The Residential Broadband Usersí Association

February 27th, 2002

Call Participants:

  • Chris Weisdorf, President and Technical Director, RBUA
  • Daniel T. Baril, Senior Member, RBUA
  • Dermot OíCarroll, Senior Vice President, Network Engineering and Operations, Rogers Cable
  • Taanta Gupta, Senior Vice President, Media Relations, Rogers Cable

Agenda Items:

"update on mail service issues"

  • web mail is now in testing; deployment within the next week (beginning of Mar.)
  • there are concerns about mailboxes running out of storage (10 megabytes)
  • Compaqís front-end architecture didnít separate internal and external e-mail addresses, due to a known bug in the truth tables
  • they are rearchitecting the front-end; truth tables are being reformed; testing performed on the 26th of Feb.; Mar. 11 is the estimated date of the truth table fix by Compaq
  • SMTP fixes implemented either in the first week of Mar. or on Mar. 18th, but not after that date

"update on news service issues"

  • binary retention is at 60 hours; 30 days on text
  • Mar. 1st update should increase retention to 3 days
  • bug in software on Compaq platform
  • no answer on throughput issues; a followup by Rogers will provide us with information
  • old speeds on @Home news service to be possible on Rogers news service

Agenda item 2, point 3: "regardless of its benign intentions, the X-Authentication-Info header represents a violation of subscriber privacy and should be axed"

  • X-Auth header canít be removed because itís part of the SMTP auth system
  • if you want to have an anonymous e-mail address, you can have that by assigning yourself a non-descriptive Rogers address

Item 3, point 5: "apparent broadcast storm problems have been affecting subscribers in January with LANCity cablemodems (i.e. characterized by a solid receive light on the modem and lost connectivity); what information can you offer concerning these problems?"

  • broadcast storms were actually a denial of service attack, unknown in nature
  • the LANCity filters were adjusted in early Feb. to compensate and block out the attack

Item 4, point 4: "there are DNS entries for pop.broadband.rogers.com and smtp.broadband.rogers.com; why is there no entry for nntp.broadband.rogers.com?"

  • the pop and smtp DNS aliases were created for roaming purposes (i.e. Netmail) only; news wasnít supported

Item 5, point 2: "after the countless past incidents involving a drastic increase in support line hold times and busy signals, why is this situation permitted to continue from time to time?"

  • Rogers contracted services to another call center (200-400 seats) to handle the transition; T-1 lines used to transfer calls failed to the other call center, which resulted in overload and busy signals
  • Rogers claims 2-15 minute hold times over the past few weeks

Item 5, point 3: "was the increase in busy signals and hold times due to the transition, or the massive influx of nearly 60 thousand subscribers in Q4 - or both?"

  • increased hold times mainly due to the transition, not subscriber additions

Item 7, point 1: "the new DNS naming convention for subscriber PC's, which lists subscribersí hardware addresses, poses a security hazard for subscribers and Rogers, alike; will the naming convention be changed and if so, when and to what?"

  • Rogers doesn't believe this is a problem; hardware address security issue will explored in another call

Item 7, point 2: "we are against incorporating the primary e-mail IDís of subscribers in any succeeding DNS naming convention; this would pose a serious threat to subscriber privacy and would make subscribers a wide open target to spammers"

  • primary e-mail IDs will not be incorporated under the naming convention

Item 7, point 3: "the new policy on acceptable packet latency is not fair to subscribers and does not take into account the different packet latencies yielded by the various types of deployed cablemodems"

  • there is no policy on acceptable latency; Rogers didnít know anything about this, but will followup on it shortly in light of the notice at http://rogers.home.com/help/content/trouble/faq/WebHelp/Service-Policy/ISTLALSP14.htm

Item 7, point 5: "LANCity cablemodems and their corresponding DNS and DHCP routers were still under @Home's control for weeks after the start of the transition; why?"

  • LANCity provisioning was completely under @Homeís control; transitioned POP router by POP router
  • until the individual POPs were transitioned, Rogers couldnít control DHCP or anything else for LANCity subscribers
  • Jan. 11 was the date of the final POP transition

Item 7, point 6: "there were convoluted instructions for LANCity subscribers on the transition website; why weren't simple DNS server names such as pop.broadband.rogers.com and smtp.broadband.rogers.com offered in these instructions, when they worked perfectly well?"

  • changes were not made due to future flexibility; Rogers doesn't intend to continue using the expanded aliases, such as pop.broadband.rogers.com, for their load balancers

Item 7, point 8: "cablemodem rental fees are apparently being charged to some new subscribers, which accounts for the general rate hike that was levied against all new subscribers; is this just a billing glitch, or a real rental fee?"

  • modem rental fee issue to be addressed on Mar. 1st during a call with Alek Krstajic

Important Odds and Ends

Prepared by Christopher Weisdorf

President and Technical Director,
Residential Broadband Usersí Association

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