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Old 08-23-2004, 12:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default BES MDS vs. 4.0's BWC (TCP/IP stack)

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I'm confused about something. I have read and been told that web browsing through an MDS is faster than not. For example, a third-party MDS provider ensured me that bandwidth through his service was very fast in comparison to what I currently have (TMO browser with RBRO hack).

Is this true? How will 4.0's built in TCP/IP stack change this? I assume bandwidth is a function of the provider? Can these networks support higher speeds than we currently receive? Will 4.0 make any difference in terms of bandwidth?

Some clarification on this issue would be much appreciated. If I'm not making myself clear, it's because I don't completely know what I'm talking about :D I have read the MDS FAQs etc but none of them seem to address the issue of speed. . .

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Old 08-23-2004, 12:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The info that was told to you is incorrect, I believe that eventhough MDS uses third party servers, it still has to rely on the providers servers for speed..

so you wont notice a difference, unless the MDS server is terribly slow.

4.0 will eliminate a need for Third Party MDS.
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Old 08-23-2004, 12:23 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guess
4.0 will eliminate a need for Third Party MDS.
So I hear, which is great. Glad I didn't sign up for that 3rd party MDS. My only reason was to have better browsing speeds and now I learn that that was a fallacy.
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:02 PM   #4 (permalink)
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>>The info that was told to you is incorrect, I believe that eventhough MDS uses third party servers, it still has to rely on the providers servers for speed..

Almost accurate, but not quite always true. Sometimes it's faster to go to the "Internet Cloud" from the corporate Intranet than from the provider.

The MDS Way (Your BES or Mailstreet, etc)
Blackberry -> Provider/Blackberry.com -> Corporate BES Server -> Internet via Corporate (fast)

The Carrier Way (RBRO, or 4.0)
Blackberry -> Provider/Blackberry.com -> Internet via Carrier (slow; overloaded)

And the maddening thing: Sometimes the carrier does port blocking! I know that a UK carrier does it on non-corporate Blackberries. The only way to bypass this is to get your own BES/MDS even with 4.0 TCP/IP stack. Then your Blackberry Internet connection is limited only by your corporate firewall or the firewall at the hosting service (i.e. Mailstreet's own firewall).

The inverse can be true, especially if the "Provider/Blackberry.com" hop is extremely slow (especially between "Provider/Blackberry.com" and your corporation), and reducing the number of hops by going through the carrier's own BWC is faster.
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:07 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Correct, but either way it has to go through the provider, and I bet the provider has capped upload and download speeds in order to keep everything consistent.

I bet there is even more of a cap on the Internet via Carrier side of things, as there are millions of cell phones out there accessing the web.
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:09 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I have tested performance differences in Reqwireless web viewer (which is much faster at image downloads than Blackberry Browser, and makes these things much more noticeable). So, for me, it is faster for my Reqwireless to go through Mailstreet BES/MDS than to go through Rogers. At least, during midday congestion periods.

Other times, the difference is not noticeable...

Rogers does not throttle downloads. I can download OTA files (from my BES/MDS). A 100 kilobyte file downloads in 18 seconds, which means I've exceeded about 5 kilobytes per second -- just about right for an average GPRS connection. (Browser rendering tests are not accurate unless the browser is really fast; all Blackberry browsers can't display data as fast as it is downloading, as you can notice that transmit/receive indiciator stops flashing and the browser is still rendering.)

To the best of my knowledge, it is a general policy for carriers not to throttle data sent to corproate BES servers. (There might be general global GPRS throttling but that will affect all kinds of connection equally, and thus a fast corporate LAN will still be faster, even if a little masked by the throttling. Like lower latency; website starting to download sooner). I have no idea if there is throttling being done on the BWC server.
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:12 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Does anyone know what ACTUAL speeds are blackberrys are capable of on certain networks?
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:19 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for the info guys. I'd like to try a third party MDS but need Outlook 2003. Don't really feel like spending the $80 for that in addition to the MDS costs. I guess RBRO and ultimately 4.0 will suffice until then
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:20 PM   #9 (permalink)
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GPRS is frequently quoted at things like "50-70 kilobits per second" from several sources.

Rogers Actual speed: over 5 kilobytes per second during periods of low GPRS congestion. GPRS bandwidth uses up unused cellwaves (i.e. the fewer phone calls on the air, the more bandwidth for GPRS). Usually 3-4 kilobytes per second.

How it was tested #1: Over-The-Air download of a 100 kilobyte file, broke 5 kilobytes per second. I tried many other files, and the speeds are consistent. When airwaves are congested, it slows down somewhat.

