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Intermittent Internet Connectivity Woes Strike Virgin Media UK UPDATE8

Monday, April 27th, 2020 (8:35 pm) - Score 33,008
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Customers of TV and broadband ISP Virgin Media UK have this evening been affected by a seemingly intermittent problem with their national internet connectivity, which the operator initially claimed to have resolved only for the issue to return again and again. Other ISPs, Virgin Mobile and Ethernet services have also been impacted.

The problems appear to have started at just after 5pm and tend to result in a mix of issues, most commonly slow performance and a loss of internet connectivity approximately every 5-10 minutes (sometimes going offline for a similar length of time). Initially a spokesperson for Virgin Media said that they were “currently investigating an intermittent broadband issue that lasted for a very short period of time earlier this evening” but that “services are currently back up and running.

Despite that claim the fault soon returned and the operator’s teams are continuing to investigate the problem, with the spokesperson adding that they will “work flat out to fix it” and “apologise for any inconvenience caused.” The issue, which appears to be affecting people right across the country, has now been on-going for several hours and we await a further update.

Faults as uneven and widespread as this one tend to be quite rare in the industry, most often resulting from a bad configuration or key piece of faulty hardware. Nevertheless we’d usually expect such issues to be resolved first time – with only a short period of disruption – and not for them to return on three or more occasions.

Sadly such operators are rarely forthcoming with much detail during these events and so we usually only get the answers from other sources after the fact. As an extra bonus some of the operator’s Mobile customers (currently based off the EE MVNO platform, albeit soon to join Vodafone) appear to be suffering from similar issues with their call and data connectivity.

UPDATE 8:48pm

A spokesperson has just issued the following update, which doesn’t really tell us anything new: “Our teams are urgently looking into the issue and will work flat out to fix it the moment the problem is fully identified. We know how frustrating this is and we apologise.”

The operator has also established a dedicated web page for the fault (it’s not often we see them doing that). Some additional feedback has further suggested that this may also be affecting their business Ethernet clients.

UPDATE 9:06pm

A quick look at some feedback from customers of Sky Broadband, BT and TalkTalk suggests that they too also saw some disruption around the same three periods, albeit seemingly not to the same level as Virgin Media (i.e. the complaints have not been to the same scale or volume). The issue at BT was however much bigger than the other two, but that may just reflect the operator’s size as the biggest ISP.

We know that some of these operators do make use of capacity links from Virgin Media, although equally the issue could be further up the routing/peering chain. At present there are three clear peaks of related complaints at around 5:30pm, 6:15pm and 7:12-7:29pm.

UPDATE 9:20pm

Feedback coming in suggests that a fourth outage has just occurred, although we don’t yet know if this one is going to be as big as the others or if it will be much more location specific. Customers of BT, Sky Broadband and TalkTalk are also reporting some problems at exactly the same time, just like before.

UPDATE 9:37pm

Please note that due to high interest in this topic I’ve had to enable strict caching on the article, thus if you post a comment then don’t expect to see it appear immediately.

Back to the topic. We haven’t been able to reach all of our usual sources to confirm yet, but we know that the issue is definitely not a capacity or usage problem. The technical fault, as suggested earlier, appears to be occurring further back on the network (central/core).

Virgin’s website is also running very slowly and not at all for some people.

UPDATE 28th April 2020 – 6:35am

After the last 9:20am outage we detected a further two at around 11:04pm and then 12 midnight. The fault hasn’t been seen since then, at least not to the same scale, but past midnight most people will have gone to sleep and thus detecting a re-occurrence becomes much harder.

The fault itself is known to have been impacting Liberty Global’s operations in other EU countries, which shifts some of the blame further down the line. Sadly we haven’t received any further updates from Virgin Media and so will be watching closely this morning to see what happens as people wake up.

We note that Virgin’s location specific Service Status page is currently reporting an estimated fix time of 9:05am this morning, which may vary for other parts of the country but it seemed consistent across several postcodes.

UPDATE 28th April 2020 – 8:50am

In a status update posted at 8:20am the operator said: “The issue was fixed in the early hours of this morning and it was not caused by a spike in usage or a lack of network capacity. We know how frustrating this was for everyone and we’re really sorry for the disruption caused.”

After such a huge level of disruption we don’t think it’s acceptable to just sweep this under the carpet (a classic trend among major operators). We want to know what actually happened and will continue to dig until we find out.

