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Canadian ISP admits throttling World of Warcraft

Canadian ISP admits throttling World of Warcraft

Canadian ISP Rogers has admitted to throttling online games such as WoW.

Canadian ISP Rogers has admitted to accidentally throttling some online games, including World of Warcraft, due to 'traffic management errors'. Apparently, the problem might not be fixed for months, according to Ars Technica.

The throttling became apparent when, in February, a Canadian gamer wrote to the telecome regulators complaining about broadband throttling that made online games unplayable. The regulator demanded that Rogers look into the matter, which they duly did after continued complaints about the deep packet inspection routines used by the ISP.

'Our tests have determined that there is a problem with our traffic management equipment that can interfere with World of Warcraft,' said Rogers. 'We have been in contact with the game manufacturer and we have been working with our equipment supplier to overcome this problem.

'We recently introduced a software modification to solve the problems our customers are experiencing with World of Warcraft. However, there have been recent changes to the game, which has created new problems. A second software modification to address these new issues will not be ready until June.'

Rogers continues to insist that the problems only occur if gamers run P2P software at the same time as playing, though users insist that isn't the case.

Rogers suggests turning off the P2P settings within World of Warcraft to help alleviate the problem.

Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

25 Comments

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will_123 29th March 2011, 12:41 Quote
If my ISP tried to pull anything like that i would be gone in flash. Wouldn't be waiting months for them to get themselves sorted.
B1GBUD 29th March 2011, 12:51 Quote
Rogers? should rename themselves to LEEEEEROY JENKINS!!
TWeaK 29th March 2011, 13:07 Quote
Man, Canadian internet users have really been having a hard time recently, pretty much all thanks to Rogers (and Bell), too. If you didn't know about it, look up UBB - Usage-Based Billing.. Let's hope our government isn't looking at them for ideas.
Salty Wagyu 29th March 2011, 13:14 Quote
Reminds me of the days I was on Nildram in the UK, would always disconnect shortly after starting the Twin Emperors encounter in Ahn'Qiraj. Turns out Nildram was routing badly for many WoW users for months that only switching to a new ISP fixed it.

Nildram was popular back then, now it isn't. I wonder why
srx08 29th March 2011, 14:31 Quote
I personally wrote a letter to the regulatory board about the usage based billing on behalf on myself and my roommates. The Canadian Radio Telecommunications Commission actually reversed their decision on usage based billing. However I'm unsure of the future. Our internet bill would have increased by 40% per month, which is a lot for students.

I don't think you know how lucky you guys are that you don't have two giant monopolies (Bell & Rogers) running most of the telecommunications in your country.
djab 29th March 2011, 16:13 Quote
Blocking P2P ... Have they heard about net neutrality?
Jim 29th March 2011, 16:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by srx08
I don't think you know how lucky you guys are that you don't have two giant monopolies (Bell & Rogers) running most of the telecommunications in your country.

BT runs almost everything in the UK, it's government legislation that has stopped monopolisation of the markets.
GoodBytes 29th March 2011, 16:58 Quote
I used to have Videotron.. they are only in Quebec and Ontario.. small ISP in comparison to the other only "choices" we have: Bell, Rogers, and Shaws.

Videotron is SUPER expensive, small gap too, unless you go with the really high end services such as 30Mbps or even 120Mbps, which has a 100GB bandwidth cap per month download/upload shared.
30Mbps service is 67$/month Canadian (U.S currency is about the same as Canada's, if you want a point of reference). 120Mbps is 150$ per month.

Videotron did not throttle anything, did not care what you did, has descent service, no special software to install, no special anything.. just plugin the modem to your own router, and your set. Everything stays connected.

Sadly, my mother could no longer pay Videotron high fees as life expense in Montreal is increasing, and my mother didn't want to pay a penny (despite me being able to afford Videotron service entirely). So we went with Bell (I knew it was crap, but no choice).

We are the lucky ones in term that when you get the 10Mpbs service, you have 10Mpbs (most people have <10.. and I don't mean 9.. I mean 6 or 5 or even 3Mpbs... as Bell plays with the words "Up To"). They throttle your internet access based on file size, if you do any sort of P2P, unless your do Windows Remote Desktop (VNC is throttled), they also throttle based on time of day and if it's a week-end or not.
In addition to all this, Bell has horrible service. Anything you want to do requires to call to a specific department. You want to add a service, call at..... you want to modify a service you need to call at.... you want to remove a service, call at... And they can't transfer you, and their system takes 24 hours to update, and each department are COMPLETELY disconnected from each other.. like if you call a different company.

