Last week I finally got Verizon's FIOS installed, it took 3 weeks...I was originally was told that I could not get FIOS until the end June, however in late April when I was reviewing my land line phone bill on-line, I saw a link displaying that FIOS was available at my address. I ordered the installation on-line and scheduled it for May 3rd. On May 2nd I got a call from Verizon that there was a technical issue and rescheduled for May 4th. May 4th came around and no one showed or called. I called Verizon, explained the situation and found someone who was very helpful. She analyzed the order and found that it had an issue which caused it not to be dispatched. The problem was that the cut over dates for the land line and connection for the Internet were different. The order system does not automatically dispatch when you have different service due date on one order. She elevated the issue to the order department for resolution. May 7th went by without a call, so I followed up on Tuesday. At this point I voiced my displeasure in the process, and the gentleman researched the issued and overrode the system to force the installation for the morning of May 15th. This time the process worked as planned, I was called the night before to confirm and the technician called me before arriving.
The technician arrived and could not find the fiber router listed on the order. Routers support 25 to 50 homes, they seem to be on the ground next to poles. I told him there was one at each end of the street and based on the routers street address listed on the order I pointed him in the right direction. The next step was to run the fiber cable from a connection point on the router to my house. The fiber cables come in pre-defined lengths and cannot be altered by the technician. They are built by Corning Glass. He decided to use a 350' cable. The longest part of the installation was the stringing of the cable down and across the street to my house.
The next step was to install the Tellabs 1600 Optical Network Terminal (ONT). I wanted it placed in my garage but at the technician's insistence we decided outside was better for two reasons. First, the fiber connector on the end of the cable is quite large, it would require a large hole through my brick and block wall. Second, if there was an issue with the ONT Verizon could not service it from outside and I would have to be home. The ONT requires a power source so we decided to place the power supply and backup battery next to an outlet in the garage. The ONT enclosure measures 13" x 13", so it is not too obvious. Since the technicians have to use fixed length fiber cable the ONT has a slack storage compartment to hold the excess, very nice design feature.
The fiber connection inside the ONT. The bottom black connector is the large fixed end of the Corning Glass cable coming from the street.
The ONT provides both cable and RJ45 LAN outputs. Verizon provides an Actiontec MI424WR 4 port wireless router which accepts cable or RJ45 LAN inputs. Since my plan was to use my D-Link DFL-210 router I wanted to use the ONT LAN output. Because most homes already have cable, Verizon prefers this method, however we agreed that a LAN drop was better in my situation and I offered to run the drop. One note, since I have Directv and the ONT's cable output is not compatible with the satellite dish cable signal, this gave me another reason not to use cable.
The user interface side of the ONT. From left to right, the RJ45 LAN connection, the 2 land line phone (POTS) connection, and the cable hookup.
Verizon strongly suggest that you use their router with stickers that warn about network degradation if you don't. I really don't think there is anything the Actiontec router has that my DFL-210 can't do. In order for the DFL-210 to acquire an address from the network, all I had to do is clone the MAC address from the Actiontec router. I compared the speeds with and without the Actiontec, they were the same.
It took 6 hours to complete the install, the major portion of time going to running the fiber drop to my house and resolving a cut over issue from copper to fiber on my land line at the central office.
So far I am very happy, the download speeds average 5.1Mbps are equivalent to Comcast while the uploads of 1.8Mbps are 6 times faster and at $39.99 a month cheaper than the $57.99 Comcast was trying to charge me.