ADSL Service is the sux0r

Posted: Thu, 15 September 2005 | permalink | No comments

Mark Greenaway's apparent woes with Telstra ADSL service remind me of the stories I've been involved with.

I wasn't a really early adopter of ADSL, primarily because I lived outside of the major metropolitan areas (although Wollongong is closer to the Sydney CBD than some parts of Sydney). This was OK, because I had University-grade hyper-mega-super-high-speed-broadband instead. But when the DSLAMs landed, I was up Internode's online signup form quicker than spam up an e-mail account posted on the web.

I'd heard the horror stories -- waiting weeks for no word, then a quick "haha, you're on a rim, no real-time fleshtones for you". Connection orders gone amiss. Taking months to actually get hooked up. And so on. So I steeled myself for a bit of a wait. Which was a waste, because a week later I had line sync, and all was happy.

When I moved house a little over a year later, I had to call up and get a relocation done, and again, all was sweet. I unplugged from the old place, drove the server farm across town, plugged it all back in, and reset the IP address. Hola!

This last time, however, was a bit different. The relocation itself seemed to go OK, with a "yes, you've got copper hooked up" message turning up a couple of days after moving in (I was a bit slow in registering the switchover). However, I didn't have line sync. Every possible combination of extension, splitter, filter, and extension line did nothing. A call to the ISP to log a fault resulted (in usual fine Internode fashion) with professional service and (after a blessedly short dance-of-clue-demonstration) a fault logged with (hack, spit!) Telstra.

After a few days wait (it was a weekend, so I can live with that), the Telstra tech who was supposed to come over and check the lines called up and said "I'm just going to check the exchange is OK, call you back". When he called me back, he told me that the line hadn't been wired in, and it should all be good now. And it was.

Whilst the dance of death there wasn't so painful, I am left wondering how someone manages to remember to breathe, when it appears to be too difficult to connect two copper wires to a DSLAM port before checking the box that says "line provisioned". Sheesh.

On the gripping hand, a friend of mine had the very devil of a time getting his ADSL provisioned at both his previous and current residences. At the last place, he wanted to get multiple lines put in, but there was only one pair into his house. Telstra scheduled some far-distant date for putting in extra copper, so in the mean time he got DSL on the current line.

Come extra-line-installation time, Telstra managed to totally screw up the wiring and "lose" his DSL connection. I'm not quite sure how they can manage to install new copper between the pit and the house, keep the same number on the line, and lose the DSLAM connection. Astounding.

At his current place, there have been nightmares. Four pairs available in the pit, Telstra activated the wrong pair for the phone service twice, and then they managed to hook the wrong pair up to the DSLAM (so his phone service still worked, but got sync off a different pair). A couple of weeks later, something completely lunched itself and all phone service was gone for a week or two.

About the only possible positive to come out of the full sale of Telstra is that a privatised Telstra can't do much worse than they're doing already.

Post a comment

All comments are held for moderation; markdown formatting accepted.

This is a honeypot form. Do not use this form unless you want to get your IP address blacklisted. Use the second form below for comments.
Name: (required)
E-mail: (required, not published)
Website: (optional)
Name: (required)
E-mail: (required, not published)
Website: (optional)