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  1. #1
    jdp1962's Avatar
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    Superfast Broadband Questions

    I use BT Yahoo Broadband, & have just received an email offering a free upgrade to its superfast "Up to 8mb" broadband service. At the moment, I use an Alcatel Speedtouch modem via USB, but BT tells me I should switch to either an Ethernet or wireless router connection.

    Here's the link:

    BT Up to 8MB Broadband Linky


    My PC is fitted with an Asus 802.11b Network Adapter card, but nothing is hooked up to it. As far as I know, I don't have an Ethernet card fitted, but when I checked the Communication Profile using my Belarc Advisor utility, it returned the following info:

    "1394 Net Adapter
    1394 Net Adapter #2
    Alcatel SpeedTouch USB ADSL PPP
    ASUS 802.11b Network Adapter
    Marvell Yukon Gigabit Ethernet 10/100/1000Base-T Adapter, Copper RJ-45
    NVIDIA nForce MCP Networking Controller
    Network Card MAC Address: 00:0E:A6:B0:19:FE"

    I've no idea what that means, but I did notice a reference there to Ethernet. Can any one advise me what I need to buy to take advantage of this superfast broadband connection?

    Thanks [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/beerchug.gif[/img]

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  3. #2
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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    A Netgear DG834 Wireless / or non wireless modem Router would do the trick.

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    Although if a non wireless, you may as well go for the Netgear DG632 modem, a lot cheaper!

  5. #4
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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    Am I right in thinking if I go for the DG632 non-wireless one, I have to get an Ethernet card as well? As far as I can tell, I don't have an ethernet socketon the back of the PC.

  6. #5
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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    Becareful changing broadband suppliers. I had loads of serious hassle and delays recently after moving house. Other people i know have had similar problems. 1-2 months with no broadband. Original supplier must fully relinquish their hold on your line before new supplier can connect. In mycase this took weeks,loads of phonecalls,emails,headbanging,crying and wailing to get any action.
    OFTEL were about as usefull as a chocolate fireguard.

    Is it just me or has dial up got even slower recently I was on it for 2 months during hassles and it barely worked at all.

  7. #6
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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    This won't a be a change of supplier. I'm already with BT Yahoo, & they're just offering to upgrade the connection speed for free. But they say I won't gert the benefit of the upgrade if I stay with my USB modem, which is why I'm considering the wireless router. Trouble is, I don't really understand how it works.

    Do I just plug it into the phone line, switch on & it then detects the little antenna on the back of the network adapter?

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    I thought this:
    Marvell Yukon Gigabit Ethernet 10/100/1000Base-T Adapter, Copper RJ-45

    was the ethernet card on the back of your PC, the ethernet port, looks like a modem port, it's just bigger!

    The wireless routher would work as follows:

    Plug cable from phone socket, (that currently goes to your USB Modem), into the new ethernet / wireless modem, this should detect the antenna's on the network adapter!

    I'd advise logging into the new modem, and configuring it with passwords, so no one else can use your wireless broadband, you'd also prob have to put your BT yahoo user name & password into this, to get the connection.

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    Alot of these new modems (surfboards) which have come out have USB connections as well as RJ45 and the USB is good for upto 10Meg Broadband. If your wanting to go Wireless then i would seriously consider Netgear make sure you get one with a built in Firewall though a little more expensive but they do work well....alternatives to that would be a Linksys maybe (also make sure it has a inbuilt firewall to help keep the nasties out). [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/beerchug.gif[/img]

  10. #9
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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    Thanks, guys, I think I understand it now.

  11. #10
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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    Jdp

    I would recommend like others have said, a wireless modem/router. Netgear are great, no problems with them at all. Also I read good stuff about Linksy.

    It's worthwhile paying teh bit extra for wireless IMO, as you never know when you or someone in the family will want a laptop/wireless device. My sis can use her lappy in her house and pick up signal in my house -no fusses. Also my aunty uses my wireless when she is in the country. Again no fusses.

    To do the job properly I would recommend setting up IP address on the machine(s) you want to allow permission...you will also need to set an IP for the router. And ensure you set the WEP key - to stop people sneaking onto and zapping your bandwidth.

