Case Study: Bridge Tap Removal and Troubleshooting
Recently, the team at SECURE A COM tackled an intriguing case of internet failure for an AGL customer in Parramatta. This case was filled with peculiarities, challenges, and, eventually, a resolution that taught us a few valuable lessons about Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and the telecommunication industry.
Two young students in Parramatta faced a long-standing problem: their fibre to the basement connection had a bridge tap on the line. This issue had been plaguing them for nine months, causing page load failures, dropouts, and other problems. Despite notifying their ISP about the situation, the issue persisted. That’s when they turned to SECURE A COM.
Investigation and Troubleshooting
Identifying the Bridge Tap
Upon arrival, the diagnosis began with locating the bridge tap. This was found behind a panel, with cables connected to different rooms. Here’s a step-by-step rundown of the process:
- Investigation of Sockets: Both the sockets in different rooms had a single yellow cable, pointing towards a join somewhere.
- Locating the Bridge Tap: A panel was removed to uncover the bridge tap, a join of cables going back to the IDF (Intermediate Distribution Frame) on the floor.
- Testing the Connection: Despite removing the bridge tap, the connection was still failing, with the infamous “Spinning Wheel of Doom.”
- Router Inspection: The team considered the possibility of a router issue, but it was only nine months old.
Some peculiar symptoms were observed:
- Selective Browsing: YouTube and WhatsApp were working fine, but other sites wouldn’t load.
- Sync and Internet Light On: Both lights were solid, indicating no apparent issues with the connection.
- Bypassing the Frame: Temporary bypassing was done to get the sync light, pointing towards a potential frame issue.
- Removing the Bridge Tap: The bridge tap was removed, yet the problem persisted.
- Advising a Call to ISP: The customer was advised to request AGL to run a line test and send an NBN technician.
Final Thoughts from the Site
This job was a peculiar one with symptoms never seen before, possibly pointing towards an ISP programming issue. The cost of our call-out was suggested to be refunded by AGL, since the bridge tap removal did not solve the problem.
Update on Client’s Situation: A Lesson in ISP Responsiveness
Upon our recommendation, AGL conducted another network test, performed a port reset, and the service began functioning at 100% efficiency. Simple, yet significant.
The Underlying Problem
The lack of a thorough investigation into the customer issue by the ISP demonstrated a common industry problem. A proactive approach nine months ago would have resolved this promptly.
The Impact on Customers
For the students, the cost and delay in resolution had lasting consequences, despite the ISP’s commitment to a refund.
The Cost to the ISP
This inefficiency resulted in higher overall costs, from the service fee to handling customer calls and repeated tests.
This case serves as a valuable lesson for ISPs and the telecommunications industry. Going the extra mile in troubleshooting can lead to quicker resolutions, happier customers, and potentially lower costs. At SECURE A COM, we believe in that extra mile, and this case has only reinforced that commitment.
Head Internet Technician
Jason Kearney is the Head Technician at SECURE A COM, with qualifications spanning NBN, ADSL, phone, and data cabling. Starting as an electrician, Jason quickly delved into the telecommunications sector, leading crucial projects like the rehabilitation of the Telstra network. With credentials in both managerial and technical aspects, he now specialises in phone line and NBN fault location and repair, serving both homes and businesses with effective and personalised telecommunications solutions