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Router reboot

Posted on 14th Aug 2012 at 09:30 by Harry Butler with 76 comments

Harry Butler
If you play any decent amount of online games, you’ll likely have shared my situation. Half way through a tense round, your connection suddenly freezes. You’re kicked from voice comms and dumped from the server. Yep, the router’s frozen again, so it’s off to dig it out from its hiding place behind the desk/bookcase/pile of old shoes to unplug it and re-start it.

Of course, routers provided by your ISP will usually be the lowest possible spec that the provider can get away with. When you’re giving out literally millions of devices to customers, saving £1 on a decent heatsink here or a cooling fan there quickly adds up. This then leads to a router that loves to fall over when thrashed with the high-bandwidth requirements of people doing more than just checking email or downloading the odd MP3. Add in multiple wi-fi devices, streaming 1080p video from a NAS box and playing online games at the same time and you soon find that, at least in my experience, ISP-provided routers just can’t keep up with the demands of a high-end users.

Router reboot Router Reboot
A Selection of my abandoned networking gear

Even worse, there’s port forwarding. Forget player vs. player grudge matches, when it comes to online gaming, this is my greatest foe. Xbox Live or PSN require just a few ports opened, so ISPs configure routers as standard to accommodate them.

PC games can’t make up their minds though, so if you’re router isn’t clever enough to do it itself, you’ll need to dig into its settings and set port forwarding up. Doing this, you’ll also need to configure static IPs else the port-forward won’t work next time you have to, yep, reboot the router, and woe-betide you if you want to forward the ports for a game to two different PCs! I’ve spent literally hours over the last few years fiddling with router settings for games when putting together larger multiplayer games, particularly for older titles. Between Windows 7’s own port forwarding, the router’s port forwarding and the endless amount of tinkering, it’s no wonder many users opt for console games. After all, they just work.

It’s not over yet though. Despite a router being a product that can technically last 5+ years (after all, wi-fi standards and ADSL connection protocols haven’t changed), router manufacturers have a diabolical track record when it comes to product support. We reviewed this hateful product a few years back to a highly positive conclusion, only for us to find down the line that it had a bug which severed all active connections once every 24 hours while it updated its internal clock. The only fix was to log into the router’s debug menu and terminate the offending service, which of course you had to do, every time you rebooted the router. The last public firmware update for this device was made available October 21st 2008; what a kick in the teeth for those that shelled out £90 for a better online experience.

It’s not the only offender though. I’ve used routers which offered beta firmware that caused major instabilities and others that simply died on their arse after 12 months of use. In total, over the last four years, I’ve used a grand total of seven different modem routers; three provided by ISPs and an incredible four from after-market router manufacturers, none of which have met my expectations.

Router reboot Router Reboot
46 days uptime and a stress free internet experience, but these things shouldn't necessitate a £180 router

Having become more and more disgruntled though, there is a glimmer of hope, at least for me. It’s come in the unlikely form of Western Digital, who handed us a sample of its new N900 Router a few months back. With no recent comparative tests to judge it against, we were pessimistic about publishing a full review, but being tortured by a flaky D-Link router at home, I jumped at the chance of a possible replacement.

The difference has been light and day. The N900’s current uptime sits at 46 days whereas my past router did well to last a week. Setup was a breeze as well and even when playing older games, that in the past have proven to be port-forwarding nightmares, the router hasn’t required me to touch its settings beyond entering my wi-fi password of choice.

Of course, this isn’t a blog post saying you should all go out and buy a Western Digital router. I’ve not tested its network or wi-fi throughput, or VPN capabilities and at £180 it’s ferociously expensive so far as routers go. However, it’s done for me what no other router I’ve used before has; allowed me to just get on with using my Internet connection when and how I like, without me having to reach for the reset button once. Why can't this be the level of reliability and service offered by all our network gear?

76 Comments

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Fizzban 14th August 2012, 10:50 Quote
I feel your pain. I've set up the PC's in my house with statics ips and port forwarded them for things like torrents and mmos. While the router my isp gave me will often stay up for a couple months without needing to be reset and doesn't fall over due to gaming, its wireless function is pretty pathetic. Go a couple rooms away and it becomes utterly rubbish. Sadly I can't afford to spend upwards of £80 on a good one.
steveo_mcg 14th August 2012, 10:55 Quote
IpCop and an e-Machines Pentium 2 last time I checked it had an uptime in the 450+ days and that was only because I was out the country for a month. Its got to the point where I'm scared to turn it off in case it never comes back up.

