Early Gripes with Sky Broadband

I’ve recently joined Sky Broadband from PlusNet – hey, a year’s free broadband and a £100 pre-paid Mastercard on top of over £77 TopCashBack is hard to turn down!  However, I have already come across two major annoyances – one which I’ve carried over from my days at PlusNet and one which is new.

Screenshot from Sky Hub's Dynamic DNS screen showing a list with a single entry.
What passes for “choice” when you’re a Sky customer

Let’s start with the new one. It turns out, the Sky router (sorry, “Sky Hub”) only lets you ‘choose’ from a list of one Dynamic DNS providers. Since I’m not interested in paying $40 a year for something that I know I can get for free this is not an acceptable solution for me.

So instead I came across this old post on AskUbuntu which pointed me towards a program called ddclient.  This perl-based program will run on my Linux server and update the No-IP service from there, bypassing the router instead.  Not ideal as far as I’m concerned, but workable.

The second issue is one that was also a problem at PlusNet in that, for whatever reason, ISPs these days seem reluctant to let you bypass their DNS servers (cutting their load and doing part of their job for them!) and so remove any option related to this from their routers.  I managed to get round this at one point with Plus Net by telnetting into the router itself and updating the settings manually (not for the feint-hearted!) but this Sky Hub is a different router make so I will need to do a bit more digging on that one.  A task for another day methinks.

Needless to say, Sky and I aren’t off to the best of starts.

Author: nerd.

An experienced IT professional, I used to run a number of small websites and spend a lot of time tinkering with my sites or my PC - back when I had free time.

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