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Broadband Internet - Your Experiences

Is anybody using Broadband Internet, and if so would you recommend it. Does real life use of Broadband Internet mirror the hype?

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Tim
Tim McGuire

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Broadband is Great
We have a BT connection to Demon Internet in our office and I have a 600k NTL service at home (£25 per month). The big benefit is connecting from home to the office server via the internet and being able to work whenever I wish. Email is normally instant. Speed is slower than being in the office and some applications do not like a wide area network but on the whole it has made me much more productive.

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Rural Broadband
This is to give hope to all those who want broadband but can't get it.

I live in a village so absolutely no hope of our exchange being broadband enabled in my lifetime. I have just had a satellite system installed by http://www.satdrive.com . As an accountant working from home I have received a grant under the RABBIT scheme so I haven't had to pay a penny. However, I wanted a system where I could afford the monthly subscription and I therefore chose SatDrive's one way system. You still use the dial up modem for uploads and to send instructions but all the downloads (files, patches and content rich websites) come down via the satellite in a jiffy. After using 56k dial up alone this is a joy to behold.

As a bonus I receive emails offline via satellite without having to dial up, although I dial up if I wish to reply. This adds professionalism to my practice as I can reply to a client's email straight away giving the appearance of a much bigger enterprise.

SatDrive also provide other benefits detailed on their website. After installation the cost is only £14.99 per month (vat incl).

There are several alternative technology broadband systems out there as well as other satellite providers. For details of suppliers and grant application forms visit:

SEEDA
http://www.rabbit-broadband.org.uk covering the South East and South West of England

Welsh Development Agency
http://www.wda.co.uk/en/technology_and_innovation/broadband.cfm covering the whole of Wales

I wouldn't be without it!

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AccountingWEB User Guide to Broadband
Tim,

Back in May last year, a fellow community member posted a similar question - and received over 80 responses.

Click on the link below for a wide range of broadband opinions!

AccountingWEB User Guide to Broadband.

Regards

Richard Norton
Community Manager
AccountingWEB

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Broadband Experience
The only broadband experience we have up here in the north west of Scotland is those which hold last years purchase invoices and chequ book stubs together!

Despite Highlands & Islands Enterprise (HIE) investing £5m in a £15m joint inititative with BT years ago to upgrade all exchanges in the north to digital exchanges, it has only happened in the larger towns and cities. Where I live, I do not have a digital exchange and the Council grass verge-cutting machine regularly chops up the BT mainline cable which is "supposed" to be buried alongside the main road!

I cannot get 1571 from BT or any of the other super-duper "benefits" supposedly accruing to users of their BT Talk Together packages. As for ADSL, I think BT is of the opinion that it must be some Greek football team!!

Good to see Arsenal getting the run-around from a spritely youthfully exuberant Ajax side tonight, even if Mr Bergkamp mysteriously fell over yet again (!) in the box in the last few mintutes in a vain attempt to sneak a penalty!
The older that guy gets, the dirtier he becomes as a player, yet becasue of his reputation, he gets off with an awful lot!

And good luck to Sir Bobby, even if he cant pronounce the names of half his team without his teeth in. Fully deserved their victory tonight!
I wouldn't be too surprised if Tony asks him to take his team to Baghdad to sort out a certain Mr Hussein, against all the odds!

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I wouldn't be without it.
The faster your connection the more you use it and the more benefits you receive.

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For us, definitely yes
Tim
We installed Telewest broadband Internet in March 2000 and, after the initial teething troubles on signal strength were sorted out it, has been absolutely brilliant. We have an ordinary telephone line v90 status modem as a backup in case of cable downtime but I do not remember having had to use the v90 modem during the last year other than for testing.

As the connection is permanently live, delivery and collection of email is literally a matter of seconds each time and Internet access is immediate. Is it always up to speed at 10 times faster than an ordinary modem? - the short answer is no if you always compare it with the best that an ordinary modem can achieve as Internet congestion affects all forms of Internet access at various times of the day.

Our experience of cable 512mbps Internet is however that it is always very fast by comparison with an ordinary telephone line connection. Our initial finding that it cut the download time for a regular file pick up from 15 to 2 minutes still holds good. If you regularly download large files consider going for an even faster connection if its available (Telewest and some others also offer a 1gig connection).

It is not essential to have a powerful computer to gain the benefit of broadband Internet. Ours was originally installed in March 2000 on a P200 and it has also been run on a P166 and the benefits were clearly evident on both machines. There are of course benefits from using a more powerful computer - the connection is now to a 1.6gb XP AMD Athlon based machine which can easily cope with all the flashiest and latest power hungry gizmos etc that some of the idiots who build websites on the latest machinery and high speed lines use.

A firewall is absolutely essential for the host machine and all other connected machines that connect via the host computer on a peer to peer basis. The easiest way of dealing with this is to use a broadband/ADSL routing hub which has firewall capability so that all machines connecting via the hub are protected by the one firewall installation at hub level.

Is it all hype? - most definitely not. Our Telewest connection is fast, reliable, enables us to give a better service to our clients and saves us time/enables us to do more in the same amount of time. Its also helped to reduce our library costs as we can make real use of the Internet instead.

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Look at Scottish Hydro Electric's Trials
Well I have contacted SWEB our local electricity company about Scottish Hydro Power's recent successful broadband trials using standard electricty power lines.

It's 2 to 4 times as fast as BT and could be available to all but the remotest locations by their local electricty companies. It was trialled at £25 per month for a 2MBPS service for home use. I don't know if any other equipment is required.

SWEB have said they will look into it and hope to have news later this year. Here in the South West the BT broadband map is about 95% white (ie broadband not available). The South West is probably one of the areas which could benefit most in the country from Broadband and one of the areas that will probably be ignored for the longest as well.

I would urge anyone who does not have braodband access and like us have next to no chance of BT doing anything in the next few years, to contact their own local electricty company and enquire about the possibilty of broadband via power lines.

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Broadband - No Contest
Unless you have thousands a year to spend on a fixed connection then the BT broadband / Dial up debate is a "no contest", even allowing for the setup cost of a router/firewall (£120) and the BT connection (£40) it's paid for itself in the 3 months we've had it and has reduced our phone bill by 80-90%

We've also found we can respond quicker and do a lot more for our customers at a fraction of the former costs that would have been involved.

As far as we're concerned EVERYONE in the UK should have access to it if they want.

(Bestfirm Limited)

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Unfortunately......

I get broadband but my PC isn't up to the required spec. So.....

Wait for the return next week in the Ajax-v-Arsenal tie! You'll see a different Gunners once Ajax have to get some men in front of the ball rather than behind. Ajax got lucky on another night 4-2 to the Arsenal.

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Wouldn't be without it, only wish I could get it at home too.

We use the 512Kbps DSL Connection covering about 10 people and we find this more than ample.

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