28 January 2013

SOUTHERN STORMS EXPOSE FNQ TO LACK OF REDUNDANCY ON "INTERNET BRUCE HIGHWAY"

Well, on one of the biggest retail weekends in Cairns tourist-centric economy, shops across the CBD and outlying areas have again put up their oft-used signs.  "No EFTPOS due to Telstra Outage"

So where is this now two-day old Telstra outage?  Not anywhere near Cairns, but in some shithole called Colosseum, Queensland.  A town named by jokers who couldn't even figure out how to spell Coliseum.  Over 1200 km from Cairns.  


RESIDENTS OF COLOSSEUM, QLD DON'T LOOK TOO
INCONVENIENCED BY THIS INTERNET
BACKBONE OUTAGE
Millions of dollars of business has come screeching to a halt in Cairns, Townsville, Mackay, Rockhampton - all because the same ignorant theory of infrastructure design used for the Bruce Highway was used by Telstra to provide us with internet service.  One fibre optic cable, run alongside the Bruce Highway and the Queensland Rail line has, unsurprisingly, gone under water along with these other two links.

In every "developed" country, the internet is structured to avoid large-scale outages.  This is done by tying legs together so that everyone's got two backbone connections.  In Australia, this has never been done, and even the NBN won't fix this glaring problem.  Cairns should have years ago been connected via sea cable to Guam, to provide redundancy not just for Cairns but for Brisbane, Sydney, and in fact the entire east coast of Australia.  


MINISTER FOR OZEMAIL TURNBULL
WAS AWARE OF THIS DESIGN FLAW
OVER FIFTEEN YEARS AGO

When PIPE PPC-1 was laid in 2009, it connected Sydney and PNG with Guam, which is the internet backbone "hub" in the Pacific.  The ALP government was then advised that the cable should connect to Cairns as well - exactly for this reason.  No redundancy now means no internet for an area of Queensland larger than Victoria.  Thanks, KRudd for NOTHING!  Even WA was given dual-redundancy via a sea cable to Port Hedland.  But no such redundancy exists from Brisbane north.  

With not just vital services but military infrastructure running on, and depending on, low-latency internet backbone connections, the lack of redundancy is a national security issue that has been ignored by the government.  Currently, the Bureau of Meterology, who everyone is relying on for accurate and important information, cannot access their weather sites because of this backbone collapse.  And emergency services communication has collapsed as well.  

Is this Bengladesh?

So, like our vital National Highway and rail links, a little rain in Colosseum, Queensland has exposed another vital infrastructure link to be another joke on North Queenslanders.  Leadership (cough, cough) in Cairns, Townsville, and indeed all of Queensland should be demanding this vital error be rectified.  

Don't hold your breath.





31 comments:

  1. Smithfield Sam28/1/13 15:47

    Amazing to see scores of people wandering around the CBD and Esplanade, unable to get a coffee or sandwich for lack of EFTPOS capability. Even Macca's was empty.

    I didn't know this problem even existed - but I've long ago stopped being shocked at the short end of the stick we get up here.

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  2. Terry Pritchard28/1/13 16:25


    Telstra's communication is abysmal. I phoned them when the internet went down, 6:15pm, after finally negotiating the 'robot' I was asked if I wanted them to phone me back in ten minutes. After an hour, I phoned them again, this time declining the offer of a call back in '22 minutes'. When I finally got to speak to someone they had no idea if there was an outage in my area, Cairns. They tried for ten minutes to trouble shoot, to no avail. They gave me a reference number, and a phone number to call if no-one had rung me by mid-day today. Last night, five minutes past midnight, I received the 'ten minutes' call they promised earlier, that asked me if I wanted to take the call, then hung. All this could have been avoided by a simple message when I first called, announcing the outage. As I said, Telstra's communication is abysmal! Luckily my phone, with Virgin, can be 'tethered'.

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  3. Second outtage since the floods started here in Rocky where I'm studying.

    Even the landline was only good for local calls.

    Apparently there's two fibre optic lines - the coastal line broke near Colosseum which from memory is just a roadhouse on the banks of a creek between GinGin and Miriamvale.

