Tower problems ?

HSPA setup and configuration (for wireless networking, please use the 'Networking issue' forum)
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petemoss
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Tower problems ?

Post by petemoss » Wed May 27, 2009 2:26 pm

On the 1st May, I dropped into the local Optus shop, and asked if any towers were burnt out in the bushfires. They informed me that a tower, close to us, was burnt out. It would have been great if Exetel informed me of this (via Optus of course). It is since the bushfires that the reception has been very poor, resulting in dropouts, unable to connect, slow speeds, etc, etc.

Obviously, communication between Optus and Exetel needs to be improved.

The time 'wasted' in relation to this matter, could have been avoided, if communication between Optus and Exetel had been sufficient enough, for Optus to inform Exetel that a tower close to us was "not working" at present, or that a tower had specific problems.

Don't Exetel think that communication could be improved ? Why aren't Optus supplying Exetel with this type of information ? When is the communication between Optus and Exetel going to improve ?

I keep asking these questions, but no reply from Exetel on these forums. Have also been emailing "Exetel Residential Support" <residentialsupport@exetel.com.au> in relation to this matter, the replies have not been helpful at all. This is the type of reply I'm receiving from a person called 'Jason M' ..
Your questions relate to our own dealings with our supplier, which aren't of your direct concern. As there are no specific questions relating to your dealings with Exetel, there is no further response available.

Simply, our management monitor, review and determine our dealings with our suppliers and determine how to improve this. This isn't something discussed with customers, because it is of no immediate concern to them.
As I browse the HSPA threads, I notice other people have similar connection problems, and also some people have been advised by Exetel that the problem is with the tower. How is it, that Exetel are being very co-operative and helpful to other users who have 'tower problems', yet Exetel have failed to provide me with a response that could even remotely resemble 'helpful' ??

Exetel have provided no information to me at all, in regards to the tower, nor have they indicated that they will be taking the issue up with Optus. What does it take to get some support on this issue ?

Pete

JasonM

Re: Tower problems ?

Post by JasonM » Wed May 27, 2009 3:06 pm

What exact response are you hoping to have to those questions?
They relate to how we handle issues with our supplier, "None of your concern", comes to mind.

They don't relate to your specific service, and concern internal communication with our suppliers.

.. Or I'll supply the answers you might expect:
Don't Exetel think that communication could be improved ?
- Maybe, That's a co-operative effort that management at the supplier and Exetel can review.

Why aren't Optus supplying Exetel with this type of information ?
- They investigated based on the information supplied and found your address is on-street coverage only, that might not be related to the tower being burnt down, it could very simply be 'you can't get the service anyway'.

When is the communication between Optus and Exetel going to improve ?
- When Management at the supplier and at Exetel review the situation and determine if and when it should be improved.

The supplier investigated the issue we reported and advised nothing can be done to resolve it as it is an on-street only coverage area.

We offered a refund for the equipment purchase. You then took it upon yourself to go to Optus who advised you a tower burnt down, that may or may not be affecting your service, and replied to us with specific questions relating to Exetel's (and not your own) communication with Optus.

petemoss
Posts: 192
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Re: Tower problems ?

