Google Fiber Continues Awful ISP Tradition of Banning Servers

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The Electronic Frontier Foundation has posted an editorial today detailing its belief that Google Fiber banning servers is "unreasonable" and a "power grab by ISPs that damages user freedom and chills innovation."

In a Wired piece published recently, Ryan Singel assails Google's newfound hypocrisy when it comes to net neutrality. And he's right. Having spent many years fighting to stop Internet Service Providers (ISPs) from discriminating between different types of Internet traffic, the tech giant is now perpetuating a long-standing form of that discrimination with Google Fiber, its own ISP, by adopting a terrible Terms of Service clause that bans the use of "servers." Google's ban on servers is sadly not a departure from the norm, as similar prohibitions can be found within the Terms of Service of other large ISPs.
 

FiveFig

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good to see people still hammering google about this

eventually they might change if they keep getting a bunch of bad press
 

Grimlaking

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Has anyone reached out to google to find out their policy on adding a server? What the additional cost per month would be? Or is it.. "Booo Google is baaaad?" ok done move along.
 

DPI

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Did you guys even bother to RTFA? No shit ISP's don't want you hosting a server out of your house.
 

MoFoQ

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I still don't understand the "brew-hahaha" (sans the beer).

The Net Neutrality that Google and others advocated for is related to third-party traffic aka traffic such as those from Netflix, Youtube, etc. going to an user on...say Comcast.
The "no hosting servers on your residential line" part is only between the end-user/customer and their immediate upstream provider.
If the end-user/customer wants to "host servers" and the immediate upstream provider gives them the option to do so (via upsale/different kind of account)...that's fine.

The problem most people should have regarding net neutrality is when a company or organization doesn't give that option (the whole Comcast/Level3/Netflix shenanigans stinks to high-heaven for me)
 

dandirk

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The article is completely and obviously biased....Garbage, I even emailed the writer such.

How can you bash Google Fiber specifically when every example the writer gave would be ALLOWED under the quoted policy of their service? Absolutely hilarious!

Every example he gave of a server a consumer would use at home, was not an example of "commercial" use which google specifically has in its policy. HE quoted the damn thing, you would think he read it.
 

kbrickley

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Agree with others that these clauses and rules are intended to prevent people from operating commercial servers on their residential account ... an internal home server would be unlikely to send up red flags and violate their Ts&Cs ... if you want dozens of incoming and outgoing connections you probably need a business account which would accommodate that ... their clauses have nothing to do with Net Neutrality (which was to protect competing businesses, as others have noted) ;)
 

Kenworth

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I am so glad I came here and read these comments because I thought I was either totally misinterpreting the author or just very understanding of what Google intended its services for. In this forum I think we all run some sort of home server but not for business per say. It's like he wants a million and one scenarios that we can or can't use the pipe for which would only further elicit comment of "bad Google" I am sure.
 

Godmachine

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you want to host servers, get a business line
Seriously. I understand the need to cover rights for the user but its traditionally accepted that if you want to run servers out of your home , you pay for it.

I can't imagine they charge all that much more over baseline users considering the service is known for its affordability.
 

GaryJohnson

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Every example he gave of a server a consumer would use at home, was not an example of "commercial" use which google specifically has in its policy. HE quoted the damn thing, you would think he read it.
you should not host any type of server using your Google Fiber connection,...OR use your Google Fiber account to provide commercial services to third parties
If the big 'OR' there were an 'AND' you would be correct. But it's not. You can't host any type of server using your Google fiber connection.
 

Ehren8879

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You let residential customer host servers out of their homes and it's a only a matter of time until their demanding commercial level service from their ISP.

Been there, heard that.
 

Ashbringer

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I like how the future is Cloud, and yet hosting your own server is bad. God forbid I'd like to access an ftp or something to watch my own shows, or gain access to my own files. Oh hell, let others have access. Instead of hosting all my files on dropbox and letting NSA looking at my favorite TV shows and get a copy of those TPS reports.

Better yet, live stream a TV show through my computers capture card to my cell phone. Using my web cam to live stream it to my phone so I can see if anything that shouldn't be going on in my home when I'm away.
 
D

Deleted member 82943

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doesn't it come down to math? they can give us gigabit up and down because they in a sense overprovision. They know most users won't be using a lot of the pipe all the time like one might in a server environment (I was hoping to set up a sort of private dropbox). But when people do then the bandwidth and their bottom line is hurt.
 

NeghVar

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If servers are forbidden, then why offer such high upload speeds.

Also, that makes using torrents a violation of the ISP ToS. No, I don't mean piracy, using the torrent protocol, your system becomes a client and a server. Updating my WoW client violates the ISPs ToS because I am also acting as a server for fragments of the updates.
 

Grimlaking

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Yes the TOS are written to be restrictive. But in practice it isn't enforced by most any ISP even GASP Comcast. Unless you are saturating your connection for large amounts of time.

If you guys are like me you have over provisioned yourself. IE bought more than you reasonably use at any given point in time. So that when you hit those times where having a higher bandwidth is fun you get to use it.

Raise your hand if you DON'T have your own private cloud.

