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From TPG to ABB

This post has been updated in 2022, originally published February 2021

TPG and ABB (Aussie Broadband) need no introduction, but the shite way one of them does business and treats its customers is the chalk to the others cheese.

Long time visitors to my blog, zonecheck, and usenet service would be well aware of the frustrations and problems I've had to tolerate with TPG. I took up their service in 2010 as a static-IP account, yet after about 6 years, TPG forgot the meaning of static-IP and changed our IP - without notice - not once, but three times, I only find out because people texting me Mail seems down, I tell them their bonkers I'm accessing it, only to realise hours later when I'm getting no new mail they were right something was definitely amiss.

Of course TPG being TPG ignore my complaints about it despite my plan, which even on the last day of my service when I confirmed closure of my account with them in October 2020, *still* very clearly said static-IP plan with rDNS.

This got even more frustrating early 2020, and no, they can't blame covid for this...

The last IP change TPG thrust upon me and others in early 2020 resulted in certain inbound ports that were found to be filtered, preventing connections to some services, again, all of my complaints went on deaf ears, these morons kept saying it was my configuration, the same one that had worked for 10 years, even through their previous IP changes, and all without me altering anything (pppsssst btw TPG muppets, those ports work now that I'm with ABB and amazingly no changes were made to any firewall rules).

Of course covid made it worse trying to get that fixed, it was a joke, reduced staff and covid meant most the Filipinos were working from home, one clown who was assigned to my case was more interested in watching netflix, and complaining was pointless, even though I was at all times restrained, meaning, no matter my disgust with these clueless TPG idiots, I was always polite with them, I ended up getting a call from some other Filipino at TPG leaving a voicemail saying she wanted to talk to me about the termination of my service, which of course were idle threats from third world muppets who exceeded their authority so that went nowhere, and if they had, it would have just prompted my NBN move sooner than I planned which was never going to be with those turds.

Then, a new light shone down...

Dealing with Aussie Broadband was like entering a new reality, a bunch of friendly guys and gals that seem to care, their staff also being true blue Aussies meant no more language barriers, no more tech support staff who couldn't give a flying f##k if your internet worked or not, like I said, chalk, and cheese.

I'm pretty fussy with my internet, partly because other people rely on it, and partly from having an ICT/Telco background which has involved ISP network operations. After being forced onto NBN by the local exchange being turned off (yeah, I waited until the last week heh), and having tired from dealing with the numbnuts muppets at TPG for a decade, I declined their offer of screwing me over again and signed up with ABB.

The changeover was painless, ABB kept me informed along the way of each process, scheduled for 9am one Monday morning, around 9:15 ADSL dropped, I changed the routers login profiles I previously setup to minimise downtime and rebooted, up it all came, the static IP assigned to my account, its rDNS entries, even the phone service was active which came over from Telstra at same time, very impressed ABB and NBN, very, impressed given the typical nightmares you often hear about.

But my joy lasted only a few hours, where I noticed a fair number of dropouts, but this didn't raise my blood pressure since I've worked with countless FTTN dramas and was prepared given this lines history, and with the much lower frequencies of ADSL able to handle more noise and crud then FTTN's VDSL, I expected it.

I jumped onto the my aussie web site, and ran a line test, yep failed, set stability profile, left a few days, no real change, so I thought here I go, grab a strong coffee and be prepared to argue my way through support, re-ran the fault test, it confirmed once again it was crappy, fired off the fault request, a couple hours later I got a response confirming that they can see the failures with their tests too and will send it off to NBN - very impressed ABB, blood pressure stayed low.

NBN tech turned up a couple days later - on a Saturday morning mind you, techie Wayne confirmed a problem using his hst3000, shot off to the pillar and an hour later it was back up all good, connection rock solid since (well, apart from a failed modem firmware update a month later LOL but that's Billions bad), and given my distance I knew I was only getting midway speeds anyway, too far from the node.

Further impressing me was Aussie Broadband staff stayed in touch for a week or so after, making sure it was all good, and I'll add that at no time, did I pull my credentials on them, they had no idea about my background in ICT and telecoms, this really impressed me, this is how they treat everyone, try getting that level satisfaction out of TPG or Telstra.

