*Consumer protection links
If the site xplornetsucks.com becomes null at any point in future history, keep your questions going at https://secure.dslreports.com/
There 2 satellite forums for your satellite of use. Oh you don't know what satellite you are on? What a bummer.
All other posts can go to the 'Canadian broadband' forum:
Xplornet on Facebook:
For you Facebook users who love a canned response
New direct link to comments. Comments will popup:
Would be real nice for the readers if you post what platform you are on. wireless. satellite(+name of it)
Some posts do get deleted from the Xplornet Facebook page.
*****As of May 27 2014, Xplornet has locked down their comment page to a side tab on the left of the page. What this does is prevent people from seeing a dedicated
**Edit in July 2014: Click 'posts to page'(lower down, on the left side) and it will open a popup window to see the posts.
*** Edit Nov 2014:
Xplornet on Twitter:
Commissioner for complaints for telecommunications services:
And since observant customer posts continue mention it, after all these years...
New service? Full subscribed speed for 1 month? Nothing really seems to be throttled?
First month expired? Speeds drop off? Various protocols get throttled?
You got screwed during your 1 month guarantee.
It is extremely easy to program the various parameters in each customers account. So pay attention.
There are ISP's who sell speed. There are ISP's who sell data caps. When an ISP sells you a data cap, disguised as speed, it is frustrating.
Complaints for traffic shaping that interfere with your internet experience.
Also include complaints when your security updates for Windows or Apple or other, are throttled.
Generally for Hughesnet: If you have the 'proxy' on(turbo page / web acceleration), turn it off in your modem.
If on, it can result in sites being not reachable.
Why would the satellite internet companies, that Xplornet leases service from, put a earth-gateway in St John's? So if your service becomes intermittent or goes down, check the weather there first. Umm, with your data plan from your smartphone, of course.
Tired of a monopoly provider of your high speed satellite internet?
Current Monopoly: Echostar 17, Viasat1.
2017 Monopoly: Echostar19, Viasat2.
Questions or Complaints
If you use Xplornet DNS and you see it is 192.168.*.* (where the two stars are actual numbers), That is a local IP number(not the internet) and can cause issues. Your computer expects a IP that is on the actual internet and may sit and wait for that local IP to respond, resulting in no webpage found.
Google DNS 188.8.131.52 , 184.108.40.206 , providing Xplornet does not do DNS hijacking to remove your DNS preference.
In the Netflix site, there is a stream settings page.
There is low, medium, high. Canada should be default at medium, as years ago, Netflix saw what shitty streams Canada had due to lots of throttling of the users connections by certain ISP's.
At low, this should drop your movie stream down to below 1GB per 2 hour movie.
Data Usage tracker tip:
There are 2 ways to measure your usage.
1: Only your data.
2: Your data, plus overhead. So whats overhead? That is the ISP's data that is used to see that the modem is online and any updates pushed to it. The problem with measuring overhead is that sometimes the modem gets into a data loop of having connection issues. Then as it keeps calling for its mommy, that can result in extra data showing up on your data usage charts.
The way that you can see whats your data and whats the ISP overhead data, is by using your own data counter on your LAN(local area network ) side. A router with firmware like DD-wrt can do it, or if you only have one computer, a software solution.
With counting overhead, the ISP may also count the Internet pinging your modem. Denial of Service Attack is another name for it. Even with your shared IP address, depending on ISP traffic handling, it can cause the data tracker to show this pinging as usage from you.
Computer, internet capable speed, Tip:
When the call support center employee tells you, "the reason for your slow service is your computer", please ignore them.
A 15 year old computer can easily do the speeds that Xplornet offers. If you truly want to see your computers speed performance, take it to someone you know who has either DSL or Cable internet. Plug in and see how fast you can go.
When they blame your router for problems, please ignore them. You are doing double NAT(network address translation) because of the way Xplornet assigns 1 IP address to hundreds of people at the same time(carrier grade NAT) on their wireless system and by the owners of the satellite system. When an ISP puts up a list of 'compatible routers', there is problems with the way their network is setup. What you see and what your router sees of the network, is different. The router can freak out trying to control the traffic. The router firewall also keeps the ISP from probing your LAN(local area network) and seeing whats connected.
