the signal at the modem was absolutely abysmal and found a -20db attenuator hidden behind a piece of furniture. It was removed and the tech declared problem solved.
  • We however still experience numerous sync losses throughout the day with the modem ranging (5 or 6 times yesterday) due to T3 timeouts. We still have persistent connection issues.

I ran a ping continuously during my working hours for a while:

217512 packets transmitted, 216539 packets received, 1% packet loss
round-trip min/avg/max/stddev = 20.327/144.534/168586.567/2731.208 ms

We're a household of two, with me working online full-time and my partner part-time. I haven't had a single meeting where my connection didn't falter for months. I assume we need another tech visit, but I wanted to check if someone here in the Community may know a quick fix.

 

Here's the Downstream channels/Upstream channels:

3.0 Downstream channels

Channel Frequency (Hz) Power (dBmV) SNR (dB) Modulation Channel ID
13390000003.841QAM 25626
21390000007.942QAM 2561
31470000007.742QAM 2562
41550000007.242QAM 2563
5163000000742QAM 2564
61710000006.842QAM 2565
71790000006.642QAM 2566
81870000006.442QAM 2567
91950000006.342QAM 2568
102030000006.242QAM 2569
112110000006.342QAM 25610
12219000000642QAM 25611
132270000005.542QAM 25612
142350000005.442QAM 25613
152430000005.342QAM 25614
162510000005.242QAM 25615
172590000005.142QAM 25616
182670000004.942QAM 25617
19275000000542QAM 25618
202830000004.742QAM 25619
212910000004.742QAM 25620
222990000004.742QAM 25621
233070000004.342QAM 25622
243150000004.142QAM 25623
253230000003.842QAM 25624
263310000003.842QAM 25625
273470000003.342QAM 25627
283550000003.142QAM 25628
293630000002.942QAM 25629
30371000000342QAM 25630
31379000000342QAM 25631

3.0 Downstream channels

Channel Locked Status RxMER (dB) Pre RS Errors Post RS Errors
1Locked414565356
2Locked42800012643
3Locked421782120925
4Locked42695712741
5Locked42760612778
6Locked421545519353
7Locked4283569717
8Locked421182418977
9Locked421064118950
10Locked42690912701
11Locked42964911911
12Locked421323415580
13Locked421105618517
14Locked421157212441
15Locked422243330843
16Locked421369218750
17Locked421152419042
18Locked421068919976
19Locked421019319189
20Locked421432822472
21Locked421172719007
22Locked421343021602
23Locked421576424335
24Locked421539122157
25Locked421873428262
26Locked422094225748
27Locked422432531251
28Locked421819618036
29Locked422346525822
30Locked423085033392
31Locked421912519517

3.1 Downstream channels

Channel Channel Width (MHz) FFT Type Number of Active Subcarriers Modulation (Active Profile) First Active Subcarrier (Hz)
33944K1840QAM 40961108

3.1 Downstream channels

Channel ID Locked Status RxMER Data (dB) PLC Power (dBmV) Corrected errors (Active Profile) Uncorrectable errors (Active Profile)
33Locked411.0894431631198122

 

3.0 Upstream channels

Channel Frequency (Hz) Power (dBmV) Symbol Rate (ksps) Modulation Channel ID
049600000455120QAM 641
14310000044.55120QAM 642
23660000044.35120QAM 643
33010000043.85120QAM 644
42360000043.35120QAM 645

3.0 Upstream channels

Channel Channel Type T1 Timeouts T2 Timeouts T3 Timeouts T4 Timeouts
0ATDMA0162360
1ATDMA0162400
2ATDMA0162360
3ATDMA0162360
4ATDMA0162360

3.1 Upstream channels

Channel Channel Width (MHz) Power (dBmV) FFT Type Modulation
61141.02KQAM 256

3.1 Upstream channels

Channel Channel Type Number of Active Subcarriers First Active Subcarrier (Hz) T3 Timeouts T4 Timeouts
6OFDMA2207400000000
10 REPLIES 10

Client62
Hero

There are hard errors (Post RS) across all of the Downstream channels, if a conf call was connected over UDP that could result in some video and audio breakup. The Upstream channels looks OK.

This could be a local fault in your street, it might be worth a call to 0800 561 0061 to see if the automated fault reporting service has logged any issues.

A restart of the VM Hub to clear the error counts would make it easier to see if the Downstream service issue is still present or has cleared.

Thanks for the advice. There were no local faults reported, but the tool in the VM app suggested a factory reset. Afterwards the connection was stable and no hard errors anymore, although the Pre-RS errors start piling up on half the channels - not sure what the going rate for those is, but since 4pm yesterday only channels 2 and 3 didn't have any Pre-RS errors, with the lower channels now hanging at around 400.

