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Zen latency

BigAlbert

Regular Member
I'm after some idea of latency with Zen mainly for gaming purposes could someone using Zen post the results from the below commands ?

tracert 185.60.112.157
tracert 149.28.112.244
tracert 155.133.247.155
 

1rY

Casual Member
I live in the Midlands on VDSL2 connected to Zen's network through Openreach GEA not WBC.

# traceroute -I 185.60.112.157
traceroute to 185.60.112.157 (185.60.112.157), 30 hops max, 60 byte packets
1 router.lan (192.168.1.1) 0.527 ms 0.550 ms 0.674 ms
2 losubs.subs.bng1.th-lon.zen.net.uk (62.3.80.17) 9.999 ms 10.034 ms 10.180 ms
3 ae1-177.cr2.th-lon.zen.net.uk (62.3.80.38) 10.182 ms 10.185 ms 10.216 ms
4 lonap-ix.blizzardonline.net (5.57.81.160) 11.904 ms 11.930 ms 11.957 ms
5 ae1-br01-eqld5.as57976.net (137.221.79.33) 17.944 ms 17.981 ms 18.023 ms
6 et-0-0-2-br02-eqam1.as57976.net (137.221.65.91) 18.549 ms 17.909 ms 18.074 ms
7 et-0-0-67-pe01-eqam1.as57976.net (137.221.78.71) 17.324 ms 16.616 ms 16.594 ms
8 185.60.112.157 (185.60.112.157) 16.417 ms 16.583 ms 17.845 ms

# traceroute -I 149.28.112.244
traceroute to 149.28.112.244 (149.28.112.244), 30 hops max, 60 byte packets
1 router.lan (192.168.1.1) 0.433 ms 0.428 ms 0.496 ms
2 losubs.subs.bng1.th-lon.zen.net.uk (62.3.80.17) 10.028 ms 10.054 ms 10.415 ms
3 ae1-177.cr2.th-lon.zen.net.uk (62.3.80.38) 11.556 ms 11.585 ms 11.619 ms
4 vl-50.ae43.agg2.lond1.ptn.zen.net.uk (51.148.73.54) 11.195 ms 13.004 ms 13.054 ms
5 ae-4.cor1.lond1.ptn.zen.net.uk (51.148.73.7) 11.808 ms 11.837 ms 11.869 ms
6 ae-3.agg1.lond1.ptn.zen.net.uk (51.148.73.4) 11.596 ms 10.107 ms 10.576 ms
7 ldn-b5-link.telia.net (62.115.169.132) 9.414 ms 9.671 ms 9.670 ms
8 ldn-bb4-link.telia.net (213.155.132.196) 97.336 ms 97.204 ms 97.220 ms
9 * * *
10 chi-b21-link.telia.net (80.91.246.162) 94.784 ms 94.798 ms 94.945 ms
11 * * *
12 * * *
13 * * *
14 149.28.112.244.vultr.com (149.28.112.244) 97.667 ms 97.690 ms 97.691 ms

# traceroute -I 155.133.247.155
traceroute to 155.133.247.155 (155.133.247.155), 30 hops max, 60 byte packets
1 router.lan (192.168.1.1) 0.549 ms 0.572 ms 0.644 ms
2 losubs.subs.bng1.th-lon.zen.net.uk (62.3.80.17) 9.753 ms 9.987 ms 10.017 ms
3 ae1-177.cr2.th-lon.zen.net.uk (62.3.80.38) 9.983 ms 10.159 ms 10.396 ms
4 151.139.40.3 (151.139.40.3) 10.209 ms 10.579 ms 10.604 ms
5 151.139.40.67 (151.139.40.67) 10.957 ms 11.149 ms 11.196 ms
6 * * *
7 * * *
8 151.139.76.6 (151.139.76.6) 38.929 ms 38.852 ms 38.983 ms
9 151.139.76.5 (151.139.76.5) 38.989 ms 38.442 ms 38.602 ms
10 * * *
11 * * *
12 155.133.247.155 (155.133.247.155) 36.478 ms 36.644 ms 36.481 ms
 

BigAlbert

Regular Member
Thanks so much, I've been needing to see this for a long time. From what I can see at the moment, I'll study more later but peering latency is much the same compared to my current ISP. You're about 4 to 5ms faster due to the latency into Zen.

I've never heard of 'Openreach GEA', is something only Zen offers ? and would you mind saying how much it costs per month ? any setup / install fees ?
 

