Ooma phone problems due to Verizon Fios sudden drop in reliability

Posted on 2012-08-13
Last Modified: 2012-08-19
About 4 days ago I was on a phone call when the other party told me that my voice was dropping out and they could not hear me. I called Ooma and they told me that my network was not working properly. I went to and got very poor reports. I am supposed to get 10 mbps download and 2 up and I was getting .5 down and .3 up.

The jitter was also bad.

I called a number of times and Verizon tried to fix it and each time it worked for 5 minutes and degraded again. A repairman came today and checked my line and eventually changed the ONT box and swapped my modem.

The problem was not corrected. What could possibly be causing my to have terrible jitter particularly and what can be done to correct this problem?
Question by:dovidf
    LVL 5

    Assisted Solution

    It sounds like there is a problem upstream to you, and the "repairman" that changed the ONT either didn't properly retest, or perhaps wasn't able to properly retest.... I am presuming that he tested at all of course.

    This is of course an issue you'll be forced thru the VZ ringer (no pun intended) to get resolved.  This is clearly a issue in the feed to you -- either the cable from the pole to you, or the hardware on the pole, or even something further up and closer to their headend.

    All it takes is a slightly damaged fibre to ruin an otherwise good connection.  I cannot believe that they just did that one replacement, and left you hanging like that --- but --- at the same point I am aware that the "repair techs" are under extreme pressure to do a very large volume of jobs in a given time.   Not an excuse, but a clear reason for the fact that you were still broken after they left.

    Did you test things before he left, or was this a total outside repair and you were not available?

    You HAVE to be there when they do any repair like that or you have no means to hold them to the stone of fixing the problem.  In this case, you need to be able to test it under load of what you're trying to use.  It could easily pass baseline specs, but fail under load.

    There's no black box technology in the ONT box.... it's technology that's been around for some time, they just put it in a weatherproof box outside your house.

    I realize this isn't exactly an answer, but the reality is until you get them back to actually fix it this time, there's nothing to do but guess....  

    Take that frustration back to them --- If you can get FiOS, you can get other technology too and it's incumbent on them to get you going correctly -- don't be nasty to them, but don't be a push-over...  You're paying good money for a certain level of service...don't let em off the hook.

    Good luck!
    LVL 3

    Accepted Solution

    Thanks for your thoughts. Verizon thinks it might be the cable connecting the ONT box and the Modem/router.

    It looks like it was Crashplan that was messing this up. I had it on all the time and it was eating a lot of the bandwidth. I set it to run at quiet times and since then jitter and download and upload speeds have been good.

    I'm not 100% sure because I was here when the Verizon agent did his thing and I tested for a while and things looked good. Shortly after he left things went downhill.

    Verizon is scheduled to come back Wednesday. If I have a good day tomorrow with Crashplan turned off at peak hours, I will cancel the call.
    LVL 5

    Expert Comment

    Well -- it is possible to be that cable --- as I recall they use RG6, with solid core, so it's possible, but....My opinion -- that would have to be basically all but broken....  

    On the Crashplan -- I'm only vaguely familiar with it -- is there no means to throttle its bandwidth consumption?   That seems a rather demanding application if it's drawing so much on the bandwidth as to interfere with other applications.

    Perhaps there is a way to use QOS with your Ooma.    I believe the modem you have does have support for QOS, and perhaps you can leverage that to help mitigate the Crashplan consumption.
    LVL 3

    Author Comment

    You are correct. Ooma likes to have their device before the router directly connected to the modem so that they control their own QOS. The Verizon router is a combination modem and router so one would have to play games to accomplish that with port forwarding.

    If I couldn't have gotten the bandwidth problem solved, I would have done that next.
    LVL 3

    Author Closing Comment

    The bottom line cause of the problem in this case was the impact of Crashplan in a high activity mode. However, btetlow-expert's comments were true and valuable.

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