Looking For a New ISP

I use a business ADSL line at home provided by my employer, but since I’m changing jobs, that’s going to go away so I need a new ISP. My blog and mail are also hosted at work, so they will have to hang off the end of the new line while I change and configure my new hosting. My current ISP is, well, work, as an Entanet reseller and I’ve been exceptionally happy with Entanet, but business lines aren’t cheap so I’m not going to migrate it to my private telephone number.

So, I solicit your opinion. I need the following things:

  • Static IP
  • No blocked ports
  • Free setup and activation

Now I know these things are provided by a lot of ISPs and certainly my previous ISP before I got a business line provided my company, Freedom2Surf, do this and so do pretty much all of the other Entanet resellers do, so this isn’t a problem really.What makes the choice difficult are the following:

  • I’d like ~800KB upload speed which is only available on the business connections with all of the above, as I’m going to have to host my blog and mail on the end of this line for a week or 4
  • At least ~50GB download allowance, preferably with extra allowances off-peak
  • Around £25 on an ongoing monthly basis, ignoring discounted months up-front

Extra bonus points for being able to provide extra no-NAT IP addresses either cheaply or at low cost. F2S used to charge £5 for an extra IP, I can’t see the situation now. Freeola (Entanet reseller) are offering 8 IP no-NAT free and are the clear winner at the moment, but none of them offer an 800KB upload without paying for the business package, which is on average a third extra.

Answers to this Dear Lazyweb in the comments. I’m willing to listen to people telling me to get cable, but Virgin Media support are said to be clueless, though if the price versus speed ratio is high enough that it’s worth me junking my BT line and ADSL kit for a wireless cable router, then I’ll think about it and hope I never have to speak to them. Ooh and Entanet and therefore their resellers are trialling 24Mb ADSL, though sadly my exchange isn’t due for this til 2011.

9 thoughts on “Looking For a New ISP

  1. I’ve been using Eclipse for quite a while now and have been very happy with them. They don’t impose a full cap to bandwidth use, only from 6pm till 12midnight, and it tends to be quite fair. I’m on the top whack, and I get 50Mb per month for peak times.

    The upload speeds are standard for home adsl at around 400k.

    I’ve got 8 IPs off them for no extra cost, tho’ you do have to justify their use, so one static one shouldn’t be a problem!

    No ports blocked too. I run numerous servers at home (jabber, mail, web, etc.)

    Might be worth a look. Its free setup if you do a 12 month contract, 50 quid if you want a month by month one.



  2. Hi,

    Try, bethere – they do local loop unbundling, and do speeds up to 24mb downstream (ADSL2). However, I only get 5mbits down (stupid BT) and 1mbit up.

    Be are relatively cheap (they have unlimited usage, with no caps or prioritisations I’ve discovered) and do a ‘budget’ 8mbit one, or a slightly pricier 24mbits one.

    If you can get blueyonder/virgin you may find that to be better (after all, no money to BT)…

    BeThere do block port 25 outbound, which is an obvious spam blocking technique; so my local box just relays to $server on port 2525… if you get a static IP from Be then the port blocking is removed.

    I’m supposed to be on a dynamic IP Address, but it hasn’t changed yet in over a year of being on the service.

    Be also provide a modem/router thing, which is incredibly easy to setup, and gives you 802.11g as well.


  3. I’ve just signed up via O2 (as an O2 mobile subscriber). They claim upto 20Mb down and more than 1Mb up for £15 per month (as a subscriber, £25 without). Fixed IP addr. is I think £5 extra and they say unlimited bandwidth. I think they may be related to Be – anyone?

    http://www.thinkbroadband.com is worth a look at what ISP’s are out there.


  4. Adam,

    My name is Ramsey Tamimi from Cogent Communications. We are a Tier 1 ISP with largest IP only network in the world. (with 190 Gigs of capacity).

    If you would like more information about how to receive a price quote for our services, please email me. My email is ramseytamimi@cogentco.com

    I’d be happy to help you find service that will meet your bandwidth needs.

    Inside our lit buildings we have a $10 per Mbps price, that is 100 Mbps (direct, non-oversubscribed, fiber connection) for ONLY $1000 per month. Install time is 17 days!!!

    I look forward to speaking with you soon, if your still looking.


    Regional Account Manager
    Cogent Communications


  5. If you don’t opt for getting Mr Tamimi to drag a fibre under the Atlantic to your house, I can recommend IDnet. 30 gigs download, no upload caps, no traffic shaping, fixed IP address, yadda yadda yadda. 25 quid a month. (standard adsl).

    Tell them I sent you, and you might get a tenner off (and so might I).

  6. Terry – yes, I think O2 bought Be a year or so ago; thankfully they’ve not turned into some shit ISP even though they’ve been bought up.


  7. Dude, you need some comment moderation and/or spam blocking here.

    The Entanet/BT 21CN trial is likely to expand to other exchanges in the Wolverhampton area later this year, if I read the BT materials correctly. However, the initial reports I’m reading – only two so far – suggest it is very much a trial service. You can see the reports on Vivaciti’s forum http://vivaciti.net/forum/ in their 21CN trial section.

    I’ve been with Telewest/Virgin Media since 2001, with a brief break while I was working in London in 2003. Up until the NTL merger, Telewest were near faultless. Now, though, I’m planning to leave as soon as my BT line is clear of the 21CN trial.

    David Goodwin: giving money to BT is a fine and good thing if the alternative is paying Virgin Media. With BT you get to choose your calls provider(s) (Virgin Media phone tariffs are appalling) and you can choose from any number of ISPs. Now, cable phone tariffs have been poor for around ten years but the broadband is going the same way now. Virgin Media are introducing all sorts of measures designed to wring a little extra out of each customer whilst degrading service.

  8. Not sure if you have selected already, but newnet would probably be your best option – been using them for around 3yrs. No problems.

    No port blocking or traffic shaping. Static IPs min 1 max whatever you want, depends if res or business depends on the package.

    Free modem (at long last) or wifi router. If LLU upto 24Meg otherwise 8Meg.

  9. Adam,

    I’ve been with o2.co.uk unlimited 8mb BB for around a year. Their line speed is the best I’ve ever had here. Our exchange isn’t 16mb enabled. I was on freedom2surf.net previously, and got around 5mb, but suffered constant disconnections.
    I achieved over 1mb/s download the other night, while downloading Fedora 10 Linux DVD iso. I’m actually getting around 6.5 mb according to the speedtester at http://www.thinkbroadband.com. They do however block port 25 and their supplied router, a Thompson ST8OWL I believe, is not the most configurable, with their own cut-down firmware.

    I run my own web, FTP, PLESK, database server at home too, I use CentOS 5 currently, but blocking port 25 is a real pain as can’t send Email directly from the server. However, if you pay them an extra £5.00/month, they will give you a static IP and unblock the port. They also allow a relay.o2broadband.co.uk for sending mail via a Mail client, but this isn’t widely publicised.

    And yes BE and o2 are one and the same, all part of the Telefonica group now, which they weren’t when I signed up.

    I would really like to change but I can’t really complain as I’m only paying around £7.50/month seeing as I’m an o2 mobile customer! i’d most likely go with Demon Internet.

    Thought I would add my two cents, as the Americans say.



Comments are closed.