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Frequently Asked Questions

What should I do if my Internet connection stops working?

The first thing you need to do if your connection has stopped working is to locate the source of the problem. These are the steps to follow:

  1. Check if all or just a single WiFi dependent device in your house is affected.
  2. Once you have determined the extent of the problem you need to do the following:
    1. If all devices are affected -the problem could be with your broadband equipment, check if the power is turned on to each device i.e. are all lights on – if not switch it/them on. Should all devices already be powered up then turn them off for at least 30 seconds before turning them back on again. This procedure usually fixes the most common faults.
    2. If only a single device is affected – check WiFi is enabled on the affected device. Turn the device off for at least 30 seconds and then turn it back on. If this doesn’t fix the problem you should call the support line for your device.
    3. If none of the above works contact Westnet. You can either send us a text on 087-644-7897 or call us on 094-906-7444.

What does turning a router off and on do?

You are supplied with a router when you sign up for a Westnet service. A router is basically a small PC running an operating system. It also runs programs such as a firewall for security, a web-server for the set up of the router and a DHCP server to issue any connected devices with the information they need to contact the internet. Your router also manages every connect that comes from and towards it to make sure information is sent to the device that is waiting to receive it. It also watches for connections aimed at it that you may not have requested and then subsequently refuses them entry.

As you can see, a router is a very busy piece of equipment. At times, the connections that are set up from your device can stay open for long periods of time and open multiple connections to display one web page. This consumes a lot of the already small amount of memory and processor cycles that your router has. So as you push more data through your router it may reach a point where the memory simply runs out, the operating system freezes and your router stops working. Turning off and on the router (also known as power cycling) restores peace and calm to the router, clears the memory and any frozen processor cycles allowing data to flow again.

What do I do if I experience poor coverage in my house?

We supply one internal WiFi router as part of our installation. In order to achieve optimal performance, the connection strength between your devices (laptop, desktop, smartphone etc.) and the router should be 100% (full bars). You can use the WiFi signal strength bars on your devices to locate areas with strong and weak connection strength. Alternatively you can install a WiFi analyser application on your phone which will identify the signal strength in a given area. If you find an area with a weak WiFi signal and you need WiFi in that area you will need a range extender to solve this problem. Note that other devices in your house can cause radio interference for your router e.g. baby monitors, video senders and even microwave ovens. Westnet offers solutions for extended WiFi coverage allowing your internet to be accessible in areas not covered by the main router. Please contact us for further details –  text us on 087-644-7897 or call us on 094-906-7444.

If you have found that your router is no longer covering as much of your house as it used to when originally installed then let us know as this may be a fault with your WiFi router.

 

Why do I get poor speed test results over WiFi?

If you want to get an accurate speed test reading, you will need to plug a laptop directly into the router. Testing over WiFi can give lower results than testing directly.

*Note-The only way to fully utilize the maximum available bandwidth is by connecting via a cable direct to the router. This is assuming that your laptop has a 1Gb port (older laptops only have 100Mbs port)
This website will show you how to find out if your device has a 1Gb port
www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-find-out-if-my-computer-can-do-gigabit-speed/

Broadband speed can be considered in two parts, the speed delivered to your router and the speed seen on your wifi.

The speed delivered to your router is the rate we take into consideration when determining the speed provided to you. Not necessarily  the speed seen on your WiFi network. We can assist with optimising your wifi network to achieve the best speeds possible.

When a WiFi router detects other devices broadcasting a WiFi signal it will back off its data rate performance to ensure internet packets are delivered and not dropped. When you perform a test it is common for the router to drop back on its data rates and you will see a lower result. This is not always a fault with your connection, it is a mechanism to ensure your internet packets are delivered reliably. This is common when using the 2.4 Ghz radio channel as most wireless devices such as microwaves, baby monitors, video senders etc. use this frequency.

Where do I find my WiFi password?

Fibre or vdsl On our Fritz!Box models your password is the 20 digit pin number printed on the base of the router.