    The other was near Kingaroy. Roads are cut everywhere in both areas so it's hard to believe they got crews out to the breaks - perhaps their third option worked and they managed to reroute through outback NSW, up through the NT and over through the Isa and Charters Towers.

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  4. Second Anonymous28/1/13 17:06

    ...and before this it was bridgeworks at Mackay, before that a break near the Gold Coast.

    About time all the service providers came up with solutions - what about the Optus satellites or the multitude of redundant links and coaxial cables that made up the infrastructure prior to fibre optic?

    Geez, a terrorist attack on a few fibre optic points in remote locations could bring the economy/community safety/health/transport/government etcetera to a standstill.

    PS, my broadband just came back on. Time to fill up with petrol and go to the bottleshop - presuming eftpos is back up an running too.

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  5. jim-bob jnr28/1/13 17:10

    Fucken amazing how incompetent Telstra has become since being privatised. Thanks for nothing John Howard and all your dickwitted LNP supporters. Hope you enjoyed your Australia Day holiday.

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  6. Telstra had been privatised by the time Rudd was elected in 2007. Shouldn't the cable have been the responsibility of the corporatised Telstra?? It seems to me as if Telstra is being gouged of as much profits as the shareholders can possibly get without re-investing in infrastructure and running the service into the ground. Wello more and more of us are giving them the big heave ho, because of their disgusting customer service and their obvious lack of care for anything other than profits.

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  7. John Howard fucked Telstra. Now the LNP want to fuck with our Ergon energy and hospitals.

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  8. Anonymous28/1/13 18:52

    I use Optus.
    No problem.
    A soundly run private company.

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  9. Anonymous28/1/13 19:16

    Optus - Singaporean efficiency. http://infopedia.nl.sg/articles/SIP_1610_2011-03-21.html
    Telstra - taxpayers' asset ripped off and privatised by political greed.

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  10. Anonymous28/1/13 20:15

    Anyone with half a brain figured that 4G wireless was the way to go.
    Only that dick 4 brains Conway couldn't see that.
    If my memory serves me well, then that's what z Turnbull was saying.

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous29/1/13 06:36

      Anyone with half a brain would know his name is Conroy. How do you think mobile phones eventually connect to the network you goose.

      Delete
  11. Anon No.428/1/13 20:32

    It was Barnaby Joyce, the Moron of the Maranoa, who gave the nod to the privatisation of telstra and the total demise of telecommunications in the bush.

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  12. oops there goes the budget now i know what anna felt like maybe i judged her harshly wow fire and flood warnings in the same weather report i love qld but she is a cruel mistress campbells thought last night

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  13. We're all recalling how the LNP crucified the Bligh Labor Government for the blow out in the State Budget following the 2011 Yasi and S.E. floods. So now it is Newman's turn. What's he going to do? Continue penny pinching and tell everyone Queensland can't afford any reconstruction???

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  14. Anonymous28/1/13 21:27

    I thought the last letter of www stood for web. Why do we only have a strand?

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  15. Newman? Oh, you mean the guy who didn't show up until Brisbane was threatened? Oh there'll be plenty of money for rebuilding in Brisbane.... just sack a few more nurses, close down more services outside the SEQ corner....

    Noticed his dickhead mate the Mad Monk joking about "how much hotter it would be if we didn't have the carbon tax" the other day too. Pair of wankers.

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  16. Jethro, the Bligh Government had to fund post construction work of two major cyclones, Larry and Yasi, as well as the South East floods of 2011. You are correct however in that the LNP never took that into account when attacking the ALP State government over the State debt. Indeed, what is Newman going to do?

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  17. Turnbull has been with the LNP dinosaurs too long and was sold a dummy with the shadow communications portfolio.Any opposition to the NBN is just going through world arse first.

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  18. Anonymous29/1/13 07:39

    Dear Tory Troll Clown 20.15, I am (purportedy) on 4g wireless. Generally very average reception where I am, with constant switches to (purportedly) 3g, and quite poor reception in bad weather. And it's expensive. The ONLY reliable and cost-efficient solution is fibre optics.

