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  • 10 Oct
    2012

An Important Letter From Gian to YOU

We've re-published this letter from Gian Visser, our CEO, to all our ADSL Clients - for those who did not get to read the email, or would just like a reminder of the important points from his letter.

I've got some breaking news. And it's very important that you know about it. In my 12 years at Afrihost this has probably been the most challenging email I've written.

Why?

Because this is one of the most exciting things we've ever done and I want to make sure I communicate clearly how groundbreaking it is and exactly how it affects you. I believe the ADSL game is about to change again. In 2009 we offered ADSL data for R29 per GB when the going rate was R70. And it changed the game. Our business (and the SA Internet market) hasn't been the same since.

So what's happening?

A new ADSL network has been custom built and created for us and all of our clients. It's been crafted with love and care. Passion and precision. Our uncompromising requirements, specifications and expectations have not only been met but exceeded. Nothing's been held back. I'm confident that this new network will change the ADSL game again in South Africa

Here are the reasons why...

Your connection will be fully redundant. Local traffic is spread across multiple IPC's across the country - so even if there is a catastrophic Telkom outage in one area we can divert all traffic within minutes. The new network also uses multiple undersea cables for unparalleled international speed, stability and reliability.

So what if one of the undersea cables has an outage or gets cut?

Traffic will automatically be diverted across the other cables so you'll still be able to access international sites - you probably won't even know that anything happened!

But that's not all:

  • We now have unparalleled control over every facet of each of our ADSL products.
  • We have created our products to work exactly like we want them to work.
  • We will now be able to control how the system prioritises traffic and we can change it if necessary.
  • We are no longer reliant on our supplier controlling the way your Internet data is delivered to you across the network.

Now we control this.

What does this all mean for you?

Simply that you'll get the absolute best ADSL Internet experience possible.

So when will you start enjoying all this?

Your account will be moved to the new network this Tuesday (16th of October). You can log in to your ClientZone at anytime to see which network you are on and whether your account has been moved. Please note that this currently applies to clients who's usernames end with @afrihost.co.za, and users on @is.afrihost.co.za will be contacted separately next week.

What do you have to do?

Nothing. Your settings will stay exactly the same - your username and password will remain unchanged. We are doing all the work in the background for you.

Will your connection to the Internet be disrupted or broken?

No. Your ADSL should work all the time and the switchover should be seamless.

What if you can't connect on Tuesday?

If you find you are not able to download anything in Tuesday then switch off your router or modem for a few minutes and turn it on again - this will enable your router/modem to log you onto our new network and should fix the problem.

What changes for you?

Nothing (other than your ADSL connection is hopefully even better than usual) You still contact us in exactly the same way if you have any problems in the future

Who built and owns this new network?

MTN. We've worked very closely with them to create this network and I've been amazed by their tireless dedication and passion. They have exceeded our expectations at every turn. We're very excited to partner with MTN - without question one of the best tech companies in South Africa - to bring this groundbreaking, game-changing ADSL network to you. And we're excited to let you loose on it on Tuesday!

Will there be teething problems?

I hope and pray not! Obviously we have done everything we can to ensure it all goes as smoothly as possible. However, as you probably know, computers and anything tech-related can be unpredictable so if there are any unforeseen problems be assured we (and MTN) have our best technicians ready to leap into action if necessary.

What about the websites we host?

We are NOT moving our websites or web servers that we host. Nothing is changing to our hosting infrastructure or any of our hosting products. This new network is specifically created for ADSL users so we will only be moving our ADSL clients on Tuesday. Our web servers will stay with Internet Solutions (IS). They are a great company and we have the utmost respect for them. We are very grateful to them for the excellent service they have given us in the past and will continue to give us going forward.

If you have any questions please post your questions in the comments section and we'll answer them for you ASAP.

Thank you for your ongoing support.

We do not (and never will!) take you and your trust in us for granted.

Thank you

Gian
CEO, Afrihost

 

Here are some of your questions (and Afriman's answers) to help clear the confusion and get the good vibes going:-

Does the MTN-ownership mean that a Telkom landline is no longer a prerequisite for an ADSL line?

MTN only owns the network, not Afrihost (in case that is part of the question. It's still ADSL so you still need a line.

Will this affect my Telkom Line managed by Afrihost - Should I cancel the Telkom line now?

