Honest Review of 10 Gbit Upgrade Process

Internet access discussion, including Fusion, IP Broadband, and Gigabit Fiber!
12 posts Page 1 of 2
by brwbrw » Wed Nov 29, 2023 9:57 am
I learned here that there was a "request upgrade" tool in the member portal so I clicked it, and approved the one-time $299 fee. After getting a text and an e-mail asking me, "is everything OK with your upgrade? We noticed you haven't connected your new equipment yet," I replaced the old white Adtran GPON ONT with the new, bigger, black XGS-PON ONT that had arrived in the mail, and everything was gravy.

FOMO and Microeconomics:
Now my internet is as fast as my neighbor's, though I had to pay an extra $299 for the privilege. Amortized over a year, I don't mind the upgrade fee, since even though it's a big hit from a behavioral economics standpoint, it's actually better than indefinitely upping the monthly rate. I don't mind implicitly investing in Sonic's infrastructure for cooling and power at the Central Office for my location. That said, I'm slightly envious of my one neighbor who hasn't yet made the switch from cable. It will be significantly cheaper for him to do so.

I will admit, there was no guidance on what, if anything, I should change in the room next to my garage where the lines come in. I drilled two new holes, 4" apart, and screwed two screws into plywood to hang the new ONT. I don't know much about fiber, but I did my best not to get the glass dirty while unplugging from the old ONT and plugging into the new one. The green connector looks a little different from my neighbor's, but everything seems gravy. I did notice that a couple of the fibers seemed to make 90-degree turns, which I think is bad for the glass, so I tried to remedy that. I hope I didn't break any glass in the process, though some points on the line look crimped/squished. Hopefully that's just the PVC jacket.

(...adding a second post, since the UI won't let me scroll and type more...)
by brwbrw » Wed Nov 29, 2023 10:06 am
Why I Wanted 10 Gbit:
I work in artificial intelligence, and frequently download super large models, often in the 70-100 gigabyte range. I also occasionally download 2+ Terabyte training datasets. I probably should have a NAS at this point, but I basically just have a Unifi UDM SE with a couple U6 Enterprise Wi-Fi 6E access points. It's not a super cheap setup, but I'm grateful: my home came wired with CAT5e in most places, and CAT6A in a few, so I'm juicing the hardlines for what they're worth.

It turns out the CAT5e is sufficient for 10 Gbit at the shorter runs I have in my house. I mostly use CAT6A for encapsulating HDMI down to my receiver on a different floor.

Since the Wi-Fi at my office tends to be sub-gigabit, I'm excited to SSH into my workstation at home, and be able to download models and files at 4-8 Gbit/s.

The Case for a IoT Line:
I'm still trying to figure out the ideal network setup. I used to relegate car software updates to a second Comcast line that also serves as a failover, but somehow that wasn't working. That said, I've decided I want to put all cameras on a subnet that doesn't have direct internet access, and all untrusted IoT devices on a subnet that talks to the internet over a bargain basement Comcast line. I still have a fancy MB8611 modem from before when I relied on "Gigabit" Comcast as my main connection. Although I'm ineligible for the Affordable Connectivity Program, I did manage to secure a $29.99/mo "deal" for a 1 year contract for 75Mbit down/5Mbit up. That way I have a low-bandwidth, untrusted IoT line. Let Comcast handle my garbage traffic ;) and save the high speed clean line for Sonic!

That said, I wouldn't mind if the second gigabit port on the Adtran were turned on as a second, slower IoT line. It would probably have lower latency than a cable modem on Comcast.

(...and a third and final post next, again truncating because of the forum editor UI not letting me scroll down...)
by brwbrw » Wed Nov 29, 2023 11:11 am
10 Gbit Inside My Home:
Obviously 10 Gbit at home isn't for the faint of heart. While there are some QNAP switches that are relatively cheap, there's definitely a premium to pay if you want 10 Gbit support on Netgear/Asus/Ubuquiti/eero, etc.

But there's also a complexity tax. The 10 Gbit links in your network might require CAT6A or higher grade wiring if the runs are long enough, and the endpoints likely require SFP+ tranceivers. Between the Adtran 10Gbit port and my UDM, I tried using a QSFPTEK tranceiver, but that yields roughly 4 Gbit/s down versus only 300 Mbit up. Hence, that thread suggests using a Mikrotik S+RJ10. I'll report back if and when that gets me up to symmetrical 8 Gbit or so on the UDM.