My cable modem on the other hand has taken to crashing at alarming intervals, I've had to dig it out of its nice hiding place and leave it some where more accessible so I can hit it with flint tools.
Harlequin 14th August 2012, 10:57 Quote
my own netgear DG834GT is begining to show signs of not being loved anymore..... was faithfully reliable but starting to not be (it is 6 years old now)
=DJ= 14th August 2012, 11:08 Quote
Aside from the occasional silver-bullet firmware update I've found most flaky routers are made a lot more reliable by simply turning off the built in WiFi, and using a proper separate AP anyway.

One Thomson router I had would freeze within a couple of hours if an iPhone was connected to it, but never needed power cycling again once the WiFi was turned off... (ADSL up time was always around a month)

With perfectly adequate APs available for under £20 it's not an expensive experiment to try if you're suffering reliability issues. :)
wuyanxu 14th August 2012, 11:27 Quote
DD-WRT is the answer :D

got myself a high end Linksys DSL router for DD-WRT, then using ISP provided router as modem. never had any problem or issues with configuration or freezing.
Blademrk 14th August 2012, 11:28 Quote
I'm using the wireless router supplied by my ISP, unfortunately it's locked down, pre-configured and about as reliable as a chocolate teapot filled with luke-warm water - it'll work but how long before it melts?

I've got another router (which I've not used) but as I don't have any of the settings (as the router was pre-configured) I can't use it.
proxess 14th August 2012, 11:32 Quote
My Thomson 784 (no N for wireless) has been working fine for the last two years. Only thing I feel it lacks are N (obviously), Gigabit ports and no NTFS support on the USB port. Other than that, it's uptime = 47 days, 12:40:25 (at the time I ran the command). Of course I've done some tinkering on it, but that's what I do during my day job, so it's trivial.
Valinor 14th August 2012, 11:51 Quote
Actually, I'm using a BT Home Hub (3, I think) and that openreach fibre box thingy, and I've only had a couple of issues (connection dropping) in the year-and-a-bit in which we've had it.

As I said, it's hardly been perfect, but it's still been surprisingly good (I also have an old Home Hub, which decides that for the first week after being plugged in it'll drop the connection every minute. After that it's mostly fine, but annoying when that week happens to be half-term week, for which I was at home almost all the time).
leexgx 14th August 2012, 12:13 Quote
well at least BT have made it easy to replace the BThub3 when on FTTC, the bthub3 N and auto channel select really does not work well at all its still broken for the most part

like what BT do when they remotely connect to it you set the device to B/G mode (no N) and pick an channel like 1,6 or 11 as they are none overlapping channels and that fix's basic all its issues with devices randomly not working after 1 to 24hrs

DD-WRT on my edimax Gigabit N router been working fine for an years (the 40 N mode does not work but 20 N does)
Jaybles 14th August 2012, 12:50 Quote
All my routers used to break within a year, often half a year. I was then given a BT Business Hub made by 2Wire. This thing is awesome. Hasn't fallen over once in the 2 years I've had it. The only fault is a dodgy power cable that when knocked has a chance to turn off but that only happens when fiddling with the wires and has been there since I got it.

Edit: The problem with DDWRT is that AFAIK they don't support ADSL modem routers.
PCBuilderSven 14th August 2012, 12:51 Quote
My Linksys router works without problem, haven't had to reboot it ever so it's been running for over two years now.
digitaldunc 14th August 2012, 13:04 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveo_mcg
IpCop and an e-Machines Pentium 2 last time I checked it had an uptime in the 450+ days and that was only because I was out the country for a month. Its got to the point where I'm scared to turn it off in case it never comes back up.

I used IPcop up until 2005 with an ancient pentium with an ISA 56K modem and it was bulletproof. Automagically maintained my pitiful connection 24/7, relatives were trying to get through to the landline for months :D

Used smoothwall for a couple of years as well when broadband finally dawned here which was pretty good until the modem in the box died -- it was pretty solid apart from that.

At the moment I'm using a Netgear DG834G that's a few years old -- pretty basic feature set but does an adequate job, albeit I'm the only one that uses it generally.

I'd suggest you give a firewall distro a go if you've got an old mini itx board or old laptop kicking about, though depending on the hardware you might be talking excessive power usage for the end goal.

I've noticed a trend with recent combi router/switch/APs that limits the speed of the wireless connection and only allows higher/full speeds on the more expensive models -- I suspect this is artificially rate limited via firmware rather than a hardware limitation. I'd concur in suspecting that the vast majority of these cereal boxes the ISP supplies or you buy in PC world are crap.

How about a roundup of quality routers at some point? Not the most glamorous tech but something a lot of us would appreciate, I think.
faugusztin 14th August 2012, 13:32 Quote
I gave up on routers. I have a 100/8 Mbit internet and even such model as Linksys E2000 has problem routing it (with E2000 i had ~90/5MBit, with a router from my server i have 105/7Mbit).