Your ADSL line is unaffected, and this is just like your regular Afrihost adsl account. You still need your router, ADSL Line and Username and Password (as always). Please don't cancel any infrstracture, the ONLY changes are going to be made on our side and everything remains the same on your side (it will just be more awesome).

Will I get faster Upload and Downloads Speeds?

We expect that general connectivity will improve in the sense that we can get optimal performance from your ADSL line. We still are limited to the capabilities of the Telkom infrstructure in your home and local area.

Does this apply to clients with bandwidth only from Afrihost or does Afrihost have to manage the ADSL Line? 

All clients on Afrihost DSL (except those with usernames ending with @is.afrihost.co.za) will be moved over and enjoy the benefits of the new network.

How will high usage users on the uncapped option currently routed to IS be affected? That is where login was changed to @is.afrihost.....

We will contact those users during the course of next week to find out what option they would prefer, and at this stage we will continue to offer the same service on IS, as well as an equivalent service on MTN.

Does this result in any changes to the Terms and Conditions, Acceptable Use Policy or Privacy Policy? 

At this stage, all our policies will remain as is, we are simply moving everythign accross and we'll monitor and assess before we make any changes.

Will all ADSL clients be moved to the MTN infrastructure (i.e. capped and uncapped)? Will all ADSL prices remain the same? Will the current "bundles" offered (and pricing) stay the same? Since the infrastructure will not be under Afrihost's control, will clear rules and guidelines for the uncapped AUP be posted (especially those related to shaping and throttling)?

All pricing, products and services will remain the same, including AUP limits - for now! But rest assured they will only change for the better. We'd like to offer more bandwidth and more value for money on all products. We are definitely now in control of every aspect, and can set the rules now more than ever.

Will access to IS's News Server be affected and will MTN be putting up it's own News Server?

At this stage we expect that access to IS news server will be affected, and mostly unavailable. We are exploring a news server with MTN, and we'll publish this information as soon as we have a goal in sight. We'll also explore other alternatives should we not be able to setup our own news servers in a reasonable time.

Will joining MTN allow Afrihost to offer 3G internet packages?

We certainly hope so. We will continue to offer our existing AlwaysOn packages, but the possibilities are open for the future to offer all kinds of Broadband access products.

Will there be any changes to the outgoing SMTP server for email or will smtp.afrihost.co.za and smtp.isdsl.co.za still work?

Our main SMTP (smtp.afrihost.co.za) will remain active, however we will not be able to use ISDL fallback SMTP's as we are no longer on their network. We will be able to provide new alternative mail servers via the MTN network.

As a high traffic ADSL user I have been moved to Internet Solutions network for better throttling. Will there be similar options?

We revamped our Uncapped accounts to allow much more bandwidth access than IS uncapped accounts, though we are not in a posititon to offer 2 concurrent accounts yet. By the time we move those users over to MTN (if they choose to do so) we will be able to offer equivalent (if not better) uncapped products for them to move to.

Will we now get the long awaiting Fixed IP's on the business packages?

We are planning to deploy this very soon, and the network has definitely brought us closer to this. This will be available on business packages only, but we will make the announcment soon (once our existing products are stabilised and performing as expected)

How does this affect your shaping policies?

At present all policies will remain as is, until such time as we feel the network is stable and we can identify unused capacity or resources to add more value to our products. Whether those will come in the form of price drops or additional access to bandwidth will be released closer to the time.

I'm worried about reports suggesting MTN has some dodgy dealings going in Africa and the Middle East. Maybe those are untrue, but how long before they try to buy you out?

Those reports are based on allegations which have yet to be proven and the cases are ongoing. In any case, MTN are a service provider and do not reflect on Afrihost's business dealings in any way. We are not considering any buy-out offers at this time (and not for any time in the future) so clients can rest assured that we will continue to secure their interests no matter who we procure services from.

Where in the ClientZone can I see which network my account is currently on?

This will be in MyProducts>MyProductivity, but will only become active once we start moving the accounts over on the 16th.

89 Cool Comments Leave a comment
Pieter said

I’m worried about reports suggesting MTN has some dodgy dealings going in Africa and the Middle East. Maybe those are untrue, but how long before they try to buy you out?