Meanwhile there are still an above normal level of sporadic complaints, much like we saw yesterday before the main peaks of the issue (i.e. a much smaller number of people reporting the same issue). Virgin’s support teams are advising a router reboot, but then they initially did that yesterday too.

UPDATE 28th April 2020 – 11:42am

Data provided to us by ThousandEyes has helped to track and trace the outage, or at least most of the related disruption, back to Liberty Global’s related UPC Broadband network (AS6830). You can see this a bit better with the visualisation below.

NOTE: The numbers in the circles reflect events detected on each link.

ThousandEyes_virgin_media_outage_liberty_global

The AS6830 network operates a lot of key peering arrangements with Content Delivery Networks (CDN), as well as other major UK and international networks (e.g. Akamai, Level 3, Telia, Cogent and about a thousand more like them). The visualisation shows that connectivity was disrupted to a number of those significant destinations.

We now have a better understanding of where the issue occurred and why there were so many outages, although I’ll reserve writing about the detail of this until I can get some concrete confirmation on the problem itself.

UPDATE 28th April 2020 – 1:17pm

A spokesperson for Virgin Media has just told ISPreview.co.uk: “Our investigation is still ongoing but we believe the issue to have been caused by a technical fault within our core network which resulted in intermittent connectivity issues.” We of course now know, thanks to the previous update above and other sources, that this “technical issue” almost certainly relates to router (peering) configuration problems.

Leave a Comment
118 Responses
  1. Avatar Jonny says:

    Not just broadband – we are seeing the same outages on their MT MIA product (multitenant Ethernet).

  2. Avatar Ryan says:

    I’m suffering an outage right now that started a few minutes ago.

  3. Avatar Matt R says:

    Mark,

    Thought I’d point out that this is still ongoing. Just cutout again at 9:18 in North London, on what I believe is the Finchley headend.

    Can also confirm that the Virgin media gateway that I connect to is still operational during these outages. It appears that it’s related to their core routing infrastructure.

    Matt

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      Yes I’m aware, tracking it too.

    2. Avatar Sukthe Sballs says:

      Ok boomer

  4. Avatar steve says:

    down here in w Wales. Third outage since 5pm.

  5. Avatar Ed says:

    Having also issues ,north east lincs – cleethorpes..

    Have had these outages on my virgin broadband since 5. really weird .

    EE mobile data is holding up very well, no problems with mobila data so far.

    1. Avatar paul0363 says:

      Virgin Mobile data goes down too at the same time as their broadband outages so can’t even fall back on mobile data!

  6. Avatar Spurple says:

    Virginmedia.com is down too.

    Looks like the end of the world :))

  7. Avatar Joshyy says:

    Seems to be pretty consistently around 17 minutes past the hour across the country.

    Here is my ICMP Graphs. https://i.imgur.com/8Cd9Clc.png

    1. Avatar mark-m says:

      I see exactly the same in my own ping-logs. In fact I see similar “packet-loss storms” of around 3 mins or so, going back weeks and weeks, but more usually in the early hours.

      Occasionally they hit daytime too. They’ve only now become obvious due to the sustained network usage when WFH.

    2. Avatar mark-m says:

      It’s slightly early days, however I’ve not had a single packet dropped in a continuous ping test to a public DNS server in more than 24 hours. I’ve not seen that level of ‘connectivity reliability’ for weeks.

      I do wonder if there was a long term problem lurking somewhere in VM’s network that finally got fixed.

  8. Avatar Marc says:

    Very intermittent and slow connect in Watford, Herts. Running Netflix and Macs on EE unlimited data!
    Might have to start paying the Virgin Media bill intermittently.

    1. Avatar David P says:

      This hardly happens a lot, and in watford we get very good service. Been a customer 10 years and can count the outages on my fingers.

    2. Avatar L says:

      What’s the point in having internet when you have unlimited mobile data. Tf

    3. Avatar Mark Lewis says:

      Thinking the same thing. I’m already annoyed at Virgin for putting my bill up by £10 and closing their customer service down, so I can’t complain. Surely breach of contract? maybe time to stop the Direct Debit?

  9. Avatar Mr C says:

    We are down too in Chelmsford. Internet, TV all going down regularly, unstable…just what we need being n Lockdown!
    I hope this will be resolved quickly

  10. Avatar Scott says:

    On my third disconnect of the evening in Glasgow.

  11. Avatar VM Northampton says:

    Quick little upgrade to the core network to stop customers whinging that they don’t have enough capacity to cope with everyone at home due to covid 19 .

