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Old 26.08.2014, 13:04
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Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

Hi All,

I just read a cablecom media release about Wi-Free, the newesh expansion of free wifi offer from cablecom, covering supposedly all of Switzerland come October.

Now everything looks nice and handy until one realizes that they will use the customer's wifi unites to broadcast the new wifi signal, again not a big issue! although the discussion can go on forever over how secure is the customer's private/home network and whether or not hackers can have a field day with this type of setup.

However what I find worrying is the fact that by default the customer's unit is automatically enabled to broadcast Wi-Free signal without the customer's approval. those of you with cablecom should have a look at their account (My upc> My products > Wi-Free).

I know it is their equipment but I am paying the rent/service fee hence it should be under my control until I ask for help or request otherwise or am I wrong here?

For people in the know & experience & simply have an opinion. What are your thoughts?

Thanks
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  #2  
Old 26.08.2014, 13:10
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

well since they raise the price of the service without asking you, opening up wifi without asking doesn't seem all that surprising.
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Old 26.08.2014, 13:16
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

When I got their email about that Wi-free I totally missed that it now was a bu default option! must have been in small characters somewhere...

Off I go to check on my account...
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Old 26.08.2014, 13:24
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

Separate network: privacy and data protection guaranteed
From mid-September to the beginning of October, the Swiss subsidiary of Liberty Global will extend Wi-Free to the whole of Switzerland. By means of a software update, Wi-Free will be added to upc cablecom Internet customers’ WLAN modems. Following registration via the My UPC customer portal and initial login using a mobile device, this device will then connect to Wi-Free automatically in the future.


Where is the problem? Cablecom will enable every modem to receive your encoded mobile device. It costs you nothing, and is secure.
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Old 26.08.2014, 13:33
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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encoded mobile device. It costs you nothing, and is secure.
By encoded they mean a your account login and a min 6 letter/number password!

Well, the cost is an arguable point, the basic fee is going up by 90Rb, Not a lot I know but multiply that by 2 million customer and it adds up.

Secure is again an arguable topic, there is actually a simple app to break such security measure on router's secondary/free/guest wifi!
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Old 26.08.2014, 14:11
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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Where is the problem? Cablecom will enable every modem to receive your encoded mobile device. It costs you nothing, and is secure.
Actually it doesn't cost their customers "nothing", it costs them in terms of reduced available bandwidth and increased electricity costs (albeit the latter probably being minimal).

And as for secure... you're kidding, right?
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Old 26.08.2014, 14:48
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

Swisscom already do the same.

It's VLANs set on the device, you can go VLAN hopping but it's not easy.

And they will use provisioning and QoS to ensure that you advertised speed is what you might get (remember these domestic services are more best-effort than guaranteed)
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Old 26.08.2014, 13:27
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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well since they raise the price of the service without asking you, opening up wifi without asking doesn't seem all that surprising.
At least that option (price raise) is going through the price regulator for approval and it is still under invistigation. The Wi-Free on the other hand is not even announced to all.

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When I got their email about that Wi-free I totally missed that it now was a bu default option! must have been in small characters somewhere...
You got an email!! consider yourself lucky, A lot did not get anything.
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Old 26.08.2014, 13:28
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

No email, it's enabled, I don't see any other SSID.

But if it's not eating my bandwidth then I don't care. I never trusted the UPC CPE so have my own router and run the modem in bridge mode. Which is maybe why I don't get another SSID.

I would expect the thing to run in its own VLAN and not in your NATted IP range.
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Old 26.08.2014, 13:38
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

An interesting, if scary idea which opens both security and bandwidth questions.

I expect Swisscom will do the same.

Although I have been a cablecom customer since it was called Swissonline and was dial up, I don't have a CC wireless router. I bought my own as initially CC only supplied a cable modem...
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Old 26.08.2014, 13:39
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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No email, it's enabled, I don't see any other SSID.

But if it's not eating my bandwidth then I don't care. I never trusted the UPC CPE so have my own router and run the modem in bridge mode. Which is maybe why I don't get another SSID.
The bandwidth is limited to (download: 5 Mbit/s, upload: 500 kbit/s).
some routers have not as yet received the updated software/firmware hence the broadcast is not on as yet.

