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Update from Nildram on Traffic Management
Wednesday 01 November 2006 10:13:00 by Andrew Ferguson

Nildram has in the last few weeks implemented a traffic management system, that from users posts seemed to largely control the usage of NNTP and peer to peer protocols. Nildram has now announced that it has adjusted the traffic management such that people should be seeing no impact from it. The full announcement is reproduced below:

“Listening to Customers – Nildram Extends its Network

Business quality services – for Business and Home

Nildram provides voice and Internet services to all kinds of customer, from discerning consumers to companies looking to web-enable their business. As part of our ethos to provide high quality ‘business strength’ broadband services, we have been introducing a traffic management policy to prioritise key online activities and ensure network resilience for all our customers.

Traffic management is used by most ISPs as a means of coping with excessive downloading from a minority of users, which sometimes has a knock on effect for other users on the network. Traffic management does not impact the total download allocation users have per month, but limits the instantaneous bandwidth allocated to certain types of traffic – for example, the Network News Transfer Protocol (NNTP) and peer to peer (P2P) applications.

Since we began traffic shaping two weeks ago, we have been talking directly to customers to get their feedback on how it affects them, so that we can implement a fair traffic management policy that ensures a consistent quality of service for everyone.

In response to these initial trials and feedback received, this morning we took steps to extend network though-put in the short term to minimise the impact of traffic management for bandwidth intensive customers.

However, we are committed to stopping excessive down-loaders impacting the service for everyone else. Over the next few weeks we will be contacting individuals who regularly download excessive amounts using P2P and NNTP to request they change their online usage. If they are unable to change, we may restrict their P2P and NNTP profiles and, as a last resort, may suspend services and possibly close their account.

Nildram takes a responsible approach to providing the best online service possible which means at times making difficult decisions to manage the service for the vast majority of our customers. We hope that this change in our approach shows we value customer feedback and are prepared to investigate different approaches to achieving a quality and reliable service.

Nildram

31st October 2006”

Statement from Nildram 31st October 2006

The Nildram section on our forums for the last few weeks has had plenty of discussion on the traffic management situation. The next few weeks are also likely to be busy as Nildram carries out its policy of talking to those who it feels are downloading excessive amounts of traffic.

While traffic management is often seen by those adversely affected by it as something evil, very often the silent majority may be seeing benefits without knowing it, e.g. gamers whose latency does not increase greatly at peak times. As usage of broadband connections changes the need for ways to control traffic grows, and so long as providers combine this with network growth the impact need not be massive. At some point as usage patterns change we are going to see prices to the end-user rising, unless there are large across the board price cuts in costs to the providers.

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