BT Home Hub 5 or Zen Router Thomsom TG589N v3

Discussion in 'Broadband' started by Bill Ward, Oct 22, 2015.

  1. Bill Ward

    Bill Ward Guest

    Is the BT Home Hub 5 a better option than the Thomson TG589N v3 supplied
    by Zen?
    Bill
     
    Bill Ward, Oct 22, 2015
    #1
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  2. Bill Ward

    Richard_CC Guest

    Can't comment on the BT home hub. Got a Zen one pre configured, plugged
    it in, it worked. WiFi OK all round the house with Mac, ipad, android
    and windows phones (a much older one struggled upstairs). I have a NAS
    and the office laptop connected to the ethernet ports. Chrome TV dongle
    via wifi.

    Never had any cause to fiddle with it or think about is so it meets my
    criteria.
     
    Richard_CC, Oct 22, 2015
    #2
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  3. Bill Ward

    Mike Barnes Guest

    I have a Zen 582n and like yours it connected straight out of the box.
    However trying to be clever with the LAN side was quite tricky. The Zen
    support guy admitted as much. So, it's fine for basic use, but not easy
    to configure for special requirements.
     
    Mike Barnes, Oct 22, 2015
    #3
  4. Bill Ward

    Graham J Guest


    I'm quite surprised that Zen chose to supply such a strange router. In
    my experience Zen users are sophisticated people who are prepared to pay
    Zen's premium prices for performance and technical competence; and as
    such are the very people would like a router with useful facilities -
    which the Thomson is not, as you have found out!

    Zen would have done better to persuade Draytek to get their Vigor 2860n
    router approved by Openreach and to offer it to their customers at a
    heavily dscounted price.
     
    Graham J, Oct 22, 2015
    #4
  5. Bill Ward

    Mike Barnes Guest

    I suspect they went for the simple low-cost option (including: easy to
    support), thinking that anyone with special requirements would source
    your own router. My previous router was a Draytek and I only took the
    Zen offering this time through laziness.
     
    Mike Barnes, Oct 22, 2015
    #5
  6. Bill Ward

    Brian Mc Guest

    : Is the BT Home Hub 5 a better option than the Thomson TG589N v3 supplied
    My understanding is that the HH5 can ONLY be used with BT Broadband
    and Plusnet - so that will solve your problem!

    If it does work then it is very good at the price - dual-band, Ghz
    wired sockets etc.
     
    Brian Mc, Oct 23, 2015
    #6
  7. If it's supplied by BT then that's probably correct. I've encountered
    other BT modems that definitely are locked to their service, in that
    if you enter a login name that isn't one of theirs, the firmware won't
    allow you to save it. BT are the only internet service of which I can
    say this from personal experience. I don't know if others, e.g.
    Plusnet, hobble their modems in the same way. For some BT devices,
    amateurs have produced alternative firmware to flash a restricted one
    for general use, but this is more of a challenge for the technically
    curious than for somebody who just wants something that works.

    However, you can also buy a generic BT Hub from other suppliers.
    Amazon, for example, make no mention of the one they sell being
    restricted to any particular service, so I assume it isn't.
    True, and it's not the only one. I use the the Billion 8800NL, and
    there's also the TP-Link TD-W9980, both also available from Amazon and
    cheaper than the BT Hub. Any of these will work with either ADSL or
    VDSL and will replace both the Openreach modem and the router supplied
    by your ISP, so for VDSL you end up with a single box instead of two.

    Rod.
     
    Roderick Stewart, Oct 23, 2015
    #7
  8. Bill Ward

    Bill Ward Guest

    It seemed to my limited knowledge to be a better spec so a better
    performance. However users all seem to prefer ZEN for speed and reliability.
    Bill
     
    Bill Ward, Oct 23, 2015
    #8
  9. Bill Ward

    Brian Mc Guest

    : I would imagine a couple of baked bean tins and some string would do a
    : better job than the HH5...

    : I've had HH3, 4 and 5 and I binned them all for giving shite Wireless
    : reception and constant update reboots.

    I have been using the BT HH5 since March 2014 with zero reboots - and
    pretty good wireless performance.
     
    Brian Mc, Oct 23, 2015
    #9
  10. Bill Ward

    MB Guest


    I used to find the Home Hub 5 kept crashing when plugged into my Windows
    8 desktop. I tried putting through an Ethernet hub or switch to isolate
    but the same. It would crash even if the Windows 8 PC connected via WiFi.

    Eventually I used an old WiFi router just to isolate from the PC. Even
    then it would occasionally reboot.

    I then bought a TP-LINK router and (after struggling to find the right
    settings!) used that in place of the HH5 and not had any problems. It
    does a few things that the HH5 does not do so I like it.

    I have occasionally put the HH5 on overnight to check still OK and must
    try again with my Windows 10 PC to see if that will work with that.

    I always like to have a spare router configured so I can put in the
    event of a fault then tell the people on the 0800 number that I have the
    fault with two completely different combinations of router and PC. The
    BT Indian customer service centre would still want to go through all the
    usual completely pointless tests!
     
    MB, Oct 23, 2015
    #10
  11. Bill Ward

    Brian Mc Guest

    : > I have been using the BT HH5 since March 2014 with zero reboots - and
    : > pretty good wireless performance.

    : Stay up till 3am and often you will see BT reboot it for you...

    My HH5 goes for typically 12 days or more these days. On ALL routers you
    are going to get restarts - not reboots - at that sort os frequency!

