Get the most from your broadband, maximum speed, maximum stability.

Ex B.T. Broadband Engineer (22 years experience)

Serving south east London and west Kent, England
07504 170 951
gary.foard@projectbroadband.co.uk
Broadband Fault Diagnostic Specialist
Computer Networking Extensions
Telephone Extensions
(Installation, Repair, Fault finding)
Secure Wireless Networking
Computer assistance and basic tuition available
For all Broadband & Telephony work
Advice, Support & Installation of Open Source Software
(See Ubuntu GNU/Linux)

Helping to get you connected

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Broadband Fault Diagnostic Specialist

Intermittent/slow or no broadband at all?

If you cannot get satisfaction or good service from your broadband service provider, or simply wish to avoid call centre procedure and policies then call me for good advice and on-site help.

Many broadband faults for ADSL (broadband through the phone line) are caused and cured within the house or business premises.  I can also determine whether the problem is with your computer(s)/router/main phone line/local exchange and advise you on your best course of action.  You will find my callout charges are far less than your service provider’s.

My help will range from basic set-up assistance including your computer to advanced problem solving such as isolating sources of R.E.I.N. (Repetitive Electrical Impulse Noise), faulty wiring and fitting a dedicated broadband socket so you dispense with untidy plug-in filters and direct all of your incoming broadband signal to one point (to your router) rather than dispersing your signal across all of your phone extensions, therefore making full use of the supplied broadband service.  You will have the fastest possible connection speed for your line and be far less prone to drop-outs.

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Secure Wireless Networking

Once you have had your broadband connection optimised for maximum speed and maximum stability don’t forget to connect your “smart phone” or “tablet” to your wireless router or access point so whenever you’re at home you benefit from the faster speed and save your mobile data plan allowance for when you really need it – out and about.

For home or small office use you should use WPA-PSK or the more recent WPA2-PSK encryption, but not WEP, although WEP is better than no encryption at all (open). Businesses can go further by implementing 802.1X protocol using an authentication server but this is normally only used in large enterprises and is overkill in most situations.  Hiding (not broadcasting) the SSID and using MAC address filtering does not provide any extra “real security” as a wireless adapter placed in monitor mode and “sniffing the air” will see both anyway.  MAC address filtering is typically used for businesses to provide a some level of blocking ex employees who may know the WPA code or to only allow select personnel to certain areas of the network.

All routers wireless or not should have a decent administrative password and have Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) disabled unless specifically required.

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Computer Networking Extensions

Also know as Ethernet or data extensions.  You may need Ethernet extensions for those places where wireless (WIFI) does not give good performance due to distance/interference or you simply prefer to be hard wired.  Related information.

Powerline adapters can provide networking through the electric power sockets but a physical wire (Cat5e standard or above) will always provide the fastest and most stable connection possible.

Note that the latest Televisions now often have a Ethernet port on the back to give more T.V. and internet services on the “big screen”, and of course Xboxes, and Playstations will benefit from a solid connection.

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Ubuntu Linux

Ubuntu Linux is an open-source operating system (OS) used as an alternative to Windows or Apple OS.  Linux systems demand far less resources from computers (384MB of RAM is the recommended minimum for desktop use or 128MB will be sufficient if just setting up a basic local file server).  New computers become lightning fast whilst older systems are revived and responsive again.

A nice overview can also be found on the BBC website.

Traditionally Linux has been a system only used for servers on the internet, servers in businesses, and for computer enthusiasts – be in no doubt Linux is a secure and robust platform to work from.  The Ubuntu version of Linux is the most most popular variant for home users as it utilises a modern user friendly interface so interaction with the computer is mainly point and click with the mouse for desktops,laptops and netbooks.  It is also often used by businesses and schools as there are not any license fees to pay as it is free software.

Ubuntu is installed using a “live” CD or USB memory stick so you can see what it looks like before you install it on your machine, or even use your machine immediately if Windows has completely crashed.  You are able to do this yourself – all instructions are on the Ubuntu website.  I can of course do this for you, or assist you if you want learn this alternative way of computing.  I’m here to help.

Running a “live” system is useful even if you don’t want to install Ubuntu: you can use the virus scanner to check your installed system without booting it up and further propagating viruses on your computer and the internet; use the shredder to permanently delete sensitive data; and run “GParted” to partition hard drives into custom sized segments if for instance you want to keep your files separate from your operating system. These are just three of many many useful open source tools that are just part of Linux systems waiting to be discovered.

Some advantages:

Fast start-up and shut-down times.  Typical system will boot-up and be ready to use in 45 seconds.

Centralised system updates.  All your software will be updated with just a few clicks (security updates can be set to happen automatically without the forced reboot that Windows 7 Home editions now gives you).

Can be installed alongside Windows giving you a “dual boot system” so you can choose whether to use Windows or Linux in case you have some Windows specific requirements such as Sage accounting software, work training packages or Sat Nav updating.

Extend the usefulness of your old desktop or laptop for yourself, children, older relatives friends or just use it as a file sharing Network Attached Storage (NAS) server.

Some disadvantages:

You cannot generally buy software or games in the shops for Linux (all the software you need including enough games to keep you amused are downloaded free from the Ubuntu repository).

Some functions and peripherals that are not fully supported can be a fiddle to enable but I can guide you through this.

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What ever you decide please do not throw old computers away as they normally can be used for many years longer than you may think and will be very welcome by someone who wants to get online without spending a small fortune.  Any computers recycled through me will have the hard drives electronically shredded (permanently erased) for your security.

Learn – Share – Enjoy

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Blackberry Sketch

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