How to get Spectrum to fix their network?

Brad_SBrad_S Posts: 12 ✭✭✭
edited December 2020 in Connectivity Dec 09, 2020

Hello,

I'm going to try and make this short and to the point. I have been having minor outages for a few months now which causes my work computer and phone (Ethernet/POE), and kids' laptops to all stop working. I'm connected to work via VPN device and the laptops are connected via WiFi.

I'm using Solar Winds ipMonitor (free) tool to monitor my internal network and my Spectrum Gateway (see pictures). The first device after the Spectrum modem is a Zyxel firewall. I'm monitoring both the firewall (ping and snmp) and the Spectrum default gateway. I can show I'm not having an issue with my hardware, but there is an issue outside of my house.

I called up Spectrum and received the usual non-answer of "you need to connect directly to the modem" and then, "your modem has been up for 34 days." Really, the modem cannot be up for 30+ days? How ridiculous! I have spoken with my internal firewall folks to confirm they had seen my VPN device drop off the network as well.

Who should I talk too at Spectrum to get some positive results?

Any helpful comments would be appreciated.

Best Regards,

Brad

Best Answer

  • Brad_SBrad_S Posts: 12 ✭✭✭
    Dec 11, 2020 Accepted Answer

    FIXED!!!

    So the tech that came out started checking all of the lines and of course there was some LTE noise. He went throughout the house replacing ends which were starting to fail as well as the outside ends. I had a dB gain after the outside ends were replaced.

    Noise is now gone and my connection signal is very strong. The tech was nice enough to replace my modem with a DOCSIS 3.1 modem, so now I can upgrade to gig speeds when I need too.

    We had a nice conversation about future technology in my area which should be coming very soon. I'm very excited about that!

    Cheers and thank you to all who posted comments.

Replies

  • James_MJames_M Posts: 2,563 ADMIN
    Dec 09, 2020

    Posting additional data, such as modem logs, would be helpful to identify any potential issues. As far as the modem uptime of 34 days, restarting the modem will often resolve most issues. When using a VPN, it is ideal to connect directly, versus wireless. For the wireless connection issue, have you checked for interference with other wireless networks and tried changing the wireless channel?

  • Brad_SBrad_S Posts: 12 ✭✭✭
    Dec 09, 2020

    @James_M ,

    First, you may have misunderstood/misread the post as this was written late at night for me. The person I spoke at Spectrum made a comment that my modem had been up for 34+ days, indicating this could be an issue. In that same breath, she stated she did not see any issues with my modem or any failed pings to my modem. Second, my VPN device is hardwired (Ethernet) to the firewall's DMZ; not WiFi. It was the kids' laptops which were WiFi connected.

    So now that we are clear on the facts of my original post...

    I am monitoring the Spectrum default gateway (24.179.160.1/255.255.248.0) and my own firewall, and work is monitoring my VPN connection. So this should be very simple math: (1) my ipMonitor for ISP default gateway show dropped ping packets, (2) my ipMonitor for firewall shows no dropped ping packets or snmp messages showing any outage, (3) my work shows an outage to between them and my VPN device and I lose my Cisco IP phone, (4) when an "outage" occurs, it is brief but everyone in the house (on my network) loses Internet connectivity, (5) Spectrum states there is no issue with pings to my modem.

    If you add all of this up, the problem is not in my house; the problem is not from the Spectrum network switch to my modem, but the problem is closer to the default gateway.

    How else can I prove this issue is not a modem issue and is outside of my house? How can I get someone from Spectrum to fix this issue? I'm not receiving 99.9% availability.

  • James_MJames_M Posts: 2,563 ADMIN
    Dec 09, 2020

    I understand your frustration, however we need to follow a troubleshooting path. That path would include asking you to restart your modem and, if possible, post your modem logs. You also mentioned a Cisco IP Phone in your last post. Is the Cisco Phone also connected to the modem? Is there any correlation to receiving calls and the internet drop you are seeing?

