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Beyond the expected

Gungahlin’s Frustrations with the Internet

By ACT_Broadband 29 September 2009 50

Many of you in the North of Canberra are acutely aware of the ongoing Internet performance issues being experienced by residents the of Gungahlin, parts of Kaleen and even Watson.

If you have ever wondered why the Internet at your place never seem to work as well as your friend in Hackett, or Monash? This site may be able to help explain why.

It had always annoyed me that the Internet became almost unusable around 8:00pm each night and why no one seemed to want to fix it. I raised tickets with my ISP and received the same response each time.

Our Wholesale Provider has reported a congestion fault with your service, there is no ETA on its resolution at this time.

After months and months of heartache my apathy finally gave way to action. Much to my wife’s dismay I started a campaign to try and resolve the issue.

I have spent the greater part of the last month compiling data and researching the issue of poor Internet performance in Gungahlin. All of what I have found out I have published on a website www.actbroadband.net

Self promotion aside, I have managed to document the problem as well as my attempts to address the issue. I have set up monitoring of Internode infrastructure and generated a number of months worth of performance reports. I have also published all the correspondence I have had with my ISP and will have with Territory Legislative Assembly Members and Federal Members of Parliament.

I have prepared letters to all Legislative Assembly Representatives for Molonglo which I will post Wednesday 30th September. I will post copies of these on my site the following day as well as all the responses as I receive them.

If you at the level of frustrations as I am with the whole Internet thing, please contact me through the site. I am happy to hear from fellow Gungahlin residents who are having the same experience as I am. Numerous people have already contacted me with their support after visiting the site.

It is my intention to keep this an issue until it is resolved. There are 38,000 residents in the Gungahlin area, the majority of which are suffering as I am. Any support in this endeavour will be greatly appreciated.

What’s Your opinion?


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Gungahlin’s Frustrations with the Internet
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Holden Caulfield 10:25 pm 12 Oct 09

Gungahlin, pfft. Fyshwick has the largest amount of retail shopping space in Canberra (or used to) and it still can’t get ADSL2.

SpellingAndGrammar 8:34 pm 04 Oct 09

I have been quite interested to read the comments on this post and realise that I am one of the more fortunate ones. I have lived in Gungahlin now for around 12 years and am currently lucky enough to have ADSL2. However, I had to compromise my principles to receive it. Several years ago, I swore black and blue that I would never bring my custom back to Telstra. However, in changing my ISP a little while ago and attempting to go with a lesser known company, I was told that the only way I would be able to get ADSL2 in my area was to go with Telstra as they were the only ones who had the connections I needed and weren’t handing them out to the competition. Given both my professional and leisure pursuits, I decided I wanted the ADSL2 more than I didn’t want to go back to Telstra and now here I am. BUT – if anyone out there can provide me with ADSL2 without going through Telstra – I’m theirs. Like other posts on this site – one wonders how, when in the greater Canberra area one cannot receive decent broadband or mobile coverage for that matter – how the hell are we going to roll it out to the rest of the country??

Gungahlin Al 11:26 am 02 Oct 09

Aurelius said :

Gungahlin all hangs off one exchange. That exchange was designed to handle Mitchell and some parts of Watson/Lyneham. Now, it’s got Gungahlin hanging off it. Telstra wont upgrade because they’re tight. Result: North Lyneham, the newer parts of Watson and several chunks of Gungahlin get scammed, and cannot get decent access.
How to fix it? Make Telstra want to fix it. Only way that’ll happen is to make them think there’s money in fixing it. But that wont happen in a place like Gungahlin in any hurry because the population density is too low. The solution is to have higher density, more businesses, and thus a greater potential profit per metre of cabling.
And, unfortunately, the same people who are lobbying to solve one problem are the same ones lobbying to avoid higher density and greater population.
Sorry boys and girls, you can’t have your cake and eat it too.

Telstra won’t upgrade things because then they are forced to share those upgraded facilities with all ISPs. So “Screw you” says Telstra to all of us.

IMHO splitting the carrier arm off the retail arm and then bringing it back under government ownership is the best thing they could do with Telstra.

H1NG0 10:50 am 02 Oct 09

I went over to my old house in Ngunnawal yesterday and when I turned up, a Telstra guy was at the door. He said that ADSL2 was now available in this area (Wanganeen Ave). I was suprised. When I lived there, I couldn’t get regular ADSL due to the Pair Gains systems and poor quality of the copper. Correct me if I am wrong, but if I was unable to get ADSL because there was no alternative path from the Pair Gains plus there was a large amount of transmission loss, wouldn’t that also apply to ADSL2?

I don’t think that unit would have a snowflakes chance in hell of getting internet now or any time in the near future. Believe me, I tried to sign up to various services and spoke to Telstra CountryWide on several occasions and there was simply nothing anyone could do. If you put in the phone number or address on the BogPond site, the only service they will provide to that location is NextG. Obviously they know it is a dead zone for ADSL.

I moved to a house less than three blocks away and ADSL2 was also not available due to the Pair Gains system when I signed up for internet a couple of weeks ago. Luckily I got regular ADSL with TPG which is quite good.

Maybe someone from Telstra has caught onto this thread and are sending out their reps in an attempt to try and hose down the issue.

Aurelius 10:05 am 02 Oct 09

Gungahlin all hangs off one exchange. That exchange was designed to handle Mitchell and some parts of Watson/Lyneham. Now, it’s got Gungahlin hanging off it. Telstra wont upgrade because they’re tight. Result: North Lyneham, the newer parts of Watson and several chunks of Gungahlin get scammed, and cannot get decent access.
How to fix it? Make Telstra want to fix it. Only way that’ll happen is to make them think there’s money in fixing it. But that wont happen in a place like Gungahlin in any hurry because the population density is too low. The solution is to have higher density, more businesses, and thus a greater potential profit per metre of cabling.
And, unfortunately, the same people who are lobbying to solve one problem are the same ones lobbying to avoid higher density and greater population.
Sorry boys and girls, you can’t have your cake and eat it too.

ACT_Broadband 7:58 pm 01 Oct 09

@Gungahlin Al – no problems with reproducing this on the GCC website. I am about to listen to the interview again there anyway.

Due to so many requests I will enable comments on my site, http://www.actbroadband.net. Feel free to post your experiences and thoughts if you get inspired.

Performance report for September will go up tonight to if anyone wants to see how bad it has been the last few weeks.

Grrrr 2:25 pm 01 Oct 09

watto23 said :

Its easy to rollout to 95% of the population, but that last 5% will cost so much they won’t do it and that includes the broadband blackspots in cities.

Rolling out NBN (by which you mean FTTH) to Gunghalin or Tuggeranong wouldn’t cost any more than rolling it out in Belconnen.

Those who miss out on FTTH because they are in much lower density living areas (think Sutton) look likely to be offered NBN WiMax (or similar) instead. Truly remote people will be stuck with Satellite just like they are now.

watto23 12:15 pm 01 Oct 09

Dare i say there are blackspots throughout Canberra. I can only get ADSL in the part of Tuggeranong I am in. No Transact or ADSL2. Still its better than Dialup and it seems to be fine speed wise.

Thats the real issue with the NBN idea. Its easy to rollout to 95% of the population, but that last 5% will cost so much they won’t do it and that includes the broadband blackspots in cities.

H1NG0 8:09 am 01 Oct 09

Looking forward to seeing the radio transcript.

Gungahlin Al 7:01 am 01 Oct 09

I’ve uploaded the interviews to our website, and Russell I’m sure you would be OK that I’ve reproduced this article on our site (with credit also to RA).

I seem to have had trouble getting my tongue around “antiquated”… 🙂

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