Who shares that same cloud out to more than a dozen people?

And cloud.. Damnit I hate that term. It's A GLORIFIED FTP SERVER!

Ghaaaa!!!
 

DPI

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I like how the future is Cloud, and yet hosting your own server is bad. God forbid I'd like to access an ftp or something to watch my own shows, or gain access to my own files. Oh hell, let others have access. Instead of hosting all my files on dropbox and letting NSA looking at my favorite TV shows and get a copy of those TPS reports.

Better yet, live stream a TV show through my computers capture card to my cell phone. Using my web cam to live stream it to my phone so I can see if anything that shouldn't be going on in my home when I'm away.
Those kind of personal use scenarios are not even what this is about.
 

DiabloRojo

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Yes the TOS are written to be restrictive. But in practice it isn't enforced by most any ISP even GASP Comcast. Unless you are saturating your connection for large amounts of time.
This is part of the issue. It's underhanded bullshit ass-covering. They know they don't enforce this policy 100% of the time and they know that we know they won't enforce it 100% of the time. They only say it in order to introduce fat gray area that essentially allows them, via your consent (and your assumption of their *winkwink* lax enfocement) to their ToS, to do whatever the fuck they want to your connection, at any time, for any reason.
 

CreepyUncleGoogle

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The usual thing with someone pointing out something unfavorable about a company they have an emotional attachment to is to reject the unfavorable thing by trying to discredit the source. Google supporters unite!
 

sfsuphysics

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Its an "awful tradition" to ban turning a home service into a commercial service? That's really what is at play here, not having a bittorrent program open, or not having your own FTP server open so you can access it remotely.

Every damn one of you would give two shits about the ToS if Google Fiber came to your door and asked if you wanted in.
 

Kenworth

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Its an "awful tradition" to ban turning a home service into a commercial service? That's really what is at play here, not having a bittorrent program open, or not having your own FTP server open so you can access it remotely.

Every damn one of you would give two shits about the ToS if Google Fiber came to your door and asked if you wanted in.
Good point. Good point indeed because I know I wouldn't turn them down. They could have my money and as you point out I am not in the minority. And that "fat gray area" was brought up because everyone wants specific answers to what they can and can't do knowing full well ahead of time the answer. "Can I push a gig up and gig down torrenting distros? I mean, it's JUST distros!" Right. And Creepy wants us to think that Google is just about ready to spring the trap by injecting this clause as if no one else does. What? Google isn't the first? Then why are they getting all the wonderful attention, because it's Google. Yeah, I would have an emotional attachment if I were getting this type of internet service for $70 a month. I also use their e-mail, calendar, and phones without a problem for a very reasonable price. So I guess you could say I have a prediliction for the company who is treating me right. Bring on the "they know everything about you, so boy they have you where they want you now!" as if your isp and every other service you use doesn't already.
 

rudy

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You should be able to do what ever you want with the connection you pay for. The reality is that they don't want people to run businesses because ISPs know would rather charge those same businesses 2-3x the price for the same exact connection. Its no different than the stupid artificial limits MS has always tried to put into windows and office to force businesses into a higher pay bracket.

Also what on earth are you going to do with a 1gbit connection if you aren't aloud to do half the things that could actually take advantage of it. More likely googles 1 gbit is BS and they cannot serve it if people really do try to push it.
 

Ur_Mom

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Every damn one of you would give two shits about the ToS if Google Fiber came to your door and asked if you wanted in.
So true. I could use the remote server if possible, but I think I'd give it up for that speed.

I only have a small Server 2012 shared with myself and about 2 others. Still a server, although it's not a commercial use (nor is it high use).
 

TheWeazmeister

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Did you guys even bother to RTFA? No shit ISP's don't want you hosting a server out of your house.
Technically speaking if you're using a SlingBox they could call that a server being hosted on your network.
 

Ducman69

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Google TOS were written in 1984, and include an very small subprint under heading "Be Evil".
 

Ducman69

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Also what on earth are you going to do with a 1gbit connection if you aren't aloud to do half the things that could actually take advantage of it. More likely googles 1 gbit is BS and they cannot serve it if people really do try to push it.
DingDingDing! Its a false promise, like those endless basket "unlimited fries". If you actually sat there all day eating fries to even approach the concept of the offer, they'd throw you out and don't have the infrastructure to support it! :D
 

dgz

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Has anyone reached out to google to find out their policy on adding a server? What the additional cost per month would be? Or is it.. "Booo Google is baaaad?" ok done move along.
Say what? Why would you need to pay more for the privilege of running a "server" at home? They are offering you bandwidth. They have no reason to care or fucking restrict what you do with it.
 

Talyrius

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DingDingDing! Its a false promise, like those endless basket "unlimited fries". If you actually sat there all day eating fries to even approach the concept of the offer, they'd throw you out and don't have the infrastructure to support it! :D
...but I've done that before with some friends and we didn't get kicked out! However, I wouldn't have put up a fight if they told us we had outstayed our welcome. We left a generous tip.
 

FighterAce124

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Every ISP has the same restrictions on a HOME line. It is not enforced for most cases, and when it is, its been deserved.

