Suck it, Bell!

   21 October 2008, early evening

Use Tomato/MLPPP to Stop Bell from Throttling your Internet Connection.

So the WRT54G router firmware I linked to earlier does in fact get around Bell’s (anti-competitive jack-ass) throttling of my Teksavvy internet connection. I love my router, I love Teksavvy, and I now love Tomato/MLPPP. I haven’t been able to download torrents during the evening for many months. (Bell throttles during off-peak hours, so while I was at work my torrents used to run at full speed.) I really didn’t expect a solution like this to develop: I was waiting for Bell to get their asses handed to them in court. Clearly, relying on your government to take a large corporation to task is an exercise in futility. If you’re on Teksavvy, and have a respectable router, I seriously recommend you upgrade to this firmware. Suck it, Bell!

So how does this work? MLPPP is used to aggregate several different network links into a single faster link — i.e. you can take several DSL connections and make a single faster one. With MLPPP the client will split a packet up into smaller fragments, and send each fragment with an additional MLPPP header over different links to the server. The server will then reassemble the original packet from the fragments it receives. You split your bandwidth over all your links, effectively creating a single faster one. You can run MLPPP over a single link, but it obviously offers you no advantage, as all your data is still going over the same link. In this case, the advantage comes from the fact that (for the time being) the hardware Bell uses to track and shape Internet traffic does not know how to process MLPPP traffic. Bell doesn’t reassemble the real packet to examine what is being sent, and thus can’t decide if it needs to be throttled. As long as your ISP understands the MLPPP protocol, you should be able to avoid throttling this way.

Update: TekSavvy now charges $3 for a static IP, access to newsgroups, and access to their ML/PPP server(s).

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Comments

  1. Been using this since it came out a couple months ago.

    It’s great!

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