  • Brad_SBrad_S Posts: 12 ✭✭✭
    Dec 09, 2020

    @James_M ,

    I understand your procedures and this is the most frustrating part. I do understand networking as I've had my Cisco Certification since 2000, and I've worked for a telephone company at a Level II NOC operator.

    If you send me the steps on how to pull the modem logs from your modem, I can definitely do that.

    My Cisco IP phone is connected to my VPN device, which connect to my company's phone system.

    When I see the large drops on the ipMonitor, my phone drops as well as my VPN connection to work. Work sees my dropped VPN connection. My Firewall remains up and operational, print jobs to the local printer still run, etc.

  • Brad_SBrad_S Posts: 12 ✭✭✭
    Dec 09, 2020

    @James_M ,

    So why is it so difficult to get someone to look at the various hops (switches and routers) between the default gateway and my modem to see if there are any dropped packets or interface errors on the counters?

  • Brad_SBrad_S Posts: 12 ✭✭✭
    Dec 09, 2020

    By the way, I have an Arris TM1602A cable modem.

  • Brad_SBrad_S Posts: 12 ✭✭✭
    Dec 10, 2020

    @James_M

    Here are the logs.


    System: ARRIS DOCSIS 3.0 / PC 1.5 Touchstone Telephony Modem

    HW_REV: 3

    VENDOR: ARRIS Group, Inc.

    BOOTR: 2.2.0.39

    SW_REV: 9.1.103J6J

    MODEL: TM1602A

    Firmware Name: TS0901103J6J_031517_1602.TM

    Firmware Build Time: Wed Mar 15 16:01:46 EDT 2017


    Interface Parameters

    Interface Name Provisioned State Speed (Mbps) MAC address

    LAN Enabled Up 1000(Full) 98:6B:3D:71:CB:4C

    CABLE Enabled Up ----- 98:6B:3D:71:CB:4D

    MTA NotInitiated Down ----- 98:6B:3D:71:CB:4E


    DOCSIS (CM) Events

    12/2/2020 4:15 82000200 3 No Ranging Response received - T3 time-out;CM-MAC=98:6b:3d:71:cb:4d;CMTS-MAC=00:01:5c:95:66:4c;CM-QOS=1.1;CM-VER=3.0;

    12/6/2020 19:52 84000700 5 RCS Partial Service;CM-MAC=98:6b:3d:71:cb:4d;CMTS-MAC=00:01:5c:95:66:4c;CM-QOS=1.1;CM-VER=3.0;

    12/8/2020 1:59 82000200 3 No Ranging Response received - T3 time-out;CM-MAC=98:6b:3d:71:cb:4d;CMTS-MAC=00:01:5c:95:66:4c;CM-QOS=1.1;CM-VER=3.0;

    12/8/2020 18:04 84000700 5 RCS Partial Service;CM-MAC=98:6b:3d:71:cb:4d;CMTS-MAC=00:01:5c:95:66:4c;CM-QOS=1.1;CM-VER=3.0;


    PacketCable(MTA) Events

    *** Last event was 1/8/2016


    RF PARAMETERS

    Downstream

      DCID Freq Power SNR Modulation Octets Correcteds Uncorrectables

    Downstream 1 29 627.00 MHz -0.10 dBmV 40.95 dB 256QAM 109489373301 34383 298143

    Downstream 2 1 441.00 MHz 3.10 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 104540362777 13772 157703

    Downstream 3 2 447.00 MHz 3.30 dBmV 40.95 dB 256QAM 108721075184 13141 146660

    Downstream 4 3 453.00 MHz 3.20 dBmV 40.95 dB 256QAM 105722313648 3694 31380

    Downstream 5 4 459.00 MHz 3.70 dBmV 40.95 dB 256QAM 104925412816 2274 24167

    Downstream 6 5 465.00 MHz 3.30 dBmV 40.95 dB 256QAM 108731209961 4002 33842

    Downstream 7 6 471.00 MHz 2.00 dBmV 40.95 dB 256QAM 105341482161 2800 30704

    Downstream 8 13 519.00 MHz 1.50 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 103393844649 691 11199