    Once ya get going it's quite easy really. Also as said you get a good firewall with the netgear stuff - it really does filter a lot of [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/swear.gif[/img], and makes surfing quicker.

    I have two PC's and a Mac hooked up by hardwire in the house and provision for wireless - fab.

    On the subject of ISP's though I am with BT, always found them pretty good, though a bit pricey compared to others. I was thinking about switching to this talk talk broadband for life...anyone looked into this/using them? I think I also read somewhere that they have somethingto do with BT, but can't quite remember off hand.

    Suggestions on the old topic of best ISP's guys?...I know Nildram are supposed to be good too.

    Cheers

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    I've just gone to Tiscali for 19 pcm, which includes unlimited local & national calls anytime, was going to go with talktalk, but unfortuanlty for me they take over everything from BT, still use the BT line, but you pay them the line rental etc. I'm still contracted with BT for a year with line rental, as I recently moved into my new place, and it didn't have a BT line installed, but from what I saw, they looks very good

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    well the Alcatel modems are pretty good, and can cope with more that 8 meg line.

    I'm not entirely sure why they say they say you should switch to a router, unless they want you to a buy a router from them! as the alcatel will work fine.

    The only main reason to get a router is to attach other pcs to the Internet, with the added bonus of being able to access files ( with correct settings) of other pcs attached to the network.

    but if you do sounds like you don't have a network card, but you can pick one up fairly cheaply.

    If you do go for a router, I would highly recommend the Netgear DG834G.. have a fair amount of experince with routers and this is easiest to set up, and you can be connected within minutes!

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    The reason they want to move away from USB, is that they cannot be sure that customers PC's are UBS2. Without USB2, they wont be able to use the full bandwith of the 8Mb connection.

    as for using WEP, dont, it's very poor. Use WPA, its much much better, but still not perfect. Most if not all new routers come with WPA encryption.

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    Poor in what way?

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    poor as in easily crackable. Given the fact that most people never change their key, and the fact that WEP uses static keys, theres a relatively high chance of it being cracked (should somebody have the time and inclination).

    WPA uses different keys for each packet.

    Bottom line is that no (home) wireless network is 100% safe, but WPA or WPA2 is the best of whats affordable and available at the minute.

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    these are great, i installed this at work and u get a free USB wireless dongle, got ours from PC(****ee)world for 59 quid i fink it was, works great and easy to install..

    http://www.dsl-warehouse.co.uk/product.asp?pr=DSL-G604T

  18. #17
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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    I think what I'll do is accept the upgrade from BT Yahoo, and initially stick with the Alcatel USB modem just as it is. I can always switch to a router later if i think I need it.

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    I almost jumped on the BT 8Mb "free" upgrade, till i read the small print. By doing so, your signing up for another 1 year contract... and with the way broadband pricing is going at the moment, there's no way I'm signing up for another year at 30 / month.

    They'll be giving it away free with cornflakes soon.

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    "poor as in easily crackable"
    Ummm I don't think the average home user is really gonna be worried about their neighbours cracking the encryption on their router to save 10 a month in broadband charges. It's not like we don't know where they live!

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    You do have a network connection.

    Marvell Yukon Gigabit Ethernet 10/100/1000Base-T Adapter, Copper RJ-45

    is your network adaptor.

    It is an RJ-45 socket on your PC (an 8 pin socket).

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    [ QUOTE ]
    "poor as in easily crackable"
    Ummm I don't think the average home user is really gonna be worried about their neighbours cracking the encryption on their router to save 10 a month in broadband charges. It's not like we don't know where they live!

    [/ QUOTE ]

    well you should be!

    It's not just your broadband connection thats at risk, its all the connected PC's on that network too. It won't be long before data theft from home pc's becomes common. Not just your paid for movie or music downloads, but personal details, emails, bank details, pictures etc etc.

    And how do you know it's you neighbour? It could just as easily be somebody sitting in a car outside your house down the road.....

    The technology is here, but the skills to use it securely and properly are unfortunately not widely known.

  23. #22
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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions


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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    I'm connected over secure VPN so don't really have an issue, I just think there are rather easier ways to defraud people than cruising around trying to crack someones WEP encryption in the vain hope there's something useful on their PC.

