1. We presently use a router from BT to get internet service. Will we need a new router and will this be provided by B4RN? Costs or part of the installation?
B4RN will install their own equipment on an inside wall of your home. This is the equivalent of your current router and has WiFi and wired connections. This is supplied as part of the monthly subscription charge of £30 (£25 + VAT) (i.e. not extra).
2. If B4RN provides a new router will it be wireless and what sort of range will it have?
Comparable Wi-Fi performance to modern routers from the likes of BT, Sky, Talk Talk etc. Some customers have reported that the WiFi may be slightly weaker than the latest BT Home Hub, but it is a lot faster than the home hub.
3. Where will the router be located in our house?
It can be mounted wherever you want it in the house. Ideally, it would want to be somewhere central so that the Wi-Fi can be used to maximum effect. However, where it goes will largely be subject to limiting the disruption at the property, i.e. it is easier to run duct through lawn & flower beds than tarmac & concrete. Just like any other company like BT or Sky, B4RN volunteers would find a convenient location and anything beyond that (for example internal routing under floors, through lofts etc. to a more ideal location) would be down to the householder. The router needs power, so will need to be mounted within 1m of a socket. It can also be useful to have a telephone socket nearby so you can more easily change your entire home phone circuit onto VoIP.
4. Can we have the router located close to where we use our computer to provide wired connection?
Yes, subject to the answer above.
5. My existing service provider provides my email service. Do I need to change to a B4RN email address?
You would need to contact your existing service provider to determine their policy on email services when you terminate your broadband service with them. Regardless of this, our recommendation is to move to using a free email service like gmail, which is typically far superior than service provider offerings. As such, B4RN does not offer an email service.
6. We use BT for our broadband and telephone service. BT prices are increasing and as we are out of contract we could negotiate a better deal than at present but would then be on a 12 month contract with the supplier. Therefore an accurate estimate of when we can expect to get a service from B4RN is needed so we can decide whether to contract with a supplier for the next 12 months.
We will provide an estimate of when B4RN could be expected to provide service but this cannot be accurate because the time it takes depends on the following:
- Agreeing routes with landowners.Digging trenches. “Many hands make light work”. B4RN does not come to a village and provide the installation. The B4RN rollout is done by the community (B4SW). All of us are part of that effort and the more people help the quicker it will be.
- Raising enough money from the community.
7. Are there any usage limits?
The B4RN network has no limit; you can use it as much as you like, subject to a fair usage policy.
8. Is there a help line number if the service goes down?
Telephone B4RN during normal office hours on 01524 555887.
9. How can I optimise B4RN broadband speeds in every room in my home?
Three different ways of extending your B4RN connection to every room of your house are by wireless, homeplug adaptors and ethernet. The B4RN website gives details of each method as well as its advantages and disadvantages. To access this, go to www.b4rn.org.uk/resources/ and click on Home Network Help v1.