back to article Pipex upgrade causes email snafu

Some Pipex customers have been without email access for several days due to an platform upgrade that meant their settings were wrong. The Tiscali-owned ISP announced major work upgrade billing and account management on its website. The changes also include new spam protection and anti-virus for the email system. Users have …


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  1. Jimmy Floyd

    Going back a bit

    Co-incidentally, I've just found a pair of floppy discs in my desk drawer at work left by a previous occupant circa 1995. They promise to get me on-line with Pipex Dial (!) v2.6. Do you think they'd still work or has this upgrade now scuppered my nefarious 14.4kbps plan for gopher domination?

  2. Codge

    Ah Gopher!

    Those were the days.

    Searches coat for briar pipe and tin of ready rubbed.

  3. Peter Bennett
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    That figures.

    I had been without normal access to e-mail since Thursday and had looked at some of their advice as you referenced. Having taken their advice, ,my e-mail client (Eudora Pro 7) complains about a certificate in the SSL signer chain having expired and won't play any more.

    I've had to go over to using Outlook, otherwise, I couldn't get at my e-mail.

    On the plus side, there's less spam though.

    Still, I'd rather not have had to go through the pain of the migration to a different e-mail client that doesn't have a working import tool to carry over my e-mail from the last 6 years.

  4. Haku

    It all becomes clear (sort of)

    Oh so that's why I was getting an invalid user/pass when trying to get my Pipex email a few days ago.

    I thought they'd finally caught up with the fact that they kicked me off their ADSL service back in March 2007!

    Well my Pipex email seems to be working again now, but the webspace I had with them disappeared a few days ago.

  5. sproot

    No sh.t, Sherlock

    Since Tiscali bought them they're no longer a quality provider.

  6. Anonymous Coward
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    Old platform?

    I thought that Tiscali had sold off pretty much all that was Pipex. I finally left them a couple of months ago for another provider after watching the service go horribly downhill, 600k-1.2 meg downstream on an 8meg connection wasn't really doing it for me.

    Last week I got my sixth identical letter giving me a mac address, my third letter advising me that they were unable to take my normal monthly sub by direct debit, and my second telephone message asking me to contact them on their premium rate number to discuss overdue monies. This is despite their confirmation email a few weeks ago acknowledging that my account has been closed since the beginning of September and I owe no money. Almost as good as when I got threatened with legal action for paying my bill on time, when my email responses went unanswered.

    The only worthy pipex upgrade imo is the one to another provider.

  7. Chika


    Totally agree. I jumped ship a while ago and never regretted it once. Everything Tiscali touches turns to whatever the Italian for "shit" is.

  8. Anonymous Coward

    Utter Shit

    Their email has been fucking shit for weeks - time outs - invalid passwords missing folders.

    It might have been a blindin' idea to actually *mail* everybody well in advance to warn them of the upgrade, but no - fucking morons.

    Time to switch to another ISP, with **UK** call centre. I'm fed up with installing USB modems just so they'll talk to me and believe what I say.

    Tiscali are a cheap shit mob who are notorious for email snafus so hardly a surprise.

  9. Richard Hopkins
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    Pipex? Poopex

    Have to agree with my anonymous friend above. Pipex's service has gone through the floor since the Tiscali buy-out. Aside from multiple mail outages in the last couple of weeks, emails regularly go "missing" (they don't arrive, but don't bounce), and then there's the "stealth" LLU migration. I also remember a day when Pipex's customer support actually satisfied the description.

    The only thing tying me to them at the moment is a long-established email address and a lack of time to research the alternatives. Shame, they used to be proper tidy.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sounds pretty normal...

    My POP access to email servers that aren't owned by Tiscali, via a Tiscali broadband connection has been iffy at peak times for months.

    I've given up complaining or reporting anything as apart from that the connection is bearable.

    Last time I reported something the whole connection got screwed up for days! I don't want to risk that again!

  11. Humph


    I was asked to look at someone's computer because they discovered that their internet connection wasn't working on returning from an extended holiday. After trying the basics I spent two hours on the phone with Pipex/Tiscali only to be told that my client's account had been closed several weeks earlier, despite the client having bank statements indicating that money was still being debited from their account at a point after the supposed cancellation.

    The nice lady in India, who was surprisingly helpful, was at a loss as to how this situation arose, and in fact no-one seemed able or willing to hypothesise, but one can't help thinking that it was something to do with the migration from Pipex to Tiscali.

    Reinstating the service apparently takes longer than it would for a new broadband connection to be provided. A new connection can be made in 10 days, reactivating an existing paid for account takes 16 days.

    This email balls-up sounds like yet more of the same uselessness. As I said to the client after explaining to them that despite them paying for a service, their provider had taken it into their heads to kill their service and keep taking the money, this kind of incompetence requires years of practice.

  12. Shane Mussell
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    And you think thats bad?

    If you think that's bad how about little old me then I have been trying to talk to someone at Bulldog/Pipex/Tiscali about my phone line since and supposed cancelled account since July this year and in fact I have been to CISAS who have been unable to resolve the issue.

    Basically since December 07 I have been trying to keep my phone number, only to be told yes its ok till April when I asked in an email what was going on and they just cancelled my account!

    Pretty annoying as they actually cancelled my line after CISAS asked them to explain what they were playing at and to keep it.

    But then I see I'm not the only one suffering with a lack of Customer Service, what made me laugh is they came top for CS in a poll the other day?

    Now I'm getting demands for the calls and line rental up to the last day of service with threats of court action.. *sigh*.. Oh did I mention the line still works? Well it does but for how long? This is a very long story suffice to say I'm certainly cheesed off..

  13. Anonymous Coward

    Quelle surprise

    I have been without email since Thursday. I have had several calls to the new tech support centre, conveniently based in.... The Phillipines. Clearly, the pre-Tiscali idea of basing the tech support near the operations team in Welwyn Garden City was in danger of being too useful.

    The call centre were apparently told that the upgrades would have no effect on functionality. They've been very surprised about some of the functionality changes that have been reported to them by irate customers.

    It seems clear that the operations team had done little homework on the Pipex customer base before launching the upgrade. So what if it was old infrastructure ? It did, at least, work well and consistently.

    How strange that Pipex customers have large mailboxes ! Let's see now: Pipex is one of the minority of ISPs that offer IMAP (which tends to lead to large mailboxes), and has a decade-old presence among a loyal set of subscribers (which tends to lead to large mailboxes) that has consistently attracted early adopters, professionals and businesses (which tends to lead to large mailboxes).

    Oh well, better get on the phone to the Philippines - strange that the promised call from the operations team to resolve my problems never materialised yesterday ...

  14. Chris Malme

    "some extremely large mail boxes"

    Pipex could possibly make life easier by not automatically creating a mailbox for every customer, or allowing customers to delete unused mailboxes.

    I quickly came to the opinion my default Pipex mailbox was useless - their practice of naming it after your pipex username apparently made it easy for spammers to harvest them. I have never made proper use of it - I use Pipex for connectivity only, and handle mail through my own domain. This does not stop my Pipex mailbox being continuously filled with unwanted spam - I occasionally clear it down out of the goodness of my heart.

  15. Anonymous Coward

    Would you believe it ?

    They've launched a new "Help & Support" page in the past 24 hours. Here are the Top 5 "most popular" questions being asked at the moment:

    1. Are there any Service Issues?

    2. How do I get a Mac Code?

    3. I want to cancel, what should I do?

    4. When does my contract end?

    5. I have cancelled my account. Why are you still deducting money from my account?

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