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Four times more core bandwidth in prep for 50Mbps cable products
Tuesday 13 May 2008 08:51:49 by Andrew Ferguson

The rise of broadband has at times seen the bottleneck that old fashioned dial-up presented move from the connection to the customers home to the various elements of the providers core network. As part of its upgrades to prepare for the roll-out of its 50Mbps cable broadband service, Virgin Media is to upgrade the speed of its core fibre network.

The upgrade should see the core network increasing from 10Gbps to 40Gbps without the need to replace the many kilometres of fibre linking the major nodes. From the Silicon.com article which reveals the connection has already been tested between London and Manchester, it is not clear how much of a difference this will make to local contention issues.

Comments

Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
"it is not clear"

Sure it is. "None". Core network contention's never been an issue for me on VM, because of overloaded UBR's.
Posted by kev445 over 8 years ago
With the introduction of Docsis 3 and 40Gbit backhaul, could this be the turning point for Virgin Media? As long as they invest in bandwidth to the outside world, I can only see this as being a good thing.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
kev, DOCIS3 will only at best double the bandwidth avaliable locally (because of frequency restrictions). And they are more than doubling their headline speeds.

This would only be a good thing IF they were not again raising their headline speeds.
Posted by martinsaunders over 8 years ago
As far as I know, Sky Network Services have been running 40Gb/s on their national core for well over a year, so I don't see that as particularly big news?
Posted by kev445 over 8 years ago
Hi Dawn_Falcon, I understand what you are saying, however if all 20Mbit and 50Mbit use the Docsis 3 network, this will free up bandwidth on the existing Docsis 1 network, which should improve speeds for everyone.

With them also starting to switch off analogue transmissions, this will free up more spectrum for additional bonded streams for Docsis 3.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
The second, yes, but I'm not sure where the concept of running "seperate networks" comes from.

Regardless, something years away isn't going to make the service quality hit of the higher headline speeds any less of an impact *now*... and they won't sit still and wait for that to happen either.
Posted by kev445 over 8 years ago
The analogue switch off has already started on Virgin Media.
Source: http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/digitaltv/a95712/virgin-begins-analogue-cable-switch-off.html

Essentially they will be two networks, these being Docsis 1 and Docis 3, they will have their own seperate channels of bandwidth from the UBR.

By making this move the network will essentially become what it used to be when the higest tier used to be 10Mbit, which was a higher quality of service compared to what we have now.
Posted by Kyomii over 8 years ago
What is the point in Virgin providing 50meg when many of their customers are experiencing slow speeds due to imposed caps?

No point having 50meg if it can't be used because throughput is less than 1meg!
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
kev - And that program will take years. Also, again, where does this two-network idea *come* from?
Posted by xathras over 8 years ago
An excellent move by virgin media - finally its clear that virgin media are really staying true to their word and investing more in their broadband network.

As an ex-customer i was fully aware of how annoying it was to be paying for a premium broadband service but not getting the speed.

The move from Docsis v1 to Docsis v3 will see a massive increase in not only Down speeds but a shift in upload speeds to. Docsis 3 should also all virgin to better manage there network will the functionality it provides.
Posted by xathras over 8 years ago
as for the user complaining about capping, well to be honest i think the proposals of what virgin will be offering for the 50mb product is excellent. It will nearly be around 200Gb per month.Lets be fair hear anyone downloading anywhere near that figure a month is taking the michael.

Posted by hoodamanny over 8 years ago
no point having high speed, if you need to pay a premium rate when you have problems. Would much rather have a slower speed and knowledge that I am not going to be screwed when virgin screw up
Posted by herdwick over 8 years ago
On Broadband XL can't you download 9 GB *per day* in the measured hours before it slows down for the peak hours? On top of this you can download as much as you want outside the metered hours without consequence. It's hardly a constrained service in that regard.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
herdwick - It's been proven multiple times that VM capping levels are not absolute. In areas with overloaded UBR's (the majority), it can be much lower.

(For example in Oxford, downloading 41MB got you shaped in peak time on a 4MBit service).

So no, not 9GB.