Routers often have too low performance as well for a demanding user. You can easily slow down the router to halt just by starting some application which opens lots of connections (torrents for example) where the usual cap of 500 max connections vanishes and you are left with unstable connectivity - simply because the router cannot open more connections.
Krikkit 14th August 2012, 14:23 Quote
I've experienced the same problems with provided routers (a particularly awful BT home hub springs to mind), but the last two have been awesome.

My DG834GT was retired because it couldn't cope with our wireless printer, to be replaced with a TP-link which is even better. 75 days uptime at home now and still going strong.
law99 14th August 2012, 14:24 Quote
Billion 7800n worked a treat for me during a 6 month stint at my parents. Never flaked out... But this was streaming video mainly.
SlowMotionSuicide 14th August 2012, 14:26 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by wuyanxu
DD-WRT is the answer :D

got myself a high end Linksys DSL router for DD-WRT, then using ISP provided router as modem. never had any problem or issues with configuration or freezing.

Sorry, but no. My Buffalo AirStation Infiniti WZR-HP-G450H came factory configured with DD-WRT firmware, and it has stupidly low power output to antennas resulting in poor signal strenght and tends to freeze completely couple of times a day. Switching to Buffalo's own firmware makes it somewhat more useable, albeit only barely. Not a great showing from +100EUR wireless device.

I'm going to try running it with OpenWRT one of these days.
steveo_mcg 14th August 2012, 14:29 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitaldunc


I'd suggest you give a firewall distro a go if you've got an old mini itx board or old laptop kicking about, though depending on the hardware you might be talking excessive power usage for the end goal.

I've noticed a trend with recent combi router/switch/APs that limits the speed of the wireless connection and only allows higher/full speeds on the more expensive models -- I suspect this is artificially rate limited via firmware rather than a hardware limitation. I'd concur in suspecting that the vast majority of these cereal boxes the ISP supplies or you buy in PC world are crap.

Power usage will be higher but even my p2 only draws 25w and the difference in cost between an epia and a good router buys a lot of electricity.
Floyd 14th August 2012, 14:35 Quote
Never had to reboot my Netgear router.
Just plugged in my settings and away it goes.
wuyanxu 14th August 2012, 14:47 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by SlowMotionSuicide
Sorry, but no. My Buffalo AirStation Infiniti WZR-HP-G450H came factory configured with DD-WRT firmware, and it has stupidly low power output to antennas resulting in poor signal strenght and tends to freeze completely couple of times a day. Switching to Buffalo's own firmware makes it somewhat more useable, albeit only barely. Not a great showing from +100EUR wireless device.

I'm going to try running it with OpenWRT one of these days.
factory configured is your problem. try install a micro version of proper DD-WRT it should work better.

the fact it barely worked with stock Buffalo firmware shows there's something wrong with the router.

also, why would it come factory configured with DD-WRT yet there's a stock Buffalo firmware? shouldn't stock be same as factory configured?



i've been using multiple Linksys router with DD-WRT for over 4 years now, never had any problem. always used the ISP router as a modem.
billysielu 14th August 2012, 15:04 Quote
This article is 5 years out of date.

Routers provided by ISPs today work fine and they are well tested and supported.
Tricky2050 14th August 2012, 15:18 Quote
Currently with Virgin who have provided me with two lovely routers ie bollocks. When we were on national we had a Netgear DGN1000 which had to be rebooted daily, mixed with a 20meg line that rarely ever reached that was not fun.

We now have the Virgin Superhub which is better but I can't seem to get myself and housemate onto Battlefield 3 at the same time without disconnecting myself or him. They also for some unknown bloody reason changed the menu system so that you have to individually go into each settings option and then back without a side bar for navigation! WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT!
Margo Baggins 14th August 2012, 15:31 Quote
I got a draytek, 2830n - which I got for trade price at about £140ish, they are about £200 new, but I got it as I wanted to use it as a vpn server and set up vlans etc. and also I have got a lot of them on client sites so getting one at home is usefull for learning, well it was, I know them inside out now.
Krikkit 14th August 2012, 15:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by billysielu
This article is 5 years out of date.

Routers provided by ISPs today work fine and they are well tested and supported.

:)
lurker2b 14th August 2012, 15:46 Quote
Dd-wrt is too big and slow my asus wl-500w ended in trash.
Had better experience with tomato.

Also one note on router if you have many connections and use the lan/wifi heavily at the same time i would advice you router with radiator on the chip rt-16n has it and is rock solid and stable for over 2 years now of extensive use without problems.
Harlequin 14th August 2012, 15:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by billysielu
This article is 5 years out of date.

Routers provided by ISPs today work fine and they are well tested and supported.

would you like the thompson one O2 gave me? srsly?
faugusztin 14th August 2012, 15:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveo_mcg
Power usage will be higher but even my p2 only draws 25w and the difference in cost between an epia and a good router buys a lot of electricity.