    Small pain for long term gain… silencing those speed complaints

    1. Avatar Alex says:

      Whilst I agree on the premise of a small upgrade to fix issues down the line with capacity, demand, etc. I can’t imagine VM scheduling this for 5pm. Surely that’s an overnight job when peak times are over?

  12. Avatar Scott says:

    I’ve gone down at :16 past each hour apart from 8:16. It seems to last for around 5 minutes before partial service is resumed where I can access some websites but not all. Takes another 10 before all issues are resolved.

    Hope they manage to get this fixed before tomorrow or WFH could be fun.

  13. Avatar Fiona says:

    Been having problems with the broadband dropping out since yesterday

  14. Avatar paul0363 says:

    Virgin Mobile data goes down too at the same time as broadband outages so can’t rely on mobile data either!

    1. Avatar spurple says:

      Wise to get your mobile from a different provider — and if possible/practical get a different network for your partner/SO just for strength in diversity 🙂

  15. Avatar Derek cranage says:

    Broadband been going on and off about every 10 mins since 15:00 and still like it at 21:35 in loughborough
    Tried to report it but phone S not being answered and the site the phone message gives for reporting faults also does not work

  16. Avatar jacqui says:

    just happened again here in westmidlands about 10 minutes ago, this is not fun :/

  17. Avatar paul0363 says:

    Virgin Mobile data goes down too at the same time as the broadband outages so can’t rely on mobile data either!

  18. Avatar Derek cranage says:

    Virgin Broadband been going on and off about every 10 mins since 15:00 and still like it at 21:35 in loughborough
    Tried to report it but phone S not being answered and the site the phone message gives for reporting faults also does not work

  19. Avatar Steve H says:

    Same here in Edinburgh. Been on and off at various times this evening, the latest being 10 mins ago.

  20. Avatar Andy says:

    Problems with mine aswell in Glasgow, also my friends 1x in Glasgow also and 1x in Inverclyde, BB went off twice so far for 5 minute periods and around 5 min ago my V6 box LED started flashing on and off and also dimming which I’ve never seen in a regular boot up run or anything.

  21. Avatar Marcel Thompson says:

    I believe this has been going on In some capacity since this morning, my brother phoned me up to say his internet l was being intermittent.

  22. Avatar Josh Welby says:

    It happened to me in North West London, I was thrown off the Internet
    I had to reboot my Virgin Router to get back on to the Internet

    I did not know it was this serious

  23. Avatar Saji says:

    Branson….karma biting u in the bum. Boycott virgin ….boycott branson ….protect the NHS.

    1. Avatar Matt says:

      Not a Branson company1

    2. Avatar Louis says:

      Richard Branson doesn’t own vrigin media it is a company called liberty global.

    3. Avatar Fred Flintstone says:

      What’s it got to do with Branson?

      Nothing…

    4. Avatar Common Sense says:

      You do realise that Branson does not own or run Virgin Media, Liberty Global are the parent company and use the Virgin name on license. Boycotting Virgin products only hurts those work for said company.

    5. Avatar Paul says:

      Branson doesnt own virgin media anymore,
      Virgin media is owned by liberty global.
      Wish people would gather facts before posting pointless posts.

  24. Avatar Roger_Gooner says:

    I’ve had three broadband failures this afternoon. To make matters worse any attempt to get some information from the service status page results in failure with a “Oops something’s broken” message.

    And oddly I also struggled at times to get internet access from my Virgin Mobile phone with the signal strength indicator of H or H+ at best showing instead of the usual 4G. Was this a sign that the EE mobile network couldn’t cope?

    1. Avatar Roger_Gooner says:

      I had a fourth outage just after midnight. In all my years of cable broadband since 2001 with Cable London, Telewest and Virgin Media I’ve never known such a widespread problem.

  25. Avatar Roger says:

    Even Virgin Mobile has been playing up all day

  26. Avatar M says:

    As usual, all the other ISPs seem to have redundancy in place to avoid VM’s network. What redundancy has VM got? Has VM ever had redundancy? From a almost two decade old customer. I can categorically state: no. Does every other ISP have IPv6 yet? Pretty much. Does VM? no. Yes, VM have a shed load of bandwidth to haul but so do BT and they’re managing fine. It’s time to redirect money from the Ivory towers and redirect it to the NOC minions for salaries and assets to give us a proper network. Going to enjoy contract negotiations in a couple of months.

