Community Fibre – FTTP installation and equipment

I recently had Community Fibre FTTP broadband installed, and found that I couldn’t see much information online about the equipment and process – so here’s what I now know.

Fibre overhead sign on telephone pole

The fibres are run underground down the street, but then up to the top of telephone poles. You can see the new equipment – grey junction boxes and bundles of cable – and also the notice above. If there’s a “Caution Overhead Fibre” sign, chances are you can get access.

The installation took around 90 minutes (with one engineer – they said two-person teams were the norm). First a small hole is drilled through the wall, and a kind of solid fibre duct (shown above, not yet properly installed) fitted. On the outside of the house, a line of fibre is run from the telephone pole, down the wall and into that duct.

That duct is covered by this small wall-box. Note the internal, white-sleeved fibre-optic cable plugged in below – that then runs to the modem:

The modem is – in my case, at least – an AdTran SDX 621i XGS-PON ONT. It requires a PSU, and has sockets for the fibre-optic cable and Gigabit Ethernet. A short network cable then runs from that to:

.. the router. This is a Linksys WHW0301CF-UK. It has two Gigabit Ethernet ports underneath – one in, one spare. Out of the box it provides a single WiFI network and DHCP in the 192.168.1.x range. You can access the admin interface to change the WiFI and network settings using a password printed underneath, and I confirmed that the second Gigabit port is live, so you can connect up a switch.

So far, everything has worked as it should, and the symmetric 900Mbps connection is indeed very fast – but of course I have no way to know about reliability at this stage. I will update here if I find any issues.

If you found this useful and decide to sign up, this referral link may get you – and me – a £100 Amazon voucher.

All © 2020 Tom Royal