Technology, Writing

FIOS Rocks!

OK today was installation day for Verizon’s FIOS service.  There was a pretty big snow storm coming through the Boston area today so I wasn’t sure this was going to happen but the technicians arrived at 9:30AM and said we were on for today!  One of the technicians had to install the fiber drop from the pole across the street (in the snow!) and they installed a large Optical Network Terminal (ONT) on the side of the house.  Inside the house they installed a power supply, backup battery, and an RJ45 data jack.

By Noon the technicians indicated that the data service should be functional and that they were working on moving the telephone lines from copper to fiber.  The technicians both admitted that they had never installed a 30M/5M FIOS connection before, and neither had ever performed an installation with static IP addresses.  I told them if they could get me info on the IPs, Gateway and DNS I should be able to do the rest.  They were able to call a colleague and get my IP Address block, default gateway and DNS information.  All I had to do was plug my corporate firewall into the data jack conveniently labeled with FIOS and I had connectivity. I fired up my browser, connected to the speakeasy.net speed test site and ran a speed test against their NYC and DC servers.  Performance was a BLAZING 27.8Mbps download speed and 4.5Mbps upload (latency is also excellent but I will do more testing on that in the future)!

Bandwidth!

The phone line install has been mixed.  The business and fax lines were eventually moved to the fiber successfully after being put on the wrong cable pairs within the house.  However as of 8:30PM Scott’s residential line still had no dialtone (Verizon said there was some problem processing the order to move his line and they were still working on it).

 Synpopsis:

  • FIOS is FAST! Probably the fastest internet connection available without going to a DS-3 or OC type circuit which are prohibitively expensive.
  • FIOS is a good deal.  $389.95/Month for 30M/5M service with static IP addresses (residential service is MUCH cheaper but Verizon blocks ports 80, 25, etc so you cant run your own servers on the non-business service).
  • The Technicians are pleasant and helpful but they’re not properly trained on Business Class FIOS services.
  • There are glitches in the order process.  My order for the service took several days to get into the system because Verizon’s system thought some of our phone numbers were eligible for Fiber and some weren’t (even though they were all installed in the same house!).  The problems with getting Scott’s line working on the fiber also seem related to glitches in the system that determine what lines can be moved to fiber.
  • Did I mention Its FAST?!?!.  Verizon seems to have invested heavily in their infrastructure and backbone network.  Throughput is as close to the possible maximum available as I would expect and latency is excellent (tested with SSH, Telnet and also looking at traceroute timings). Downloading a CD-ROM Image (~600MB) took about 3 minutes.

If you’re lucky enough to live in a location served by Verizon’s Fiber To The Premises (FTTP) service named FIOS and like having lots of bandwidth order away!

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