All ABB's NBN plans include the option of phone service, so you can take your voice number over with you, even if you don't use it, there is a $0 p/month Casual plan, no more paying for line rental or DID's, it's there should you want to use it, of course they have other calls-inclusive plans as well from $10 a month, and although the $0 Casual voice plans call prices aren't that bad, they are not the cheapest compared to dedicated SIP services, but perfect for light users or those who really only get inbound calls, and one good thing about the voice service is, as an ABB voice customer, calling another ABB voice customer is totally free!

If you intend to use FreePBX to connect to your ABB SIP service, you will want to check out our FreePBX and ABB article since ABB do things slightly different in creating your trunks, I'll show you its really easy though, and if you run your own PBX like FreePBX, on the $0 casual plan, you can get a cheapy third party voice plan that has super cheap call rates, for all your outbound calls, leaving your inbound calls and free DID on ABB.

My only regret is not moving to ABB earlier, with that level of service, even my elderly parents have no problems dealing with them - unlike their, and most peoples experiences, in dealing with Telstra' Indian call centre, those nightmares just do not exist with Aussie, so I have no problem recommending for a fast and reliable NBN service

15 Month Update

Happy New Year! Well, we've managed to survive the horrors of the world thus far and made it to 2022, so as promised, here is a quick update on how the Aussie Broadband experience has been now that the initial honeymoon period is over.

In the past fifteen months or so since I moved over, the reliability remains awesome, the speed equally so, since sorting my copper line out as indicated in the above original article, there has been no problems with the service, and yes take note TPG muppets - ABB know that a static IP still means static.

ABB's beta IPv6 program was also mostly flawless, with one brief hiccup, a change in the portal removed my custom DNS servers, resulting in a brief loss of my IPv6 PTR records - nothing too major, re-adding my name servers again fixed that, and well, it was a beta project, and we all know beta means in-development and anything can happen, ABB made it very clear beta meant use at your own risk and they gave no guarantees, anyone using that beta service knew and had to accept that, before it would assign you IPv6 details, so this isn't a negative, as it only happened once.

Oh and you might have cottoned onto the fact I said was beta, because ABB's IPv6 is now fully in production as of November 2021, although the amount of IPv6 traffic is still unmeasurable compared to IPv4, not ABB's problem, I had the same low inbound IPv6 levels when using Hurricane Electric tunnels which I had to use on back on TPG, but this will only increase over time as even Telstra are now starting to issue IPv6 to general customers, and computers by default prefer IPv6 over IPv4 - unless you manually override it.

Outages, nobody likes to talk about them, but I'm happy too since very few occurred, there have been four (trust me - I have super sensitive server monitoring processes) service outages on my node in fifteen months that have affected my connectivity, all of them were planned overnight NBN maintenance, which ABB give you plenty of prior notice about, thankfully NBN carry out this work in the very early hours of the morning when most of us are sleeping so you probably wouldn't notice it.

With internal services, there was one planned maintenance outage on the SIP service, which I detected lasted only about 6 minutes at around 3AM AEST (that's S Standard not D for Dic.... pretend Time), and one other planned maintenance on their mail system that also took place around 3AM, pretty standard stuff for ISP's - unlike the multiple gmail, live/office365, bigpond and iinet/TPG mail unplanned outages we've all heard about in past year alone, including the recent iinet/TPG's Christmas day outage that lasted over 30 hours from reports I've seen on their 'ol Westnet domain.

To sum it up, Aussie Broadband is still Bloody Good Broadband, I'm still very happy with the service and highly recommend them to anyone, and yes, I still regret not moving much sooner than I did.

If you're not yet on the NBN with Aussie Broadband you should be! They also run a referral system where you can get 50 dollars off your first bill, so if you're ready to jump on board, you can use our referrer code: 4451415 disclaimer: using this code saves you 50 bucks, but also sends a little bit of credit our way too, which will help us out greatly.


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Selwyn on :

I'd like to say thank you for your recommendation, I note what you have said and agree whole heartedly, I myself moved from TPG to Aussie, and yes, best decision ever.

I've been with them about 2 months, I was on FTTN already, the static I.P. was not an issue for me, but I had other problems with TPG, and you're right, you just can not talk to those foreign staff, they seem disinterested in anything you have to say, Aussie complete opposite, they go out of their way to help, past 2 months have been most satisfying.

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