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UPDATE2 Website and Internet Connectivity Woes Hit PlusNet UK Users

Thursday, September 10th, 2015 (10:22 am) - Score 2,610
plusnet_broadband_that_loves_you_back_comedy

It’s two weeks since PlusNet’s last suffered a strange outage (here) and this morning the same appears to have happened again, except this time around their broadband customers and a few linked ISPs (e.g. Origin Broadband, John Lewis) are also experiencing connectivity and web (DNS) problems.

At present it’s somewhat less “broadband that loves you back” and more “broadband that doesn’t work properly“, with two seemingly significant service flops in the space of two weeks causing yet more bad news for the low cost provider.

The latest problem seems to have started at around 8am this morning according to Down Detector, which resulted in some customers being unable to access certain websites and others being unable to get connected.

Apparently those who are unable to get connected have been advised to reboot (power cycle) their broadband routers, which seems to fix it, although the DNS (Domain Name System) linked website problems are still on-going. Mind you if you can’t get online then you probably don’t know about the advice to reboot. Catch-22.

Similarly a related status update from Origin Broadband, which also makes use of some PlusNet connectivity, said: “We’re aware of a DNS issue currently affecting some customers. We’re working on a resolution now, and updates will follow shortly.” Likewise it’s a similar story for John Lewis’s broadband service, which is again linked to PlusNet.

John Lewis – Website and connectivity issues
Created: 10/09/2015 @ 09:27

Our website and internal systems are currently experiencing issues.

In addition, some customers may have trouble connecting to the internet.

If you find you are affected by this please reboot your router in the first instance.

Our engineers are investigating alongside our suppliers, and once we have more information, we’ll provide a further update.

Apologies for the inconvenience caused.

Kind regards,

Matty Cassell

At this stage it’s not clear precisely what’s causing the problem, which appears to be more than a basic DNS bug (swapping the DNS servers to OpenDNS or Google Public DNS works but isn’t perfect).

PlusNet is attempting to keep customers updated via THIS POST on their community forum, although there’s not currently a lot to report. The issue appears sporadic and is not yet affecting all of the customer base.

UPDATE 11:05am

The following response has been given to us by PlusNet.

A PlusNet Spokesperson told ISPreview.co.uk:

Since early this morning we’ve experienced an outage which affected our phone and broadband service as well as our website. We’ve worked throughout the night to resolve this and have made a lot of progress with most of our customers now up and running. However we still have a few issues which we’re working to solve as soon as possible. We would like to sincerely apologise to our customers for the inconvenience caused.”

Interestingly we didn’t see many such complaints during the night, although that’s perhaps because most consumers only tend to notice these things when they connect in the morning.

UPDATE 3:20pm

A spokesperson for PlusNet gave us the following update: “All our services are now fully restored, including the Plusnet website. Thank you for your patience, we’re really sorry this has happened and would like to apologise for the disruption you’ve experienced.” But still no word on what caused the outage.

Leave a Comment
14 Responses
  1. Avatar DTMark

    Buy it now, it’s in the basement..

    “The issue appears sporadic and is *not yet* affecting all of the customer base.”

    Love the optimism 🙂

  2. Avatar Al Manac

    Plusnet’s entire website is down again. Is there another ISP that would be that inept? I wish I hadn’t signed up with them.

    • Avatar DTMark

      Wondering why the website is down, in two respects:

      1. What would it have to do with users’ connectivity? How could it be related?

      and

      2. Why isn’t the DNS for plus.net hosted externally, with – if not a completely replicated copy of the website, but at least, a holding page with updates – also hosted externally, so at least *something* can be reached in the meantime?

  3. Avatar RaptorX

    There’s a reason they’re cheap. You get what you pay for.

    • Avatar JamesM

      Haha – as a fellow Zen user I totally agree 🙂

      How IS your awesome service from Zen? – if it’s like min no outages no fuss just full speed 24/7 and great tech 🙂

    • Avatar Blokie

      Well, I’m happy with Plusnet, I haven’t experience any outage, the speed’s good, I get truly unlimited internet (well over 600gb in a month and no complaints or throttling, unlike Virgin and their pathetic upload speeds) why would I want to pay extra for customer service I never need?

  4. Avatar adslmax Real

    PN been down August 28th and September 10th. I do hope it the LAST of it! Not good!

    • Avatar DTMark

      But it’s cheap.

      It can go down for 87 hours (3.6 days) a year and still be working 99% of the time.

      Other providers are available.

  5. Avatar rrm

    I have been a Plusnet customer for over 2 years, I have had nothing but virtually trouble free phone and internet access. Every company has issues, in the 30 days I was with an alternative ISP, they couldn’t even sort out my phone line, my internet connection was down every morning and the router required a reboot! So whilst I am disappointed, it’s still better than some out there.

  6. Avatar adslmax Real

    PN are very quick to fix it! Other isp’s took longer!

  7. Avatar kds

    ISP dns are no go now, specially after they block sites etc, just use opendns or google one.

  8. Avatar Simon

    Mine was fine and didn’t go down. No problems at all, all day.

    Maybe I’m not in the “cheap” sector of Plusnet, seeing as I pay just under £45/month, just for the broadband (phone/calls not with PN), so it’s always strange to me to see them described as so – some packages clearly are, but not across the board cheap and tacky…

  9. Avatar dragon

    Something other than DNS definitely went splat, My LibreNMS/Smokeping box in Italy lost contact with my router however my UK smokeping node and Uptime robot was still able to See it online

    Annoyingly because it was a partial outage it didn’t trigger my router to failover to my other connection.

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