I work on an oil and gas rig and I have a very poor Internet connection. We use satellite Internet provided by a company called DrillCom. When I connect my Xbox with Ethernet to the DrillCom box, it says on XBL that I have strict NAT.

As far as I know, there's no way for me to open the NAT without talking to the satellite providers, and I'm too low on the totem pole to have the authority to do that. I don't think the strict NAT is my only problem, though. The Internet is just bad in general (takes almost a minute to load pages and email).

I thought about a wireless Internet card from Verizon or AT&T, but we have very poor service on our location (1-2 bars). My question is...what are my options for playing Xbox Live (if any)? Thanks a lot.

  • 3
    Doesn't sound like fun being stuck out there with no good internet. I'm not sure I have a helpful answer, but a wireless internet card may not be helpful for you either. Check out the answers to this question as to why: gaming.stackexchange.com/questions/4480/… Oct 28, 2011 at 19:39

3 Answers 3


Satellite connections are not recommended for gaming due to their terrible upload speeds (often a full second of consistent delay) even when there aren't any clouds in the sky. You'd be better off using your connection to try to score some desirable DLCs or small arcade games to take advantage of the higher download rates, although not if it takes a minute to load a webpage. In that case, your issues are probably coming down to everybody on your rig trying to use the same connection at the same time (assuming you are not in stormy weather). Try to find non-standard times, since your service provider may be throttling your connection during peak hours due to volume or as part of the contract. In addition, some satellite providers throttle your connection if your usage goes too high for the month. Don't waste your packets by connecting to the internet during storms at it will count against your usage.

If your issue is related to some network settings on the rig itself, that's something that you'd have to take up with your network administrator.

  • I think satellite can have decent trhoughput, but very bad latency. From what I understand, for multiplayer games, at least anything not turn-based, they are useless.
    – horatio
    Oct 28, 2011 at 21:18

Quit that job, dude. If they can't provide a good XBox environment, they are just no damned good. =)

Seriously, though. Being out there leaves you with very few options. NAT won't hurt your speeds from what I know. If it's slow and choppy as you say, there's nothing you can do about it if there's nothing in the intra-net that's choking off your bandwidth. Do other guys have xboxes? Maybe send out an email to see if anyone's interested in LAN games and maybe organize everyone getting a certain game to play. Which you can set up yourself, independent of your outward connection.

  • Thanks everyone for your help. 'Yatrix' you are absolutely right I need to quit this job! I tried playing in off hours and I actually was able to play for a good 5 hours without hardly any lag. Hopefully that keeps up, because when your not working rig life is booooring. Oct 29, 2011 at 6:23
  • Hehe. Good luck, man. Hope to see you on the XBL battlefield. =)
    – Yatrix
    Oct 31, 2011 at 12:58

You pretty much have no options for playing online multiplayer. Cancel your gold subscription.

You need a relatively high bandwidth, low latency connection in order to have a good experience. With a satellite connection, you fulfill the bandwidth criteria, but you're talking on the order of half a second pings if you have a full 2 way connection. From your question, it's not clear if you have a 2 way connection, or if your uploads are handled terrestrially. Either way, it's typically too much for a FPS or racing game to handle. Other genres are somewhat more lag tolerant, but that much latency can still cause problems.

As you said, your other option is getting a 3G stick, but unfortunately, you're trading one problem for another. With spotty reception, you might not get enough bandwidth to support some online games.

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