In my case i tasked with routing a PC, which runs 24/7 anyway. So when you have your server running the whole day, it has unused secondary NIC and you can buy a good n wifi card for 18 euros, why bother with routers ?
dunx 14th August 2012, 15:55 Quote
Moved in six years ago and SKY supplied the Netgear, no problems so far except for a painfully slow connection for the year 2012....

BT are supposed to have FtoC as I speak, but not sure I need it yet (?)

dunx
Shirty 14th August 2012, 16:01 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harlequin
would you like the thompson one O2 gave me? srsly?

Or indeed anything with the "word" HomeHub in it? Hateful tech >:(
kenco_uk 14th August 2012, 16:08 Quote
[blog]The difference has been light and day.[/blog]

Night and Day, natch ;)

I've recently switched the wifi on my Sky DG934G router off and set up a seperate WAP - if only to have N speeds and WPA2. Never had any issues though and I've had the router for a good 5-6 years now.
Spreadie 14th August 2012, 16:20 Quote
I got an Asus Draft n router (I forget the model) - much bigger than my previous boxes, with plenty of ventilation holes. It doesn't get anywhere near as hot as my others did - the others being a couple of netgear units, one D-Link, one Belkin (shudders) and one Linksys (which was surprisingly bloody awful at everything and the hottest of them all).
ya93sin 14th August 2012, 16:33 Quote
I have a Thompson TG585v7 iirc/O2 Wireless Box II, which came as standard with the internet deal. While it's slow and tedious, the connection has never ever dropped in the few years we've had it. That's crazy reliability imo.
IMO the main pain can come through customising the router settings, with port forwarding especially. Luckily I can telnet into the router which helps me get past the interface. But the reliability is something else for sure.
digitaldunc 14th August 2012, 16:34 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
In my case i tasked with routing a PC, which runs 24/7 anyway. So when you have your server running the whole day, it has unused secondary NIC and you can buy a good n wifi card for 18 euros, why bother with routers ?

Because it's good network practice -- a perimeter firewall should be just that, a perimeter firewall, maybe VPN, and nothing else. Less services to be exploited and provides an additional hardened layer of abstraction if someone is trying to penetrate your network.
faugusztin 14th August 2012, 16:49 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitaldunc
Because it's good network practice -- a perimeter firewall should be just that, a perimeter firewall, maybe VPN, and nothing else. Less services to be exploited and provides an additional hardened layer of abstraction if someone is trying to penetrate your network.

But first they would need something exposed to attack right ? Good luck attacking a computer with no publicly available services (yes, stuff like SMB, SSH, DNS, DHCP, whatever else is running there are all bound to the local interface). So, with no services to exploit from the internet side, what are the negatives then again ?
iwod 14th August 2012, 17:42 Quote
This is great, finally some noise made from media. Hopefully things will follow through.

We have been stuck with absolute RUBBISH routers for years if not decades. And most tech site only cares about stupid wifi performance and other non essential things. With Companies making beta firmware or not providing support to older models at all.

And DD-WRT or any other 3rd Party firmware are not the solution, if it works it works really well, and if not then tough.

None of the big name companies has made any decent routers. The only i got which was good was actually from Apple. But it is expensive. The other one happens to be TP-Link which is a huge brand in Asia. And their firmware support is great with update coming even after the product is 3 - 4 years old.

But soon, with ARM and Android someone could built a cheap and reliable router.
Shirty 14th August 2012, 17:51 Quote
Write to your MP now, let's banish the scourge of sub par routers once and for all!
play_boy_2000 14th August 2012, 18:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by article

Yep, the router’s frozen again, so it’s off to dig it out from its hiding place behind the desk/bookcase/pile of old shoes to unplug it and re-start it.

Well theres your problem. I suppose that it was sitting right ontop the hot air vent (or rad) as well?
TheDarkSide 14th August 2012, 19:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tricky2050
Currently with Virgin who have provided me with two lovely routers ie bollocks. When we were on national we had a Netgear DGN1000 which had to be rebooted daily, mixed with a 20meg line that rarely ever reached that was not fun.

We now have the Virgin Superhub which is better but I can't seem to get myself and housemate onto Battlefield 3 at the same time without disconnecting myself or him. They also for some unknown bloody reason changed the menu system so that you have to individually go into each settings option and then back without a side bar for navigation! WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT!

i strongly advice you get another decent router, put the "SuperHub" into modem mode, and enjoy being online the way it was meant to be.
Never had a problem since.
hughwi 14th August 2012, 19:41 Quote
Got an awesome asus n router at the folks, but have had to live with two frankly awful routers from Virgin, firstly a castrated netgear, and now a superhub, which is anything but, it can't hold a wireless signal to save its life, and refuses to print more than half a page of a4 via my wireless printer (cabled it is fine).
John_T 14th August 2012, 20:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harlequin
my own netgear DG834GT is begining to show signs of not being loved anymore..... was faithfully reliable but starting to not be (it is 6 years old now)

I was using a Netgear DG834v3 until a few weeks ago, also for about 6 years. Mine too was faultless for about 5+ years, but recently it got to the point where it started needing to be rebooted everyday. I guess it was literally just wearing out with age, I'd happily buy Netgear again.