  27. Avatar Peter Green says:

    I’ve been suffering this since Sunday. Spent half the day reflashing routers thinking an update on my own kit was at fault

  28. Avatar mike says:

    My monitoring graphs show small amounts of packet loss starting at around 14:00, with 3-5 minute outages at 17:20, 18:20, 19:20, and 21:20

  29. Avatar Ed Mellodew says:

    We are on their 1Gig service. Been intermittent since Friday. Dropped twice on Friday and once on Saturday and quite a few times tonight. Since January we have been intermittently but frequently dogged with this very issue, outages, performance problems and only being able to access a subset of websites. Tonight is obviously more widespread though. Hopefully they can fix it for good and for everyone.

  30. Avatar Bilal Habib says:

    Our Business line close to where i live went down twice. Residential line went down 4 times. Here is a bqm of my residential line https://imgur.com/gallery/M2VE6A8

  31. Avatar Steven M says:

    Still having issues, seem to have limited connectivity to connect to sites but streaming etc if out of the question, sites like TwitchTV won’t even load the streams.

  32. Avatar Nigel jones says:

    Seen it at least three times in Southampton as per original report.

    Could get to 8.8.8.8 obv near… but nothing useful. Symptoms as described above

    Netflix continued working on the last fault. Caching or perhaps dedicated routing/cdn

  33. Avatar Khile says:

    Still on going in Bradford West Yorkshire suffering drop out roughly every hour and they last between 1 to 15mins at a time currently been down for around 20 mins

  34. Avatar Bilal Habib says:

    Another short outage just occurred, definitely most be core routing

  35. Avatar Tony Sachin says:

    Gone again. Seems to be at .18 minutes past every hour.

  36. Avatar Bilal Habib says:

    Actually sorry our business line goes down the exact same time as the residential line and has gone down 5 times

  37. Avatar Kyle says:

    Another repeat, around fifteen minutes ago. It seems that this is still an issue.

    1. Avatar Kyle says:

      Another drop. Not so long, but still there.

      All the years I wanted this service. Be careful for what you wish!

  38. Avatar Mark Capell-Helm says:

    23.35 and still ongoing in Essex (Saffron Walden area) dropped for 5 mins then came back been most of afternoon speed dropping to 10mb at one point before a drop out

  39. Avatar Declan M says:

    Apparently Vodafone as well Marc ours has been fine this evening.

  40. Avatar Ivor Smallun says:

    has a certain virus mutated from human to……machine?

  41. Avatar Tony Wares says:

    Outage number 12 here in Brighton on shore ham headend, loss of landline (virgin voip) and mobile calls, texts and data down too for well over 4 hours.

    Can’t get online apart from giffgaff PAYG MiFi.

    Website down too now.

    2 weeks ago had same issue, credited with £12, bit friggin bad! I can’t work from home without BB.

  42. Avatar Kevin Dawson says:

    Down again in Northamptonshire for the fourth time, just come back up.

  43. Avatar Simon says:

    Does anyone understand why the mobile internet goes down at the same time as cable? I don’t understand the technical basis for that given their mobile service is MVNO on EE.

    1. Avatar Blueacid says:

      My guess is that Virgin Media have struck a deal with EE whereby EE hand customer internet traffic over to Virgin Media, then VM deal with their customer’s traffic separately.
      If VM are therefore suffering a core network outage, that’ll knock out their mobile customers internet as well, but EE mobile users wouldn’t be affected — in fact, they might notice a speed increase due to the sudden absence of any VM customer traffic!

    2. Avatar CarlT says:

      https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mobile_virtual_network_operator

      Check the different types. Virgin Mobile are an Enhanced Service Provider / Thick MVNO. They don’t simply resell EE.

  44. Avatar Raj says:

    I don’t know why the news keep saying it started at 5pm. It’s been like that for ages. I put it down to high utilisation. Today was worst. Was unable to work from home due to constant drop outs breaking my Citrix session to work. Switched to 4G and even Vodafone had issues with connectivity. It’s everything

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      Sometimes a more location specific problem gets confused with a wider, but separate, fault and of course there’s no easy way for consumers to tell the difference. Other times a major fault can start small but then rapidly escalate as any changes in the environment propagate through a network.

      In short, the times you see reflected in the news article reflect only the extreme peaks or spike of significant consumer gripes that rise well above the rest.

