A Cascade of Problems with BT Broadband

You may remember my blog post of 2 May 2012, “Does your download speed drop when uploading?” in which I describe a common artefact of ADSL which involves a drop in downstream speed whilst uploading.  The effect on my line was so pronounced (a 7.5Mbps throughput dropped to less than 0.2Mbps), I reported it to @BTCare on twitter.

They confirmed a drop as significant as mine was not normal behaviour. Having explained that I have a degree in Computing Science from the top-ranking University of East Anglia, and that I run a couple of I.T. / Web related companies, (not being big headed, just didn’t want to be treated like an idiot) we soon ruled out all of the obvious stuff.  The problem persisted no matter what devices were used to upload/download, or what router I used.

Fault No. 1: Significant drop in speed when uploading

The guy I was dealing with on the @BTCare team, who has been great throughout this case, reported the issue to BT Wholesale, who (eventually, after the usual unnecessary to-ing and fro-ing, and jumping through hoops) actually looked into the situation and found “a problem with [our] virtual path”.  An order was placed with them to move our connection to a different piece of equipment in the exchange in the hope it would resolve the issue.  This order with BT Wholesale, failed to close properly — half of BT’s systems showed the order as closed, while half seemed to show it as open, which effectively locks anyone else in BT from touching it, as it thinks there is work in progress on the line.

Fault No. 2: BT Wholesale order fails to close

On the new equipment, we once again obtain a decent connection to the exchange — this time a sync rate of 8.13Mbps, however, for some reason, the IP profile is set to 2Mbps.  No problem, a simple task of issuing a (Signal to Noise Ratio) SNR reset request ought to fix that pretty quickly.  However, because BT’s systems think there is work in progress on the line, because the BT Wholesale order didn’t complete, the SNR reset isn’t actioned.

Fault No. 3: Cannot action SNR reset request while the BT Wholesale order is stuck

The problem of the BT Wholesale order being stuck in limbo is reported, but it’s reported to the wrong department.  Rather than notifying this, that department simply closes the report.

Fault No. 4: BT Wholesale stuck order problem is reported to the wrong department, who simply close it

So now, twenty-seven days later, I’m left waiting for whoever manages BT Wholesale’s system to action a request to ‘un-stick’ the stuck BT Wholesale order, to allow @BTCare to re-issue an SNR reset to hopefully get us back to a steady 6-8Mbps connection which in-fact, leads us right back to square one.  Because, after all this, even with the current 2Mbps connection, the problem persists!