Post by petemoss » Sat May 30, 2009 2:55 pm

JasonM wrote:What exact response are you hoping to have to those questions ?
Some courteous responses would be appropriate. Also, some honest responses would be great, and also some timely responses would be great also. :mrgreen:
JasonM wrote: They relate to how we handle issues with our supplier, "None of your concern", comes to mind.
That would be categorised under a discourteous response. :oops:
JasonM wrote: They don't relate to your specific service, and concern internal communication with our suppliers.
Incorrect. They do relate to the service I use, although indirectly. If there is a communications problem between Optus and Exetel, it does affect me and other Exetel customers, because the information that comes back to Exetel customers, is reliant upon the Exetel <==> Optus communication/s. Because of the information dependance, it does relate
JasonM wrote: Why aren't Optus supplying Exetel with this type of information ?
- They investigated based on the information supplied and found your address is on-street coverage only, that might not be related to the tower being burnt down,
That information was 'as at' the pre bushfire period. Any attempt/s to obtain , at least some post bushfire information, from Optus via Exetel proved fruitless, hence the need to do some investigations of my own. The 'on-street' coverage information has been obtainable, via the Optus site, by the general public, for a long time.
JasonM wrote: ... it could very simply be 'you can't get the service anyway'.
Incorrect. The Optus site , whilst the format of the enquiry has changed, states our area as "Serviceable".
JasonM wrote: The supplier investigated the issue we reported and advised nothing can be done to resolve it as it is an on-street only coverage area.
Can we be 100% certain, that that information was post bushfire ? Whilst that information (apart from being publically accessable) may have been supplied from Exetel pre and post bushfire periods, was it updated post bushfire, or was it simply the pre bushfire information sent again ?
JasonM wrote: We offered a refund for the equipment purchase.
Yes, and the alternative internet connection offered by Exetel was ..... ?? Please remember, I had not only spent $$ on the modem equipment, but have also installed a Yagi antenna. The offering of a refund was nebulous, as there was no alternate method of connection to the internet, proposed by Exetel. Considering all the issues at hand, it was quite an incongruous suggestion, really.
JasonM wrote: You then took it upon yourself to go to Optus who advised you a tower burnt down, that may or may not be affecting your service ......
Indeed I did ; I needed specific answers, which weren't forthcoming from Exetel. That information I received from Optus was also in the local papers, on the local radio, and was general public knowledge, after the bushfires , and well before I went to the local Optus shop. All of this proves that the information I got from Optus was public knowledge anyway, so really, I was no better informed afterwards. :(

However, the objective of this thread was to ask Exetel (a) If there is, or was, a tower problem, and (b) was this related to the poor reception since the bushfires. Also, why cannot this type of information be supplied by Exetel ?

My 0.02 cents worth. :)

Pete

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vk3xem
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Re: Tower problems ?

Post by vk3xem » Sat May 30, 2009 8:44 pm

It appears to me that the problem you are creating is that you want to know how Exetel deals with a supplier.

If the HSPA service does not work in your area then you advise Exetel, which you did. The reply is that the network is operating as described in your area. They offered you a resolution, end of story take it or leave it.

You could always subscribe to Optus and then ask them to improve the coverage in your area, but I wouldn't expect a positive outcome there either.

My understanding is that all mobile phone services have long since been fixed, that were burnt out during the bushfires. I know that additional services were moved into most bushfire affected areas within days of Black Saturday by all the networks to cope with all the Emergency Services that flooded into the areas.

So if Exetel say that you have 'Street Level Coverage' in your area and the yagi you have setup does help your service then I would be looking at the direction it is pointed in and the feedline between the antenna and modem to ensure it is all correct.
The views I present are that of my own and NOT of any organisation I may belong to.

73 de Simon, VK3XEM

petemoss
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Re: Tower problems ?

Post by petemoss » Thu Jun 04, 2009 11:07 am

vk3xem wrote:It appears to me that the problem you are creating is that you want to know how Exetel deals with a supplier.
The current problems have not been created by myself, rather they are external. No, I do not want to know 'how' Exetel deals with a supplier (method), simply require some information from the supplier, via Exetel.
vk3xem wrote: If the HSPA service does not work in your area then you advise Exetel, which you did.
I would not state that "it did not work". For that to be true, I would not be able to connect to the internet at all. I would state that there are problems with broadband wireless, and certainly there are many others experiencing similar problems.
vk3xem wrote: The reply is that the network is operating as described in your area. They offered you a resolution, end of story take it or leave it.
Considering all the issues at hand, that is quite an incongruous suggestion, really. To 'leave it' would result in no internet connection at all.
vk3xem wrote: My understanding is that all mobile phone services have long since been fixed, that were burnt out during the bushfires.
Whilst tower locations and other details can be obtained from the ACMA website, it does not show whether towers are operational or not. Therefore, we cannot state that all mobile phone services have been fixed, unless there is sufficient information to prove that statement to be true.
vk3xem wrote: So if Exetel say that you have 'Street Level Coverage' in your area and the yagi you have setup does help your service then I would be looking at the direction it is pointed in and the feedline between the antenna and modem to ensure it is all correct.
I hope to get that checked soon. I cannot check it myself, as I use Ubuntu and have no indication of signal strength, and therefore cannot see if another direction helps or not. The software that comes with the USB dongle does show signal strength, but it only runs on M$, so I need to get it checked with someone running a laptop and M$.