  45. Avatar Archie says:

    Aye, has one start at 23:17 and again at 23:35.

  46. Avatar Onephat says:

    Seems fine this morning in Leicestershire

  47. Avatar Forester says:

    I’d just like to say fantastic work on this Mark! Thank you for the all updates and hard work you put into this site.

  48. Avatar Tony H says:

    Manchester UK. Two outages this morning. 7:00 am and 8:15 am so far. Each time a full re-boot (power down, disconnection of coax for 5 minutes before re-connecting and power back on) was required to get any connection. Noticed Wi-Fi goes first. I have the latest router. No error lights on the box so look ok, but no connection. I Will report back if any further loss.

    1. Avatar Tony H says:

      09:45 am Manchester UK offline again for 15 minutes, fixed I think not!

    2. Avatar KH says:

      How long did you leave it before doing this rather comprehensive “turn it off and on again”? I have just left it all switched on for the 5-10 minutes it is down, and then all is fine – no reboot has been needed. If you’re rebooting as soon as you notice a problem then most likely the reboot is finishing at about the same time as you would have been back online anyway.

    3. Avatar Tony H says:

      Just been contacted via Twitter and told to reboot router! Informed them of how many times I had done so and how much more than power off I had done. Oh was the reply, “drop us a text and we’ll talk you through it” I now give up and will just go and sit in a dark room for the rest of the day.

  49. Avatar Phil says:

    From what I have been reading, this was a major outage that affected Liberty Media companies across Europe

  50. Avatar Martin R says:

    Their website now claims fixed 8.20 this morning. Garbage, still getting ‘No internet’ randomly when browsing the web, and just been kicked out of an online game again. Whoever posted higher up about 17 mins past the hour was close, 9.15, I’m kicked out.

    1. Avatar Nikolay M says:

      Same here… the connection has been very sluggish in the morning, and my wife struggled to connect to her work. Though it definitely feels somewhat better than yesterday

  51. Avatar spurple says:

    I’m gonna go on and name a new law of the internet.

    Every major outage that is quietly resolved and swept under the rug several hours later was caused by an expired TLS/SSL certificate on a crucial piece of infrastructure.

    spurple — 2020.

    1. Avatar Tony H says:

      Agreed!

    2. Avatar CarlT says:

      Sadly that rule falls down on this one 🙂

    3. Avatar Chris says:

      Ah ha! we found the VM mole

      SSL certs expiring is a real pain, plus the new thing with browsers only trusting certs of less than 13 months really sucks when dealing with internal systems.

      many many time bombs waiting to happen.

      work on a project, throw in a load of 1 year certs, project ends, contractors leave, 4 months later the service stops as no one bothered to utilise some kind of system to remind anyone to update the certs, despite me stating its needed.

      rinse and repeat.

  52. Avatar Andrew says:

    Very slow and intermittent broadband connectivity in Harrow HA1 3BG still. 28 April 2020 (10:33 am)

  53. Avatar James says:

    Had intermittent outages on UPC Switzerland last night (UPC I understand are the parent VM). The service status also reported outages nationwide, but no further details. I could ping 8.8.8.8 but DNS from UPC’s servers was not working. All good this morning and possibly related.

    1. Avatar SU says:

      UPC Schwiizerland is actually VM’s sister, both have the same parent company, Liberty Global. Yes, same problems https://twitter.com/moetiker/status/1255012063950393344

  54. Avatar Vermin Media says:

    Vermin Media said:

    “We’ve fixed the problem now plebs. We would like to confirm that none of you plebians will get any credit to your account as we were below the 2 days outage. We don’t need to tell you the cause as you will be too thick to understand but we remind customers that [insert any old poll] says we are top for customer service and reliability through our superior network.”

    The representative gasping for air, went on to puff:

    “These are unprecedented times, and the plebs will just have to accept that our superior network will have issues and be assured that we will fix as soon as we can despite lower staffing levels so there is no need to to phone us as nobody will answer anyway, but rest assured customer satisfaction is our priority. We thank you for attempting to find the root cause but its fixed now and that’s all you need to know.”

    Kindest of regards,
    Vermin Media

    /end of sarcasm 🙂

  55. Avatar Nigel Jones says:

    After suffering many times yesterday 1800-2359 I’ve not noticed any issues this morning, consistent with VM’s statement. Back to full speed/low latency connectivity (Southampton, UK)

    I do wish, as ispreview sai, that they gave us more info about what happened. An apology and an explanation helps build confidence – we all know mistakes can happen.