If you have a MikroTik or Linksys router and if you didn’t make a note of the password when you received it, please contact us as we may be able to retrieve it for you. You can text us on 087-644-7897 or call us on 094-906-7444.

What impact does large downloads have on other WiFi users in my house?

From time to time you may find yourself, or members of your family, downloading large files. In particular the file size of games can be extremely large. Your download speed will dictate the length of time it takes for the file transfer to be completed as well as the impact on other users in your house. To illustrate the point you can find some approximate file transfer time examples below:

Speed

File Size

2Mbps

4Mbps

100Mbps

150Mbps

300Mbps

1Gbps

15GB

18hrs

9hrs

22mins

15mins

7mins

2mins

40GB

50hrs

25hrs

1hr

40mins

20mins

5mins

70GB

87hrs

43hrs

1hr 45mins

1hr 10mins

35mins

10mins

Rates shown are approximate, the actual interface will be slowed down by overhead (data requests, acknowledgements)

While a large download is underway the majority of the bandwidth will be consumed by the device doing the download. This can cause other devices connected to the same network to experience a slow intermittent connection as there is little bandwidth left for other users. This is especially a problem for 2Mbps and 4Mbps service packages.

Why is Netflix, YouTube and other streaming services buffering?

Most streaming services such as Netflix and YouTube will try to deliver their contents to you in the best quality they can. This means that when streaming, the relevant service will consume as much of the bandwidth Westnet delivers to you as it can to deliver the best quality possible. This may leave very little bandwidth for other users using your network giving the effects of a terribly slow and intermittent connection. This can be seen in the settings of the application using terms such as “auto” or “auto negotiate”.

If you are on the 2Mbps or 4Mbps service you will achieve a better streamed service if you reduce the quality of your chosen streaming service to a lower resolution.

Below are some advisory settings to use in order to achieve a better streaming experience on a low Westnet connection.

Netflix – To select the setting that works best for you and your Westnet service follow these steps:

  • Go to the “Your Account” page
  • Go to “My Profile”
  • Select “Playback Settings” and select the “Low” option

Note that it can take up to 8 hours for these changes to take effect.

Reference: https://help.netflix.com/en/node/87

 

Apple TV –  You need to change your setting from High Definition to Standard Definition but it is done slightly differently depending on which generation of the TV you have.

Apple TV (4th generation):

  • Go to settings
  • Select Apps
  • Select iTunes Movies and TV Shows
  • Select Video Resolution
  • Select Standard Definition

Apple TV (2nd and 3rd generation):

  • Go to Settings
  • Select iTunes store
  • Select Standard Definition

Note that your iTunes Store purchases and rentals will be in Standard Definition. You may be able to switch between High Definition and Standard Definition in third party applications – check the settings within the application.

YouTube – Reduce the quality by

  • Open a video
  • Click on the cog on the bottom right of the video (shown below)
  • Select quality
  • Select anything below 480p

Reference: https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/91449?hl=e

What to be aware of when using a modified android box to stream TV

You need to know that there are many points of failure on these boxes all of which are outside of Westnet’s control. Westnet does NOT support the use of this type of TV service on our network.

Some of the key issues we have come across are:

Speed – We have researched the internet bandwidth requirements for these products and although many figures are quoted, the consensus seems to be that a speed of no less than 10Mbps or in some cases 25Mbps is required  in order for the box to function reliably. Hold that against our standard rural fixed wireless services of 2Mbps and 4Mbps and you will understand that none of these services have enough capacity to meet the minimum requirements.

Local Traffic – Other users in your house may use the internet at the same time you want to stream TV. Other users will consume bandwidth away from your streaming box resulting in it freezing. An example of this would be someone watching Netflix while you want to stream TV on your IPTV box.

Busy Servers  The servers the IPTV boxes stream from can be congested – and especially when showing a popular event. A football match or boxing event will often have a high number of viewers streaming from the same server simultaneously, the server becomes overloaded and the viewer receives an intermittent service with many periods of frozen pictures. It does not matter how fast a service you have through Westnet – the problem is with the 3rd party servers the IPTV boxes access.


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