I didn't replace it specifically, as I've just managed to upgrade from Virgin ADSL to BT's FTTC about three weeks ago, (2mb to 72mb!!!). I'm only using the gear they sent me, and it's only been three weeks, but so far (not wishing to jinx it) it's been absolutely faultless.

Saying that, I always switch the things off at night anyway - which I'm guessing puts me in a minority here. I just don't see the point in leaving it on if I know I'm not going to be using it for hours and hours...
John_T 14th August 2012, 20:41 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitaldunc

How about a roundup of quality routers at some point? Not the most glamorous tech but something a lot of us would appreciate, I think.

Looks like an excellent idea to me. The more mundane things are often overlooked, but as the number of comments on here shows, they can still be important.
Brett89 14th August 2012, 21:32 Quote
Definitely something that is worth spending some extra money on to avoid any headaches. I bought a Linksys e4200 when they were new. I haven't looked back, had to reset it a few times in a year, but with three guys in an apartment, iPod touches, 360s, wireless bridges, 5 laptops, my TV, it's been solid. I would always appreciate a good router review, with something that is lacking from other stuff I find. Reliability, leave it up for X amount of days and see how it fares.
faugusztin 14th August 2012, 21:43 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brett89
Definitely something that is worth spending some extra money on to avoid any headaches. I bought a Linksys e4200 when they were new. I haven't looked back, had to reset it a few times in a year, but with three guys in an apartment, iPod touches, 360s, wireless bridges, 5 laptops, my TV, it's been solid. I would always appreciate a good router review, with something that is lacking from other stuff I find. Reliability, leave it up for X amount of days and see how it fares.

Well, Linksys/Cisco is not very good at support either. I own a Linksys E2000, guess what, last firmware update is from 12/01/2010, and considering AFAIK it was released in 2010, it kinda stinks. No IPv6 update at all, and it looks there won't be any. For a 2 year old router. With IPv6 hitting us hard in next 1-2 years.

So enjoy your E4200 while it lasts, but i doubt you will see any firmware releases for it in 2013. And same applies for nearly all router manufacturers. I had a SMC gigabit router, it had maybe 3 or 4 firmware revisions and then it was cut.
Yadda 14th August 2012, 21:49 Quote
A couple of my friends have had router issues over the years but I've been very lucky - my SMC router, bought in 2003/04 is still going strong, serving a home network of 1 wired PC, 2 wireless laptops and wireless mobile phone without too much hassle - usually around 1 restart per month.

I'm sure a more modern router (with modern firmware) could probably squeeze a bit more performance out of my broadband connection but this router will (hopefully) see me through until fibre comes to my area.
dark_avenger 15th August 2012, 01:53 Quote
I'm now running a Routerstaion Pro running OpenWRT after having a lot of similar issues. Bit more complicated to get up and running but now that it is setup only time restarts is if the power is out long enough to flatten the UPS.

The people that have mentioned that after 4+ years that they are just starting to have an issue with their router I'd suggest trying a different power supply. In my experiance when you start to have issues with them, especially under load it tends to be the PSU voltage dropping under load rather the the router it's self.
javaman 15th August 2012, 03:49 Quote
Got BT infinity and hating the new hub the moment it went in. Now comes with modem and router combo and the range is shorter not to mention the thing refuses to port forward. Want to replace it but not confident there will be any advantage to it. After reading this a router round up would actually be interesting.
ssj12 15th August 2012, 03:58 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by billysielu
This article is 5 years out of date.

Routers provided by ISPs today work fine and they are well tested and supported.

BS, the signal BrightHouse's gives is garbage. My sister's D-Link router was more reliable. I bought NetGear N600 Router (WN3700? I think is the model) which has a way better signal-wise and very decently fast speed. I want an AC based router.. just not when they cost nearly $200.
fluxtatic 15th August 2012, 07:07 Quote
Damn, I had no idea - I'm using the same Adaptec modem/router that I got when I finally got DSL 4-ish years ago, hooked to a $20 TrendNet router being used as a switch (trick I learned somewhere - plug the modem into one of network ports, not the 'in' port, and the TN router acts as a dumb switch.)