And DOCIS 3 is *at best* next year!
Posted by AdamGz0r over 8 years ago
Dawn_Falcon: it appears virginmedia are actively doing something about overloaded ubrs, theyre used to be 4 in my town and i have noticed that they have increased this in the last couple of weeks to 7 my ips have all changed and im on a new ubr that didnt exist before the frequencies have also changed. give them time to show what they can do, i do believe things are changing :)
Posted by AdamGz0r over 8 years ago
Dawn_Falcon: also can I add that person that got shaped after 41Mb probably had a hacked/open wifi connection :)
Posted by chrysalis over 8 years ago
Dawn_Falcon but some people claim higher speeds dont increase contention ratios and costs heh, in their dreams. Yeah firstly I am susprised VMs core network is so small 10gbit seems low for their customer base, and secondly there is romours the original plan was 100gbit now cutback to 40gbit.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 8 years ago
Adam - So you're saying that 11 seperate connections in an area all had unsecure wifi? Ahaha, no, I don't think so (I checked each one, for starters, and they were using WPA *if* they used wifi at all).

The results were consistant across the area.
Posted by AdamGz0r over 8 years ago
Dawn_Falcon: the fact it is the same area makes it even more possible :), hacker probably, wpa is easy to hack just have to wait for the handshake.

chrysalis: they might not need to have 100gbit but i do agree they should already have it considering the amount of customers they have, but with there being more capacity people can download quicker and then hit that magic cap and theyre using less bandwidth then and not clogging the network up.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 8 years ago
quote "Virgin Media is to upgrade the speed of its core fibre network."

Yep and then throttle you to death at basically every moment of the day when you are likely to need that new faster speed.... What Clowns!
Posted by BlackAle over 8 years ago
No throttling here except 4-9pm, very reasonable to me. Though I guess you want 24/7 for pennies.
Posted by BlackAle over 8 years ago
CARPETBURN: you seem to comment on everything, are you actually a VM customer?
Posted by 2doorsbob over 8 years ago
blackale i believe carpet is an easynet/ukonline/sky llu customer that is fortunate to live quite close to his exchange to get a reasonable service..but alot of arn't so fortunate i would love the chance to get 4mb (soon to be 10mb) .
Posted by CARPETBURN over 8 years ago
Yep thats right i do indeed use a service easynet provide. I dont see myself fortunate in this case as probably even less can get cable.
Blackale seems to think i want speed 24/7 for pennies??? i already get it compared to this Virgin media rubbish... How much they charging nowadays for their 20 Mb service 37 quid a month regular standard price just for broadband isnt it? Oh and 4-9pm throttles huh.... Yea i can see how that would be appealing compared to my flat out when ever i want 25 quid service ROFLMAO.... Fibre..... Fast LOL yeah right if they say so.
Posted by Kyomii over 8 years ago
xathras: I was not "complaining" about caps, but rather asking the question of what is the point when customers are being capped.

I am not on Virgin, I was duly put off with all the capping complaints when I moved ISP for the first time in 10 years.

Some people have even tested the usage allowance by hardly using the service for a week and still found they were being capped, some lower than dialup speed!

So...what is the point in providing 50mb when they are not sticking to their proposal for usage allowance and initiating capping across the board regardless?
Posted by CARPETBURN over 8 years ago
quote"So...what is the point in providing 50mb when they are not sticking to their proposal for usage allowance and initiating capping across the board regardless?"
There is no point, they have destroyed a once acceptable cable service, sure people had issues when it was all telewest or NTL.... Since virgin have taken over though they have given people... premium rate support calls, loss of big name channels (like babies they didnt want to pay sky), mass cloning of connections, increased prices and throttles... Virgin care, fast, fibre eh?
Posted by Somerset over 8 years ago
Carpetburn critises everything he does not use!
Posted by kmendum over 8 years ago
chrysalis: "I am surprised VMs core network is so small 10gbit seems low for their customer base, and secondly there is rumours the original plan was 100gbit now cutback to 40gbit."
We are talking about 10G/40G per wavelength and many wavelengths per fibre using Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing technology (DWDM). Secondly, there are major technical problems with getting 40G on existing installed fibre over a decent distance as the fibre installed was never designed to support this kind of bandwidth.
Posted by kmendum over 8 years ago
Pt 2:
100G per wavelength requires very carefully chosen fibre: finding it didn't work is no surprise.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 8 years ago
quote"Carpetburn critises everything he does not use! "

Better that than stalk a person and critise them personally when you disagree rather than staying to the topic and airing you pointless views on that
Posted by splat01 over 8 years ago
I for one will not be going for 50mb, Virgin Media can't give me 20mb because of the capping.
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