How it was tested #2: Reqwireless webviewer and waiting for the transciever indicator at upper-right to dissappear. (Reqwireless tells me how many kilobytes is being downloaded). I total up the text and images, and that's the total kilobytes. I divide by number of seconds. But rendering is still a bottleneck. However, I got a 100 kilobyte webpage (news.google.com, Reqwireless, images turned on) downloaded in slightly less than 30 seconds. After the transmit indicator stopped, it was still rendering/rendering .... so about 3 kilobytes per second in reqwireless (About 1 kilobyte per second in 3.7's Blackberry Browser, although images seem to download somewhat faster in 4.0 browser)

Generally, GPRS is approximately the same as a 56 Kbps modem in speed, when you have a GPRS modem on a laptop (pre-EDGE).
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:20 PM   #10 (permalink)
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JohnH,

MailStreet provides a FREE copy of Outlook 2003 for just the price of shipping ($11.95)
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:21 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Rejhon
JohnH,

MailStreet provides a FREE copy of Outlook 2003 for just the price of shipping.
But their monthly service is much more than the provider I was considering. . . Is there a contract length with mailstreet? Can I sign up for a month, get Outlook 2003 and then switch?
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:27 PM   #12 (permalink)
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There's no contract with Mailstreet. However, there's a signup fee (I think it was 39.99 to setup the 9.99 per month optional BES) that would make that option somewhat unpalatable. You can, but you'd still be paying the equivalent of buying a full copy of Outlook 2003 at full price :D Better to just stick with Mailstreet for at least a few months until BWC 4.0 is released. You could budget it like "buy Outlook 2003 at $80 and get a couple months of MDS for free", and quit when 4.0 comes out.

Anyway, I was using Outlook 2002 with Mailstreet, but I needed to set up a VPN to Mailstreet's servers.
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:28 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnh
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Rejhon
JohnH,

MailStreet provides a FREE copy of Outlook 2003 for just the price of shipping.
But their monthly service is much more than the provider I was considering. . . Is there a contract length with mailstreet? Can I sign up for a month, get Outlook 2003 and then switch?
I believe your liscense for outlook expires the second you stop using their service.
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:31 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guess
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnh
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Rejhon
JohnH,

MailStreet provides a FREE copy of Outlook 2003 for just the price of shipping.
But their monthly service is much more than the provider I was considering. . . Is there a contract length with mailstreet? Can I sign up for a month, get Outlook 2003 and then switch?
I believe your liscense for outlook expires the second you stop using their service.
sneaky sneaky. One 3rd party MDS provided me with a link to a warez site to purchase Outlook 2003. That sketched me out so I passed.
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Old 08-24-2004, 02:00 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Yeah, pointing out an illegal copy is just too far out. Personally, I have enjoyed my experience with Mailstreet and their tech support. But while Outlook 2003 is nice to have on its own, I like the way it integrates with Word 2003. And while you're at it, I really like Excel 2003.

I would recommend getting a full copy of Office 2003 on eBay, and then picking the hosted BES service you are most comfortable with.
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Old 08-24-2004, 02:09 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kirson
Yeah, pointing out an illegal copy is just too far out. Personally, I have enjoyed my experience with Mailstreet and their tech support. But while Outlook 2003 is nice to have on its own, I like the way it integrates with Word 2003. And while you're at it, I really like Excel 2003.

I would recommend getting a full copy of Office 2003 on eBay, and then picking the hosted BES service you are most comfortable with.
How much can you get Office '03 for on ebay? I am an excel monkey and would love excel 2003 but I don't have it at work so I'm not really tempted to get it at home either. . .
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Old 08-24-2004, 02:15 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I got my copy for around $230. You could get it much cheaper if you wanted to get the Student version. I weighed that long and hard. I consider myself a student of life, enrolled in the college of nature...yeah right...EULA is kind of particular when it comes to accreditation

But that being said, I can see the argument that one should pay Microsoft a license, but not that MUCH of a license. So, if that is your school of thought, go for the student edition, and you can find it for around $150.

I LOVE excel 2003. I have no idea what functionality was added, but I love it anyway!!!
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Old 08-25-2004, 04:06 PM   #18 (permalink)
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During the dotcom boom, I enrolled in an official Microsoft training course for $99 that included a free copy of Office 2000 Professional. Or essentially Microsoft Office 2000 for $99 provided you go through free training, whichever you view it.

They don't have such an offer these days, but that was one way to get the whole echilidia without needing to be a student of an accredited institution.
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