Let AT&T help you elebrate your dad with Father's Day Gifts that connect us.
mag2023's profile

New Member

 • 

30 Messages

Tuesday, February 21st, 2023 12:38 PM

DSL Service is Flapping

I've had the AT&T DSL service (25Mb/s tier) for several years.  It's been rock solid.  My significant other and I both work from home and have never been in danger of hitting the hard limits.  We previously had cable that promised some pretty substantial throughput (upwards of 10Gb/s) which sounds awesome, except for the fact that the service was shared by everyone in the community (partyline, essentially), and had a really bad track record of going out during the day, which meant 0 Mb/s, until they got around to fixing it.

We switched to AT&T ADSL Service at 25 Mb/s, which is dedicated and shared with no one.  The service has been reliable... until very recently.  One evening about a month ago, suddenly all of the services in the house stopped working.  No internet browsing, no streaming (television content), no making cell phone calls over WiFi (WiFi service (Edited per community guidelines), so using cell over WiFi)... to name a few.  After performing a bunch of diagnostics on the ARRIS device, my theory was that either the device was malfunctioning, or there was a hardware problem somewhere upstream.  I reached out to AT&T Cust Service.  The gentleman on the phone spent most of the call handling me, which I'm fine with if he is ultimately able to escalate to an engineer.  He spent an inordinate amount of time interrogating the device in my home (the ARRIS BGW210-700), I spent about an hour on the phone while he alleged to be running tests, he was making the case that the problem was between the ARRIS and my home network.  I explained repeatedly that I had already run the diagnostics on the ARRIS and that they clearly showed that the problem was upstream.  Here are some images of those diags:

Figure 1:  Running the internet speed test using the ARRIS-based utility complained because it couldn't contact the Test Server, and as a bonus, notice the massive latency, 8758ms:

 

Figure 2: After running the suite of ARRIS on-board diagnostics, the IP test failed, indicating a possible routing hardware issue:

Figure 3: Clicking into the details of the IP Test failure yields more insight into the problem, related to access to the Default Gateway (a problem upstream from my equipment):
Figure 4: Finally, a "PING" test to google.com which was coming back with 100% packet loss, in this case showed 50% packet loss plus the latency issue.
The customer service rep eventually agreed to change out my modem, which I installed two weeks ago.  The screen shots in this post were captured last evening, evidenced by the date/time stamps.  The new hardware didn't fix the problem.  
Would it be possible to speak with an AT&T engineer to figure out why this is happening.  This morning, as I write, all tests indicate everything is functioning properly, but I suspect that whatever caused the malaise yesterday afternoon (and a few weeks go) and lasted into the evening hours (flapping service) will likely happen again.  If there was a service outage due to routine maintenance, I was hoping to learn that from customer service, but customer service didn't share that when I called yesterday.
Are there any engineers on this forum?  I'm hoping this detail will help bypass the customer service support tier.

New Member

 • 

30 Messages

1 year ago

Quick update!

After the intermittent service issue this morning, I reached out to AT&T customer service and they agreed to dispatch a technician to my location... scheduled for tomorrow afternoon.  They initially explained that I would be charged the $99 (as @ShouJr suggested) if the problem turned out to be related to my networking, but then revised that, telling me that since my equipment had already been swapped out that fee would be waived.  I will update you all after the technician completes their assessment.

And, thank you @JefferMC for the suggestions for zeroing in on the issue more precisely.  

ACE - Expert

 • 

35.8K Messages

1 year ago

Did you check your stats after that?  Are there errors showing?

New Member

 • 

30 Messages

1 year ago

Hi @JefferMC ... are you referring to the Broadband tab?

ACE - Expert

 • 

35.8K Messages

1 year ago

Yes.  Yep, it's clearly showing it was down for 115 seconds today.  That's pretty clear.

New Member

 • 

30 Messages

1 year ago

Ok.  One more question, so if I am continuing to see those timeouts via the perpetual ping (it's still in and out), should that 115 seconds counter be advancing?  Just as a matter of course, I took a moment to re-punchdown the incoming line from the dmark and replaced the patch cable between the patch panel and the ARRIS.  Once the broadband service came back up I was still seeing intermittent timeouts... however, while the UASL metric increased while I was completing the patch panel work (advancing to 1299), it doesn't seem to advance while those timeouts are occurring.

ACE - Expert

 • 

35.8K Messages

1 year ago

You should get timeouts while the USAL metric is counting up (like when you disco'ed the pair).  However, you can get timeouts even when the wire is connected and the Gateway is talking to the upstream equipment.  They can actually happen due to upstream congestion as well. 

ACE - Professor

 • 

5.7K Messages

1 year ago

I’m not sure what they saw that caused a truck roll.  The $99 charge threat is standard script.    Att is obligated to ensure service up to and including the gateway, but not responsible for homeowners internal wiring.   

If your gateway is randomly rebooting, it could be bad firmware.   Mine has been fine since version 4 was applied.  

If you’re having issues with WiFi connectivity, then I’d consider a personal solution and forget about the Att gateway altogether.   

New Member

 • 

30 Messages

1 year ago

Hi Folks,

The AT&T technician was here today.  While neither of us were 100% confident in the solution, it made sense and we agreed it was, at least, a step forward.  First, because I had a new broadband device sent to me a few weeks ago, which was within the last (I think) 90 days, the potential fee ($99) was automatically waived.  Oh... and service has been solid since about dinner time last night.  AT&T even sent me a text acknowledging that and asking if I still needed a technician.  I responded, YES.

A little background, my ADSL service was installed in 2019.  When that technician did the installed he crimped an rj11 module right onto the line coming into my based utility room (it was a four twisted-pair line).  I had a bunch of Cat-6 lines from various rooms in my house just hanging out of the ceiling (previous owner) and decided to install a patch panel.  It's a 12-port patch with 110 punchdown blocks on the back.  After punching down all of the Cat-6, I decided to do the same for the ADSL line.  I then installed a 1-foot patch cable between the patch panel and the ARRIS device. 

So, three plus years later, I started having these intermittent service interruptions (starting in early January).  My assumption was that there was a problem somewhere between the port on my ARRIS and AT&T.  Turns out I was right!  When the technician arrived today, he immediately pointed out that the patch cable I used between the patch panel and the ARRIS was a flat rj-11 telco cable.  He switched my 1-foot-long flat rj-11 cable with a 6-foot long twisted-pair rj-11 patch cable.  He then ran a number of tests and explained that after switching to a proper twisted-pair cable, he could see a marked improvement through his test equipment.

So, since neither of us was 100% confident that just switching the cable would suffice, he left me his mobile so that I could text him if and when we experienced another service degradation -- and he'd be happy to run those test again.

Thank you for your support!!  Hopefully my bush-league patch cable bungle was the root cause, and it won't inspire any flaming in this forum.

ACE - Expert

 • 

35.8K Messages

1 year ago

Yes, you should be using Cat 5 or better twisted pair.  Usually a foot of satin cable won't kill anything, but that depends on what interference that cable needs to be protected from.  Much worse than that has been used successfully, especially when the bandwidth, and thus the frequencies in use, are lower.  But you're dual pair, and so the pairs need isolation from each other just as much as anything else, and that might be your downfall here.

ACE - Professor

 • 

5.7K Messages

1 year ago

I’m actually impressed you got that level of help.  Att should own the wiring up to the gateway and I wouldn’t want to mess with it.  

Not finding what you're looking for?
New to AT&T Community?
New to the AT&T Community? Start by visiting the Community How-To.
New to the AT&T Community?
Visit the Community How-To.