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train_wreck

join:2013-10-04
Antioch, TN
Reviews:
·Comcast

1 edit

[CustSvc] "Comcast Business Broadband Performance Measurement Study"?

got an email today saying that, if I plug in a "SamKnows" device that Comcast will send me, into my cable modem & leave it there for 60 days, i'll get $150.... apparently all it does is measure network performance, and can supposedly tell when traffic is being generated & won't do its measuring at that time.

sound legit? not sure how trusting i'd be of something like this...

ExoticFish

join:2008-08-31
Stuarts Draft, VA

Re: "Comcast Business Broadband Performance Measurement Study"?

Got an E-mail from Comcast ? A legit address ?


train_wreck

join:2013-10-04
Antioch, TN

Re: "Comcast Business Broadband Performance Measurement Study"?

offers@get.comcastbiz.com

ExoticFish

join:2008-08-31
Stuarts Draft, VA

ExoticFish

join:2008-08-31
Stuarts Draft, VA
reply to train_wreck

Re: "Comcast Business Broadband Performance Measurement Study"?

And »comcastbiz.com/ isn't really anything...

I'd say it's spam.
--
»www.VAJeeps.com | »www.APetForum.com


train_wreck

join:2013-10-04
Antioch, TN
Reviews:
·Comcast
whatever the address, it looks like it might be official, here's a link from the official forums about it

»forums.businesshelp.comcast.com/···-message

ExoticFish

join:2008-08-31
Stuarts Draft, VA
Yes, Comcast did officially do this at one time. I hadn't heard anything recent.
--
»www.VAJeeps.com | »www.APetForum.com


NetFixer
Freedom is NOT Free
Premium
join:2004-06-24
The Boro
Reviews:
·Cingular Wireless
·Comcast Business..
·Vonage

2 edits
reply to train_wreck
If you decide to try using the SamKnows box, I hope you have better luck with yours than I had with mine.

The device is a TP-Link router (or was when I had one) with custom firmware that makes it look like a simple layer 2 switch, and it needs to be inserted between all of your LAN devices and the LAN on your Comcast gateway box. Its WAN interface requires a DHCP assigned address (there is no way to manually assign a static IP), so if your Comcast gateway box has its LAN DHCP server disabled because you are using static IP addresses only (as I was doing with my SMC gateway), you will need to enable the Comcast gateway DHCP server to be able to assign at least one IP address for the SamKnows box. When it is working properly, it is effectively invisible to your network (and its tests don't seem to interfere with your own traffic).

However, mine would intermittently block all Internet traffic and require a power cycle (and sometimes also a power cycle of the Comcast gateway) in order to unlock and allow Internet traffic again. I never got anything specific from SamKnows support to explain why that would happen, but they hinted that the firmware might be having problems with a combination of local private IP addresses and public IP addresses passing through it (their solution was that I should take it out of my network and trash it). That was a couple of years ago, so maybe they have upgraded the firmware to work properly with Comcast Business Class service with multiple static IP addresses mixed with private NAT IP addresses (especially since Comcast seems to be recommending its use for business class customers).
--
A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.


train_wreck

join:2013-10-04
Antioch, TN
Reviews:
·Comcast
interesting, so i actually have to route all my traffic from my 4 static IPs through this, then out to the modem? or can it just exist along side those, within the same switch as the firewalls/servers? i have heard of tp-link, and that they are kind of bottom-of-the-barrell


NetFixer
Freedom is NOT Free
Premium
join:2004-06-24
The Boro
Reviews:
·Cingular Wireless
·Comcast Business..
·Vonage
said by train_wreck:

interesting, so i actually have to route all my traffic from my 4 static IPs through this, then out to the modem? or can it just exist along side those, within the same switch as the firewalls/servers? i have heard of tp-link, and that they are kind of bottom-of-the-barrell

You can try to just install it in parallel instead of in series (a serial connection is what SamKnows wants you to do), but then the traffic sensing won't work, and their tests (which can be quite intensive) will compete with your traffic. The SMC gateway that I was using had no QoS or rate limiting, so that was a problem when I tried that workaround. But if you have a switch with QoS or rate limiting, or if you are using the Netgear gateway (if it has QoS or rate limiting), then it might work OK in parallel with your LAN devices (but if you limit the bandwidth for the SamKnows box, that would skew the test results...and Comcast might not like that). If you have enough bandwidth, that might also make a difference with the SamKnows box connected in parallel...I am on the 16/3 speed tier (12/2 at the time I was using the SamKnows box), and run two VoIP ATAs...the SamKnows tests definitely interfered with my VoIP unless I installed it serially.

TP-Link (IMO) is definitely not a prime quality supplier, but they are cheap and most of their router products can run OpenWRT and other firmware. That makes them very attractive for organizations such as SamKnows and RIPE to use TP-Link products for devices that they distribute for free. After I took my SamKnows TL-WR1043ND box out of service, I attempted to load the original TP-Link firmware just to evaluate it as a standard WiFi router, but I bricked it in the process. I later found out that it was my fault; I was supposed to know that I needed to do a hex edit on the TP-Link firmware file before uploading it. FWIW, I have had no problems at all with the TP-Link router that RIPE sent me for their Atlas monitoring project...but that device is not installed serially with my LAN, and it uses very little bandwidth.
--
A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.


train_wreck

join:2013-10-04
Antioch, TN
Reviews:
·Comcast
said by NetFixer:

But if you have a switch with QoS or rate limiting, or if you are using the Netgear gateway (if it has QoS or rate limiting), then it might work OK in parallel with your LAN devices (but if you limit the bandwidth for the SamKnows box, that would skew the test results...and Comcast might not like that). If you have enough bandwidth, that might also make a difference with the SamKnows box connected in parallel...I am on the 16/3 speed tier (12/2 at the time I was using the SamKnows box), and run two VoIP ATAs...the SamKnows tests definitely interfered with my VoIP unless I installed it serially.

i'm actually back on the SMC at the moment. I suppose I could always manually set the port for the Samknows to 10meg, kind of a poor-man's QoS lol. i have 100/20 & great signals, so i don't think it would be able to saturate things


NetFixer
Freedom is NOT Free
Premium
join:2004-06-24
The Boro
Reviews:
·Cingular Wireless
·Comcast Business..
·Vonage
said by train_wreck:

i'm actually back on the SMC at the moment. I suppose I could always manually set the port for the Samknows to 10meg, kind of a poor-man's QoS lol. i have 100/20 & great signals, so i don't think it would be able to saturate things

If I were using one of Comcast's gateways and qualified for the Comcast rebate (I currently use an SB6121 with my own routers for multiple subnets), I would probably initially try it in the "recommended" mode of being inserted between the gateway box's LAN and the rest of my network. Since Comcast seems to be pushing its usage for business class customers, one would hope that the firmware has been updated to eliminate the problems I saw (and it is possible that I just had a flaky box when I tried it previously). Hooking it up that way should insure reasonable accuracy for the tests (which includes a speed test similar to the ShaperProbe test that runs many times a day during what it perceives as idle time). Limiting the bandwidth available to the SamKnows box (or just connecting it unregulated in parallel with your LAN) would likely skew the test results and make your connection appear to not meet specs.
--
A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.


train_wreck

join:2013-10-04
Antioch, TN
Reviews:
·Comcast
said by NetFixer:

(which includes a speed test similar to the ShaperProbe test that runs many times a day during what it perceives as idle time)

and this would be my primary concern, whether its "perception" of idleness matches reality. also privacy concerns of what exactly this box might be doing.

thanks for the info


tshirt
Premium
join:2004-07-11
Snohomish, WA
kudos:5
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to train_wreck
I'd check with NetDog See Profileor netcool See Profile to be sure it's a legit offer, comcast betas rarely pay cash.


train_wreck

join:2013-10-04
Antioch, TN
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to train_wreck

Re: [CustSvc] "Comcast Business Broadband Performance Measurement Study"?

Click for full size


jlivingood
Premium,VIP
join:2007-10-28
Philadelphia, PA
kudos:3
reply to train_wreck
This is (indirectly) from my team. We want to learn more about business class performance since all of our SamKnows units are on residential at the moment and you can learn a lot with enough measurement points. This helps improve the service experience over time, which is why we're doing it.

This actually saves my asking for an update from someone tomorrow - I know we're soliciting participants.
--
JL
Comcast


train_wreck

join:2013-10-04
Antioch, TN
Reviews:
·Comcast

1 edit
coolio
are you aware of any of the issues NetFixer mentioned? i'd be willing to try this out as long as it for sure works with static IPs (5)

EDIT actually, i don't believe i would qualify for this requirement

You are not a heavy downloader. We'd classify anything above 30GB per month as being too heavy for us to gather useful results

n_w95482
Premium
join:2005-08-03
Ukiah, CA
reply to train_wreck
With my roller-coaster speeds on business-class, I'd love to run one of those. Unfortunately (for them), I don't use a gateway device. Oh well...
--
KI6RIT


NetFixer
Freedom is NOT Free
Premium
join:2004-06-24
The Boro
Reviews:
·Cingular Wireless
·Comcast Business..
·Vonage
reply to train_wreck
said by train_wreck:

EDIT actually, i don't believe i would qualify for this requirement

You are not a heavy downloader. We'd classify anything above 30GB per month as being too heavy for us to gather useful results

I don't recall seeing that disclaimer when I signed up for the SamKnows project, but perhaps it is possible that heavy usage added to the intermittent lockup problems I saw with the SamKnows box I was using.
--
A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.


NetFixer
Freedom is NOT Free
Premium
join:2004-06-24
The Boro
Reviews:
·Cingular Wireless
·Comcast Business..
·Vonage
reply to n_w95482
said by n_w95482:

With my roller-coaster speeds on business-class, I'd love to run one of those. Unfortunately (for them), I don't use a gateway device. Oh well...

You might not like using the SamKnows box under those conditions anyway. What I saw was not an up and down roller coaster ride...it was driving over a cliff and crashing in the valley below.

When I used it in conjunction with the SMCD3G using a mixture of public static IP addresses and NAT addresses, it would crash perhaps two-three times a week (but sometimes it might make it a full week without crashing). However, when I changed my Comcast account to use dynamic IP addresses (first with the SMCD3G in bridge mode, and later with an SB6121) so that I could start using Comcast's IPv4/IPv6 dual stack, it would crash two-three times per day. The Samknow box (at least the one I had) just seemed to not handle not being behind a NAT router and/or having multiple public gateways very gracefully (at that time every router and server I had behind it was on a different Comcast subnet and had a different gateway). Possibly if I had used a single NAT router and routed all of my traffic through the SamKnows box to that single NAT router (just as if I had a Comcast residential account with a single public IP address), it might have worked flawlessly, but that was not how my network was/is setup.
--
A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.


ropeguru
Premium
join:2001-01-25
Mechanicsville, VA
reply to train_wreck
If that is the case, then I think the results would be very skewed and invalid.