You have a Modem/router thing, which was HELL to setup with my own router, as they use a custom layout for the router, where everything is scattered everywhere, it's super slow to navigate, and you have virtually little options to do things. AND their DNS service is utter crap. Every 5-6 pages, or pages I never visited before, will time out before connecting as the DNS service is not doing it's work, and I have to re-try to get it to work (common Bell problem). In result, let's say I click on a YouTube video... well sometimes, the video doesn't load, as it connects to a different domain name, and the DNS server doesn't do it's job. I have to re-load the page 2 or 3 times to get the video going.

Bell is AWFUL, and severally annoying. And based on other stories.. it's similar with other ISP in Canada.
Seriously.. with Bell.. I feel like the first days of this Internet technology. It won't surprise me, if they run on Pentium 1 their servers, with a few megabyte of RAM, running Windows 3.1 or 95.

Also, it's not like Bell was significantly cheaper either.

Why not pick someone else? Most people have at best 2 choices.
Whirly 29th March 2011, 17:05 Quote
I think over the next few years we'll see ISPs doing this more and more as they come under financial pressure and look to cut their overheads. P2P has a bad rep and it's easy to defend throttling it.

Within the next 5-10 years we'll see the end of cheap, good internet access. You really will get what you pay for.
mucgoo 29th March 2011, 17:51 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whirly
I think over the next few years we'll see ISPs doing this more and more as they come under financial pressure and look to cut their overheads. P2P has a bad rep and it's easy to defend throttling it.

Within the next 5-10 years we'll see the end of cheap, good internet access. You really will get what you pay for.

or alternatively p2p will become more common in distribution of media/"cloud computing"
i believe sky player use p2p too distribute files support by it's own servers
Unknownsock 29th March 2011, 18:14 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by srx08
I don't think you know how lucky you guys are that you don't have two giant monopolies (Bell & Rogers) running most of the telecommunications in your country.

We have one company that pretty much owns most, if not all our network.
1-0-1 29th March 2011, 18:18 Quote
Ever since Cataclysm it has been really bad for most WOW players. ISP issues and Blizzard making so many changes to the game without really understanding the effect or testing them lead to countless hours of running through wow log files, repair the game file, etc with no real positive fix.

For some of us approaching our ISP is useless. We have a monopoly (with the only telecommunications company having ties with the government) in our country with no consumer law. The best we can do is talk to the "right" person or just become plain annoying until they look into it.

This is from a ISP that charges prices like 81 GBP per month for a uncapped 512kbps ADSL (over 1 year period) and 59 GBP per month over a 3 year period. For a 2Mbps line over 3 years it would cost you 146 GBP per month. Oh yeah - and they are the only ones allowed to resell ADSL in the country.

Have a look at Telecom Namibia pricing for yourself:

http://www.telecom.na/index.php/products/broadband/484?itemID=18

How do i as a consumer even start to fight against something like this?
TheUn4seen 29th March 2011, 23:14 Quote
Damn, and I was contemplating moving to Canada. I heard they have poor ISPs, but what I see here is ridiculous. Where I live I have a 75/50mb/s DSL which goes full speed even at peak hours, is completely uncapped and unthrottled and costs me something like 50GBP. This means that Canada is a no-no for me, in january I had just a bit over 940GB of transfer and there were months I got over a TB, I don't want to think how much would I have to pay over there...

Soo, any good ISPs in California?
GoodBytes 29th March 2011, 23:31 Quote
[delete]
knuck 29th March 2011, 23:44 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheUn4seen
Damn, and I was contemplating moving to Canada. I heard they have poor ISPs, but what I see here is ridiculous. Where I live I have a 75/50mb/s DSL which goes full speed even at peak hours, is completely uncapped and unthrottled and costs me something like 50GBP. This means that Canada is a no-no for me, in january I had just a bit over 940GB of transfer and there were months I got over a TB, I don't want to think how much would I have to pay over there...

Soo, any good ISPs in California?

rofl

I did some quick math and if you had downloaded 940GB on my current isp contract (videotron 15mbps) it would have cost you 1305$ for the month LOL :)
GoodBytes 30th March 2011, 00:10 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by knuck
rofl

I did some quick math and if you had downloaded 940GB on my current isp contract (videotron 15mbps) it would have cost you 1305$ for the month LOL :)

Hmm affordable. Let me just get out my money tree that I have right here.... let me grab some bills...