1rY

Casual Member
Zen operate their own network in the United Kingdom in some BT exchanges similar to Sky and TalkTalk. If you are connected to an exchange with their presence, Zen save themselves money by connecting to you more directly, as opposed to depending entirely on BT Wholesale to connect to you. I recall seeing others on a forum talk about Zen's network in similar terms to TalkTalkBusiness' LLU network but I cannot recall which ISP that was.

I don't know why Zen seem to obfuscate information about this so much, skimming around their website I can barely find any information about it. Here is a PDF where they talk about it, you could be forgiven for thinking that it was only relevant to business services/leased lines, etc.

It's also difficult to know if you are connected to one of their exchanges as AFAIK FTTC cabinets do not necessarily connect to your local exchange but to the larger exchanges that BT call NGA (Next Generation Access) headend exchanges. I say this as my local telephone exchange doesn't have Zen presence but one of the exchanges in the city does and that is presumably why Zen's portal says to me "Your current line technology is GEA FTTC." It seems the only way to know if you can skip BT Wholesale is to contact Zen and ask.

They migrated me to their GEA system automatically back in November 2014. I'm on their standard FTTC 80/20 service. EDIT: or as it's called now "Unlimited fibre 2" (FTTC 66/17).
 

BigAlbert

Regular Member
Thanks 1rY, I think what you're describing is what I'd call Zen LLU but may be a bit more complex how you connect to that service.
I don't think we have Zen LLU anywhere nearby, there is talk talk LLU and Sky LLU in the local exchange. The million dollar question is what my ping would be into the Zen network, I've tried asking Zen and of course they can't say, so with a 12 month contract I'm finding it hard to take the gamble.
I have just discovered Uno which recognize the talk talk LLU available on my phone number plus they have 1 month contract option, might be worth at least trying 1 month with them.
 

1rY

Casual Member
Yes, latency is a tricky thing. Especially with VDSL2/FTTC where the ISP has no effective control over interleaving/fastpath and everything is controlled by the whims of Openreach's DLM.

As you have said, no ISP can predict how much latency you will experience to their point of presence (copper conditions, physical routing from exchange, blah blah blah). The only way I know that you would be able to force consistent latency from your circuit is, like you said, to get ADSL2+ services from a provider like Uno with TalkTalk LLU and select fastpath from their management portal. I assume that option still exists. But obviously, if your copper line conditions suddenly deteriorate you'll only know about it from the packet loss.
 

ManOfMeans

ULTIMATE Member
The only way you will get a guaranteed ping time is with a business grade connection
 

BigAlbert

Regular Member
1rY could you indicate if you're any where close to where I am, I'm located in Ibstock near Coalville ?

ManOfMeans I've emailed and spoke with about every ISP and not found any one that will even estimate what my ping will end up being. I'm not really after an absolute ping value just an estimate that my ping might be lower based on how I'd be connected to the core network. If it's the same handover from BT wholesale in London via a L2PT tunnel I bet I'd just end up with the same ping, so it's pointless switching.
 

BigAlbert

Regular Member
Well I'm about ready to give up on my quest to reduce my latency into the core network. I've tried to tease out of Zen how they'd connect me to their network and the answer is just BT wholesale routed to either Manchester or London. Plus I may even end up being routed to Manchester which would be a disaster for my ping if the peering is coming out of London.
 

1rY

Casual Member
1rY could you indicate if you're any where close to where I am
I'm in the Leicester Forest East area, west of the M1. Presumably connected to Zen through Montfort using FTTC.

From the new build development in Ibstock (Dale Road, LE67 6QJ & others) I can see that their fibre is from Coalville. As Zen don't list their PoPs, this information is not useful. From their last dump of 207 exchanges, Coalville is not present. So BT Wholesale connectivity is more likely.

Ibstock looks interesting, Openreach have apparently built out copper and FTTP to some locations, seemingly at random.
 

ManOfMeans

ULTIMATE Member
I am sure they have peering and transit out of Manchester, they are on LINX Manchester
 

ManOfMeans

ULTIMATE Member
I'm in the Leicester Forest East area, west of the M1. Presumably connected to Zen through Montfort using FTTC.

From the new build development in Ibstock (Dale Road, LE67 6QJ & others) I can see that their fibre is from Coalville. As Zen don't list their PoPs, this information is not useful. From their last dump of 207 exchanges, Coalville is not present. So BT Wholesale connectivity is more likely.

Ibstock looks interesting, Openreach have apparently built out copper and FTTP to some locations, seemingly at random.
If your on GEA then its not BTwholesale
 
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