Blinking Modem Lights

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About 2 days ago I asked some questions regarding understanding what the blinking lights on the modem meant but did not receive an answer...  anyone care to venture a shot at some answers?  thanks

Note: This conversation was created from a reply on: running out of data.
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mike barber

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Posted 2 years ago

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Matt B, Viasat Employee

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Sorry we missed you Mike.

What exactly are you seeing on your modem?
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Bev, Champion

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Mike That depends on which modem you have. The SB2 has a row of lights on the front of it and the SB2+ has one circular light on the side of it.

On the SB 2, it's Power Receive, Transmit, LAN or Ethernet connection.

For the SB 2+ 

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les

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 thanks Bev for the view and explanation of the new modem Id rather not have to use, it looks cool, but it has
extra bells and whistles Id rather not have to deal with.

 my old modem has the 4 blue light slots and yup the third one down has the link to the dish/tria icon and it likes to blink randomly.
Even when there is nothing connected [Ethernet cable removed], which makes the 4th light turn off. light 4 lets me know I have no devices connected when it is off. or when the computer is off.
 [router removed]
 
the on sight techs and the phone ppl seem to have a few different stories about the 2nd and third lights on this old modem.
 most say the 3rd light blinks to indicate data is coming in.
one on sight tech said it indicates the connection/communication between the modem and the tria - which sounds right as when there is no Ethernet cable connected to this modem - light 3  sometimes blinks.

  the information about this old modem and its 4 lights seem to vary from person to person.

 this is why I find it best to just remove power when Im gone and not using the system. as when it is powered on- the data seems to get used even when there is no Ethernet cable connected to the modem.

 the phone ppl tell me that is bad to power it off.

the on sight techs seemed to agree it was fine to power it off when Its not being used for a few days or hours.
 Of course the data is not able to reset if the modem is powered off on the reset/billing day. [found that out the hard way] the phone ppl told me they could do nothing about that - grrr - they are just third party out of country phone answering folks. shucks
 many calls later I reached the right person at Excede and they fixed it.
 that was before I knew about writing to excedelistens where they do listen and take care of you in email.
[of course you need internet to so that] so a trip to town to do that.
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Gwalk900, Champion

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Les,

There are two types of data:

#1: The data used by your devices

#2: Command & Control

The transmit and receive LEDs on the front of the modem will flash for both kinds

Data used by your devices is counted against your data allowance.

Data used for Command & Control in NOT counted against your allowance.

The usage meter does not operate in "real-time". Data used by your devices is stored by the modem and is reported during "sync cycles". That activity is part of the Command & Control. Removing the AC power from the Modem will prevent the Modem from syncing with the Gateway until the modem power is restored and the next sync cycle occurs. This may make it appear that data is being used while the Modem is powered off.


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mike barber

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Thanks Gwalk900, that information is very helpful and helps explain what Bev wrote.

  So.....  if there is a "usage meter" in my modem, can I access it?

 It seems to me that if the customer could look at the usage as reported by the modem on his specific system the issues of "who took my data" could be much better addressed. It's a bit like the problem with Windows 10 downloading to my computer and not providing a simple way to know when it is happening, how much and being able to control it.

 For those with unlimited data isps, this is not an issue. But as can be seen by the constant and numerous posts on this site, it is a significant issue for Exede customers.

 It certainly is an issue for me. I have been exceeding my data allowance well in advance of the end of the cycle period for the last few months without a significant change in my usage habits. I have spent many, many hours trying to deal with how to measure and control my data usage with limited to no real results.

 With this being such a problem for so many customers I just don't understand why Exede doesn't do something to provide it's customers with the ability to "see" the data usage that they "see".  It's in the modem, right? If Exede can see it, why can't we?

  I'm sure you can understand why people would end up feeling that Exede has something to hide. I may be oversimplifying this but it seems like a pretty straight forward solution. It may not be easy but if possible, it would go a long way in improving customer satisfaction.

 And despite the  "captive audience" aspect of this service, I would think that Exede understands the value of happy customers.

 I think I understand the limitations on satellite internet and that's unfortunate. However, I personally will move to a different isp the moment one comes along that has unlimited data (or provides a meaningful and user friendly way to monitor my data usage),

 The time associated with the extreme effort it takes to control/monitor my data usage (Windows 10 and ineffective access to my usage) is just more trouble that it's worth.

  And I have to say that Exede could do a much better job addressing this issue not withstanding the excellent responses I have received from the folks on this site.
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Gwalk900, Champion

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Mike,


 "With this being such a problem for so many customers I just don't understand why Exede doesn't do something to provide it's customers with the ability to "see" the data usage that they "see"."


As an ISP, Exede has a duty to supply a subscriber with a contracted volume of data.

How that data is consumed is the responsibility of the user. Maintaining and understanding how that data is used is also the responsibility of the subscriber.

Thee are just soooo many variations of user connected computers and devices a ISP simply can't provide more than just general tips.

So what can Exede "see"?

They can see the amount of data you use.

If you have your own router they can see the MAC address of that router and that will display it brand.

If you have the wifi modem they will see the number of devices connected and that will tell the brand of those devices

They can infer roughly where you went on the net by the type of "traffic".

