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whyamihere

join:2008-10-01
Tyler, TX

U-verse speeds vs DSL; ATT digital modem choices

I'm not looking to change from AT&T DSL to U-verse (both internet only), just to change. I'm paying under half current DSL 3.0 "Pro" price now. But they are phasing out DSL & offering Uverse for generally LESS than same DSL speed.

1) Any word on how ATT U-verse prices will change over next couple yrs, as DSL's phased out? Are "experts" saying Uverse will skyrocket once DSL is mostly gone? If so, I may stick w/ DSL for now.

2) I read (urban legend?) that speeds on Uverse tend to be bit higher than same speed DSL. Any experience on that?
In my 36 yr old hood, it's NOT FTTH.
I use ATT DSL 2Wire 2701 HG-B in bridge mode, w/ Linksys WRT54GL. Regularly get 2500 kbps d/l from 3.0 Pro DSL.

3) Not sure if they offer more than one digital modem, under their rebate to cover new digital modem. Anyone aware if have a choice of digital modems & have any suggestions / preferences on diff brands / models (this is TX)?

4) After 1 yr into price of ? $14.95 / 19.95 (hard to decipher), U-verse prices (6.0 - Elite) goes up to $46 /mo, eff. Jan 27, 1013. But current dry loop 3.0 DSL is NOW "regular" $43. (See Q-1)

Besides, I always have to call every 12 (or 6) mo to get price reduced on DSL to ~ current promotion price or near it. Though it takes some time / patience / negotiation skills. That won't change w/ DSL or U-verse.

»www.att.com/shop/internet.html
*Effective January 27, 2013, the standard retail price for high-speed [U-verse] Internet will be: Max Turbo $66, Max Plus $56, Max $51, Elite $46, and Pro $41.


NormanS
I gave her time to steal my mind away
Premium,MVM
join:2001-02-14
San Jose, CA
kudos:12
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET
·Pacific Bell - SBC
said by whyamihere:

I'm not looking to change from AT&T DSL to U-verse (both internet only), just to change. I'm paying under half current DSL 3.0 "Pro" price now. But they are phasing out DSL & offering Uverse for generally LESS than same DSL speed.

1) I see no way to predict where prices will go for either; but, given the history of price increases for traditional ADSL (I saw my Internet price on Pro rise from $24.95 to $33 before I canceled), I would expect the price to go up for either.

2) I have no direct experience, but there is one salient difference between traditional ADSL and U-verse DSL: The former uses an ATM link between the DSLAM and the aggregation router, while the latter does not. ATM requires encapsulation of Ethernet packets in ATM cells, which incurs a 15% overhead, while U-verse IP-DSL does not. So ADSL throughput is .85xsync while IP-DSL is closer to .96xsync.

ADSL - 3008x0.85=2500
IP-DSL - 3008x.96=2888

3) I can't say which is better. But Pace bought 2Wire, and I am not very happy with my Pace 4111N-030. It is a CLEC issue (Sonic.net, LLC) modem, straight ADSL2+, not IP-DSLAM; but it has ISP access from the Internet side, so the ISP (and whomever hacks the modem client) is in control of the LAN. This appears to be a modem issue, not an ISP issue.

4) Some users report that they have negotiated their price down to $33-$35 for Pro (3.0 Mbs service). I never saw my AT&T DSL price go over $33, having canceled before their next round of price hikes, but I was unsuccessful at getting the bill back to the $24.95 price.

I fired AT&T over their ridiculous caps. In that regard, U-verse HSI will have higher caps, if they can fix their broken meter.
--
Norman
~Oh Lord, why have you come
~To Konnyu, with the Lion and the Drum

whyamihere

join:2008-10-01
Tyler, TX
reply to whyamihere
Thanks Norman,

I've never heard of Pace that bought 2Wire. This is all I've found on residential gateway - not much: »www.att.com/media/en_US/swf/uver···eway.pdf
Can you explain exactly the implications in your comment:
"but it has ISP access from the Internet side, so the ISP (and whomever hacks the modem client) is in control of the LAN."
Even U-verse 6.0 (Elite) - inet only - "reg." $ is now only $3 more than Uverse 3.0. And Uverse 3.0 "reg." $ is (now) $5 LESS than DSL 3.0. - $38 vs $43. That's w/o promos or "negotiating."

You fired ATT - & went w/ what? Did you get better price, or going more for higher speeds & data cap, at not too much more than ATT's price?

AT&T prices for all internet has gone up tremendously in last few yrs. DSL almost tripled in ? 5 yrs? I don't know what U-verse "internet only" $$ will do, once DSL is mostly gone. But, I've been successful for several yrs renegotiating DSL price down sharply. Last yr, 3.0 DSL was $35 "reg." (for "grandfathered" cust) & I got 1yr @ $14.95. You can't just say, "I want cheaper $," & they say OK. It's a process, for sure. Similar success in past, except their $ wasn't nearly as high.