  56. Avatar Groucho says:

    5 pm was when Dr Rashid Buttar started his talk on the new London Real platform. He was going to mention 5G and C****a, so OFFTOSS probably threw a hissy fit. After all, they are in charge of what us grownups are allowed to watch……

    1. Avatar New_Londoner says:

      Is that the same Dr Rashid Buttar that is an American osteopathic physician? The one that has been reprimanded by the North Carolina Board of Medical Examiners for unethical treatment of patients? The one that falsely accused Dr. Anthony Fauci and Bill Gates as “being responsible for development of the CV-19 virus and for causing the pandemic”?

      If so the outage probably did us all a favour. After all, why would us grownups want to watch someone peddle fake conspiracy theories?

    2. Avatar Groucho says:

      Well, New Londoner, the whole interview is there on the London Real platform, so anyone can watch and form their own opinion. After all, a ‘conspiracy theory’ is just an alternative view of information put out.

    3. Avatar Lister says:

      “just an alternative view of information put out.”

      A categorically false, misleading, unscientific view that has helped to fuel a new and moronically mindless culture of criminal damage against even unrelated telecoms infrastructure and assaults against engineers for which there is no excuse.

    4. Avatar Groucho says:

      ‘A categorically false, misleading, unscientific view that has helped to fuel a new and moronically mindless culture of criminal damage against even unrelated telecoms infrastructure’
      How can we even begin to find out who the perpetrators were when OFFTOSS throw their weight about and stop ANY discussion of this particular subject? This is why Brian Rose has started his free platform so that things can be discussed without the fear of heavy-handed bureaucrats deciding what THEY want the public to know about. We are capable of making our own minds up. I saw someone buy a copy of The Sun the other day, but it wasn’t up to me to tell him what to read. (Poor man).

    5. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      “How can we even begin to find out who the perpetrators were when OFFTOSS throw their weight about and stop ANY discussion of this particular subject?”

      In fairness I can’t see how that’s relevant to finding out who the perpetrators were. Locals with information need to contact the police and the police then do their job. A bunch of people whittling on about conspiracy theories online, which will only fan the flames of violence, seems likely to do exactly the opposite of helping.

      But in any case, none of this is relevant to the above topic, so let’s all move on.

  57. Avatar Aloy says:

    “it was not caused by a spike in usage or a lack of network capacity”

    This is PR speak for “human error”, is it not?

    It implies they knew what the fault was, fixed it and failed.

    Also, the little yellow button that says “throttle everything” (usually active 5-10pm) wasn’t lit up.

    Unless there is actual gibbon wondering through the LG datacenter hitting all the “throttle everything” alarms. Now THAT would be an awesome failure root cause.

    1. Avatar Ferrocene Cloud says:

      Some sort of human error, or some partial failure. I’d be more inclined to think the latter at this stage, especially as the issue seemed to start around 5PM when most operators would not make changes that had such potential impact at that time.

      Looking as my connection graph from last night, I can see 8 separate outages of around 10 minutes each over 12 hours. That would be more common of a link/node/line card flapping or crashing in my experience.

      In some ways stuff that’s going up and down is far worse than something that’s failed outright, because it makes it much harder to locate it, and to determine if it’s a one off outage or something which needs corrective action. You can even have cases where failed hardware reports there’s nothing wrong, and you then spend a lot of time chasing down exactly where the problem is. Until you know exactly what’s gone wrong, you can’t fix it – fixing it is usually the easy part!

    2. Avatar CarlT says:

      Well, no. It implies they know what the issue wasn’t. If they said the issue wasn’t related to the outbreak of World War Three or SARS-COV-2 mutating into digital virus it wouldn’t tell you much about what the fault was.

      Capacity issues don’t manifest as that fault did, and given the media fixation with whether the Internet can handle the demands placed on it during lockdown it was a valid statement to make.

  58. Avatar Mike says:

    I spoke to a reporter at The Register this morning and they are interested as well as this being in daily newspapers. we should expect a fuller statement from VM which The Register would chase. Normally those things take some time to prepare and go before the legal teams, should they choose to do it.

    Local losses in connection are one thing, but national scale outages present risk and can be scary, if you consider the current world status and possible attacks on our core internet trunks and providers. Not saying it was an attack, just it would put my mind at ease to know that we had the correct amount of resiliency, redundancy and security in our nations services.

