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Nearly 2 Weeks of Latency Woes for Virgin Media UK Users in Surrey UPDATE

Monday, June 18th, 2018 (7:59 am) - Score 15,584

Customers of Virgin Media’s cable broadband ISP in Surrey, as well as potentially a few other parts of South East England, have for nearly two weeks been suffering from high latency times to servers in the EU (as well as a few in the UK). This has been particularly disruptive to online multiplayer games.

The problem (likely to be a network routing issue) appears to have started on around 7th June 2018 and results in high latency (ping) times that tend to fluctuate from between around 100ms to 1000ms+ (milliseconds), albeit mostly when connecting to European based servers (websites, video games etc.) and particularly during peak periods.

Sadly Virgin Media’s front line support staff initially spent over a week denying there was a problem and refusing to update their service status page. We had planned to write about this at the end of last week but then some helpful forum support agents finally stepped in on Friday, made a few tweaks to Virgin’s network and for a brief period the problem appeared to be resolved.

As you can probably guess, that fix didn’t last too long and on Saturday the complaints began again.

VM Customer Uli said:

“My friend on VM up in Liverpool doesn’t seem to be impacted with the high ping issue and like you said it’s just going to European servers. It’s 100% due to routing with one of the hops/nodes being screwed up.

Connecting to a server in Chicago gives me 110ms ping, connecting to one in Europe during peak time gives >1,000ms, right now pinging Google is yielding 500ms.”

VM Customer Snookieboy said:

“How much longer is this service status fraud going to go on for? Virgin, Admit you have a fault publicly on the Service Status because the fact other customers are all directing your customers here to this thread publicly on twitter and facebook after your support teams failed to assist them makes you look terrible.

I think we can all be thankful the fact that Fortnite hosts its EU Servers in the Mainland, because if it wasn’t the fact everyone seems to be playing it and noticing 1000+ ms pings, I doubt this issue would have as many people noticing it and reporting it.”

VM Customer Utte said:

“Day 11 and basically all gaming and streaming is still just not possible. There was a brief period for me on Friday were it looked a little better but other than that the connection has not been fit for purpose.”

A lengthy post on Virgin’s Community Forum details the issue and there are a few other topics that may be related. Similarly a quick search of Twitter for the term “virginmedia ping” appears to turn up a fair number of unhappy customers, all reporting the same issue and most are based in or around the Surrey area.

In the meantime some subscribers have been able to get around the issue by shifting traffic off Virgin Media’s network and pushing it over a Virtual Private Network (VPN) or optimized gaming network service, like Outfox, although naturally they’d all prefer not to have to pay extra just to avoid bad routing on the ISP’s network.

We have already reached out to the provider for a comment and are awaiting their response. In fairness, all broadband providers will from time to time suffer such issues, although they’re usually spotted and resolved quite quickly. NOTE: This has nothing to do with the known latency bug on Virgin’s Hub 3.0 router.

UPDATE 19th June 2018 (8:45am):

At present Virgin Media has not been able to provide us with a comment because they said the issue is still be investigated in order to fully identify the cause. We’ve been promised an update once more is known.

Leave a Comment
18 Responses
  1. Avatar Oli says:

    Yup, its been really annoying. And it’s not just gaming, its anything that uses services like Amazon AWS that is affected. So plenty of other apps are crazy slow or not working.

  2. Avatar Anonymous says:

    Myself and others have been experiencing the same issues in the Greater Manchester area and it’s been going on for several weeks now.

  3. Avatar John says:

    Bunch of clowns. Problems happen but if your incapable of recognising them or believing they exist or fail to act on them what is the point of you. BT aren’t perfect but this sort of thing just doesn’t happen or if it does it’s dealt with before it’s an issue. VM you bunch of clowns.

    1. Avatar graycoll says:

      Agreed John, I had an issue with my SFBB, making gaming impossible. On contacting BT they said they would get back to me, and they did. They said they would keep me updated and they did. Problem was solved within 36 hours of first reporting.

  4. Avatar Optimist says:

    VM’s reliability has really gone down the pan recently. Last week I had no service at all from 18:00 on Thursday to 14:15 on Monday – nearly 4 days! No explanation given! When I phoned to find out the progress, I was told that the fault hd been found that an engineer was on their way [sic] and that it would be fixed by 4pm (date unspecified).

