Blistering bandwidth!

I signed up with Sonatel last week and got a phone line installed. The broadband services are predictably very expensive, and I chose the cheapest one, which gives us just 512k downspeed … or that’s what I thought. In fact I had already warned the salesperson that, annual tied contract notwithstanding, if I didn’t get the speed I paid for, then I would break the contract. So there I was, squatting on the floor, Mr B’s laptop balancing on a suitcase, primed for high dudgeon. I logged on to, and sighed when I saw the nearest server was in Bamako, Mali; hardly the centre of highspeed telecommunications, I thought.

The ping came out average and I waited for the downspeed test to begin. I blinked. The needle jumped and fell back in a microsecond. I looked at the measurement: over 9 Mbps. While I pondered that freak result, the upspeed test chugged round and clocked in a measly 65 kbps. Still, I tried the test again; again over 9 Mbps.

He-he-he. I thought to myself. I’ve got a fat tube and no one’s checked. I can hardly complain about the upspeed, however.

How long will it last before they realize? Have I got the Internet equivalent of the light bulb that never dies? I mean, the speed is obviously possible, and the reason everyone doesn’t have it is purely commercial, and not technical.

This morning, of course, when I wanted to take a screenshot of the test. The result came in at under 500 kbps. I tested it again immediately and got the following result:

Blistering bandwidth!

So it is obviously very erratic, but I haven’t had any cause to complain about the speed in practice.

Of course, having no electricity for eleven hours (no modem) did slow things down somewhat.