  59. Avatar Saajan says:

    Ah this explains what was happening! I thought it was a config issue because my router kept switching over to the backup sky ADSL connection, whilst the virgin modem was still locked on a signal.

  60. Avatar Bill says:

    Was not just contained to broadband lines, my 1G Fibre MIA leased line was affected as well, South Wales

  61. Avatar far-from-virgins-biggest-fan-but-dislikes-lazy-journalisim says:

    “The AS6830 network operates a lot of key peering arrangements with Content Delivery Networks (CDN), as well as other major UK and international networks”

    Im unsure of the relevance of this when Virgin Media almost certainly has caches from all the major CDN’s embedded within its as5089 network, with the parent as6830 providing connectivity to external destinations via its peering and transit relationships.

    Is there any other evidence to support the assertion that this issue “almost certainly relates to a router (peering) configuration problem(s)” ?

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      Thank-you-for-the-lovely-and-quite-subtle-title-of-lazy-if-not-particularly-creative-insults.

      But to answer your question, yes there is, from several credible sources, but they’re not people I can quote directly. I have to balance what I can say with protecting where the information comes from. Everything points to peering router configuration problems. If you know something different, which I doubt, then please do constructively share or help rather than criticise.

    2. Avatar gotta-fill-the-time-somehow-speaking-of-which-i-wonder-how-many-characters-this-field-allows says:

      While not meant to offend, I am unsure how better to describe journalism which presents unsubstantiated conclusions without even quoting the “other sources” that you subsequently clarify to be “credible”.. unless it was intentional “fake news”? 😉

      The only evidence offered to back up the claim that the “technical issue almost certainly relates to router (peering) configuration problems” is “thanks to the previous update” consisting of a single diagram based on “Data provided to us by ThousandEyes”… which appears to show some test hosts within Virgin Media/Liberty Global’s networks failing to be able to reach some external destinations outside of their network.

      So although understandable why it may be tempting to conclude that the issue must therefor be at the border of VM/LG’s networks, aka their Peering Routers, all this appears to show is that there are issues somewhere between the test hosts and the external destinations..

      Is there, for example, any data to show that there was no issues with traffic between the test hosts which would actually lend credibility to your assertions that the cause of the issues is “almost certainly” the peering edge rather than the “core network” as you quote Virgin Media as having advised you? 😉

    3. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      Either you’re trolling (most likely) or just new to this site. Regular readers will be familiar with our long established trend of leaking major Virgin Media announcements (same for other ISPs), and often long before they’re made public. None of that would be possible without established sources and contacts within the industry, which have been built-up over 20 years. If you don’t like it, then don’t visit.

    4. Avatar Brian Storey says:

      While I won’t be adding to the overall purpose of the comments section for the article, I do feel it appropriate to call out that Mark is quite simply the absolute opposite of lazy and for me and many others, is a great source of information & trust.

  62. Avatar Chris viper tap Sayers says:

    Spanning Tree? I am happy to be shot down, as a respected journalist @Mark Jackson has to be careful to protect his sources, I’ve always thought his articles have been balanced and well written.

    1. Avatar CarlT says:

      Is spanning tree a suggestion as a possible cause?

      If so, no. Definitely not.

  63. Avatar Jon D says:

    Fyi My Internet (virgin) went down around 1pm this afternoon (Telford) and has not come back on as at 6pm. All I can find out is news saying “s’ok, we fixed it!” grr

  64. Avatar Richard Jones says:

    Still intermittent in the Lee-on-The-Solent area.

    Online tests are pants!

    Virgin Mobile Data Sim is also affected.

  65. Avatar Oggy says:

    Virgin Media, ironically up and down like a bride’s knickers.

  66. Avatar Jim the Disappointed VM customer £73 per month. :-( says:

    In the outer limits of wild west London VM have been intermittent for weeks and some would say years. The start of this latest appalling service period was just before lockdown when VM service diappeared for three days, they of course said three hours. If my expensive TV package and boredband not working for three days I know how long! Outages almost every day since, many hours yesterday evening 27th Apr 2020 and hours this evening 28th April 2020. Fortunately three did a fantastic deal recently unlimited data for 15 pounds per month for next two years. I am saving up my pocket money for the 5G mobile (actually waiting for Nokia) and improving coverage then cut myself three from all the physical connection %$&*. I have no loyalty to any provider they just need to provide a reliable service and I might stick with them. Anyone know how to get Discovery HD without TV package? Goldrush!