I've rebooted due to freezes a grand total of maybe 6 times - I'm yay close to bailing on my ISP (I've been overpaying for 1.5Mbps the entire time, and it's still the fastest they offer in my neighborhood), but I've got to say my experience with DSL (and routers) has been apparently freakishly good.
modfx 15th August 2012, 07:40 Quote
I've got the standard virgin hub which can't quite decide whether it has WiFi or not, I rarely get issues from the router itself (more the isp) as I'm using a cat5 but my flatmate uses wireless and it usually cuts out a couple of times a week
Phil Rhodes 15th August 2012, 12:42 Quote
I bought a TP-Link TL-R460, no wireless. Seems fine. When they put in the FTTC, though, BT supplied a DSL modem that they elected to replace a scant few months later, although it had given no trouble.

I have to say that Eclipse really do appear to be a pretty solid outfit. Yes, I am very seriously saying something nice about someone. The TP-Link router gets uptimes in the months and their tech support is UK-based and non-patronising. They answer the phone quickly and the phone maze is shallow. They are pretty expensive, though, which I guess tells you something.

Two of my mates have BT and Sky respectively; both are having a horrible experience.

Edit: I thought Eclipse provided the router. They didn't; I bought it. Not sure what they would have supplied.
Parge 15th August 2012, 12:42 Quote
I've been using two routers provided to me by Sky. One Netgear and one Sagem. Both have been absolutely rock solid throughout their entire lives. The only problem I've ever encountered is that the Sagem one doesn't allow me to play DayZ for some reason, so I'm back on the Netgear one.

My parents had a Netgear DG834 which has also been fantastic. However the new Netgear DGN100 is supposed to be diabolical (check out the Amazon reviews!)

Its pathetic that companies can't get their gear together after so many years.
Senilex 15th August 2012, 12:52 Quote
TP-Link
They are WTF how can this be so good for the price.
OWNED66 15th August 2012, 15:14 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
I gave up on routers. I have a 100/8 Mbit internet and even such model as Linksys E2000 has problem routing it (with E2000 i had ~90/5MBit, with a router from my server i have 105/7Mbit).

Routers often have too low performance as well for a demanding user. You can easily slow down the router to halt just by starting some application which opens lots of connections (torrents for example) where the usual cap of 500 max connections vanishes and you are left with unstable connectivity - simply because the router cannot open more connections.

buy a RT-N16
it has the fastest CPU in a router ever
300,000 sessions for extensive P2P clients
im not sure whats faster the original firmware on it or DD-WRT
try it
i have one and its amazing
OWNED66 15th August 2012, 15:48 Quote
guys if you want the fastest router just buy a pc and a network card and install one of many available x86 router distributions
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157324
something like this good
Acanuck 15th August 2012, 16:30 Quote
These two websites hold a wealth of information.

http://www.ispreview.co.uk/review/top10.php
http://www.kitz.co.uk/adsl/index.htm

I've been through ISP-provided routers, D-Links, Belkins, Linksys and Netgears and all of them have eventually become unstable, except for the Thomson Gateway 585v7 (awfully slow interface) and the Billion BiPac 7800N (super super super router). The problem with reviewing routers is that:

- It is such a long process (how can you test the stability of a router without owning it for 5+ years?)
- Router requirements vary by user (a terrible router might give the casual web browser many years of stress-free internet, whereas a gamer/server host/ torrent freak/serial video "streamist" can make a router fall over in minutes
- ADSL connections are far more fragile than fibre connections (how can you be sure you're testing an ADSL router on the worst possible line? A router which is fine in one home might struggle in a less favourable environment). And don't tell me ADSL isn't relevant: most homes still have it.
- Router manufacturers aren't as affected by bad reviews. If a GPU manufacturer slips up in the release of a new architecture, their accountants are going to know about it . Why is this? I can think of many reasons.
-

Which is why I have resorted to reading customer reviews. If there are 270 five star reviews of a certain router on Amazon, there must be a reason.

The SHORT VERSION:

For those having problems with their internet connection: Xilo.net (seriously, all you Virgin users out there, for crying out loud, it's common knowledge that they are the worst UK ISP)

For those having troubles with their router: Billion BiPac 7800N (just get it, it's flawless)
Jipa 15th August 2012, 20:03 Quote
After losing a flat mate with a dedicated router/server we've been absolutely ****ed when it comes to the internets.. The 'boxes' just don't seem to cope too well with heavy use. It's not like I'd like to buy another one, either, because all of them seem to suck rather equally.
Andre_B 15th August 2012, 21:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acanuck



The SHORT VERSION:

For those having problems with their internet connection: Xilo.net

I've been with Xilo for a while and they've been pretty solid.
Roskoken 15th August 2012, 21:31 Quote
Cisco small busines routers win.
Pookeyhead 15th August 2012, 21:38 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Floyd
Never had to reboot my Netgear router.
Just plugged in my settings and away it goes.