You know Tthe trick with money trees is the healthier it is, the more and larger value bills comes out from it. So not only it provide you with a larger income, but it's like a heath status bar. You can read all about it all in my "I am trying to afford my IPS, so buy my book of nonsense on how become rich in 10 easy steps" for only a low low price of 3 easy payment of 49.99$. BUT WAIT! If you buy it on the next 30 sec, we will double your offer, with 2 books for the price 1. BUT WAIT! For this first time exclusive offer, we will remove 1 payment. That is right, now for just 2 payment of 49.99$. Each book comes complete with a certification of authenticity. Against our management, if you call now, we will also include this vacuum cleaner as a free gift for you! A 999$ value, all yours for 2 payments of 49.99$. This fabulous book won 5 TheGoodBytes awards! Sorry, the 30 seconds ran out... no more offers. But call now!
knyghtryda 30th March 2011, 02:10 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheUn4seen
Damn, and I was contemplating moving to Canada. I heard they have poor ISPs, but what I see here is ridiculous. Where I live I have a 75/50mb/s DSL which goes full speed even at peak hours, is completely uncapped and unthrottled and costs me something like 50GBP. This means that Canada is a no-no for me, in january I had just a bit over 940GB of transfer and there were months I got over a TB, I don't want to think how much would I have to pay over there...

Soo, any good ISPs in California?

I'm thinking of jumping to Sonic.net. Its in the SF bay area only, but they have a bonded 40mbps DSL with 2 phone lines for $70/mo. Considering how much 40mbps costs with comcast this is a pretty good deal especially if you have use for 2 phone lines. They are also a local company and have a really good customer service reputation.
RogersElise 30th March 2011, 03:34 Quote
Hi all

I am Elise with Rogers. I would like to bring more details to this issue.

As you mention in your blog post, we have been investigating issues related to World of Warcraft (WoW) and we recommend a temporary workaround.

What we know today is that there is a problem with our traffic management equipment that is inadvertently slowing the game for some customers. While we have fixed some issues with a software modification, new problems have emerged that we expect will be addressed with a second software update in June.

As you explain, we believe the problem occurs when P2P is running while simultaneously playing the game. If customers are experiencing problems we suggest they turn off the peer to peer setting within the WoW game and ensure no other P2P file sharing applications are running while playing WoW. WoW does use P2P for software updates, but with this setting changed they should continue to automatically receive software updates through other methods.

This is only a temporary solution. We continue to work closely with the game manufacturer and our equipment supplier to help resolve this issue as soon as possible.

We also want to thank all our customers for their patience while we are working on this issue.
sinner666999 30th March 2011, 05:32 Quote
Ouch! This makes me pleased as punch with my Brighthouse Networks contract. $164/mo includes phone/internet/cable with HD channels.
Cthippo 30th March 2011, 11:24 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes
30Mbps service is 67$/month Canadian (U.S currency is about the same as Canada's, if you want a point of reference). 120Mbps is 150$ per month.

I pay $67 a month for 12 Mb and have to deal with the idiots at Comcast :(
sWW 31st March 2011, 17:06 Quote
Is this the only ISP in Canada? Surely you should just change ISP if you're a gamer. Should be able to break out of a contract if they hadn't made it apparent that they would be 'blocking' gaming.
GoodBytes 31st March 2011, 17:40 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by sWW
Is this the only ISP in Canada? Surely you should just change ISP if you're a gamer. Should be able to break out of a contract if they hadn't made it apparent that they would be 'blocking' gaming.

Videotron (Quebec only - super expenisve), Bell (throttle, terrible DNS), Rogers (throttle the most) and Shaws (throttle and horrible service). Make your choice. Note most region has at most 2 IPS to choose from. Rarely 3 choices.
doggy 31st March 2011, 17:46 Quote
At least it gives WoW players something new to complain about on the WoW forums rather than how underpowered their character is since the last patch which nerfed the class into oblivion......
Gunnerbob 2nd April 2011, 23:58 Quote
Hi Elise,

Very nice marketing-speak there, I notice the subtle comment about disabling P2P while playing (even though it can be necessary for updates). Sorry, but that's like someone complaining their mechanic broke their engine and the mechanic saying to just turn off the car and the problem is fixed!

The problem is not with the paying customers; the problem is with Rogers treating all P2P with a blanket mentality that it's inherently illegal or wrong. Here's a concept: how about you stop throttling the legitimate, paying customers?

The real shame is Rogers is just as bad as Bell. Pick your poision fellas: death by throttling and bad service, or death by bad service and throttling?

Nice deke move Elise, you almost had the goalie beat, but a quick glove hand will always beat Rogers trying to go top shelf on customers.
OCJunkie 20th April 2011, 19:18 Quote
This just opens the door further for competition from smaller local providers as customers finally get fed up with the big nazi monopolies and leave... I hate Bell, I hate Rogers, and will only spend my money with whatever small local company I can go through.
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