Simple Service tip:
If your service is at your purchased speed during most of the time, but not in the evening hours(5pm to 10pm), thats called primetime slowdown. It is a sign of an oversold system. That system being wireless tower and satellite.
Oversold is where there are many more customers on the system, than the bandwidth available. The ways of dealing with that oversell is: Throttle everyone. Throttle the heaviest users. Throttle certain internet communication protocols. Deny the system is oversold and continue taking full payment from you month after month until more bandwidth is created by upgrades to their local hardware and/or their internet backbone. The more logical alternative is to issue a stop-sell on the congested part of the system... which may not be done before over-sell, because hey more money coming in.
Bank Account safety tip:
It is your Right to revoke auto-payments from your bank account. You pop into your bank and tell them you revoke permission for the company withdrawing funds. If the Teller does not understand, escalate to the branch Manager. If the Manager does not understand, escalate to corporate Manager of all their banks. Same goes for your credit card.
The reasons for revocation is simple.
1: Company takes out funds at non-agreed times. Takes out more money than agreed on. Takes double payments and eventually returns it. You canceled and are 100% free from the company with all hardware returned and payments already made.
2: You canceled and to ensure no more 'accidental' access to your account, you block access. With leased/rental hardware waiting for an installer to remove, the block also ensures that if he does not come or loses your equipment after removal, you won't find a big non-authorized debit from your account. Your service agreement says about 'return our stuff or we'll take your money', but if the chain of action fails, you get money basically stolen due to the company failing to uphold their side of the removal agreement.
3: You have not had service for a longtime, but the company's payment service added your canceled account back to active service. This can be a nightmare. You will call in and since the company uses a third party for billing/payments, you almost have to file a court case in small claims court to get your money back and to have the Judge also give you damages from the companies involved.
Keep your bills for at least 3 years, so you don't forget your account number and have the canceled/complete payment document available.
4: Please be aware that companies in Canada tend to quickly dump/sell delinquent accounts to a third party collections company. They may not inform you of the action before the dump. If the collection agency is not licensed to operate in your Province, tell them what the law says and to stop harassment of you. The collection agency will try to ruin your credit anyways, even though the dispute is with the company you had service from. In court, you can make a large amount of money for the violation of collections laws in Canada.
5: Blocking your bank access can lead to problems when the chain of events breaks down. This is not your fault. It is the company's fault. Don't be bullied. Don't allow the company to deny responsibility once they dump your account to collections. They started the mess. They are still legally responsible for what is happening to you. Take names. Record conversations(one party permission laws in Canada, so no need to tell them you are recording, or else they will hang up). Their own recordings, they tend to refuse to provide, unless under court order and a Judge who may make life miserable for the company's executives, under the terms of 'obstruction of Justice'.
Your personal file with the company, you have a Right to see it, including all notes on the account. Companies like to deny that, as well.
On this page:
*Consumer protection links
Xplornet wireless: Motorola unit: Is the old network which is slowly being replaced with,
Xplornet wireless: 4G network. Non-motorola units. Newest network. which is being upgraded to,
Xplornet wireless LTE: Expected to be the savior of the wireless system. To allow more data throughput. Completion sometime in 2017.
Lets also explain something here.
'Wireless' is terrestrial(ground) based Internet that is delivered via towers.
'Satellite' is from satellites.
4G is a fancy term done by the communications industry to make people think a higher number is better than a lower number. And guess what? 5G is coming out this year. Doesn't mean much, as it is only the next generation of hardware or software or firmware or looky shiny here my money for that pretty thingy.
Xplornet is listed with the actual satellite owners here, as Xplornet has only purchased Canadian capacity from those owners.
Low bandwidth capacity satellites:
Xplornet/Hughesnet KU band: Leased satellites(various ages and issues) using modem units of HN7000.
Hughesnet has slowly been removing users off of these satellites to the newer ones. As the leased KU satellites are more expensive per user.
Above low bandwidth but below medium bandwidth capacity satellites:
Xplornet/Telesat KA band: Satellite Anik F2(2004) , Anik F3(2007): is the older satellite network. Surfbeam Blue modems.
Medium bandwidth capacity satellite:
Xplornet/Hughesnet KA band: Satellite Spaceway3(2007). HN9000 modems.
High bandwidth capacity satellites:
Xplornet/Viasat KA band: Satellite Viasat 1(2011). Surfbeam Black modems.
