Many ADSL subscribers are complaining about poor ADSL speeds and high latency during certain periods. Telkom exchange congestion is often blamed for these problems.
Around 25% of Telkom’s DSLAMs are congested – a problem which Telkom is trying to address.
There can also be other problems which can affect an ADSL service. This includes poor copper quality, the distance from the exchange, and congestion on an ISP’s network.
This means that proper troubleshooting is needed to find the cause of an erratic ADSL connection.
Troubleshooting ADSL exchange congestion can get technical, but the following symptoms may point to this problem:
“You can learn nothing from a trace if the person is doing something else while doing the trace, like e-mail, Skype, or downloading.”
“Anything else you are doing on the line may influence the traceroute results, so it should be done with everything unplugged – except the test machine – or if the router has a trace facility, from the router directly.”
Once an exchange congestion problem is expected, test the line using a SAIX account to prove or disprove the suspicion.
If the same problem exists using a SAIX (Telkom) account, the problem is most likely related to congestion on Telkom’s network.
The following is a basic guide to do a traceroute to Telkom.co.za. If you want to do a traceroute to another website, just replace ‘telkom.co.za’ with the other domain (like ‘google.com’)