[GLLUG] Fibre broadband

John Edwards john at cornerstonelinux.co.uk
Fri Dec 21 00:32:00 UTC 2012

On Fri, Dec 21, 2012 at 12:57:58AM +0100, Charles Flèche wrote:
> Hi guys,
> I'm back in London after 2 years on the go and I need to subscribe again
> to a broadband provider. I'm looking for a computer enthusiast-friendly
> connection as I'm going to host my own servers. In order of importance :
> - a fibre connection

I assume you mean Fibre To The Cabinet (FTTC) ADSL, which is not all
parts of London have FTTC yet. Fibre To The Premises is not wide
spread or easily available.

FTTC ADSL is still provided by BT Openreach, and available via the
same ISP resellers as normal ADSL. Ingore the BT adverts about
"BT Infinity" - it's just FTTC ADSL.

> - no monthly data cap

Doesn't really exist. Those companies that claim no monthly data cap
will try to throttle bandwidth, traffic shape services, drop long
running connections, use proxies, etc. On the plus side the caps can
be very high (up to 1TB/month).

At upto 80 Mbit/s transfer running at 100% you could be downloading
25TB/month which will cost most ISPs many times more than you are
paying them. Traffic is a cost and you will have pay for it somewhere,
so I would suggest choosing an ISP that is honest about what you get
and what it will cost you.

> - static IP

Is often standard these days. Good companies will also offer routed
subnets, although with the IPv4 address shortage they may charge.

> - no P2P throttling

See month caps above.

> I don't need a TV / phone package, but I don't mind one if the good
> internet connection is part of a bigger deal.

Only common with Virgin Media or Sky. Both have very poor technical
support, bandwidth throttling and other brain-dead behaviours.

> I'd like to use my own router but I don't mind using the provided one if
> absolutely needed.

With FTTC ADSL BT supply their own modem that presents itself through
an ethernet connection, so any halfway decent ethernet router/firewall
that can cope with the bandwidth will do. A decent ISP will offer a
range of routers but be 100% fine with using your own.

As for recommendations, Zen Internet ( http://www.zen.co.uk/ ) and
Andrews and Arnold ( http://www.aaisp.net.uk ) tend to be the most
technically aware.  I have used Zen at many sites, although only one
FTTC so far.

The same useless ISPs (Virgin, Sky, TalkTalk) exist, offering low
prices and even lower service and support.

|    John Edwards   Email: john at cornerstonelinux.co.uk    |
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