Same here. My D-Link DIR655 has been up for over a year without a reboot. It just works. Wi-Fi is solid, with good range. Port forwarding has been simple, and the UI is great. Network speeds are great - I can transfer files and back up at around 100MB/sec.

[edit]

Same for my D-Link modem. It's been that long since I had to so much as look at that, I can't even remember how to configure it!
zoom314 16th August 2012, 00:16 Quote
My router is a Netgear WPN-824v3 router, it's updated to the latest and apparently last update of 108_107 and I've been using it for about 2-3 years and the router still works with no problems, even with SuperG(108Mbps)...
zoom314 16th August 2012, 00:21 Quote
[Edit/for 1st post]
I've seen downloads as high as 365MB/sec... :)
knuck 16th August 2012, 00:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by wuyanxu
DD-WRT is the answer :D

got myself a high end Linksys DSL router for DD-WRT, then using ISP provided router as modem. never had any problem or issues with configuration or freezing.

This

my brand new D-Link kept disconnecting for no apparent reason. I installed DD-WRT two years ago and it has been up ever since. The only times I rebooted it was because I had to move it around in my room.


Rock stable
edzieba 16th August 2012, 16:04 Quote
I've got an ancient WRT54G with a dodgy dipole antenna (occasionally falls of if you look at it funny), running Tomato. Works perfectly stably, uptime is about 30 days (since it was unplugged to move it to another shelf). Switching away from the default firmware to Tomato/DD-WRT/etc is a lot cheaper than going out and buying an enterprise Cisco or a Draytech.
popcornuk1983 16th August 2012, 19:29 Quote
This isn't the case with the majority of ISP's now.

The BT hub3 is a solid piece of kit, so much so they now use it for business customers.

I have a 60Mb virgin connection and they gave me their SuperHub which is based on a netgear router. It has 4gig ethernet ports, support for the 5Ghz wireless N.. The new R36 firmware has made it even more up to date with the addition of OBSS and Greenfield options for wireless. The router has never faltered. It also supports PPTP,IPSec and multicast passthrough for VPN setups.

For an off the shelf netgear router with the same spec I would probably be expected to pay between £80-100.

Seems like more of a plug for the WD router to be honest.
popcornuk1983 16th August 2012, 19:36 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acanuck
(seriously, all you Virgin users out there, for crying out loud, it's common knowledge that they are the worst UK ISP)

I honestly don't know why you would say that. What do you base this on?

I've had Virgin since BB was available to me back in 2001 or 2002 (so long ago!). I've never once had to have an engineer out for BB trouble. Sure for TV issue mainly related to the old style TV boxes, but never for BB. I can also count on one had the amount of times my BB has went down. And it's never for any longer than a few hours.

They've given free speed upgrades to customers every couple of years. I was on a 30Mb connection. My upload was then tripled for no reason, then virgin rolled our their double speed for free, giving me 60Mb. And it's rock solid. I get 7.2Mb speeds when downloading movies or installing games from steam.

I'm a BT employee and can get BB for free. I tried it, was terrible and went right back to Virgin. All of my friends would rather have virgin over any other ISP too.
Buzzons 16th August 2012, 22:06 Quote
You could get a Routerboard (http://routerboard.com/) or you could get something like a Cisco 837, 877 or w/e the latest model in the 8xx range is. I had an 837 that had an uptime of 3 years in my house.
Prowler_88 16th August 2012, 22:37 Quote
My router (Netgear cable router from Virgin, 14 months old) hasn't failed or dropped connection once. I do, however, have it in an open ventilated area so it doesn't cook, and switch it off at the mains all the time it's not being used, so it's running about 4 hours a day on average and gets switched on/off twice a day.
Prowler_88 16th August 2012, 22:41 Quote
Oh and I second popcornuk1983's views on Virgin. They're fine...not perfect by any means, but better than BT (I too am a BT employee, and wouldn't touch their/our BB or Vision products!)
InSanCen 17th August 2012, 10:49 Quote
Most Routers suck. I end up fixing 3-4 a week, along with the associated Torture on the phone to "Tech Support" that I have to go through on the Customers behalf.

I personally get around it by Using a Draytek 2800, with a Linksys WRT54GS running DD-WRT Micro for Wireless duties. Solid as a rock.
Acanuck 17th August 2012, 16:04 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by popcornuk1983
I honestly don't know why you would say that. What do you base this on?

I appreciate that your experiences may be different, but the majority think otherwise.

http://www.complaintsboard.com/complaints/virgin-broadband-c14742.html
http://www.ispreview.co.uk/review/reviews/10/reviews.html?sortReviews=mostUseful
http://newsrelief.co.uk/virgin-media-are-crap-rubbish-hopeless-pathetic/


The truth is, it all depends on what type of internet user you are. But if you're looking for a virtually 100% stable connection, no fluctuation, no throttling, no traffic shaping, no packet monitoring, no port blocking, good customer service and you don't want your personal details being sold on to third parties, then you should probably be looking elsewhere. Perhaps saying Virgin is the worst ISP is an exaggeration, but it isn't far off.

