Misc IT-related info

(last modified 2009.01.29)
Below there is various information related (and sometimes not related) to Information Technology services and providers in Italy, and my experience with them. Some of the links below are to pages in Italian.

DSL providers

I have had service from TelecomItalia from 03/2001 to 02/2006, with a moderately expensive (approx. 45 euro/month) flat contract. Line speed was initially 640/128, later upgraded to 1280/128 and then 1280/256. Apart from very few occasional outages of short duration (maybe 2-3 times per year, 1-2 days at most) the service has been generally reliable, with reasonable bandwidth, and ping times around 30-60ms to the first hop router until 11/2006.
At that time, though, the base RTT jumped up to over 500ms for 12-18 hours each day, even with a moderate packet loss, which made the line completely unusable for interactive work and painfully slow even for browsing.

After two months of disservice, and many many tickets and calls to the customer service where the answer was "this is not our problem; the contract does not give you any bandwidth/delay/loss guarantee" I eventually had to terminate the service (both DSL and telephone) with this operator.

The procedure (which I recommend as it was quick and easy) used to terminate both services was to activate the Number Portability of my residential phone number with a voip provider, after I had a second data-only DSL line up and running.

I am an NGI customer since 12/2005, on a data-only cable. It took about one month to get the line installed, after the usual 'KO' reported by the technician on his first visit. The line (F5 1280/256, with a guaranteed bandwidth of 200Kbit/s) has been working fine with only some short periods of line down. In late 05/2007, after an upgrade to 2048/256, when I started to experience huge losses unrelated to my traffic See here for more details and graphics. Here again, the technical service seems unable to deal with the problem, except that the statement "not out problem" does not work here.

VOIP providers

I have used two VOIP providers in Italy, starting from mid 2005.