    Downstream 9 16 555.00 MHz 1.30 dBmV 40.95 dB 256QAM 118843081892 643 7628

    Downstream 10 17 561.00 MHz 0.50 dBmV 40.95 dB 256QAM 113290808248 881 8643

    Downstream 11 18 567.00 MHz 1.60 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 122101940174 803 9404

    Downstream 12 19 573.00 MHz 1.70 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 88131654471 1076 10453

    Downstream 13 20 579.00 MHz 1.50 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 91746640188 1477 14003

    Downstream 14 21 585.00 MHz 1.00 dBmV 38.98 dB 256QAM 82149114760 1322 10229

    Downstream 15 22 591.00 MHz 0.60 dBmV 40.95 dB 256QAM 94878168038 1529 8626

    Downstream 16 23 597.00 MHz 0.90 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 87323436825 317 4151

    Downstream 17 24 603.00 MHz 1.00 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 92786193957 407 5220

    Downstream 18 26 609.00 MHz 0.20 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 88345074320 581 4051

    Downstream 19 27 615.00 MHz -0.30 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 98088902822 183 2589

    Downstream 20 28 621.00 MHz -0.20 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 99283688411 1259 9518

    Downstream 21 30 633.00 MHz -0.10 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 103244480450 827 7512

    Downstream 22 31 639.00 MHz -0.30 dBmV 40.95 dB 256QAM 99654138630 614 4772

    Downstream 23 32 645.00 MHz -0.10 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 108017515556 175 2608

    Downstream 24 33 651.00 MHz 0.10 dBmV 40.37 dB 256QAM 109311546710 566 5506


    Upstream

      UCID Freq Power Channel Type Symbol Rate Modulation

    Upstream 1 28 36.80 MHz 41.25 dBmV DOCSIS2.0 (ATDMA) 5120 kSym/s 64QAM

    Upstream 2 25 17.60 MHz 39.25 dBmV DOCSIS2.0 (ATDMA) 5120 kSym/s 64QAM

    Upstream 3 27 30.40 MHz 40.75 dBmV DOCSIS2.0 (ATDMA) 5120 kSym/s 64QAM

    Upstream 4 26 24.00 MHz 40.00 dBmV DOCSIS2.0 (ATDMA) 5120 kSym/s 64QAM


    System Uptime: 35 d: 15 h: 28 m

  • Lake802Lake802 Posts: 81 ✭✭✭✭
    Dec 10, 2020

    Greetings Brad - sorry to hear you are having service issues. It is understandably frustrating when things are not working as expected. Ping tests not always super accurate or insightful diagnostic on intermittent issues.

    However , log you posted show recurring T3 errors and and uncorrectables.

    Would encourage you to schedule a service call, ask tech to correct source of T3 errors, verify RX, TX and SNR are in spec and that there are no errors of any kind in modem log after reboot.

    Please let us know how it goes after service visit.

  • Brad_SBrad_S Posts: 12 ✭✭✭
    Dec 10, 2020

    @Lake802

    Thank you for your comments.

    Before I call tech support for I was thinking of relocating the cable modem to the basement near the splitter that brings the signal to my office. That would eliminate an entire segment of cable (internal) and put the modem very close to the demarc.

    The T3 errors on the modem (time is in EST) do not line up with what I was monitoring outside of my network. The ipMonitor is pinging the Spectrum default gateway for my segment of the network. What I am seeing from the ipMonitor is no a hard outage, but an upstream packet loss causing my Internet connection to stop functioning properly.

    Regards.

  • Lake802Lake802 Posts: 81 ✭✭✭✭
    Dec 10, 2020

    Greetings Brad - you have exactly the right idea - eliminating as many variables as possible . Temporarily relocating modem to towards dmarc often helpful to rule out internal cable segments.