Everyone's standards are different.
soopahfly 19th August 2012, 22:16 Quote
May as well be a PC gamer when it comes to PSN ports. Nearly every game wants different ports.

Anyhoo, If you mess about with these horrible cheap Dlink's, Netgears, Linksys and B*lkin routers you're going to have a bad time.

Draytek here, and 100% no issues.
SlowMotionSuicide 20th August 2012, 14:20 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by wuyanxu
factory configured is your problem. try install a micro version of proper DD-WRT it should work better.

the fact it barely worked with stock Buffalo firmware shows there's something wrong with the router.

also, why would it come factory configured with DD-WRT yet there's a stock Buffalo firmware? shouldn't stock be same as factory configured?

Seems this calls in for some clarification. Buffalo ships the router with two different firmware, Europe & America gets the DD-WRT one (they call it Professional Firmware in their documentation), while Asia gets their dumbed down User-Friendly firmware. The router is delivered with both on a disc in case user wants to switch, and they can both be downloaded from Buffalo's site.

Also, naturally I fiddled with the settings (so not factory configured) but antenna power output seems hardcapped for some reason in DD-WRT. I get better wifi signal strenght from most of my immediate neighbours than 1 meter away from my router, no matter how high I set the antenna gain.

User-friendly firmware solves the signal strength issue somewhat, I get adequate signal strenght everywhere on my house, but introduces occasional freezing of the router. Also, it lacks several of the DD-WRT's features I'd like to have.
dark_avenger 21st August 2012, 03:22 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by OWNED66
buy a RT-N16
it has the fastest CPU in a router ever

I beg to differ
533mhz down clocked to 480mhz

Router station Pro 680mhz

And I have no doubt that some of the higher end Cisco, etc stuff has even faster CPU's
dire_wolf 24th August 2012, 16:27 Quote
I can relate to this, got a Thompson POS router from BE (you'd expect better from a company that primarily markets themselves to gamers/power users) - it got used for about 25 minutes then shelved, a router shouldn't timeout inside it's own configuration pages FFS, so slow!

Swapped it out for my trusty Billion and never looked back, not had to reset it for over a year
=DJ= 24th August 2012, 17:08 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by dire_wolf
I can relate to this, got a Thompson POS router from BE (you'd expect better from a company that primarily markets themselves to gamers/power users) - it got used for about 25 minutes then shelved, a router shouldn't timeout inside it's own configuration pages FFS, so slow!

Swapped it out for my trusty Billion and never looked back, not had to reset it for over a year
Yeah, the Thomson I mentioned in an earlier post was a BE router too. The firmware it shipped with was proper flakey, but after updating the firmware and disabling the wifi it never crashed on me again.

Had it 3 years, but never liked it - as you say, webadmin screens were tortuously slow. I kept with it as it sync'd with the exchange faster than my original Draytek.

I've now bounced back to Zen (FTTC) and back on a Draytek (2920 with the HG612 hacked to see line stats) - was very surprised when BE asked for their router back! (so don't bin it, or you'll get knocked for £35)
a1h 29th August 2012, 06:15 Quote
Here is something interesting. I used to work at an Australian ISP.

We handed out Open networks modems and routers (625/625w's). The company went under and we swapped to dlinks/ Linksys/ Belkin but nothing would last respectible more than 12 to 24 months. Not only that they would always need to be power cycled. So a few years went by roughly 8 years of being in circulation with no dramas and never been heard of before we saw mass failures across the board of the Open's they had hit there life span.

After owning one myself i can say they where the very best and more reliable modem Ive seen to date.

Currently i am using an Techinocolour gateway (its been flashed and locked with an ISP's firmware) that modem is holding up good. I havent had an issues within 3months, How ever It has really bad QoS configured and Torrents take priority over HTTP. There is no option in the GUI to change this due to the ISP firmware. Telnet into it to find out that i cannot change the QoS settings because the administrator account has been locked down and i need root access.

ISP wont give me root access because they like to flash the firmware of a night time when there is a new release.. Work up on morning and all my DHCP didnt work? Why because it hands out 192.168.1.X addresses but uses a 10.0.0.138 gateway. Apart from static IP this modem is pretty much cactus and if i currently had a working replacement id replace it.

My point being knowing what i know now, I wish i had of stock piled batches of band new open modems.
low money modder! 13th December 2012, 13:50 Quote
I use an old desktop pc i had lying around and put vmware on it, among others, i put smoothwall on it, never looked back since!
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