Good point re bridge mode, not sure how it will work then. Will the router still broadcast the Wi-Free signal in the background and bridge at the same time or just as Bridge.
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Old 26.08.2014, 20:02
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

If you read cablecom site it says:
The “shareconomy” principle


The more people who participate, the more each individual benefits. If you authorise the second Wi-Free network on your modem, you have free Internet access wherever anyone else authorises it. Through the numerous upc cablecom customers, Wi-Free is available at numerous locations throughout Switzerland and is constantly expanding – with every new customer.

So if you share you benefit or vice versa.

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Hi All,

I just read a cablecom media release about Wi-Free, the newesh expansion of free wifi offer from cablecom, covering supposedly all of Switzerland come October.

Now everything looks nice and handy until one realizes that they will use the customer's wifi unites to broadcast the new wifi signal, again not a big issue! although the discussion can go on forever over how secure is the customer's private/home network and whether or not hackers can have a field day with this type of setup.

However what I find worrying is the fact that by default the customer's unit is automatically enabled to broadcast Wi-Free signal without the customer's approval. those of you with cablecom should have a look at their account (My upc> My products > Wi-Free).

I know it is their equipment but I am paying the rent/service fee hence it should be under my control until I ask for help or request otherwise or am I wrong here?

For people in the know & experience & simply have an opinion. What are your thoughts?

Thanks
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Old 26.08.2014, 20:15
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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If you read cablecom site it says:
The “shareconomy” principle


The more people who participate, the more each individual benefits. If you authorise the second Wi-Free network on your modem, you have free Internet access wherever anyone else authorises it. Through the numerous upc cablecom customers, Wi-Free is available at numerous locations throughout Switzerland and is constantly expanding – with every new customer.

So if you share you benefit or vice versa.
I don't profit as I close to never use public WLAN access points. I have 4G on my phone. I live in a rural area with a bunch of 80-year-olds as my only neighbours - I seriously doubt they'll profit from that Wi-Free crap. Other than adding more radiation and yet another useless WiFi AP, it does absolutely nothing for me.
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Old 03.09.2014, 12:07
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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I know it is their equipment but I am paying the rent/service fee hence it should be under my control until I ask for help or request otherwise or am I wrong here?
Wi-Free is under your control

Your modem is not enabled for Wi-Free until you sign up for the service.

If you want to use Wi-Free, you have to share your modem so that you can share other people's modems.

Give and take. You give so you can take.
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Old 03.09.2014, 13:27
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

It seems obvious to me that some EF members have received the e-mail from Cablecom, and are stating that Wi-Free is activated by default, which seems to be true.

You may log in to My-UPC and de-activate Wi-Free. Otherwise it will be activated gradually, starting from the end of September 2014.

Or you can set a Wi-Free password and share and use the public bandwidth. Cablecom state it is secure, and Cablecom will increase the bandwidth when necessary.

Other EF members have not received the Cablecom e-mail, and some don't seem to know what they are talking about.

If anyone is worried about Wi-Fi radiation, disconnect the aerial on or inside the box.
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Old 03.09.2014, 14:11
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

It occurred to me today that this was probably the reason Cablecom sent us a new "free" router. They claimed our old one was having performance issues, etc. Nah, they just wanted to have us help them install country-wide wifi for everyone.

We will be ensuring this is disabled, as we never have issues with wifi while out and about in the country and are not interested in using or sharing the system. However to those that are interested and would benefit, knock yourselves out.
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Old 03.09.2014, 14:57
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

Cant you just push the wifi on off button instead of removing built in antennas?
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Old 03.09.2014, 15:00
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

if you remove the antennae, it will not stop the WLAN broadcasting but will most likely make it very dirty (I expect).

Just turn off wireless in the settings if you're worried....but do keep your cellphone away from your child too....
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Old 05.05.2015, 01:12
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UPC Wi-Free

hi,
has anyone gotten it to work?
i did all the steps on the router, went out to the city and it just wouldn't connect on my phone.
changed the password, even went as far as taking it to the store and they couldn't get it to work.
i wiped my phone as a last resort (iphone 5s so i had a cloud backup) but no go.
any ideas/thoughts from anyone using it?
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Old 05.05.2015, 07:37
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Re: UPC Wi-Free

It works just fine on my phone (Nokia Lumia 630). I just entered the user and password set on the UPC webpage, and it connected.
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