It does seem though, more than a co-incidence, that for the most part, the problems experienced are since the bushfires.

Thanks,

Pete

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Dazzled
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Re: Tower problems ?

Post by Dazzled » Thu Jun 04, 2009 11:24 am

Pete, the meter is being sorted. Keep your eye out for Modem manager and the new Network Manager 0.8. See also the PPA repo at https://launchpad.net/~modemmanager/+archive/ppa

petemoss
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Re: Tower problems ?

Post by petemoss » Thu Jun 04, 2009 11:40 am

Dazzled wrote:Pete, the meter is being sorted. Keep your eye out for Modem manager and the new Network Manager 0.8. See also the PPA repo at https://launchpad.net/~modemmanager/+archive/ppa
Thanks Dazzled. I did look , some time ago, at using UMTSmon , because it showed signal strength, network stats, things that are sadly lacking in Network manager. However, the support for it seem 'low', and so I stuck with Network manager.

It appears from that link, that modem manager will be a 'part' of the NM vers 0.8, sounds good news anyway, thanks. I'm using Intrepid and the latest NM on the computer with the E169, but do have Jaunty on another desktop, which is kind of a test machine at present.

Thanks for the news. :D

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Dazzled
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Re: Tower problems ?

Post by Dazzled » Thu Jun 04, 2009 11:48 am

I don't know if you are a programmer and like to fiddle, but there is a C coded meter for the E220 at http://oozie.fm.interia.pl/pro/huawei-e220/, otherwise keep backed up, risk an arrow in the back, and experiment with the Launchpad PPA solution - that is why it is published.

Need2No
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Re: Tower problems ?

Post by Need2No » Thu Jun 04, 2009 10:47 pm

petemoss wrote: Thanks Dazzled. I did look , some time ago, at using UMTSmon , because it showed signal strength, network stats, things that are sadly lacking in Network manager. However, the support for it seem 'low', and so I stuck with Network manager.
Although I prefer NM to handle my connections, I installed umtsmon to use their signal strength meter to initially select the best location to position my modem. If I start getting dropouts I start umtsmon again to check my signal strength once more.
Until NM 0.8 comes out, this setup works OK for now.

Regards

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Dazzled
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Re: Tower problems ?

Post by Dazzled » Thu Jun 04, 2009 11:06 pm

Need2no, I haven't got an E169 at hand (the one I play with travels with family) but the E220 meter I referenced above compiles readily if you have libncurses5-dev installed. It simply opens and then reads a slab of bytes from the USB port and parses them, It writes the stats and bars to a terminal window, and then erases unwanted bars. If both modems have similar outputs, Bob's your uncle. I can't see off the top of my head how it could hurt the modem if the format has changed. Huawei unfortunately won't publish the format.

Need2No
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Re: Tower problems ?

Post by Need2No » Thu Jun 04, 2009 11:54 pm

Dazzled wrote:Need2no, I haven't got an E169 at hand (the one I play with travels with family) but the E220 meter I referenced above compiles readily if you have libncurses5-dev installed. It simply opens and then reads a slab of bytes from the USB port and parses them, It writes the stats and bars to a terminal window, and then erases unwanted bars.
I have both an E220 '3' and an E169, Optus locked, Exetel C3. I might have a stab at this meter and see how it goes.

Regards

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