Xplornet/Hughesnet KA band: Satellite Echostar 17(2012). HT1000 modems.
HT1000 access settings page.
There is 'web acceleration'(proxy) that can be turned off(faint 'I') to avoid issues with pages that refuse to load at times due to those mystical trolls living in your satellite modem eating your packets.
For early 2017:
KA band. High throughput. Covering most of North America.
Xplornet. yet again, has bought all Canadian capacity on these satellites.
Latency. Also known as lag.
Latency on the satellites starts at 700ms.
Latency on wireless... Lets say start at 100ms and 300ms on a bad connection. A consideration for testing lag on wireless is pinging the tower for testing your initial latency.
The frequency that you are using for wireless is a consideration due to the overused 2.4Ghz being an open/unlicensed frequency. Using the licensed frequency will be better to reduce interference.
On both transmission methods your latency will climb higher depending on various issues, such as not enough capacity at the wireless-tower/back-haul or satellite spot-beam/ground-station.
NAT(network address translation).
Is the IP number you see on your computer a real internet IP that only you are using?
A bad thing is where the ISP will create a NAT on the tower or satellite ground base where a multitude of users will share one public IP address. This results in 'double NAT', meaning some things won't work properly.
Check your IP address:
The issue is it will show your public IP address, but it won't show if you are on a private LAN of the ISP(double NAT).
Other than calling into the ISP script support(read the screen or be fired), you can probe, what should be an open port, on your supposed public IP address and if no proper response, you are double NATted.
GRC "Shields up!" testing.
It is a quick way to probe your router or computer from the internet. Multiple ports can be probed.
If you are double natted, the ISP will intercept the probes before reaching you, so unless your local machine or router has logs to see if the probe hit you, you are screwed.
Hughesnet Echostar 17 and ViaSat 1 only cover high population areas. Generally the east and west coasts, some of the Prairies, leaving a gap in the mid-section of North America. The older KA band satellites will have their user numbers slowly reduced for added capacity and offering of higher speeds. Users would be transfered to the newer satellites based on coverage and the customers willingness to transfer. Hey new hardware and new contract of some term, oh crap.
People in the north of Canada? Yea, you are kinda screwed until someone comes up with another method to get you faster speeds and more bandwidth availability. Panic set in when the Anik F2 that serves you had a bad software update a year ago. Lots of ideas have been put forth but they take time and money so wait and wait and wait.
Next high capacity satellite sometime around maybe possibly 3 years from this posting.
ViaSat2 for mid 2016 launch, via SpaceX.
Those satellites will be [almost] full North America coverage. Until then, hopeful that there is no failures since there is no backups to them.
Anik F2 replacement around after 2020.
People seem to be enjoying the newer systems(wireless and satellite). Your mileage may vary and please ensure your Rights are protected when dealing with all sorts of companies that tend to treat the subscribers(especially ones in a contract) as nothing more than a cash cow.
One of the satellite ground stations is in Newfoundland. The usual winter heavy cloud cover can impede signal.
Write a review of your service, good or bad, at DSLreports.
We love details in a review. Call for installation. Installation. How good the service was for the first two months. Any accidents where money left your bank account by some strange error, be it extra install fees or a computer glitch. How call support is. Oh yes, 'call support'. Please don't call it tech support. Many companies front line defense is people who read a script. Real 'tech support' is people who don't deal with customers unless needed due to major issues. Also known as 'escalating'.
Ensure twice monthly that the monthly payments taken out of your bank account or credit card are valid withdrawals for the agreed amount.
?????Why you no check your money is being properly used?????
Reminder: That if a company, on auto-withdrawals, removes more than the agreed amount or removes at times other than the agreed time, and causes NSF(non sufficient funds) penalties against you, the company taking out the funds in the unauthorized manner, is responsible to reimburse you for the penalties you get from the bank or other companies.
The company responsible for causing the NSF penalties in the first place, will venomously deny responsibility for them causing you monetary harm.
Call support at companies is not your friend. They read a standard script. Some companies have better trained support agents. Anything technical may cause brain freeze to a support agent. Enjoy being hung-up on. Start all over again as the last agent left no notes on your account. Or the note says you were mean for stating your Rights and your refusing to be abused.
Sheeple run away when confronted by the dogs of call support.
That contract you signed for a set term?