At issue here is .... a webpage is built out of many segments. Many of those segments are "third party" to the website so it may appear that you visited many websites.

Beyond that .. the "internet" is changing daily.

Auto start video, HTML5 "prefetch" will eat data like mad if not blocked by browser extensions.

Many users don't understand all the background processes running on their computers and devices.

The only way to get a real handle on usage is to invest in a router that tracks data.

I have an Asus RT-AC3100 running the Asuswrt-Merlin firmware. It shows every bit and byte used per device. Truly worth every cent I paid for it.

I wrote a rather long post dealing with understanding how data is used and how it may be tracked.

I suggest you (slowly) read it and then post back with any questions you may have.

The link is as follows:


https://community.exede.com/exede/topics/understanding-and-tracking-data-usage



  

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Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314, Champion

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mike, I don't need to spend time to see where my data is being consumed, and by what device. My ASUS router is working faithfully 24/7 keeping track of all this, ready for me to review it by hour, day, month whenever I think data was consumed that I may not have initiated. A good router with data monitoring capabilities Is worth its weight in gold with a restricted data plan.
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mike barber

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Thanks Steve, I'll take a look at that.
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mike barber

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Yes, we as users are responsible for how we use the data however most of us are not that technically able to do so. What is so wrong with asking for some help in understanding how this works?

So what can Exede "see"?

They can see the amount of data you use.

So let us, the customer, "see" what Exede "sees", "the amount of data I use".....  is that such an inappropriate thing to ask???

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mike barber

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They are pretty pricey Steve $250 to $400. Any lower cost units that you might recommend? 
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les

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Hi
 Im not Steve [Im sure he will reply soon tho with good info]
I just got a new router that was recommended and it is the netgear 6200
it has a cool phone app that gives you really good information of usage, connected devices and the genie software on your PC helps too, but the phone app shines.
 I bought it off amazon for around $50 and added the extra proection and tech support from squaretrade.

https://www.amazon.com/NETGEAR-Wireless-Router-Gigabit-R6200/dp
/B008HO9DIG


 it just plugged in [connected] and upgraded the firmware easily [during my un metered time on the plan] also got the phone app all working easily in a very short time.
 I just ignored the negative reviews and followed the directions to connect and powered everything on as instructed and it works great.

 its been running a few days and I am still learning about what it and the genie app is capable of.

  prices tend to vary - it is my opinion to buy new and avoid the refurb or used units.
(Edited)
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Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314, Champion

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Mike, as les mentioned, one does not have to pay a lot for  decent router with data monitoring, sometimes called traffic analyzer. I bought an upscale ASUS AC-1900P for around $130.00 a year ago so it is just wise to shop around. You can also find some refurb units for even less. They are worth it, to get a better idea of who and what is using your data. There are also some free apps that you can download, but they only work on the device it is running on, and need to be loaded on every device you have. One I like is Glasswire
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mike barber

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Thanks again Steve. The effort you make to help people is most sincerely appreciated. I downloaded Glasswire and decided I didn't want to take the time to figure it out. I think that is what got me to this point, where I just no longer have the energy to deal with Exede.
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Diana, Viasat Employee

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Thanks Bev.
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Martin Seebach

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Mike your question is germane and exede does have things to hide. One example occurs when your satellite modem loses sync with satellite. I don't recall exact amount but do know it is between 200 and 500 MB and this comes out of your data amount. Why it happens they won't discuss. Having worked with nationwide (USA) satellite backbones re-positioning the sky based unit. Minute changes have little to no affect. Larger moves wipe out areas till they get new azimuth/range and time numbers that agree with new position relative to your modem. Primary reason is to make a better connection with their government customers. We the residential types mean less than nothing to them.

Their credo is the less the customer knows the less they can prove. Even more dismal is the lack of customer service. The answer from exede wonk was very noncommittal hot air crafted by spin doctor staff. To use his words, "We here at Hertz are only contracted to rent the car. You want to steer it bring your own steering wheel. You want it to move; tires,...yatta bleh.
There are no other options where I live. No phone lines closer than 6 miles. Cable is 15 miles and cellular doesn't work below my front ridge. All this 20 miles from downtown San Jose, CA. Most residential satellite customers are in same situation. Exede knows this and provides staff and service accordingly.
As to above router discussion all routers keep track. The less they cost the more basic the reporting. Any router above the base from each manufacturer will give you at a minimum, received packets, transmitted packets, up time since last sync, dropped packets and some other basic information.
It sucks to be at mercy of a company that has no idea of how to treat individual customers. And it truly sucks when they are one of 2 or the only option. Hughes being the other.
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mike barber

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Thanks Martin,
 However, as you may have seen in one of my recent posts I just no longer have the time or energy to deal with this company's inability to provide value nor with Microsoft who makes things so complicated even an engineer such as myself can't figure it out.
 I say screw it. I'll live with it till something better comes along and I have been around long enough to know that it will.
 I have much better things to do than deal with companies that don't care or make things so complicated that the paying customer can't get the value he is entitled to.

 A bit ironic that Microsoft takes the data you pay for and Exede will not let you verify that they are not taking the data you pay for.....