# Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Last night I finally got broadband access hooked up at my new house.  Two weeks without Internet access has been crushing me slowly, but this was the soonest I could pull everything together. 

I found out a while back that I could get Verizon’s FIOS service at my new house.  Way faster than the 768Kb DSL connection I had before.  I went round and round about how to set up networking/phone/etc. at the new place.  I considered cable modems, VoIP phone, etc.  I didn’t really want a cable modem, since I don’t watch TV, and Comcast really tries hard (relentlessly?) to make you watch TV once they get a foot in the door.  I considered DSL again, but you can’t get DSL without local phone service, and I didn’t really want that either.  FIOS works out perfectly.  It’s fiber direct to the home, and you can get (right now) 5Mb down and 2Mb up for $35/month.  Perfect.  I don’t have a landline, since I already pay for cell phones, and FIOS carries no local phone requirement, although if you use Verizon as your local phone service, they route your phone over the fiber too, at no additional charge.  If you really feel you need it, FIOS is also capable of 15Mb/2Mb for only $10/month more. 

Once that was decided, it was still a lengthy process.  Turns out that FIOS requires a little box (the Optical Network Terminal) to be installed on the outside of your house.  This (for me) required getting approval from the HOA, and for that I had to wait until we closed before even submitting the application.  That took a few days to process, and by then the earliest time I could schedule Verizon for was over a week out.  Sigh.  Being a utility, Verizon gives you a nice tight arrival window for the technicians between 8 AM and 5 PM.  Thanks.  So I worked at home all day waiting for them to show up.  They finally arrived at 4:45.  Good thing I waited. :-(  Once they got there though, I was very impressed.  They only took about an hour, which included installing the ONT on the outside of the house, installing a battery backup for said device inside my garage, and running CAT5 from the ONT through the crawlspace and into the room where I have my PC set up.  The install ends in a very tidy looking RJ-45 jack.  They even install a free (if you agree to a one year contract) wireless router and get it all configured to talk to their server (via PPPoE, I was surprised to learn). 

I tried it out last night, and it kicks the llama’s @$$, as they say.  Lightyears ahead of my DSL connection. 

If it’s available in your neighborhood, it’s totally worth checking out.