Maureen said

Does this mean that I can cancel my Telkom ADSL connection, leaving only their 384 landline package that gives me 1000 free national talk minutes a month? And then - if I were to change my setup to you guys managing my ADSL and go for the 1024 kbps uncapped option, what will the charged for that then be?

Janey said

I can’t get a landline so have MTN wireless internet.  Are you considering going this way in the future?

Rob said

This is good news!
Could it get better?
Perhaps the offer of a faster service cheaper.
Being the creative people that you are – I look forward to this!
And hopefully your loyal existing customers will enjoy the benefit of packages offered to potential new customers. :-)

Daniel Janks said

As a high traffic also user I have been moves to Internet solutions network for better throttling. Will this change?

Stephen said

Will there be any changes to the outgoing SMTP server for email ? or will smtp.afrihost.co.za and smtp.isdsl.co.za still work?

Zooxle said

Thanks for letting us know. I hope the new network is much more stable that the last couple of months were on the current network. Anyway i’m still a loyal customer and will probably only leave if Afrihost becomes defunct but seeing this continual improvement from you side make me happy.

Andre said

Does this affect customers who have not opted to have Afrihost manage their ADSL lines?  In other words, if Telkom (and not Afrihost) is still managing their ADSL line, how does this change affect us?

Nicolaas Nel said

My experience with ****** in the past has been traumatic, (due to their staff incompetance). I then moved to ****, who, also cheesed me off, due to their “throttling” the bandwidth when it suits them, and they had “peering” problems with Telkom some time back. So I decided to join you, Afrihost, and I have not had any problems that I’ve noticed.

Neville Clark said

Hi Gian

Will joining MTN allow Afri-host to offer 3G internet packages?

Regards,

Neville

Jono said

How will this affect news server access?

Morgan said

Hi Gian

I know that Afrihost does the best it can for it’s clients. My only question is, will access to your News server remain unchanged? MTN does not have a news server (NNTP protocol).

Thanks.

Duncan said

I am not sure how you are going to be any better because you are already by far the best!  I just wish something could be done about the last mile.  When can you offer us fibre to home so we can stream our TV?  Now that you are in partnership with MTN, how about providing us with some cell phone data if we are also MTN cell phone customers?

Antonie Smith said

Hi Gian & Afrihost,

Break-a-leg on the move. You have my patience should it be needed and most importantly, thank you for your dedication to customer service and experience, that is the reason I switched to Afrihost and why I remain a customer.

Regards

Leon Nel said

The MTN / Neotel fiber network infrastructure - alliance provides for full backup redundancy Nationwide and promises to break traditional throttling monopolies held by traditional large players.

Only the so called ‘last mile’ telephone copper cabling infrastructure between local Telkom Exchanges and detination addresses are still restricted and controlled by Telkom but should not be a show stopper for future innovation and change as alternative high speed broadband radio technologies are readily available and can rapidly be deployed as replacement if and when required which should will sort the remaining constraints out for good ito both voice and data communications.

These modern technologies are already deployed successfully, trialed and tested by well known International carriers such as AT&T and others and proves to reduce ongoing network maintenance costs even further.

George said

How will the move over to MTN affect News servers ie using news servers for downloading?

pieter said

Will MTN get news server access?  AS IS will most probably not work

Org said

Will we need to use a new SMTP server? And what will it be?

Gerrit Moolman said

Hi,

When do you foresee the uncapped accounts having the option to move?

Regards,

Christo said

I’m a very happy customer. I have been with Afrihost for some time now. I have received excellent service. Will you still have News Server (NNTP) available. This is currently available through IS, but to my knowledge MTN does not have a News Server.

Hennie said

Hi Afrihost.

Will moving to MTN be able to give us a NNTP/ news server? Using it quite often.

Gari said

When can we leave ****** adsl altogether?

Paul van Jaarsveld said

If the ADSL is on an MTN backbone, that means the outgoing mail server setting will also change on mail clients like thunderbird and outlook. What will the new outgoing mail servers be? (I think we have been using smtp.isdsl.net since IS was the backbone)

Gregory Adam said

My ADSL is still with Telkom - what must I do and if I move it what must I do and what charges and what happens ?? Please explain in detail !!

Hennie said

Great work! Will we now get the long awaiting fixed IP’s on the business packages?

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