Now DSL 3.0 is 43.00 & I pay under 19 - which is all it's worth.
No guarantee they'll renegotiate $ on U-verse. Not sure, but may be many more getting U-verse - internet or bundles - than dry loop DSL / DSL + phone. If users are signing up like crazy, they may not be as open to negotiating $.


NormanS
I gave her time to steal my mind away
Premium,MVM
join:2001-02-14
San Jose, CA
kudos:12
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET
·Pacific Bell - SBC
said by whyamihere:

Can you explain exactly the implications in your comment:

"but it has ISP access from the Internet side, so the ISP (and whomever hacks the modem client) is in control of the LAN."

Pace/2Wire have registered port 3479 for their 'TWRPC' (TwoWire Remote Programming(?) Client) service on the modem. Port scanning a public IP address on a Pace/2Wire RG shows that port 3479 is open, so some application on the RG is listening on port 3479 fo incoming connections. This puts the user at the mercy of the security of the firmware on the RG. Since it also is a router, whomever can access the RG can also access the LAN configuration of the router.

You fired ATT - & went w/ what? Did you get better price, or going more for higher speeds & data cap, at not too much more than ATT's price?

When AT&T annunced caps with overage fees in February, 2011 (or so) I started looking for alternatives. I found two right off:

• DSL Extreme
• Sonic.net, LLC

DSLX offers the same service tiers as AT&T; basically reselling them. But from the aggregation router to the peering connections, subscribers ride DSLX transit. Plus, no caps. They offer service in several states, in conjunction with local ILECs.

Sonic.net has a similar service to DSLX in many areas; but in my case, with a CO connection, I qualified for their "Fusion" service. Faster at the same wire distance, cheaper, more useful options. However, there is a downside for many: Sonic.net operates only in California, and only in areas where AT&T is the ILEC.
--
Norman
~Oh Lord, why have you come
~To Konnyu, with the Lion and the Drum

whyamihere

join:2008-10-01
Tyler, TX
reply to whyamihere
Assume "RG" = residential gateway?

Port scanning a public IP address on a Pace/2Wire RG shows that port 3479 is open, so some application on the RG is listening on port 3479 fo incoming connections. This puts the user at the mercy of the security of the firmware on the RG. Since it also is a router, whomever can access the RG can also access the LAN configuration of the router.

Is not the function of a DSL modem / gateway much the same, in that it must always listening for a connection. And NAT firewall on DSL modem prevents unwanted incoming connections / data?

Don't (all) digital modems have the same security functions, or equiv., as DSL modems? DSL users, short of soft FWs, were always at mercy of hard FW security on modems.

Are you saying w/ (at least your) digital modem, ATT and / or Pace can ALWAYS access your computer (scan system), not just access your modem address? If ISP has access to your local area network, they can see all machines on your (home) network & a whole lot more. "Don't seem right."

Maybe I misunderstand. Or maybe big bro has truly taken over. In past, in order for say, remote support tech to access your system to troubleshoot, you had to install an app & then allow them access. Is that what we're talking about?

Firing AT&T: Sounds like price was a secondary consideration for you, unless got a good promo.

In TX (large metro areas, anyway), local DSL / FiOS / cable / satellite all run releatively cheap promos, all the time. Usually, because cable, satellite promise much faster speeds than 3, 6 mbps DSL or U-verse, their promo prices aren't nearly as low as ATT's 3.0 or 6.0 service promos.

If I wanted to / could pay 30 - 40 / mo & needed 30mbps, I'd pay cable co. That doesn't mean I can't use cable / satellite promos as bargaining chip w/ any ATT service. Eventually, won't surprise me if actually have to fire them, to show I'm serious. Don't know how many yrs they'll keep substantially reducing price (DSL / U-verse). I'm talking down near their current promo $. Doesn't the "Scale of Economy" dictate that as more units are produced (customers served), price comes down?


NormanS
I gave her time to steal my mind away
Premium,MVM
join:2001-02-14
San Jose, CA
kudos:12
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET
·Pacific Bell - SBC
said by whyamihere:

Assume "RG" = residential gateway?

Yes.

Port scanning a public IP address on a Pace/2Wire RG shows that port 3479 is open, so some application on the RG is listening on port 3479 fo incoming connections. This puts the user at the mercy of the security of the firmware on the RG. Since it also is a router, whomever can access the RG can also access the LAN configuration of the router.

Is not the function of a DSL modem / gateway much the same, in that it must always listening for a connection.

No. The modem "listens" for nothing. It is just a bridge, passing all traffic, without stateful inspection, to the connected device.

And NAT firewall on DSL modem prevents unwanted incoming connections / data?

A pure modem has no NAT, it is just a bridge. Don't think anybody makes them any more.

NAT is a very crude firewall; in fact, the primary purpose of NAT is not as a firewall at all, but IP sharing. In its most basic form, it maintains a table of the LAN IP source of an outbound request so it can match response to the LAN device which made the request.

