The arrival of Gfast in Churchtown.

The other day I was trawling through my usual daily news feeds and came across this:- https://www.thinkbroadband.com/news/8277-another-seven-gfast-exchange-areas-spotted-with-live-pods 

For a little background, openreach give a description of what Gfast is here:- https://www.homeandbusiness.openreach.co.uk/fibre-broadband/ultrafast-broadband/ultrafast-fibre-g.fast

There was mention of the street cabinets that are served off the Churchtown exchange (where I live). In recent weeks I have noticed many cabinets being fitted with an extension, but hadn’t really figured what they were for. The extension is fitted to the main cabinet, not the associated cabinet that supports the broadband connections.

So I now need to do some rapid research since I’m not really familiar with the technology. It claims a huge increase in speed, but it’s *very* dependent on how far from the cabinet you are. And the further away you get, the less the benefit. Almost to the point that beyond a certain distance, the benefits aren’t really that great. I suspect I may fall into this category.

Anyway, my current provider, Zen, who I’ve no desire to move away from, apparently support it, so it’s time to give them a call to see what the options / benefits are.

What I do find surprising is that I’ve registered my interest for faster broadband on many official sites on the basis I’d get advanced warning when the time came. And I’ve received nothing. Only now by chance do I read I can get it.

As I find out more, I’ll add to this post.

Mark.

Update 3rd January 2019. Well, Zen have been in touch, and the information I’ve been given is not what I was expecting. It looks like I could indeed benefit from an increase on download speed, possibly up from 60MB/s to 120MB/s. But the downside is that my upload speed would drop from 20MB/s to 5MB’s. For me that’s not acceptable. Given the amount of data we need to push into ‘the cloud’ these days, I”d bee looking to increase the speed, not drop it. So, it’s a no from me…..

January 2nd pre dawn sky

This morning the temperature dropped quite significantly. Which meant I was back on the normal winter duties of de-icing the cars. Hardly something that appeals, but this morning, the pre dawn sky had something pretty spectacular on offer. Low in the South East a slim crescent moon can be seen next to an astonishingly bright Venus. I’ll check again tomorrow, and a little later too since Jupiter should also be seen lower on the horizon.

If you’ve time, it’s worth a look. Here’s a snap taken with the phone. One day I’ll get a decent astrophotography setup in place.

Mark.

Musings for 2019.

Well yes, it’s been rather quiet on here. But at the same time 2018 was quite some year to take in. And I’m not sure I coped very well with it. The subject of news, or rather fake news, and all that that drives into society will no doubt feature in some future post that I feel I must write, since in my view, we’re already well down a very slippery slope….

Nevertheless a lot of good things happened (for me at least), one of which is the decision to largely withdraw from Facebook. At some point, it’s highly likely I will deactivate and then delete my FB account. The reasons for doing this will I’m sure be obvious to many, but in short, I simply do not trust FB any more. True, that could be said for many other organisations, but the latest revelation that contents of private messages were made available to other companies was the final straw.

There is a growing trend now to get back to your own ‘personal’ space on the internet, one where the individual has the control. I’ve had this WordPress site for some time now, and it’s my intention to keep it far more up to date. There will be more categories covering my interests so it’s easy to avoid any content that may not be of interest. And more than likely what I guess I’d call a ‘rant’ category where I’ll make it clear where I stand on the whatever is the hot topic of the day!

I’ll still be using Twitter for the short(er) updates, but here is where you’ll find a little more. It’s likely I’ll stop posting to Instagram too, so expect to see more photographs here too.

So, it’s time for me to freshen up the site, and prepare to start making it a little busier 🙂

Mark.