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Standard User tb257
(newbie) Tue 14-May-13 01:48:50
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Unlimited Fibre Broadband

[link to this post]

I am thinking about leaving BE due to Sky's takeover, but I need a bit more info about FTTC etc.

1. It appears that the master BT socket will be replaced. A new fibre modem connects to the new master socket and the router is then connected to the modem. What type of cables connect (i) the router to the modem, and (ii) the modem to the master socket (RJ12 or RJ45; crossover)? How long can they be?

2. I would like to use my Billion BiPAC 7800N and it seems to be compatible with fibre broadband. It is currently connected as modem/router to a telephone extension socket on the first floor where I have to keep it. The master socket is on the ground floor. Will I be able to use the existing telephone extension cabling to connect either the router to the modem, or the modem to the master socket? What would be the best solution and how can I prepare for the installation of fibre broadband?

3. How long does/should the migration process take? Anything I should be aware of?

4. How realistic are the predicted/estimated speeds? What is the contention ratio? Ever any problems with 'congestion'?

5. I was at first sceptical about Plusnet's traffic management, but it appears to be a rather sensible feature. Am I right, or did I miss something? Could you please let me know your experiences.

Thanks in advance for your replies.
Standard User blfamily
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 14-May-13 07:17:58
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Re: Unlimited Fibre Broadband

[re: tb257] [link to this post]
Looking at robetos site might be a good place to start

Not sure about your router - PN will send you a router anyway.

Migration (for me anyway) is when you want it. I've opted for half term week when I am on leave.

no idea

It isn't traffic management unless you go for one of the esential range

Plusnet Fibre coming soon!
Standard User WWWombat
(fountain of knowledge) Tue 14-May-13 08:08:30
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Re: Unlimited Fibre Broadband

[re: tb257] [link to this post]
1. Depends on the engineer sent.

Openreach ones tend to install a new-style of filtered socket (which is a kind of interstitial plate between the existing master backplate and the existing half-sized frontplate) into an existing master, putting the right kind of master in if needed. However, they're starting to leave filtered sockets if they're already in place.

Sometime contractors turn up, who tend to leave existing setup as-is.

If you ask for the data-extension kit, then these tend to be installed better by Openreach engineers, while contractors seem to be keener to not do them. You should tick the box to ask for this anyway because, even if you don't end up with one, it seems to allow the engineer a little more freedom to alter or move the existing master instead.

(i) Ethernet cable, RJ45, not crossover, length is standard ethernet limit (up to 100 metres of solid core, or around 30 metres of flexible patch cable)

(ii) RJ12, similar to existing ADSL cables. Best kept short, but if needed, can be longer - but a quality one with twisted pairs should be used.

2. Are there other extensions? Where are they wired from? What quality is the cable from existing master to extension on 1st floor? Is a phone socket needed at the existing extension?

The two main solutions are:
i) Existing master turned into filter. BT use a data extension kit to replace the existing extension upstairs and the wiring to it (uses Cat 5-style cable instead of std phone cable). This would lose the phone socket upstairs, and can't connect any further voice extensions from it.

ii) The extension upstairs can be turned into the new master, with the filter placed there, giving both types of socket.

The existing cable can be used to carry the BT line up there, provided it is good enough quality (ie not cheap flat untwisted cable).

If it has enough pairs, it can also carry the extension wiring back down to the existing master, which becomes an extension. Any other extensions from here can be included in the wiring. If it doesn't have enough pairs, then a second cable needs to run back to the existing master.

Not every engineer seems to like this second style, particularly contractors.

3. Can't help with this.

4. In the past, predicted speeds have been very pessimistic. However, as take-up increases on a cabinet, those initial high speeds tend to drop back towards the estimates because crosstalk increases.

Contention ratio isn't a thing ever talked about any more. But there doesn't seem to be much issue with congestion of the backhaul from cabinets, or within the core network (both within BT Wholesale), or in the pipes to Plusnet (which have shown occasional problems for Plusnet, but have always been looked at)

5. I've always been a fan of the prioritisation aspect of PN's traffic management, which does indeed appear to be a sensible feature. If you're going for the unlimited package, then this is all you have to worry about.

I'm on the older variant of the "Extra" package, which still has allowances, but the same speeds limits as the newer "Unlimited" package (ie none). I haven't had a single problem with it - even in the early days when there were some limits.

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Standard User tb257
(newbie) Tue 14-May-13 16:48:45
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Re: Unlimited Fibre Broadband

[re: tb257] [link to this post]
blfamily and WWWombat thanks for your replies.

I am not too sure what type of telephone cable supplies the extension upstairs (twisted or untwisted cable; but it is round, not flat).

Anyway, there is an added difficulty, which I omitted. The master is connected to an extension for the intruder alarm in the understairs cupboard and from there to the extension on the first floor.

Since I would need to keep these extensions (at least the one for the intruder alarm), WWWombat’s proposed second solution (the extension upstairs turned into the new master) seems the most sensible. However, I guess installing a continuous section of good quality twisted-pair cable from the existing master to the new master socket would be beneficial. What category of twisted-pair cabling should be used for this? Would it be overkill to use CAT5E/CAT6E-type cable for that since the BT cable coming into the property does appear to be anything special. If I preinstall it this cable (neatly, not surface-mounted), would the Openreach engineer use it to move the master to the first floor?

This set-up should then allow me to connect the old master and the intruder alarm as extensions via the existing telephone cabling to the new master. Does it make sense?
Administrator MrSaffron
(staff) Tue 14-May-13 16:53:13
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Re: Unlimited Fibre Broadband

[re: tb257] [link to this post]
Any telephone cable that is copper and with twists to CW1308 should be fine

Andrew Ferguson, [email protected] - formerly known as
The author of the above post is a thinkbroadband staff member. It may not constitute an official statement on behalf of thinkbroadband.
Standard User WWWombat
(fountain of knowledge) Tue 14-May-13 17:44:08
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Re: Unlimited Fibre Broadband

[re: tb257] [link to this post]
My old house was wired with the kind of cable MrSaffron describes, and with the setup you describe. It was complete, so had 3 pairs.

The first DSL service I had (in 2000) was installed by a BT engineer, and he used the blue-based pair to carry the main BT line from the original socket up through the first extension into the second extension, which he converted to the master with a filtered faceplate. The standard green pair took the extension signal (and orange pair the ring signal) back through the first extension to the original master.

The blue pairs were jointed using jelly crimps, rather than using the Krone connectors on the faceplate.

I checked it out a few years later... there was no additional loss by running over the extra cable.

So, if you have a third pair, then you can use it. But adding another cable is certainly possible.
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