Wrapping Up:
I'm really curious where I'll end up, putting devices like Sonos and AppleTV on my main network or relegated to IoT speeds and scrutiny. I'm glad I terminated my own Ethernet lines, bypassing the slower-rated CAT5e couplers and receptacles that Soinc installed. I'm definitely switching over to CAT7 "pass through" connectors in the future...I ended up switching back to CAT6 terminators since they passed the connectivity test after only one try.

And lastly I have to return the old ONT to Sonic's RMA department. They provided a UPS shipping sticker, so it should be pretty easy.
by joeyyung911 » Wed Nov 29, 2023 11:54 am
Thanks for writing your experience!!

I don't have 10Gb Internet yet, but I used the 10Gtek SFP+ to 10GBaseT receiver and it seems to max out 10Gb.

My wireless devices are separate from my wired devices, via a different subnet (Edgerouter ER4-Lite). You can even get a managed switch that can limit the speed of the connection. Not sure if it's necessary to get a completely different Internet connection.
Excelsior, Sonic Fiber
by dane » Wed Nov 29, 2023 12:19 pm
Coming soon, Sonic will also be offering a full 10Gbps routing solution. For most customers, I’d advise waiting a few weeks to a month for that to be into inventory.
Dane Jasper
by brwbrw » Wed Nov 29, 2023 12:56 pm
You're a boss, Dane! 8-)
(And also the boss, I suppose.)

Best CEO I've ever encountered on the planet...no ego and a business that's growing like gangbusters. Treats employees right.

10Gbit Sonic fiber to end all cable, in every major geo! XGS-PON in every Central Office throughout the land—sorry, Ma Bell.
Just as has already happened in Eastern Europe. Low pings and IPv6 to boot.

Similarly Disruptive International Equivalents: Contrary to popular opinion, you don't have to hate your ISP.
by dane » Wed Nov 29, 2023 2:22 pm
I’ll confess that our Fusion DSL and phone service was an idea taken from Free. We’d been selling five different speeds (1.5, 3, 6, 12 and 18Mbps), for an array of pricing starting if memory serves at $35/mo, with a $5 up-charge for each speed tier. Then a static IP was an extra charge, so that left us with ten residential configurations and billing SKUs. Of course business sites paid more than residential, making for a total of twenty combinations. This view on pricing was grounded in my experience as a US operator, where duopoly carriers created tiers of service and artificial price points that had no basis in costs.

I read an article by Dave Burstien on his DSLPrime blog, and saw tweets by Benoit Felton, then an analysist with the Yankey Group. Both had published good insights into Free. And it made total sense: when the copper loop has a fixed cost regardless of site type or speed or data and voice going over it, why did we have twenty different prices?

So we flattened it all to single $40 a month for unlimited data as fast as ADSL2+ would go about 20Mbps plus unlimited phone service. It was a disruptive offering and catalyzed a huge era of growth for Sonic.

Our gigabit and 10-gig offerings build on this same view, with some feature differences bringing us to two packages basically.
Dane Jasper
by dane » Wed Nov 29, 2023 2:42 pm
Salt is another good example.
Dane Jasper
by ngufra » Thu Nov 30, 2023 10:19 am
Free started in France in 1999 with dialup where there were no monthly fee, one would just pay the call on their phone bill (just a local call rate, not premium)
Hence the name.

"Free" uses the concept of "boxes" where the box is modem/router/switch/wifi/analog telephone adapter.
It also does powerline to connect to extender and a tv box (like a branded roku)
When they started the boxes, they had a flat price that included domestic calls to landline which was very novel at the time.
They also operated as a MVNO but have since built their own cell network. they currently have almost half of the 5G antennas in France.
If i remember right the boxes were doing voip so it would route the call through wifi at home or if it could connect to a nearby free subscriber box and only use cell if it could not find any free box to connect to.
by brwbrw » Tue Dec 05, 2023 5:55 pm
Yay! New SFP+ modules arrived today. My internet is symmetrical again.

Yikes. But should do nicely for an un-secure IoT network and a failover comparable to slow LTE.
  1. I may need to reset my Unifi Dream Machine to ensure that all packet inspection is off.
  • Every motherboard and/or Thunderbolt dock I buy from now on will have a 10 GB ethernet port.
  • I clearly need to dig up my 5 GBit Thunderbolt NIC to double my server's speeds.
That is all.
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