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    VPN is only point to point tunnelling that secures the data transfer between two networks though, it does nothing to secure your local network.

    I'd agree that any potential gains obtained would be relatively tiny, but still, its better to be not one of the easy targets in the first place.

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    That's what I'm saying, there's nothing on the local network of any value unless someone wants to nick a few iTunes downloads. The serious secure stuff is all on the VPN'd network.

    Surely the easy targets are ones with no encryption?

    I can't even get to stuff on my wifes laptop from mine, so if someone else has put the effort in and managed it then hats off to them

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    128bit encryption can be broken in under an hour now! Which is a bit of a pisser considering most routers max security is 128bit

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    But how do they do it?

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    the worst bit, is that 128 bit (WEP or WPA) encryption is really only 100 bit max, and if you choose a short passphrase, it is more like 20 bit.

    static WEP can be cracked in less than a second now with 200,000-5 million captured packets. shocking. This makes WEP totally useless.

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    [ QUOTE ]
    128bit encryption can be broken in under an hour now! Which is a bit of a pisser considering most routers max security is 128bit

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Only for WEP though, and the speed that WEP can be cracked, it even makes dynamic WEP useless now. The algorithm used for WEP encryption is fundamentally flawed, and should be really considered broken.

    Proper WPA-TKIP is still virtually unbreakable, but still ultimately vulnerable to brute force. Unfortunately, I've not seen a home router have this, instead they use WPA-PSK.

    the best you can get by far is AES, and this is so far considered unbreakable.

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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    [ QUOTE ]
    But how do they do it?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    you would use a program such as Kismet or airsnort, together with a particular wireless adapter. These adapters can be switched to a "monitor" mode, which basically is able to listen to all transmitte wireless packets.

    So you think you've hidden your base station ID so your invisible? think again.

    Think you've tied your router down to only certain MAC addresses? Its possible to spoof a MAC to the same as one you can hear talking to the base station...

    Finally, ping flood attack on the base station and start grabbing packets. 20 minutes later they'll have all the samples they need. Maybe even a weak packet if your unlucky.

    seconds later, you'll have the WEP key, the SSID, and a usable MAC address.

  32. #31
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    Re: Superfast Broadband Questions

    I haven't understood a word of the last ten or so posts, but one thing I have decided is that I'm leaving things as they.

    Thanks for all the contributions, guys, even the ones I didn't understand. They all helped me decide what to do. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/beerchug.gif[/img]

  33. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by madvw
    I almost jumped on the BT 8Mb "free" upgrade, till i read the small print. By doing so, your signing up for another 1 year contract... and with the way broadband pricing is going at the moment, there's no way I'm signing up for another year at 30 / month.

    They'll be giving it away free with cornflakes soon.

    are you in line for changing ISPs like Mad? if so, who you thinking of going with?

  34. #33
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    What you need to watch is that you will actually get the 8meg as advertised. As far as a read a month or so ago there are only a few places that can acctually get that speed. Your location to the telephone exchange is supposed to be a big factor. The only way i know of getting a true or close to true speed is through cable broadband.

    I would deffo chin them on the above speed issue.

  35. #34
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    Yes this is very true, the highest I can get 5.5meg, due to the distance I am from the exchange. It's still good though, some providers websites, when you provide your postcode and tel, tell you what the estimated max speed you'll get is.
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  36. #35
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    ISP's will quite gladly take the money for 8mb from you knowing full well you wont get it that speed. Sometime you can be better off taking a lower quoted speed as that is closer to the physical limit that you will be able to get.

  37. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by madvw
    [ QUOTE ]
    But how do they do it?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    you would use a program such as Kismet or airsnort, together with a particular wireless adapter. These adapters can be switched to a "monitor" mode, which basically is able to listen to all transmitte wireless packets.

    So you think you've hidden your base station ID so your invisible? think again.

    Think you've tied your router down to only certain MAC addresses? Its possible to spoof a MAC to the same as one you can hear talking to the base station...

    Finally, ping flood attack on the base station and start grabbing packets. 20 minutes later they'll have all the samples they need. Maybe even a weak packet if your unlucky.

    seconds later, you'll have the WEP key, the SSID, and a usable MAC address.

    Your not wrong, hehe
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