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Home | Monday 21 October 2019
Broadband Internet Deals

BE Technical FAQ>

Tell me more about the wireless feature?
How many computers can I connect to the Modem?
Does the Modem work as a firewall?
Will I really get 24 megs?
How does ADSL2+ work?
What operating system do I need on my computer to be able to use your service?
Will I need to change my telephone number to use this service?
Can I choose between dynamic IP and static IP?
Can I get several fixed IP numbers?
What is the difference between dynamic and static IP addresses?
Why would I want a static IP address?
What's the difference between ADSL2+ and ISDN?
What is a micro filter or splitter?
Can I 'share' my ADSL2+ connection?
What is a VPN and do you offer it?
How fast is ADSL2+?
Does the Modem have any security?
How does ADSL2+ compare to cable broadband services?

Technical questions

Tell me more about the wireless feature

The Modem features a wireless LAN Access Point (WLAN) that acts as a 'networking hub', allowing you to connect several devices wirelessly to the Internet via the Modem's DSL router. Only devices that are compliant with IEEE802.11g or IEEE802.11b wireless standard will be able to connect wirelessly with the Modem.


How many computers can I connect to the Modem?

You can wirelessly connect up to 254 computers to your Modem. Please be aware, however, that all computers wirelessly connected to the same Modem will share the same bandwidth and the individual computer broadband speeds will be reduced. Three computers can be connected directly to the Modem using Ethernet cables and one computer can be connected to the Modem using USB.


Does the Modem work as a firewall?

Yes, by default it will come in NAT (Network Address Translation) mode. To use functions such as incoming requests from ICQ file sending, set-up of the Modem will be required. You can also customise the Modem's firewall (refer to the Modem technical info CD for more information).


Will I really get 24 megs?

The actual bandwidth that you will receive is based on three factors: the length of the wire that connects your premises with the BT exchange, the quality of the copper, and signal interference from other users or devices. If the quality of the copper is perfect, and there is no line noise, you will receive 24 megs up to a kilometre from the exchange. If your line is two kilometres long then you can expect to receive up to 15 megs. Your bandwidth will decrease further as line length increases, and we do not offer our service if you are further than 5.5 kilometres from the exchange. While bandwidths are not guaranteed, we do offer the highest bandwidth available using ADSL2+ to your premises.


How does ADSL2+ work?

The copper wires that are used to carry your telephone conversations are actually capable of transmitting information at much higher speeds than is needed just for telephone calls. This extra bandwidth in the copper wire is normally wasted, but ADSL2+ technology allows us to take advantage of the available bandwidth by using additional equipment to transfer data at a higher frequency than that used for voice calls.

Sophisticated electronics are used to cope with electrical noise on the line and to ensure that there is no interference between the voice and data sharing the line.

The higher the frequency that is used to send the signal, the faster the signal will degrade over distance. Because ADSL2+ uses very high frequencies, there are limits on the distances over which that the signal can be reliably received. Unfortunately, customers that live too far from their exchange will therefore not be able to take advantage of this technology.


What operating system do I need on my computer to be able to use your service?

We support both PCs and Macs and any operating system that supports TCP/IP communication and has an Ethernet or USB port, i.e. Windows, Linux, Apple. Any PC that supports TCP/IP can be connected to our service. To use the wireless network feature you need a wireless network port on your computer (although this is not included in your order).


Will I need to change my telephone number to use this service?

No. Our service is provided over your existing BT telephone line, so if you have a serviceable BT line already, your telephone number will not need to change.


Can I choose between dynamic IP and static IP?

Yes. We provide a static IP as a free option to office members and home members can add this option for £4 per month.


Can I get several fixed IP numbers?

At the moment you can only have one static IP per order, but this may change in future.

This one static IP is provided to office members as a free of charge option, while home members can add a static IP option for £4 per month.


What is the difference between dynamic and static IP addresses?

When you connect to the Internet, your computer uses its Internet protocol (IP) address to identify it to the rest of the Internet. There are two ways in which you receive an IP address:

  • If you have dynamic IP, our system assigns an IP address to you automatically every time you connect. This IP address may differ each time that you establish connection
  • If you choose our static IP option, you will be assigned a fixed IP address, which won't change when you connect to the Internet

If you have your own FTP server, email server or website, you will need a static IP address so that others know what address to find you at.

Offering dynamic IP as standard, but static IP is provided to office members as a free of charge option, while home members can add this option for £4 per month.


Why would I want a static IP address?

You will most likely only want a static IP if you have your own FTP server, email server or website.


What's the difference between ADSL2+ and ISDN?

Both ADSL2+ and ISDN use the copper wires that connect you to your local exchange (sometimes known as 'the last mile' or 'the local loop'), but an ADSL2+ line provides a digital service over the same line and at the same time as your analogue service (without interfering with it), while an ISDN line provides only a digital service (but this can be 'converted' to analogue by your terminal equipment or Highway wall box for voice calls).


What is a micro filter or splitter?

When your broadband is activated, your existing analogue telephone service will continue to work (and you can make voice calls as normal) with broadband operating at the same time. The 'data' signal and the regular voice signal are carried down the same line, each operating in a different part of the 'spectrum' (a bit like different radio stations).

In order for the broadband signal not to interfere with your regular telephones, fax machines and answering machines, you will need a micro filter or splitter. The micro filter 'strips out' the high frequency data signal so that your phones receive the normal voice signal without interference.


Can I 'share' my ADSL2+ connection with several computers?

Yes. Our service has sufficient bandwidth to support many users. If you have a network (LAN) it is quite likely that you will want to share the Internet connection between all users.


What is a VPN and do you offer it?

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) allows additional security when sending and receiving information online. VPN is typically used instead of a leased line when securely connecting two or more Local Area Networks (LAN) through a public network. We are preparing to launch this additional service soon.


How fast is ADSL2+?

At the moment, the fastest broadband speeds available are up to 24 megs. If you chose us as your Internet service provider, we'll provide you with the fastest ADSL2+ connection that you can get.


Does the Modem have any security?

The Modem has a built-in basic security feature called NAT (Network Address Translation)
NAT converts your computer's private IP addresses or LAN into a public IP address (hiding your computer behind a private IP network). You'll need a NAT if you want to connect many computers in private IP addresses to a single subscription or public IP number. When you connect a single computer to the Internet, your ISP allocates an IP address to you (this is a single, unique address which identifies your address on the Internet for the duration of your connection). This configuration doesn't require you to do anything. Simply plug your Modem in.

For additional security, we recommend that you change the Modem's administrative password (it is delivered with a default password) and if you are using a wireless LAN, configure it with additional security encryption (WEP and WPA). More information can be found in your Modem technical info CD which comes with your welcome pack.


How does ADSL2+ compare to cable broadband services?

The latest ADSL2+ technology, as used by our service, allows you to get speeds up to 24 megs. It is not possible, at the moment, to get a 24 meg service via cable (the highest bandwidth you can currently get today is 10 meg).

One major physical difference between ADSL2+ and Cable is that with ADSL2+ is a point to point link from your modem to the ISP via the copper wires that connect your house or office to your local BT exchange, whilst cable is a shared link between many members.