Kayak

What's A Good Isp?

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My Internet service provider is shutting down soon, so I'm on the lookout for a new one. I don't want to go with any of the big ones, such as BT, Virgin, Sky etc, as mine is a small relatively unknown one, and it has been a good experience. Their support number is a toll free, and I've always been able to talk to someone within a minute or so of calling when I've had a problem, so customer service is important to me. Cost isn't the major factor, I'm not after the cheapest one.

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Plusnet gets a lot of good reviews I think (I'm with Virgin Media - very fast but not much else worth writing home about.)

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I use Be There.

Very pleased - fast, reliable, good at contact, and seem to constantly win ISP awards.

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Plusnet gets a lot of good reviews I think (I'm with Virgin Media - very fast but not much else worth writing home about.)

Plusnet have been with them for 4 or 5 years have never had a dropped connection yet!

S x

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Plusnet have been with them for 4 or 5 years have never had a dropped connection yet!

S x

Lucky you - I get about one a month with Virgin...

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Lucky you - I get about one a month with Virgin...

Don't get me started about BT I used to be in tears to that bloody Indian Call Centre, them running through the exact same script each time you call and getting you to run the same tests! I would be out of service for up to a week at a time.

Can't rate Plusnet enough, my only gripe with them is when they lower prices they keep you at the high ones and is up to you to keep an eye on it and contact them for the lower, I was paying nearly double I do now for god knows how long.

S x

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Who ever you go with make sure it has a UK call centre even if its not free, calling Indian had me close to punching my fist through a new 22inch screen, so dont go to orange the product is great, I love it but when the exchange gets a problem they would rather you get pissed off and ask for your MAC number and move on, when I signed up I went 8 weeks without BB India kept doing 72 hour line checks, no faults reported, ever. in the end they said it was a fault with my PC and if they sent out an engineer I would have to pay, I said ok, so out he came plugged in his lappy, no signal he said so how was India doing line checks? he popped down to the exchange and connected me, job done, no fee.

After Xmas I'm going to get an additional line with Virgin, their street cabinet is outside my gate so should get some speed, did you know thay even though its call fibre optic BB the conection between the street cabinet and your home is wire Virgin is with Co-axial cable, BT are using copper wire, it will be some time before FTTP (Fibre to the premises)is rolled out big scale.

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Ive been with freeserve/wanado/orange since day 1

speed is shite but i live in the sicks so think will be an issue with any ISP

Never called their call centre cos never had a problem.

may change to plusnet cos they are getting pricey but probably cant be arsed

Or BT so I get free openzone.

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Lucky you - I get about one a month with Virgin...

I've been with Virgin cable for almost a decade and have had maybe two or three outages in all that time. They've always been really helpful, for example, during my most recent problem which ended up being a faulty cable modem: the guy in the Indian call centre didn't question my referring to speed results from Speedtest.net and the issue was resolved reasonably quickly.

And as for speeds, I get performance that I doubt anyone on ADSL will ever see: I consistently achieve 19Mbps downloads on a 20Mbps connection. Now that is fast. B)

B

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Thanks for all your thoughts. I'll be honest, the thought of Indian call centres scares me.

I've done a survey in me area, and the only ostensibly independent ISP (even though they are part of 02) that is available to me, is Be There, so I'm going to take a closer look at them next week.

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I've been with Virgin cable for almost a decade and have had maybe two or three outages in all that time. They've always been really helpful, for example, during my most recent problem which ended up being a faulty cable modem: the guy in the Indian call centre didn't question my referring to speed results from Speedtest.net and the issue was resolved reasonably quickly.

And as for speeds, I get performance that I doubt anyone on ADSL will ever see: I consistently achieve 19Mbps downloads on a 20Mbps connection. Now that is fast. B)

B

I get about 17-19Mbps which is why I stay with Virgin.

The Virgin Indian call centre is very variable - some people are very good and helpful, others are completely useless. I find it particularly irritating when they talk to you like an idiot even though you might be a very competent and experienced IT user, like I am.

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I can also recommend Plus Net. The best thing is their call centre which is based in Sheffield.

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I can also recommend Plus Net. The best thing is their call centre which is based in Sheffield.

Cheers Coll. The only problem I have with Plus net, is as far as I can see they don't offer any unlimited packages, which is important to me. I'll give you some idea of what I currently have (but unfortunately am soon going to lose when my ISP closes):

£20/month

up to 8 MGps (in reality I get between 6 and 7)

Unlimited downloads

0800 number support, based in the UK.

How to beat that?

I don't really use tons of downloads, but I often listen to internet radio, and sometimes I download a fair bit, so I don't want to get a limited package.

I take your point about their support call centre being based in the UK though.

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I was with Plusnet for some years 2004 - 2010. I never had any problems and only contacted support a couple of times and all before 2007. I say before 2007 as some may not be aware that BT have owned Plusnet since then and for some knowing BT are involved may be enough to put them off. As SabrinaYork said Plusnet are a sod for not informing you of cheaper packages and expect you to keep a look out for the new cheaper packages. Also most of their residential packages have sever traffic shaping so if you want p2p they may not be for you. I also got a couple of warnings saying I was near my download limit at just 13G in a month, despite that being miles off my monthly allowance.