But so far, the error correction is holding up - I hope it stays that way

Aaaand here we go again. Pretty much 24 hours later:

3.0 Downstream channels

Channel Locked Status RxMER (dB) Pre RS Errors Post RS Errors
1Locked422310
2Locked4200
3Locked4200
4Locked4210
5Locked4240
6Locked4230
7Locked4250
8Locked42219740
9Locked42225649
10Locked4213971802
11Locked4213881643
12Locked42220
13Locked42276822
14Locked42400
15Locked42500
16Locked42246806
17Locked42133194
18Locked4293181
19Locked42524
20Locked42128279
21Locked42204215
22Locked42203189
23Locked42269254
24Locked42295237
25Locked42358261
26Locked40354269
27Locked42469256
28Locked42547274
29Locked42624217
30Locked42554248
31Locked42606208

 modem lost sync repeatedly.

legacy1
Alessandro Volta

Noise by a faulty amp

---------------------------------------------------------------

Mendorian
On our wavelength

Thank you, that’s surprisingly specific. I know what an amp is, but a bit more context would be helpful. I assume that’s an upstream part that VM needs to have a look at on their end? Any suggestion how I can reach someone in support that doesn’t a) ignore it because it deviates from their script or b) ignores it because who trusts customers that try and look for solutions on their own or c) ignores It because they’ve never heard of it before themselves?

It’s getting a wee bit embarrassing that I constantly have to apologise for dropping out of meetings…

FlockWallpaper
On our wavelength

it does strike me that everyone who has commented on here has missed the obvious, and I quote

  • We were reconnected the following day by a Virgin tech.
  • Following that, our connection was horrible - constant cut-outs, modem resets, bad ping spikes, packet loss, etc.”

So the problems seemed to have started after the cable was ‘fixed’ following it being cut. Surely the most likely explanation is that the ‘cable fix’ hasn’t been done properly and it is introducing noise into the connection?

We had some mild issues after switching from 500 to 1gig, just nowhere near the scale of what we have now. I think I'm gonna try the support chat, although I don't have high hopes.

Hi @Mendorian 

Thanks for posting and welcome back to the community.

Apologies for any service issues, I can see you've got a tech visit booked in since posting, please let us know how it goes.

John_GS
Forum Team


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Mendorian
On our wavelength

Hi @John_GS,

Thanks for the reply. I could indeed do with your help, maybe it will save me another long call.

TL;DR: Engineer says the patched up cable is at fault and a new drop cable needs to be installed from cabinet to the house. I'm at the end of my tether. Can you help without me having curse at the chat bot and wait for a support agent with a fringe case that is far outside of what their script allows them to deal with?

The long explanation and what has happened since my last post:
I had a WhatsApp support chat on Thursday. The agent confirmed that our modem disconnected 107 times in the last two weeks alone. He boosted the amplifier output, which actually helped a bit and made the connection more stable, but we were still seeing large ping spikes and lost packets, just less disconnects and ranging issues. He then said he'd book us an engineer in for Friday morning to replace our Hub and have a look at the amp.

On Friday, no engineer. I check my scheduled appointments, nothing is listed. I call the complaints hotline, pre-empted what followed with "I know this is not your fault, but I have to vent" and explained to the gentleman there all the issues over the last 3 months. He then promised to send me someone to do what the other support agent promised, with an appointment from 1pm to 6pm. That was on Friday. I am working from home full-time and re-arranged what meetings I had to Monday morning, with the exception of one meeting at 2pm. I mention that for a reason.

This morning, at at 11am, I see two missed calls. Turns out it was the engineer who wanted to drop by. I texted him and told him I was expecting him from 1pm, just had a meeting at 2pm, but was otherwise happy to welcome him whenever. The engineer was very confused because apparently the only note he had on the system was to check the street cabinet connected to us.

Of course he arrived at 2pm, just after my meeting started, and chatted with my partner, who knows where things are switched on and off, but not much more, and the engineer had no idea what he was supposed to do.

Once I'm done with the meeting I send the engineer a long text message and explain the situation. He actually turns around and we have a chat at the door. I explain the situation to him, he looks at the cable (which was, a couple months ago, ripped out of the ground and destroyed together with our fence when a stolen car crashed into our garden... seriously) and was then patched up by a VM engineer.

SO, finally:
He says we need a new drop cable from the cabinet to the house. Noise is probably introduced where the cable was patched together.

This is all I have now. Could you, pretty please with a cherry on top, point whoever needs to read this to get a new drop cable drawn from the cabinet to our house?