  67. Avatar originalmaja says:

    Any news on the AS6830 thing? Here in Germany, it feels as if it is still all ongoing. (Vodafone)

  68. Avatar Robert Keech says:

    So I’ve been having issues with VM Broadband for about 3 weeks and was unaware that this was an internal core issue until today after reading this article and the comments. It started with the connection getting increasingly bad one evening until my Hub just disconnecting completely and not connecting for the rest of that day. I called tech support and they sent me a replacement Hub. I didn’t bother to change the Hub when it arrived as it seemed to be working on and off again and didn’t expect a replacement to make any difference. One day probably a week ago it was very bad so I decided to try the new Hub but as expected the problems have been the same with connection drops constantly in intervals throughout the day and again one evening the Hub completely disconnected. I’ve tried not to bother them unnecessarily by troubleshooting with all their ‘tips’ such as restarting the router and running the online internet test but the problem has stayed the same. Running an infinite ping test shows frequent drops and times out. I called them again today and the guy on the phone was pretty rude and insisted that I “let him finish” while he tried to walk me through all the obvious things I’ve tried a million times. He did finally agree to send an engineer out but rudely stated that if no fault was found I would be charged…. I’ve since come across this article and now understand that this is most likely an internal issue with VM but why don’t they just tell this to customers on the phone? I would completely understand and be more than patient. I’m now worried that this engineer will be wasting his time and they will charge me for the call out…

  69. Avatar Gwen Cameron says:

    Been withVM since beginning and very happy but recently intermitent outage affects numerous gadgets My MacBook hubby’s windows, sonos wifi sound system, Hive heating and apple phones. Keep being told all is well but if this keeps up I will be forced to look elsewhere. Since they changed the service is poor and unhelpful. Hard to get hold of, definately NOT the company it once was

  70. Avatar Andy S says:

    It’s been happening for at least the last 2 weeks where a webpage just freezes and refuses to update and when loading a new web page it quite often times out only to load it next time of asking. It’s not like web pages take long to load when it decides to load them but there is a lot of latency.

    There is definitely something continuing to be wrong with the Virgin Media web infrastructure.

    Get it fixed or users will be leaving in droves.

  71. Avatar Neil Thompson says:

    Still happening to me (Surrey-Hampshire area, Windows 10 PC).

    Zoom says “your internet connection is unstable” every few minutes.
    “Three” wifi calls on iPhone typically go permanently silent (without actually disconnecting) after a few minutes (this does not happen when using 3G/4G).
    Much Microsoft software (Office365, Edge browser) claims I am offline / not connected to the internet then the page typically refreshes itself after a couple of seconds (without user action needed). I originally thought this would be a Windows 10 issue: maybe both are at fault?

  72. Avatar Steve Forster says:

    I’m with TalkTalk and have been having an issue for about a week now which sounds exactly like the issue being described near the top of these comments, i.e. I lose Internet connectivity for a few minutes at around 15-20 minutes past every hour. I’m in Cambridgeshire in case that’s relevant.

  73. Avatar Christian says:

    Happening to me this week with Virgin media. Called Monday, got sent a new router which arrived Wednesday. Still, internet kept cutting off. They advised they’ll send someone next day, next thing they send a text message to cancel that as they’ve now “fixed the problem”. Friday, lost internet connection again and now on hold for half an hour.

  74. Avatar Al says:

    Ditto. Major buffering issues watching Virgin TV in Cambridge plus dshort drop outs

  75. Avatar Simon Ferguson says:

    Mine’s been dreadful for a few weeks now, any signs of improvement?

  76. Avatar Michael Davis says:

    I was told yesterday that my line was being upgraded and would be fine after 2:10pm.
    I’m still getting slow speeds and disconnecting.
    I’ve been getting this for almost a year. This ‘upgrade’ has actually made it worse.

  77. Avatar Robin says:

    I have started having an issue with dropping out for two weeks now. I have been given a replacement Hub 3 and that has lessened the dropping out but it is still happening. VM must be aware of this, so why can’t they put their hands up and tell us. If VM is upgrading services for the benefit of us, despite the short term issues, then so be it. But please tell us as many are spending time and money investigating/replacing downstream equipment (e.g own router/hubs). I work from home as many currently do, and so can’t afford the time or money to keep investigating. If there is nothing we can do to fix the issue, then at least be adult enough to tell us so we can at least know, this will all end soon!

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