I'm currently with TalkTalk because they are dirt cheap. Their call centres are notoriously bad and will lie the crap to you, anything but actually help. However their members forum is good albeit problems may take a day or two to get round to solving your query and not much good if your connection is lost. But their llu is faster than the BT IPstream and I'm pretty far from the exchange so any improvement is welcomed. Did I mention that they are really cheap. :D

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I was with Plusnet for some years 2004 - 2010. I never had any problems and only contacted support a couple of times and all before 2007. I say before 2007 as some may not be aware that BT have owned Plusnet since then and for some knowing BT are involved may be enough to put them off. As SabrinaYork said Plusnet are a sod for not informing you of cheaper packages and expect you to keep a look out for the new cheaper packages. Also most of their residential packages have sever traffic shaping so if you want p2p they may not be for you. I also got a couple of warnings saying I was near my download limit at just 13G in a month, despite that being miles off my monthly allowance.

I'm currently with TalkTalk because they are dirt cheap. Their call centres are notoriously bad and will lie the crap to you, anything but actually help. However their members forum is good albeit problems may take a day or two to get round to solving your query and not much good if your connection is lost. But their llu is faster than the BT IPstream and I'm pretty far from the exchange so any improvement is welcomed. Did I mention that they are really cheap. :D

I've signed up with Be there. The only two things that I don't like about them, are: they don't offer any email service, but at around £18/month they offer a static IP, which apparently means I can host my own webpage and email server. Webpage I have no interest in, but I think I'll look into setting up my own email server, as I've always had email from an ISP, and I'm not sure if I could transition to solely having webmail in future. It'll be a learning curve though, as I don't know yet how to set it up.

The other thing that I'm not too crazy about with Be There, is that they want to send me a "Be Box", which is their own wireless router. The pictures of it look like a Netgear router with their own logo stuck on it. I was planning to buy a Draytek router, as I've heard they are far superior to anything you can buy at PC World, and I don't fancy having a router that the Be There "engineers" can tweak remotely, which is ostensibly the reason that they want me to take their equipment.

Their call centre is in Bulgaria, which is "interesting", but I won't say bad, just yet, as at least it's a free call to call them up.

I'll see how it goes...

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You shouldn't have any problems with BE, been a customer for years and have signed up lots of friends and customers with them !!.........:D

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You shouldn't have any problems with BE, been a customer for years and have signed up lots of friends and customers with them !!.........:D

Cool.

Any advice as to how to set up my own email server? For example, what software to use, where to find it, and so on?

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Cool.

Any advice as to how to set up my own email server? For example, what software to use, where to find it, and so on?

PM me with your requrements !

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I've been with Zen for years now and their service is fantastic.

Can't remember the last time the connection dropped out, and with their call centre it's very quick to get through to a person (albeit in Rochdale) :P

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Lucky you - I get about one a month with Virgin...

I've been with Virgin cable for almost a decade and have had maybe two or three outages in all that time. They've always been really helpful, for example, during my most recent problem which ended up being a faulty cable modem: the guy in the Indian call centre didn't question my referring to speed results from Speedtest.net and the issue was resolved reasonably quickly.

And as for speeds, I get performance that I doubt anyone on ADSL will ever see: I consistently achieve 19Mbps downloads on a 20Mbps connection. Now that is fast. B)

B

Well, I finally persuaded Virgin to replace the cable modem after my 4th call to them over the last 6-8 weeks. I was fairly sure it was a modem problem but ended up buying an upgraded router, new cables etc anyway.

Tried it with new modem today and got 19.6Mbps! Hooray! If it stays stable for a few weeks then will upgrade to the 50Mbps service.

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I've signed up with Be there. The only two things that I don't like about them, are: they don't offer any email service, but at around £18/month they offer a static IP, which apparently means I can host my own webpage and email server. Webpage I have no interest in, but I think I'll look into setting up my own email server, as I've always had email from an ISP, and I'm not sure if I could transition to solely having webmail in future. It'll be a learning curve though, as I don't know yet how to set it up.

The other thing that I'm not too crazy about with Be There, is that they want to send me a "Be Box", which is their own wireless router. The pictures of it look like a Netgear router with their own logo stuck on it. I was planning to buy a Draytek router, as I've heard they are far superior to anything you can buy at PC World, and I don't fancy having a router that the Be There "engineers" can tweak remotely, which is ostensibly the reason that they want me to take their equipment.

Their call centre is in Bulgaria, which is "interesting", but I won't say bad, just yet, as at least it's a free call to call them up.

I'll see how it goes...

For your email issue why not use gmail, you can use webmail and POP/IMAP and have the best of both worlds.

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I can also recommend Plus Net. The best thing is their call centre which is based in Sheffield.

I think I can understand someone from India better than someone from Sheffield. :-)

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I can also recommend Plus Net. The best thing is their call centre which is based in Sheffield.

I think I can understand someone from India better than someone from Sheffield. :-)

I think it's been around a while but I just saw the Plusnet TV advert for the first time which extolled the virtues of their Sheffield based call centre - "a call centre down t' road."

Apparently though, they received a grant of several million pounds to relocate the call centre from South Africa to Yorkshire. Maybe in the current climate, the government can extend this - there must be tens of thousands of jobs that could be created in the UK by moving UK firms' call centres back here.

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Zen has won the PC Pro Best Broadband ISP award for the past seven years.

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