Don't (all) digital modems have the same security functions, or equiv., as DSL modems?

No. Most DOCSIS (cable) modems are pure bridges.

DSL users, short of soft FWs, were always at mercy of hard FW security on modems.

There was no "hard security" on the Westell WireSpeed B90-516R30 that SBC shipped when I first signed up; it was a pure bridge.

Are you saying w/ (at least your) digital modem, ATT and / or Pace can ALWAYS access your computer (scan system), not just access your modem address?

I am saying that there is an application on the device which listens for inbound traffic on port 3479. All I know about the application is that it relates to remote control of the device. Since all LAN (internal network) traffic must pass through the device, even if it is not going out to the Internet, it is subject to whatever capabilities the RPC service has.

If ISP has access to your local area network, they can see all machines on your (home) network & a whole lot more. "Don't seem right."

They potentially could monitor network traffic between any LAN devices; yes.

Maybe I misunderstand. Or maybe big bro has truly taken over. In past, in order for say, remote support tech to access your system to troubleshoot, you had to install an app & then allow them access. Is that what we're talking about?

Not quite the same. The user has control over the remote assistance application, and should be able to uninstall it when it is no longer needed. There is no GUI page accessible from the customer side of the RG which allows customer fiddling with the RPC.

Firing AT&T: Sounds like price was a secondary consideration for you, unless got a good promo.

Yes; secondary. I was miffed with AT&T over their caps. There is no promotional deal with the new ISP; no speed tiers, either.

About tiers: With AT&T, if your modem can't sync to the DSLAM at a given profile rate, say, 6016 for the 6.0 Mbps profile, they will only sell the next lower tier. So, since my modem could only sync at 5800, AT&T would only sell 3.0 Mbps service; modem sync set to 3008 at the DSLAM.

Sonic.net sells "Fusion" as, "up to 20 Mbps". The modem and DSLAM run free, and negotiate the best sync rate for the loop conditions. So I sync at ~5800, instead of 3008. And throughput is still 85% of sync (ATM circuit), so measured download speed is 4.9 Mbps instead of 2.5 Mbps.

In TX (large metro areas, anyway), local DSL / FiOS / cable / satellite all run releatively cheap promos, all the time. Usually, because cable, satellite promise much faster speeds than 3, 6 mbps DSL or U-verse, their promo prices aren't nearly as low as ATT's 3.0 or 6.0 service promos.

I have no promotion. "Fusion" is advertised as $39.95, plus voice taxes and fees; plus new, since last summer, a $6.50 per month modem rental fee.

The bill breaks out at $19.98 for voice (landline telephone service is required for "Fusion") + ~$10 in taxes and regulatory fees (same as AT&T collects on landline voice service), + $19.97 for Internet service + $6.50 modem rental.

At my mother's place, which has the 4.9 Mbps service, there is no modem rental, so she pays around $51 total, as compared with $103 on her last full AT&T bill.

At my current place, which has 14 Mbps service, but modem rental, I pay $58 total. I have not had an AT&T bill; not since 1984.

Doesn't the "Scale of Economy" dictate that as more units are produced (customers served), price comes down?

Based on what Sonic.net, LLC charges for "Fusion", I'd say AT&T is overcharging for both telephone and Internet service. Sonic.net is sufficiently profitable that they are rolling out FTTH service in some north S.F. Bay Area communities. They are taking it slow in order to not spend themselves into a hole (I think/hope).
--
Norman
~Oh Lord, why have you come
~To Konnyu, with the Lion and the Drum

whyamihere

join:2008-10-01
Tyler, TX

1 edit
reply to whyamihere
I'm not sure about caps on local cable, satellite, but ONLY DSL reseller in Houston metro area AFAIK, is Oplink. Their 3.0 speed is 40/mo + ATT "cheapest" line (some ATT landline req'd) runs 15 - 20. So, 55 - 60 for 3.0 DSL. Not much of a deal, unless you need the 25 call / mo landline. Except no data caps.

One more thing. I hope things have changed w/ router / VOIP compatibility since I got this 2Wire 2701 gateway in ? 2007. It was supposed to handle VOIP (maybe some did), but mine didn't. And all the LEvel 2 techs at ATT, 2Wire & VOIP provider couldn't make it hold the VOIP connection AFTER PC turned off - which is crazy. That's why I wound up w/ router behind a gateway in bridge mode. But, in bridge mode, can't access modem's UI.

Does AT&T REQUIRE using their issued digital modems? Maybe they've improved VOIP compatibility or I just got a lemon. I never want to go thru that again.

If you use that much data / mo, I guess it's OK. I don't think there's anything in TX in 14 Mbps w/ unlimited data for $58 reg. $. TX is one of those states that is not & never has been pro consumer. We have close to highest auto / home insurance rates in the country & very high electricity rates.