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  19. Anonymous29/1/13 10:04



    Wireless has an alternative to NBN has been de-bunked so many time by real experts it is not funny.

    Not sure if we had kept Telstra government owned we would have fared better on the weekend. But it is fair to say we would have better connection in regional areas as we have junk in Cairns.

    Business frequently down which simply does not happen in the big cities.

    So good to get it talked about with an election coming. They say Liberal lost the last election because regional areas wanted NBN.

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  20. dear half a brain....yep, thats right you only have half a brain if you think ANY wireless system is going to give you reliable, quick and inexpensive internet.

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  21. Anonymous29/1/13 16:43

    WTF did you say Shanghi, something about Campbell Newmans Mistress, Anna Bligh and you want to hashly treat her, and you think she's hot.

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  22. Anonymous29/1/13 18:23

    Dear k. nevill, you may be technically more competent than many, but your abusive remark marks you as socially inept.

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  23. "Even WA was given dual-redundancy via a sea cable to Port Hedland."

    Lol, nope. That cable is 5 gb/s (mouse over it and look at the bottom of the screen). The cables out of Perth are 6.4 tb/s and 960gb/s.

    However, the NBN fiber transit links will have a lot more redundancy. (From simply looking at the map you could make it extra redundant by having a link from Hughenden to Charters Towers.)

    Also, there IS an undersea cable that terminates in Cairns, but it's old fashioned telephone, not fiber: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SEACOM_(Asian_cable_system).

    Fun Fact: You actually drive by the termination point on Sheridan Street.

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  24. Anonymous29/1/13 18:55

    One 4G wireless tower can only connect to 180 users (look it up at www.nbnco.com.au). That means a suburb like Bayview Heights would need 8 or 9 towers which are not cyclone proof, like an underground fibre optic cable, which lasts 100 years if not accidentally cut. You one-eyed Libs will believe anything.

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  25. Leave Shanghai alone will ya?

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  26. k. nevill30/1/13 11:23

    Socially inept??? I re used the terminology from your original post where you praised 4g wireless as an option instead of NBN. So who is the socially inept one my friend. Also i am just a regular internet user with no superior knowledge other than having to suffer from wireless internet for the last 5 years because telstra wont expand their broadband service. They supply an inferior product at an inflated price that becomes unreliable as soon as multiple numbers of people come online. Its not rocket science, wireless is slow and unreliable compared to adsl and adsl2 and nbn will be even faster. If you are going to make comments get your facts straight and take a couple of concrete pills and harden up when someone comes back at your tone of comment.

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  27. Anon No.430/1/13 11:40

    The Cairns cable I think is fibre to guam via png or something similar. But i would not be inclined to rely on it for redundancy. it is only about 1000mbps and is capable at present of running at a max of about half that.

    there is no way telstra is going to do anything serious with telecoms infrastructure, especially up here, because it is focussing almost totally on retail - and in the capital cities - to make a profit.

    We can thank the Moron of the Maranoa and John Howard for that.

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  28. Anonymous30/1/13 12:29

    Bob R, are you one of Shanghia' Chiness lovers. He has many.

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  29. Anonymous30/1/13 18:31

    Lucky for the QAS, QFRS & QPS that someone from Optus handed out mobile phones during this outage, because one of the com centers had no phone or internet at all.
    Also people ringing 000 on a landline received an error message that told them their call could not be connected.
    It wasn't until Monday afternoon that ABC & Nine news informed viewers of an alternate number to call in an emergency.
    In Cairns, that number was 40307000, when you rang, a recorded message instructed you to call their Police Link number '131444' unless its an emergency, then hang up and ring 000. Which took a couple of hours to fix.
    Telstra could have fixed the 000 issue much quicker than they did, they could have bought air-time on TV to inform us that 000 was not working.
    What have Gavin King & Bob Manning got to say about this? Silence is deafeneing.

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  30. Anonymous3/2/13 18:38

    Do yo know why you couldn't use you mobile phone during the outage on 27-28/1/2013, but a local landline call worked? BILLING. Telstra would rather you had no service than a free service, even in a emergency.
    FNQ cop another kick in the balls.

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