Under those rules, you cant host your own teamspeak, or minecraft. You will not find a normal user outside of a sat. connection (Which I sure as hell wouldnt host anything on anyway, hello 1s+ latency) who has been disconnected or even warned for a small server setup.

Find one example of a normal user (NOT ONE OF YOU, YOU ARE *NOT NORMAL USERS*) who has hosted a normal, private server for private use where they have been disconnected - I'm not aware of a single case, and I used to do support for ISPs and still talk to one of the guys who checks lines for violations at my last company.

The only people I have ever seen disconnected for servers are very clearly not using the lines for private home servers - when you see hundreds and thousands of connections using a teamspeak port, you know they arent running a private server. And when that connection remains utilized like that for weeks and months on end, its obvious whats going on - they are not using a home line for home use, they are using a home line for BUSINESS use.

If you are going to host a server, it is a business class setup. While you can get away with small servers for personal use, try to do it with anything serving hundreds of people daily - you'll be shut down within weeks.

You run business on a business line, you run home on a home line. There is NO excuse for a home user to have hundreds or thousands of connections streaming through/from you as a home connection constantly. None. And I say that as someone who has hosted my fair share of small servers for friends and personal use, as well as an ex-isp tech who hated enforcing stupid rules. If I can tell you arent using a line for personal use, we have an issue, as you are not abiding by YOUR agreed terms. Like it or not, you signed the agreement, not the ISP.
 
D

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Hosting a private Teamspeak server for your friends does not make you a business. Nor does hosting a game server for you and your friends to play on. Still not a business.
 

DPI

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You should be able to do what ever you want with the connection you pay for. The reality is that they don't want people to run businesses because ISPs know would rather charge those same businesses 2-3x the price for the same exact connection. Its no different than the stupid artificial limits MS has always tried to put into windows and office to force businesses into a higher pay bracket.

Also what on earth are you going to do with a 1gbit connection if you aren't aloud to do half the things that could actually take advantage of it. More likely googles 1 gbit is BS and they cannot serve it if people really do try to push it.
What YOU should do is start an ISP where people can do whatever they want with the connection they pay for.

In the meantime, don't sign up with an ISP and agree to a ToS only to turn around and bitch about the ToS you agreed to for some shitty $60 a month.
 

DPI

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Hosting a private Teamspeak server for your friends does not make you a business. Nor does hosting a game server for you and your friends to play on. Still not a business.
What does that have to do with anything? An ISP isn't going to shut you down for running a teamspeak server at home.
 

Exavior

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Every ISP has the same restrictions on a HOME line. It is not enforced for most cases, and when it is, its been deserved.

Under those rules, you cant host your own teamspeak, or minecraft. You will not find a normal user outside of a sat. connection (Which I sure as hell wouldnt host anything on anyway, hello 1s+ latency) who has been disconnected or even warned for a small server setup.

Find one example of a normal user (NOT ONE OF YOU, YOU ARE *NOT NORMAL USERS*) who has hosted a normal, private server for private use where they have been disconnected - I'm not aware of a single case, and I used to do support for ISPs and still talk to one of the guys who checks lines for violations at my last company.

The only people I have ever seen disconnected for servers are very clearly not using the lines for private home servers - when you see hundreds and thousands of connections using a teamspeak port, you know they arent running a private server. And when that connection remains utilized like that for weeks and months on end, its obvious whats going on - they are not using a home line for home use, they are using a home line for BUSINESS use.

If you are going to host a server, it is a business class setup. While you can get away with small servers for personal use, try to do it with anything serving hundreds of people daily - you'll be shut down within weeks.

You run business on a business line, you run home on a home line. There is NO excuse for a home user to have hundreds or thousands of connections streaming through/from you as a home connection constantly. None. And I say that as someone who has hosted my fair share of small servers for friends and personal use, as well as an ex-isp tech who hated enforcing stupid rules. If I can tell you arent using a line for personal use, we have an issue, as you are not abiding by YOUR agreed terms. Like it or not, you signed the agreement, not the ISP.
agree
 

rudy

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What YOU should do is start an ISP where people can do whatever they want with the connection they pay for.

In the meantime, don't sign up with an ISP and agree to a ToS only to turn around and bitch about the ToS you agreed to for some shitty $60 a month.
OK we will just do that, wait we can't because the government has sanctioned a cable monopoly and won't let anyone come in and compete with them.
 

sfsuphysics

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Also what on earth are you going to do with a 1gbit connection if you aren't aloud to do half the things that could actually take advantage of it. More likely googles 1 gbit is BS and they cannot serve it if people really do try to push it.
It's about the bursts not the sustained speed. For the same reason that commercial/business accounts with the same speeds as residential accounts cost more. There is an expectation to how much you're going to use "on average" and running servers that constantly max your connection isn't it.

You're right though, they could not serve it if people really do push it, if you have say 1000 users always using 1Gbps you think Google is going to roll out a 1 Tbps line for those customers? Uh no. However you download a movie plus a few songs super quick then there's a large amount of time you're not using anywhere close to max capacity then a lot more people can use it at those massive speeds when they need them.
 
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