Validity of every portion may not be true.
Even the portion that says if part of it is invalid then the validity of the rest is not made invalid.
Contract is very favorable to the company and unfavorable to the consumer.
Prices, package details, are not supposed to change during term of contract. Changes by the company without explicit approval by the customer would result in contract being voided without penalty.
Oh you thought that it is no problem to get your monthly bandwidth usage chopped in half and still be under contract??? Company complains by saying that no monthly bandwidth was mentioned in the contract, but hey, screw you huh..
Need a faster package? Oh the company was so nice to allow you to get it changed without extending your contract. How sweet of them.
The only time a termination fee would be allowed for a change of contract terms during contract resulting in termination, would be a subsidized product(cell phone or bonus product) which would have a monthly pro-rated fee that would be reimbursed. A $300 product would be a $150 dollar pay out at half of a contract term.
Arbitration is a very manipulative clause that a company puts in to discourage a customer from realizing that an arbitration clause is a fake.
You can sue.
You can sue.
Arbitrator should never be an employee of the company.
Why should you pay many dollars to an arbitrator for a resolution that is not proper for the situation.
Might as well get mugged.
Or burn your money and continue to suffer in silence.
Using the courts is your Right. You can get court costs on top of your settlement. Do not be afraid of the companies lawyers who keep waving a contract in your face that could be declared void.
You lightly poop yourself when the lawyers say they will charge you thousands of dollars for losing against their legalize. You claim 'monetary hardship' and lawyers lightly poop instead, as the Judge restricts costs. After all, you did have a valid case and are not a troll.
Oh you won? Nice. Lawyer didn't show up. Cost too much to even get a local lawyer. Or the lawyer showed up and you easily won.
Did you believe someone who said that the case had to be held near the home office somewhere in Canada? Your service is where you live, so is the court for that service dispute. Service not guaranteed.... Damn it!.
Your service agreement said that "we don't guarantee service". Wow, you got a contract that says you have to pay money even when the service is either barely usable or completely dead.
??Signed a Contract?? Sure you did. Wink. wink. 'By using the service you are now in contract term that someone supposedly had you sign and....'. ?What contract?. What term is is is um, who put you in a 3 year contract anyways??? You agreed to $yadayada per month and an install fee of $yadayada, but no one ever mentioned contract term length. Damn you reading and comprehension skills!!!!
'By using the service, you are now abiding by terms of service'. ??!?!Whar terms of service??!?!?!?
Do not be afraid of collection agencies. Oh noes, they called and said they will bankrupt you and ruin your credit history. Oh noes....
Why yes there are rules and legal protections from manipulative collection agents.
You can even make a few bucks when they repeatedly call your work and spew all sorts of 'private' information to your co-workers or boss about how you are a deadbeat, Or maybe they left a message on your answering machine or with your room-mate. Whoooppsy, privacy laws violated...
Consumer protection agencies by Province:
Commissioner for complaints for telecommunications services:
Ontario ministry of consumer services:
Ontario ministry: Dealing with collection agencies:
Service Alberta: Consumer information:
New Brunswick consumer laws:
British Columbia consumer protection:
Saskatchewan consumer protection:
Manitoba consumer protection:
Quebec consumer protection:
Newfoundland/Labrador consumer protection:
Nova Scotia consumer protection:
Prince Edward Island consumer protection act:
Yukon consumer protection:
These two are a bit sparse in data....
North West Territories consumer protection:
Nunavut consumer protection:
Privacy Rights commissioner:
Ad Standards of Canada:
A problem with complaints made to the Ad Standards, is companies can avoid being named if they instantly correct the issue, which leads to a company looking like it never ever breaks any advertising rules.
All things Internet, general specifics of the law and the abuse from billionaires and their government servants that spew out against the people of the land every day.
Open Media: things you won't see in the media that is owned by the Internet companies:
DSLreports: Various news articles and many forums on all sorts of subjects.
You never have to provide your Social Insurance number to anyone, except for government services(not a contractor) or for an interest generating bank account.
A company can ask for it, but can not deny you service when you refuse.
Identity theft runs rampant in the U.S.A. because of silly rules that make people provide their Social Security number to oh so many companies(electric company, natural gas) for service.
Do not provide a photocopy of your Passport. That is only for border crossing.
