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BT-bloody broadband is driving me nuts!

(19 Posts)
wahwahwah Thu 11-Aug-11 15:50:53

we used to have ok wireless connections. Now it is impossible to get connected unless within 10 feet of the box (is in DC bedroom or sitting on the hallway floor). BT have fiddles with the lines and I was just on a livetalk with one of the engineers who asked me to change something or other and use a passowrd (whcich is full of either zeros or noughts, so I have to try every possible configuration until it locked me out) he then suggested I reset the box - which cut him off - Doh!

Does this sound like a hub problem? We just have a new laptop (old one dies) but the problem is just the same. Apartently we are not in an area which they advertise on the tv (all those grinning idiots with their fancy fast connections make me fume!!).

BadgersPaws Thu 11-Aug-11 16:26:21

If everything is fine as long as you're within about 10 feet of the box then there is either a problem with the box or with the laptop.

The broadband connection (the bit from the box to the internet) itself must be working fine so this is nothing to do with which area you're in (well probably, back to this in a moment). You say that you've swapped the laptop and you've still go the same 10 foot range limitation, so I'd say that the finger points firmly at the router.

If there are lots of other people using wireless near you then you kind of get a lot of "noise" floating around and your laptop can only "hear" your wireless router when it's pretty close to it. However one of the things that BT should have done would have been to talk you changing the channel that the router uses, so I don't think it's that.

Also are there any walls between you and your router? When you say "10 feet" do you literally mean that you can be at the other end of the same room with nothing between you and the router and it still fails?

Presuming that BT have got you to change the channel of the wireless router then my guess is that the router isn't working.

wahwahwah Thu 11-Aug-11 16:29:41

It works with one wall between us! There has been some major building work done nearby recently so I think it may be that. We have a few hotels nearby too. So do I need a new box?

BadgersPaws Thu 11-Aug-11 16:35:34

"There has been some major building work done nearby recently so I think it may be that."

Why do you think that could have caused it?

"We have a few hotels nearby too."

If they're very close then that's a possibility, if it's stuffed full of wireless routers all shouting out on all the different possible channels then you'll need a very strong signal from your router for your laptop to "hear" it.

However if it's that then a new box is unlikely to help.

wahwahwah Thu 11-Aug-11 17:00:12

well... it started going funny when the huge cranes moves in. There is a hotel next door and a few doors down, roung the corner, end of the street...

CruelAndUnusualParenting Thu 11-Aug-11 22:07:12

Assuming it's just the wireless network that has problems,have you tried changing the channel the router is on?

There are apps like inssider that can map out which channels are bust and which are relatively quiet, to help you pick one that shouldn't suffer too much interference.

3become4 Sat 13-Aug-11 09:17:44

Leave BT! Our wireless was useless for months if not years - just kept dropping for no reason. After driving ourselves insane trying to get somewhere with their customer service we finally left them, joined PlusNet and haven't had a problem since.

BadgersPaws Sat 13-Aug-11 11:59:07

Separate wireless problems from internet connectivity problems.

The bit between your wireless modem/router and the internet is the responsibility of your ISP, and different providers can give different qualities of service there.

However the actual wireless connection itself is really nothing to do with your ISP and changing service provides isn't going to have anything to do with it. So if you can connect to the internet just fun with a cable or when your close to the router then switching ISPs isn't going to help (well unless your ISP has given you a badly working wireless router, in which case getting another one from another ISP will fix the problem, but the root issue was that router and not something that your ISP was doing wrong).

So if the problem is/was the wireless rather than the internet connection istelf being rubbish then switching ISPs is not the answer.

Do you know if BT did talk you through changing the channel of the wireless network? It would have been a number from 1 to 13 or referred to in MHz.

inssider is brilliant, it's the software I use to help me improve my wireless networks and its effects can be quite astounding. However you have to understand and change wireless network channels to be able to use it...

wahwahwah Sat 13-Aug-11 22:00:23

Changed channel from 11 to 1 = so it now works fine in the day and bombs out in the evening (currently crouching on the floor in the hallway trying other chsnnels to see if they are any better)

BelleDameSansMerci Sat 13-Aug-11 22:11:45

3became4, hate to disillusion you but BT owns Plusnet smile

3become4 Sat 13-Aug-11 22:22:46

I know BT owns Plusnet but still had better service since moving and no longer need to deal with BT customer care which frankly made me want to kill people.

Strangely our BT wireless often bombed out in the evening too. In fact the only time it worked really well is when we knew there was a fault on a neighbours line!

BelleDameSansMerci Sat 13-Aug-11 22:28:25

Fair enough...!

CruelAndUnusualParenting Sun 14-Aug-11 08:15:34

Any luck with the different channels? Have you tried the Inssider tool I linked to? It should show you what channels are busy when you are having problems.

NetworkGuy Sun 14-Aug-11 15:07:35

Signals on the channels 'overlap' a bit so you really would get useful info using that software (inSSIDer) linked to on Thursday night, as you will not only see which channels are used by other routers close to you but how strong they are, so you can either (a) find a gap where none is active, or (b) find a weak one and use that channel for your own router.

> Wiki < has a diagram about 1/3 of the way down the page showing the overlapping nature. The 'clever' BT routers will try to find an unused channel but I don't know whether the router will find the least-strong signal if it cannot find a gap, and of course when you change channel, there's a chance some other router(s) will change channel too, so the picture may be a teeny bit more complicated if there are several channel changes per day (eg someone turns their router on when they come home, and other routers then jump about to find a 'quiet' space).

wahwahwah Fri 19-Aug-11 09:12:31

It was behaving itself after I tried all the channels (1 was best) but playing silly buggers again. I am now downloading the InSSIDer...

BadgersPaws Fri 19-Aug-11 09:22:42

It's possible that a combination of how your house is built and many other wireless networks around you means that wireless just isn't going to work for you.

In that case you might have to consider using wires, either proper networking cable or there are devices that use your electrical wiring to make up a network.

See what the inssider app shows up and that'll give some more information on what's happening...

wahwahwah Fri 19-Aug-11 09:25:42

I will wait and see. It is definately worse in the evening. I think that it's worse now because people seem to bring their laptops on holiday and on trips as a matter of course these days and we are next to a couple of big hotels.

wahwahwah Fri 19-Aug-11 11:39:58

nah. gone again! What is 'babylon'? Is this something that has been downloaded too? New pc, so still getting to grips with it!

BadgersPaws Fri 19-Aug-11 12:15:34

There is an app for Windows called "Babylon", it's something that's meant to help you translate words from one language to another, and it's not got a good reputation.

It could be that, but Babylon is pretty generic and it could be something else entirely.

Download and run the free version of MalwareBytes from:

I think that that should be able to deal with the bad version of Babylon.

If you've got problems with your wireless connection now are you able to run inssider to see what's around you?

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