Pace 5286AC Modem - poor wifi, no passthrough and bugged firmware

Internet access discussion, including Fusion, IP Broadband, and Gigabit Fiber!
14 posts Page 1 of 2
by willtull » Tue May 28, 2019 10:16 pm
When will Sonic acknowledge and fix the issue with the Pace 5286AC modems which are being installed for their AT&T customers? There is a well know bug in the latest firmware which limits download speeds to 50 Mbps when DMZ mode is enabled. In combination with the poor wifi signal and lack of passthrough, this makes for a serious issue if you're trying to use your own router or accecss point. Customer support has been unable or unwilling to fix this.
by rl0wen68 » Thu May 30, 2019 4:47 pm
I am pretty sure that I am also experiencing this problem with my Pace 5268AC Gateway. Although I am not connected to Gigabit (Sonic Fusion), I did recently upgrade my service from 50 MB to 75MB speed. Of course, this uses the AT&T lines and consists two bonded pairs coming into my Gateway from the street.

I also run DMZ mode to light up my Gigabit wired LAN and two WiFi nodes. My WiFi Router is setup to handle all my internal home wired network using DHCP, as well as being one of two WiFi access points. Also have been doing this for over ten years starting with AT&T Uverse service before switching to Sonic about three years ago. Although all the network details are relatively obscure to me, I stumbled through a number of forums in the past to figure out how to run my home network behind the supplied Gateway.

Now that I am connected to 75MB service, I only get close to that speed when doing the test directly from the Pace 5268AC. When performing a test from behind my WiFi Router, connected via my wired Gigabit LAN, I only get speeds less than 50MB.

When I called Sonic support to ask about settings or parameters on the Gateway that might be checked, they informed me that they do not support anything other than the standard configuration. Basically, Sonic does not support me setting up a network, wired or wireless, behind the Gateway. I think this is unreasonable. I know that few people have a more complex network behind their Gateway, but why make it so difficult to make it work?

My wish is the Gateway could be set up just like a DSL modem in bridged mode, so that all my network and related service could be handled by my own, easy to use, and supported WiFi and Router hardware. It can't be that difficult to design a basic modem to connect to the WAN via the fiber, or other wired connections.
by willtull » Thu May 30, 2019 6:24 pm
I agree that it's very strange to not have a passthrough/bridge mode and to also tell customers that they don't support DMZ. The situation is made worse by the fact that the wifi signal from the Pace 5286 is very weak, in my experience.

As I understand the Pace bug, if you have DMZ+ turned on your speeds will be limited to 50 down and approximately 100 up (regardless of whether you have gigabit service). This is exactly what I am experiencing, along with many, many AT&T customers over on their forums.
by dct » Fri May 31, 2019 11:37 am
willtull wrote:
When will Sonic acknowledge and fix the issue with the Pace 5286AC modems which are being installed for their AT&T customers?


This (alongside the other thread) is the first we've really heard of this issue. Apologies if it seems that support has been unwilling to resolve this problem - we're currently unable to fix the software/firmware issues from our end, and will likely need to wait until AT&T issues a firmware update.

I'll see if there's anything that we can do on our end to alleviate some of the frustration, which most likely would be replacement/alternative equipment.

Thanks for making us aware of the problem, and we'll reach out with next steps as we are able.
Dan T.
Community & Escalations Manager
707-547-3400
@Sonic
by willtull » Fri May 31, 2019 7:53 pm
Dan, thanks very much for the response and action. I understand it's challenging since AT&T is the provider, but we appreciate any help you can provide.
by rl0wen68 » Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:48 am
This morning, I measured the connection speed using two different websites (TestMy.net and Speedtest by Ookla). This test was run from my computer that is connected to my Gigabit LAN wired through my WiFi Router, which is in turn connected to the Pace Gateway using the DMZ+ mode. My home is wired with Cat 6 cables and Gigabit switches. The results are 43 Mbps upload and 7 Mbps download. There was no significant difference in the results between the two test websites.

Then, I performed the speed test using the Gateway (also shows the test results after I was bumped up to 75 Mbps service):
Screen Shot 2019-06-01 at 8.14.55 AM.png
Screen Shot 2019-06-01 at 8.14.55 AM.png (243.78 KiB) Viewed 1412 times


The Gateway is clearly getting excellent bandwidth and the data corroborates the issue raised by willtull for non-Fusion Sonic customers who are subscribed to speeds greater than 50Mbps, and are using DMZ+ to configure a network behind the Gateway.
by cmeisel » Sat Jun 01, 2019 9:43 am
This discussion belongs in the att forum. Sonic fiber doesn’t use the same hardware nor does it require to use their equipment at all. You can hook your own router up to the ONT directly if you like. I doubt there is much sonic can do to force att to get their act together and it seems att doesn’t care much about it. I am sure this is the reason why sonic builds their own fiber network in so many areas.
by Guest » Sat Jun 01, 2019 11:26 am
Can Sonic swap in the Arris BGW210 modem, to determine/confirm that the source of the problem is the Pace 5268AC firmware for a DMZ connection? (For testing purposes, direct wired connection of a PC to the modem is advised, to eliminate other potential problems.)

This specific problem aside, the BGW210 appears to be regarded generally as a better modem than the 5268AC.
by willtull » Sat Jun 01, 2019 11:47 am
Cmeisel, maybe your're talking about the native Sonic fiber service? For Fusion (Sonic fiber provided by AT&T), we are forced to use (and pay for) the AT&T Pace 5286 modem, and neither AT&T nor Sonic would replace it with a different model. I did read of some people buying their own Arris BGW210 modem and getting that to work but I assumed you would have to get AT&T to accept your new MAC address.

Regarding posting in the AT&T forum, I disagree. The problem is very clearly documented and acknowledged already by AT&T there, and I can't get help from them directly in any case. I'm a Sonic customer, and so I have to rely on Sonic for service.
by cmeisel » Mon Jun 03, 2019 8:16 am
I get that you guys are sonic customers using the Att line and hardware. But I am also sure of two other things:
1. Att is the only party here who can fix the firmware bugs. Sonic can’t do anything to force them

2. Att requires sonic to use the pace 5286ac so unless customers push att hard in their forum, no help or big fix
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