Question Horrible ping + disconnects for the past 5 months. ISP "can't fix it"

Sep 30, 2022
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For the past 4-5 months my ping has been absolutely atrocious, making any online game almost unplayable. I started getting random disconnects about a month ago as well.

I'm on ethernet and not a single device in my home is connected via WiFi.

My ISP says "they don't see anything on their end" so they can't fix it. It was excellent before this started happening on May 11th, and it hasn't stopped once.

Video example of Valorant ping this is a pretty tame example tbh, it's usually MUCH worse than this

Valorant servers ping plotter

Fortnite servers ping plotter Too lazy to record gameplay for this but you get the idea haha

ISP ping plotter

Video example of disconnect + WinMTR the videos are synced up if you can get them to play at the same time

My setup is a fixed wireless dish (ik FW kind of sucks but it was perfectly fine before this - stable 40 ping, no packet loss, stable jitter, etc) > POE adapter > Archer C5 router > ethernet cable to my PC. I've tried connecting the ethernet cable from the POE adapter to my PC and it performs the exact same.
 
So all the pingplotter things show no issues. The fortnite one show high ping times far into the trace but it is incomplete so it hard to say if the final node see a issue or it is only intermediate routers. In that case it appears to be maybe in amazons network, and not much you can do about that.

Normally I don't watch video but in this case the winmtr clearly shows your problem.

You are losing the connection to the ISP network. Your problem appears to be very intermittent so the ISP may not see it when they test. The much simpler test to show the ISP would be to run 2 constant ping commands. One to your router IP and the second to hop 2 in your trace which will be the ISP first router. You will show them you have no loss to your route but issue with their router. This represents the wireless connection between you house and the ISP. The ISP could do very similar from their end ping their radio and then ping your house....you may have to set your router to respond. Still if it does not happen on a regular basis they may not be able to detect it.

I am somewhat surprised it runs as good as it does. Any kind of wireless connection is going to be subject to data loss and much more commonly high jitter rates which games hate.
 
Sep 30, 2022
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So all the pingplotter things show no issues. The fortnite one show high ping times far into the trace but it is incomplete so it hard to say if the final node see a issue or it is only intermediate routers. In that case it appears to be maybe in amazons network, and not much you can do about that.

Normally I don't watch video but in this case the winmtr clearly shows your problem.

You are losing the connection to the ISP network. Your problem appears to be very intermittent so the ISP may not see it when they test. The much simpler test to show the ISP would be to run 2 constant ping commands. One to your router IP and the second to hop 2 in your trace which will be the ISP first router. You will show them you have no loss to your route but issue with their router. This represents the wireless connection between you house and the ISP. The ISP could do very similar from their end ping their radio and then ping your house....you may have to set your router to respond. Still if it does not happen on a regular basis they may not be able to detect it.

I am somewhat surprised it runs as good as it does. Any kind of wireless connection is going to be subject to data loss and much more commonly high jitter rates which games hate.
Is there anything else I can do to show issues with my ping? Like I said, it was literally PERFECT before May 11th. I couldn’t care less about the disconnects, at this point I give up on those. They happen regularly but not regularly enough to where it’ll show up while I’m on the phone with them, so for them to detect it would probably be very hard. I started having those exact disconnects back in 2019, but up until last month, I didn’t have a single disconnect since November 2021 🥲 Good times

Anyways, here’s a Valorant in-game ping + WinMTR to ISP video from a few days ago. You can see that for 1 ping the latency shoots up, then goes right back down on the next. Average latency is perfect so I don’t understand what’s happening, I just wanna run games with the boys again 😭
 
The main issue is the problem seems to be in the ISP network but it is hard to say where exactly. It should be in hop 1 the radio link from your house but the ISP may have multiple radio links in the path. Only the ISP knows for sure.

In general it also shows the number of times this happens is fairly low. The in game jitter is your best indicator which says the average latency between packets is only 6ms. So even when there is a big spike there are enough other packets that are fine that make the average good.

The packet loss is actually easier to get fix than latency. No ISP will promise a latency over a network that they do not control end to end, and even then you have to pay a lot extra. They barely promise even a bandwidth since they all say "up to". They would though fix the wifi radio to your house going down if they would see it.

Not sure what to recommend. In this cases I think it is because you are using a radio link. All these are subject to ping spikes because of how they work and also the radio bandwidth is shared by a lot of people.

If you had a hard wire connection for the first part of the path then you can consider crazy stuff like using a vpn servers similar to say exitlag. This many times does not work if you have a issue in the path to the vpn data centers that is the same as to the end game site.
 
Sep 30, 2022
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What should I show my ISP then to make them hopefully actually take the time and effort to look into it?

Forgot to mention this but on ping plotter if I do a 0.1 or 0.5 interval test I get 20-90% packet loss respectively. Is this just how the program works or is that a problem?
 
Not sure about pingplotter but the level 1 tech you talk to at the ISP is going to be lucky if they understand a normal ping command. If you start talking pingplotter they will just pretend they understand and do nothing for you.

You want to use a very simple ping command. The first to your router and the second to the ISP first router (hop 2). You want to show the ISP that you see loss in hop 2 but not in hop 1.

Maybe run a download at the same time limited to say 50% of you bandwidth, if the problem is load related it might happen more when you test.
 

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