Thursday, December 22

chokepoints



Ah, it's so nice to have a (relatively) snappy Internet connection again.

The DSL field tech was here this morning, ran some tests, and decided that my DSL problem is due to an old modem. "Really?" I asked. "Just yesterday, the front-line support guy (in India) told me that all DSL modems operate at line speed so they can easily process data as fast as my ISP could send it!" As it turns out, that was wrong.

The Efficient Networks SpeedStream 5360 (part number 060-5360-002, for those of you who enjoy Google'ing obscure stuff) is apparently a real dinosaur. The tech actually laughed when he saw it. He called one of his co-workers and said something like "you won't belieeeeve what this customer still has installed - remember those old silver-and-black modems, about the size of a VW bug?". He says that DSL modems seem to grow obsolete every six months.

The old modem (Siemens bought Efficient, apparently) maxes out at a 1.5 Mb downlink, explaining why I experienced lots of packet overflow (and the backoff retransmissions - slowing me to sub-56 kb speeds) when a large datastream (up to 3.0 Mb downlink) was thrown at it.

I'm still trying to find the tech specs for the 5360 to confirm the 1.5 Mb limitation, but my replacement (a Zoom 5654) quickly clocked a 2.5 Mb downlink, mid-afternoon. That's the first acceptable speed I've gotten since The Upgrade. The specs say it's good for download speeds of up to 24 Mbps .. so it'll be obsolete slower than the Efficient 5360. Perhaps the 5360 specifications are only available on papyrus?

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Gene,

I finally got fed up enough with my crappy performance and decided to do some research on my old SpeedStream 5360 (060-5360-002), and ran across this post from you. Imagine if that technician that replaced yours saw mine today! Thanks for posting the obscure - it confirmed my DSL modem's "relic" status!

txboyk said...

oh yes... I had the SpeedStream 5360. Got the 2wire homeportal (all in one deal)and it busted... So went out and got a linksys WRT300N and thought oh I have that old modem still, so I should be ok. Well I was wrong. I too am looking for some tech specs on the SpeedStream and found you.

I did the upgrade on my DSL connection some time ago and boy was it worth it... but now I feel choked by my return to the SpeedStream 5360

rel said...

Oh, to be blessed with your conundrum. I, too have the above-mentioned SpeedStream, but 'tis not what limits my speeds. It's my barely-above ISDN connection. Even if I could upgrade, the fastest available to me is 1.0MB/s.

Anonymous said...

2-25-2008
I don't know what to tell you folks, I have a speedstream 5360 (060-5360-002), I got it in early 2003. I'm subscribed to 3.0/384 DSL right now, and I get the full speed. It's never been an issue. When i first got DSL it was a mere 768kbps, and when i upgraded to 1.5 I had problems and they tried to blame my modem. It ended up being a router on the ISP's end that needed to be reset to show the new sync value. When I upgraded to 3.0 I encountered the same problem, and when i called ATT, I told them to check the router, and a minute later I was disconnected, reconnected, and speed was increased. I just placed an order for 6.0/768 upgrade today and I suspect that I'll have to go through the same thing. This modem has never been the problem. I cannot tell you how many gigabytes this modem has downloaded, and it's always been a champ.

-roeseph
last speed test
2586 kbps download
431 kbps upload
21 ping

Anonymous said...

I agree with Anonymous. I also have the SpeedStream 5360 (060-5360-002) and am subscribed at 3MB/s DSL. I've had the modem since early 2001 and it has always ran solid.

Latest Speed Test:

2472 kbps download
285 kbps upload

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