Is there a guide for bt speedtester site ?

  setecio 09:20 09 Sep 2007

Is there a guide to using and interpreting results from the btspeedtester site ?
click here

  MichelleC 09:28 09 Sep 2007


  holme 10:11 09 Sep 2007

I don't think there's a guide available (apart from your friendly Outreach engineer who will totally baffle you with arcane banter).

Reducing it to its basics, I think all you need to look at in the results is firstly the 'IP Profile' which is telling you what the BT kit is (auitomatically) setting your system to. The other number to look at is the Actual Download speed which, invariably, is something short of the IP Profile, typically 5-10 less, or 20-25% less during busy periods (Upload will typically be 350kbps).

The point is that, even if you're nominally on an "Up to 8MB" service, in practice you won't see an IP Profile of more than 7150kbps and, very often, significantly lower than this.

It's what's called a "rate-adaptive" system in that the BT kit will constantly monitor performance of their line and your system and, if it sees something it doesn't like (e.g. data dropouts), it will automatically reduce the IP Profile until it detects a reasonably stable situation. This can happen quite quickly (minutes).

But even if conditions then improve, it won't start increasing the IP Profile until it's seen *three days* of satisfactory results, so recovery is a very slow process, usually in daily increments.

HTH in the absence of a formal user-guide. You might like to have a look through a tale of woe concerning a /very/ low IP Profile(130kbps!), which may help to illustrate the process,
click here

  Dipso 16:53 09 Sep 2007

There is a guide somewhere, I'll see if I can find it but in the meantime this is a basic guide click here Check out this click here for interpretation of the results.

There have been some changes to the timescales however and it can now take up to 5 days (insterad of 3) depending on the circumstances for a BRAS profile to update in line with your connection speed.

  holme 17:25 09 Sep 2007

Many thanks for those two links; very useful.

The second one confirms my personal conclusion that, even if the max line speed is as high as 8128kbps, the max data rate is 7150kbps (which usually translates to an actual download speed of typically 6800-6900kbps - except during busy periods when up to 50 of us have to fight each other for 'our' bit of the available bandwidth.

"it can now take up to 5 days (insterad of 3) depending on the circumstances for a BRAS profile to update in line with your connection speed."

Agreed. I understand the 'auto-adaptive' routine is that the IP Profile increases in line with the /average/ stable rate over the previous 3 days. So if, for example, you've just had a very bad fault completely cleared (as recently happened to us), the three daily readings could be (say) 135/135/7150, so the IP Profile after Day 3 will initially be increased from 135 to the average, i.e. something like 2500kbs.

Then if things stay OK, Day 4's average will increase again, based on 135/7150/7150 = 4500kbps. Finally, on Day 5, the average will be based on 7150/7150/7150 = er, 7150kbps.

So to summarise, even if a fault is cleared, the IP Profile won't move until at least three days afterwards. Then it will increase in increments until Day 5 is done. That's the auto-system, but it can be overridden manually by BT Wholesale to speed up the 'recovery'.

  setecio 08:27 10 Sep 2007

Thanks for all that.

>>>> You can only use the Broadband Speed Test if your broadband network provider is BT. <<<<<

Are there any similar sites to use if it is another ISP such as Pipex or Tiscali or any of the others ?

  numskull 08:41 10 Sep 2007

I used to use it when I was with Pipex. Can't seem to use it now that I have switched to Sky Broadband

  holme 10:29 10 Sep 2007

"You can only use the Broadband Speed Test if your broadband network provider is BT."

I think that simply means if BT Wholesale are providing the physical broadband facilities, including the phone line (i.e. not cable, Sky or whatever), *and regardless of which ISP you're with*

Your particular ISP simply sub-contract to BT Wholesale. HTH.

  holme 10:43 10 Sep 2007

As a PS to my previous post (10:29), I now understand that, in the past, and if you were with another ISP, you had first to change your modem/router setting to be able to access the BT Tester.

I believe that's no longer required (but please appreciate this is hearsay). Even if you're with another ISP, you can simply enter your (BT) phone number in the slot provided, press <Enter> and wait patiently for it to do its testing. This can take a few mins but will eventually get there (unless it says "Busy"; usually early evenings).

Suggest you try it; if it isn't compatible with your set-up, it'll let you know. HTH.

  Miros 10:52 10 Sep 2007

Here's a speed test don't know if it will helpclick here you?

  Dipso 14:42 10 Sep 2007

As shown in the first link in my first post, you now only need to enter your BT phone number and after a short check will be asked for your ISP login details, the bit

The tester sometimes comes back with error messages at busy times, don't take this to mean it won't work for you, just try again at a quieter time.

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