    : My HH's were all fine and dandy for a year or so, then umpteen updates,
    : patches, reboots and firmware upgrades sent all my HH's screaming off to
    : the funny farm.

    I think I have had 3 firmware updates in 20 months!

    : minimal reboots my IP Address lingers for many many months before getting
    : renewed. Sweet...

    Why not use DynDNS or similar?
     
    Brian Mc, Oct 23, 2015
    #11
  12. Bill Ward

    Graham J Guest

    A changing IP address has nothing to do with any of your points. It is
    reasonable to expect the IP address to change, unless you specifically
    ask for it to be constant. Some ISPs will make a small charge for this
    (e.g Plusnet), others will offer it as a standard part of their service
    (e.g. Zen).

    Yet others (e.g. BT) will make an exorbitant charge for a static IP address.
     
    Graham J, Oct 23, 2015
    #12
  13. Bill Ward

    Phil W Lee Guest

    Or the Billion BiPAC 8800NL.
     
    Phil W Lee, Oct 24, 2015
    #13
  14. Bill Ward

    Graham J Guest

    tigger wrote:

    [snip]
    There's nothing in the design of the system that says the IP address
    should not change.

    When you first power up a router it negotiates the ADSL connection with
    the equipment (DSLAM or whatever) at the local exchange. By this stage
    it can send and receive data packets.

    It then sends an authentication request. Depending on the ISP this is
    either handled by a RADIUS server within the Openreach network, or it is
    forwarded to the RADIUS server operated by your ISP. This RADIUS server
    verifies your credentials and issues your router with an IP address and
    related addresses for default gateway and DNS server.

    Your router repeats the authentication request very frequently -
    possibly every few seconds. Potentially any of the IP address
    paramaters can be changed when this happens. Specifically if the ISP
    changes anything within their system both default gateway and DNS server
    parameters might change. For example this allows them to have multiple
    DNS servers and be able to take one out of service for maintenance. Or
    they may have multiple connection routes to the rest of the internet,
    and one route may have failed. You might experience this as a brief
    delay on the display of a web page.

    Generally the ISP has a limited allocation of IP addresses. If any user
    disconnects, their IP address is returned to the pool of available
    addresses, and might be issued to you when your router repeats its
    authentication request. The ISP does not percieve it has put you at a
    disadvantage by changing your IP address, so the "lease time" might be
    configured to be quite short.

    However if you ask them for a static IP addres, this is configured into
    their RADIUS server, and regardless of how many times your router
    requests authentication, it is always issued the same address.

    In summary: unless you agree a static IP address, the address you are
    issued might change at any time to suit the convenience of your ISP.
     
    Graham J, Oct 24, 2015
    #14
  15. Bill Ward

    Roland Perry Guest

    I prefer the following nomenclature, to avoid the sort of ambiguities
    thrown up in this thread:

    Static IP - you have one address, permanently. Nailed in.
    Usually costs extra.

    Dynamic IP - you have an IP address which can change as much as once per
    session, although in practice it might not change so often.
    Overwhelming the most common.

    Fixed IP - you have an IP address updated by the same mechanisms as a
    dynamic address, but the ISP promises only to change it if
    something really drastic happens (like them renumbering
    their entire network).
    Can be a sign of a more B2B kind of ISP.
     
    Roland Perry, Oct 24, 2015
    #15
  16. Bill Ward

    Bill Ward Guest

    Do some sites not recognise subscribers for a paid service only by their
    IP address? I had one when I logged in say something to the effect of
    subscribers IP address not recognised.
    Bill
     
    Bill Ward, Oct 24, 2015
    #16
  17. A lot of routers were compared by PCPro around the turn of the year, you might be able to find this online.

    The HH5 did quite well in all areas except the speed of the plugged in drive (as I have found from experience). Broadband speed, Ethernet speed and wireless speed on both bands are good. Range on 5GHz is understandably less.

    Can't say on the Thomson one. For a good all singing all dancing router, get a Draytek.
     
    R. Mark Clayton, Oct 24, 2015
    #17
  18. Bill Ward

    Brian Mc Guest

    : The HH5 did quite well in all areas except the speed of the plugged
    : in drive (as I have found from experience). Broadband speed,
    : Ethernet speed and wireless speed on both bands are good. Range on
    : 5GHz is understandably less.

    : Can't say on the Thomson one. For a good all singing all dancing
    : router, get a Draytek.

    I have an HH5 which I am quite happy with - BUT, as I said, it is
    ONLY useable on either BT or Plusnet as the ISP!

    I am iso used to having a single box - if I could not use the HH5 I think
    I would go for Billion I think - they get good reviews for about
    half the price of the Drayteks!
     
    Brian Mc, Oct 24, 2015
    #18
  19. Bill Ward

    Graham J Guest

    If so you would expect this to be explained as part of signing up for
    the service.

    I have VPNs set up between one router and another which rely on the IP
    address for correct authentication, which is why the broadband services
    at these locations use static IP adresses. But I chose this method of
    authentication.
     
    Graham J, Oct 25, 2015
    #19
  20. Bill Ward

    Graham J Guest

    That unless you agreed with ISP that the address should be static, then
    the address might change. How often the address changes is related to
    many different things, some of which might have to do with your own
    equipment if it contributes to frequent disconnections. If this is
    inconvenient for you then get your ISP to agree to issue a static IP.
     
    Graham J, Oct 25, 2015
    #20
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