    The mix of intermittent T3 errors and uncorrectables can make it difficult to see patterns in the ping results. Way cool you are using Solarwinds. They make some outstanding diagnostic tools.

    You initial assessment is also correct in that the source of T3 errors and uncorrectables is often upstream from the modem and is usually (but not always) cabling related.

    The segment of cable going from the modem out to the street pedestal is often the culprit.

    Onsite tech can usually isolate and correct the problem along that segment. On occassion , the problem ocurrs further upstream and onsite tech can engage the outdoor maintenance team to help get it resolved.

    Would also encourage you to consider having them replace that older Arris TM1602a 16x4 modem. Not clear from your post if you are using the telephone feature of that modem or not.

    Please keep us posted on your progress and subsequent findings/test results.

  • Brad_SBrad_S Posts: 12 ✭✭✭
    Dec 10, 2020

    @Lake802 ,

    All of my internal coax has been refitted with new compression fittings. The outside line had been replaced about 1.5 years ago. The one splitter and one amplifier were also replaces 1.5 years ago as I was having issues with my TVs.

    Most recently (this summer) a tech had jumped on my coax from the office and tested to the pole. No issues there and upon my insistence the modem was also changed out.

    While I know things can change in less than 24 hours, parts can fail, etc. my gut and 25 years of experience tells me this will not be resolved inside of my house, unfortunately. Hence my title, "How do I get Spectrum to fix their network?"

    I appreciate all of your comments.

  • Brad_SBrad_S Posts: 12 ✭✭✭
    Dec 10, 2020

    FINALLY!!! I had spoken with a wonderful person who does see an issue upstream from me. And they are replacing my modem.

  • Lake802Lake802 Posts: 81 ✭✭✭✭
    Dec 11, 2020

    Outstanding Brad - good to hear signs of progress as a result of your diagnostics and persistence. Please let us know how it goes and if issue resolved.

  • karlbeckmankarlbeckman Posts: 2,248 ✭✭✭✭
    Dec 11, 2020

    Your networking experience may have included the concepts that data transport networks including Spectrum do have finite physical boundaries and 3rd party IXP transfer nodes at the junctions. The problems you seem to be experiencing can reside in equipment on networks beyond the IXPs. Those issues are NOT for Spectrum to resolve.

    In fact, there are zero VPN providers inside Spectrum's network, (no 3rd party Ookla SpeedTest or DNS servers). They all are located outside and accessed through a handful of IXPs which are widely spaced across the country.

  • Brad_SBrad_S Posts: 12 ✭✭✭
    Dec 11, 2020

    @karlbeckman

    Thank you for your input.

    To clarify, I have been monitoring the Spectrum default gateway for my segment of network. Second, when I mentioned VPN, I had stated this was a VPN between myself and my work, not any commercial VPN service.

    The issues that I am having are clearly on the ISP's network.

  • rocketjetzrocketjetz Posts: 161 ✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2020 Dec 11, 2020

    Maybe it's that TM1602A modem? And it has a Puma 6 chipset?

    The problem appears to be that the x86 CPU in the modem is taking on too much work while processing network packets. Every couple of seconds or so, a high-priority maintenance task runs and it winds up momentarily hogging the processor, causing latency to increase by at least 200ms and, over time, about six per cent of packets to be dropped. It affects IPv4 and IPv6 – and it spoils internet gaming and other online real-time interaction that need fast response times."


    In addition to this class action lawsuit, they should have been forced to take this off the market.

    The arris Tm1602 Modem is on the list......maybe the 1602A should be too? It also has a Intel Puma 6 chipset.

    Intel Puma DHCE2652

    DHCE2652 (@1.2GHz) - Intel Puma 6 Family SoC - Home Gateway (24x8)

    I don't know why Spectrum continues to give these POS modem's out to people.

This discussion has been closed.