  5. Avatar John says:

    I’m also experiencing this problem in Bolton, the service will be fine and then all of a sudden, the latency goes bananas and everything crashes. It’s been happening with games and even just surfing the web. Making the service next to unsuable at times. I’m thinking it might be time to switch to BT, it’s not as fast of a service, but they never have these problems and are always stable with the connection.

  6. Avatar Phil Pritchard says:

    I was with VM.for years always paying thru the nose.I only had Broadband no TV. No phone…£49..+ pm.Loads of freezing up..and buffering!!
    Iv’email since signed up to 6G Broadband only (they do TV +Phone also). My monthly bill is now £23 pm With no freezing no buffering (3 TVs. + gamer) 6G is based in Bolton,Lancashire.

  7. Avatar Mike says:

    Been like this for over a decade and still broken in many areas, if everyone else can get it right, what is VM doing wrong?

  8. Avatar Dennis Blades says:

    I am with Virgin Mobil try that if you think Virgin Media is bad it is has the worst customer service I have ever experienced.

  9. Avatar Maddy Swinglehurst says:

    Thank you for this article. I moved to VM a week ago from BT. I’m now returning to BT as VM denied the problem, blamed our equipment, said that ping wasn’t their responsibility, tried to sell me other services that would apparently solve the problem which annoyed me. Then when I moved back tried to charge me an extra week for my internet which I said no because your service has not been fit for purpose. Terrible customer service! This past week I’ve learnt to do a trace route, discovered ping, latency & jitter which I knew nothing about previously. Told VM that all the kids in our street on VM were all having the same problems in area 20 but they refused to listen. It’s time they listened to their consumers before they all move.

  10. Avatar Paul. says:

    “At present Virgin Media has not been able to provide us with a comment because they said the issue is still be investigated in order to fully identify the cause.”

    Which says to me that VM only started to think about looking at the problem when ISPreview brought it to the attention of the wider public. They’d still be putting their fingers in their ears and going “La la la” had it not been for the bad publicity.

    1. Avatar Neil says:

      I think unfortunately you are right. Get a bit of publicity on the problem and VM are on it, like rat up a drain pipe.

  11. Avatar James says:

    I tried joining gaming servers hosted by Hydracom in London which I usually get 10-20ms but this week I get 500ms every time I join. Already gotta deal with the Puma 6 issue and now this shit.

  12. Avatar Bob says:

    The hub 3 , with its puma chip set is to blame . get a Hub 2ac , and your back on song with no latency issues

  13. Avatar Dan says:

    I’m having the same issue, Camberley Surrey. Terrible lag, won’t even stream YouTube, I only left sky as virgin had better download speeds, what a mistake. I paid for an independent IT company to come round and run tests and they confirmed it was a broadband issue from the supplier.
    All the virgin tech guys are unaware of an issue and refuse to let me out of my contract. I would strongly advise anyone thinking of joining virgin media to reconsider.

  14. Avatar Foogie says:

    By the way guys, I was suffering from this initially, and thought it was completely caused by the routing issue, then I stumbled upon this: https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Gaming-Support/FIX-FOR-PS4-LAG-SPIKES-WORKING-FOR-MANY/td-p/3798867 .

    It works even on my PC. I am now having 27-40ms consistent latency on most games. Give it a try and if it doesn’t work, yeah, it should be a VM-specific issue.

  15. Avatar Anto loco says:

    I am having this issue on PC games . ‘Lucky’ because I am one of only two on branch so I get v fast connection…. but intermittent, sometimes terrible lag spikes. What annoys me is that I have spent hours updating drivers, defragging drives, reinstalling software, I even went back to a restore point to try and solve it. Virgin say they are monitoring my connection but helpdesk kept talking scripted replies about wireless connections even though I told them 10 times I am not using the wireless network.

  16. Avatar Richmond says:

    I am here in London Richmond and am having high latency with VM my ping goes form 200 to 300 hopefully it gets fixed because my latncy was great about a month ago and it started happening unexpectedly. Hopefully VM can actually bother to fix this problem or i might as well change my provider.

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