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buzzmag

join:2000-04-23
Philadelphia, PA

[Speed] Free Speed Upgrade

In July, Comcast told me that I was getting a speed 30Mbps to 50Mbps increase. Never could get the promised increase until I contacted Comcast Direct. They had a tech look at my system and found that the original installer used the wrong ethernet cable. The tech caught this and gave me the correct cable (CAT5e High Speed Ethernet Cable). Now getting the promised 50Mbps. To those of you not getting the free speed upgrade, check you ethernet cable.

ExoticFish

join:2008-08-31
Stuarts Draft, VA
Um, really ?


Johkal
Cool Cat
Premium,MVM
join:2002-11-13
Happy Valley
kudos:10
reply to buzzmag
I can't imagine it could have been the "wrong cable". The only lower standards that could have been used would have been cat5 or cat3(not likely). Cat5 can handle 100 Mbps where as Cat3 is 10 Mbps. Obviously you were getting your advertised 30 Mbps before the upgrade. It's more likely it was a damaged cable that needed to be replaced.


tshirt
Premium
join:2004-07-11
Snohomish, WA
kudos:5
Reviews:
·Comcast

1 edit
I agree, damaged or poor quality cable (in quite a few of the super cheap imported patch cords, the cable has been excessively untwisted or the pairs aren't equal length , so even though they have beautiful machine made snagless boots they can't actually pass data at full speeds even in short lengths.)
unfortunately cablecos last mile performance gets blamed for problems in the last 6 feet/100 meters after the modem.

buzzmag

join:2000-04-23
Philadelphia, PA
Um, yes really. Since I'm not an expert in this area and other comments here sound informed, I can only tell you what the tech told me. He looked at the cable and said it had only 4 pins not the required eight. Was it BS? I didn't care. I was getting the promised speed.


quetwo
That VoIP Guy
Premium
join:2004-09-04
East Lansing, MI
If it only had 4 pins, it would not have worked at all, let alone at 30Mb. 4 Pins = phone cable. 8 pins = Ethernet.

Cables either function or they don't (within reason... and usually at really, really, long lengths). Replacing a cable won't all of a sudden give you 50Mb. What they probably did was re-provision you during the service call to the new level (and then reboot your modem to get the new config file).

medbuyer

join:2003-11-20
kudos:4
reply to buzzmag
i'm wondering what type of cable did you have before?

cat3 or phone cable won't work obviously...

that or the tech really gave you a BS reason..., i believe it's the latter...


graysonf
Premium,MVM
join:1999-07-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to quetwo
said by quetwo:

If it only had 4 pins, it would not have worked at all, let alone at 30Mb. 4 Pins = phone cable. 8 pins = Ethernet.

Not true.

10BaseT and 100BaseT ethernet run over two twisted pairs. The other two twisted pairs in a four pair Cat5 cable are unused.

GigaBit ethernet uses (and requires) all four pairs.


plencnerb
Premium
join:2000-09-25
Carpentersville, IL
kudos:3
reply to buzzmag
This was between 8 and 10 years ago now, but I had some Network Cable (don't remember if it was CAT3 or CAT5) that did go "bad". It was some extra cables that I took home from my employer (they were going to throw them out).

If I used it to connect my Windows XP Desktop directly to my router, and ran a speed test, it was very slow. If I swapped out the cable with a new one (and made no other changes at all), and re-ran the speed test, it would be normal (for whatever package I had at the time). Swap it back, and the speed test would plummet.

So, Network cables can go bad if they have crimps or breaks in them. As I said, this specific cable was used from my place of employment, and it looked to be in really bad shape (physically).

With that being said, I don't see why a Comcast installer would be using CAT3 cable, let alone even have any with him. As others have said, there is not much of a difference between CAT5 and CAT5e in regards to the speed package you have (if you were looking to get speeds above 100 MB, then yes CAT5e would of course be needed).

So, I am thinking either the cable you had was damaged or poorer quality, or they had you provisioned with the wrong speeds.

In either case, it sounds like the problem has been resolved for you, which is all that matters!

--Brian
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MNDude

@xcelenergy.com
reply to quetwo
4 pins = 10/100 speed. 8 are only needed for gigabit connections. More then likely the modem rebooted and received a new configuration file which is why it's 50mbps. If a cable is working at 30mbps, there's no reason it shouldn't work at 50Mbps.

100BASE-TX is the predominant form of Fast Ethernet, and runs over two wire-pairs inside a category 5 or above cable. Like 10BASE-T, the active pairs in a standard connection are terminated on pins 1, 2, 3 and 6. Since a typical category 5 cable contains 4 pairs, it can support two 100BASE-TX links with a wiring adaptor.[3] Cabling is conventional wired to TIA/EIA-568-B's termination standards, T568A or T568B. This places the active pairs on the orange and green pairs (canonical second and third pairs).

»en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fast_Ethernet


tshirt
Premium
join:2004-07-11
Snohomish, WA
kudos:5
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to quetwo
said by quetwo:

If it only had 4 pins, it would not have worked at all, let alone at 30Mb. 4 Pins = phone cable. 8 pins = Ethernet.

Not exactly true 10 base t and 100TX only used 2 of the 4 pair, 1000base T (CAT5 and above) requires all four pair and tighter twist specs.

*whatever the tech said obviously that cable was less than perfect (if only 4 wires, very old CAT3* and he was lucky to get 30 Mbps before) and replacing made the difference.

remember the spec was 10MBps at 100 meters, even a short length of untwisted "phone cable" can sometimes carry a higher rate if little other electrical noise exists, higher rates and reliable service NEED better patch cables

ExoticFish

join:2008-08-31
Stuarts Draft, VA
reply to buzzmag
Just curious but how could someone in the Direct forum know what the installer used as far as Ethernet cables go ? Pretty sure that's not documented.
--
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NetFixer
Freedom is NOT Free
Premium
join:2004-06-24
The Boro
Reviews:
·Cingular Wireless
·Comcast Business..
·Vonage

1 edit
reply to quetwo
said by quetwo:

If it only had 4 pins, it would not have worked at all, let alone at 30Mb. 4 Pins = phone cable. 8 pins = Ethernet.

Cables either function or they don't (within reason... and usually at really, really, long lengths). Replacing a cable won't all of a sudden give you 50Mb. What they probably did was re-provision you during the service call to the new level (and then reboot your modem to get the new config file).

Sorry, but 100mbps Ethernet only requires two wire pairs (four wires) on pins 1-2 and 3-6. Only 1gbps Ethernet actually requires 4 pairs (8 wires).

However, if the OP had a 1gbps Ethernet interface on the cable modem or the connecting device, that connection would not have been able to get a 1gbps Ethernet sync, and it might have had problems doing an auto-detect for the proper speed range.

EDIT: Oops, I should have read the whole thread before replying. I just noticed that several other posters have pointed out the information in the first paragraph (but the problem of not getting a good auto-detect I described in the second paragraph is a possible explanation for why a new Ethernet patch cable fixed the problem...I have seen this happen).
--
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