Do not provide a copy of your driver license. That is only for driving. If you must, blank out important parts(picture, number). There are companies who will photocopy it and keep that copy for identification, but thefts happen by thieves or employees.
As a generic bit of legalize, for when you sign a contract that is 99% in favor of the company and only 1% in your favor.
Contracts are to be mutual agreements that allow for both parties to be equal. But unfortunately many service contracts are written in a way to lock in the client for a set term with a large contract cancellation penalty and it punishes the client for the failures of service of the corporation.
adhesion contract (contract of adhesion) n. a contract (often a signed form) so imbalanced in favor of one party over the other that there is a strong implication it was not freely bargained. Example: a rich landlord dealing with a poor tenant who has no choice and must accept all terms of a lease, no matter how restrictive or burdensome, since the tenant cannot afford to move. An adhesion contract can give the little guy the opportunity to claim in court that the contract with the big shot is invalid. This doctrine should be used and applied more often, but the same big guy-little guy inequity may apply in the ability to afford a trial or find and pay a resourceful lawyer.
9) In most states, if a contract of adhesion (meaning a "take-it-or-leave-it" contract drafted by the more powerful party) would serve as an exculpatory clause (meaning a contract term that would deny the weaker party any effective means of vindicating its legal rights), then the contract (or at least the term that renders it exculpatory) is unconscionable.
Hey, do you want a cheap internet install? Well sign this long term contract with a reduced install/setup fee, with still no guarantee of specified quality's of service for the contract term.
But hey, you could always stay on dialup and be a second class citizen. So take it or be a lesser human.
Software: some free, some with pay versions, some with trial versions on top of the free version:
In the settings: uncheck 'voice', otherwise when an alert happens and your speakers are loud, you will poop in shock at the noise.
uncheck: cloud based services. uncheck: community... if you want.
Comodo Firewall: installer has trial version of anti-virus, etc. you can choose to only install the firewall:
FoxIt PDF reader:
SpyBot search and destroy(version 1.6):
Perfect for those using Internet Explorer.
Thunderbird email client:
Firefox , Thunderbird extensions:
Please be aware that another version is the Opera 'mini browser' and it is done via a proxy server to compress your incoming data to deal with slower Internet speeds or bandwidth data caps. Any encrypted traffic that you do is not from client to website to client. The data stops at the proxy and is opened(not encrypted) for compression before being encrypted again. And is not recommended for secure encrypted communications.
Open office, Libre version:
Should be able to open all or most types of document files along with saving in various file formats.
Google Gmail account without the extras of Google plus:
After signing up for the account, go into your settings manager and delete the Google+ profile.
Gmail help section:
Songbird online radio player:
With menus of all sorts of online radio stations.
Two web camera programs:
Ispy has video recording capabilities but no remote monitoring without going through the makers website(free registration).
Yawcam takes still images and can be remotely monitored via its built in server. The web access portion of the program can be password protected or open.
To gain access to your Webcam without having to type in your possibly changing IP address:
A dynamic DNS service that your router or the companies software on the host computer will tell it what your IP address is. You can name your connection with a webname and point it at the particular port that your webcam is on.
A free service(log in once a month) or paid for.
If your IP address is not visible from the Internet to your machine, you will need a static IP address.
VLC media player:
An alternative music and video player.
This program helps you to scan your local area for WiFi that may be interfering with your own signals. You need a wireless stick for your desktop if it does not have one and preferably a 6 foot long usb extension cable to get a clear signal. A laptop wireless can use it as is. There is also an app for Android.
Linux Mint operating system:
Ubuntu operating system:
CPUid hardware monitor:
Used to view various monitoring sensors in your computer.
GIMP(gnu Image Manipulation program):
Like photoshop but free.
A tool to see what is happening on your Internet connection in terms of traffic. Study the help files for help to learn how to use it.
HDtune(free version 2.55):
Help to determine future hardware failure of your hard drives. Note that the program will reset your power options when run(sleep time and require a password). You then change them back.
Oracle Virtual Machine:
This program allows you to run another operating system inside of your operating system, in its own window. Useful for testing out alternate operating systems like the various incarnations of Linux. Recommended computer hardware would be a dual core CPU(2.4Ghz minimum) along with at least 4GB of ram. It shares your existing hardware so you don't want to run out of resources, otherwise a big crash may happen.