Wednesday, January 31, 2007


As I mentioned in a previous post, I had to go back to my arch nemesis, Verizon, to get their high speed fiber optic service. Well I am online now, and I thought I would give it a quick review.

First, the install is very odd. They give you a free wireless router, which isn't that odd, but it's about a foot and a half tall. Odder still, they install a UPS! I asked the installer why I need a UPS, and he said if my power goes out, I can still get on the Internet for up to 4 hours... too bad my laptop battery wouldn't hold out that long, but good to know in a Doomsday scenario I can still check my Gmail.

I originally just had TV service installed, because if I didn't like it, I didn't want to have to mess around with switching my firewall's settings back and forth (I have a hardware VPN from my home network and my colocation facility). I decided to get the Internet later, so the installer told me since I already have the router, they should just be able to "flip a switch". I called, and they told me "no, a tech had to come out on a business day from 9-5". But since they put the SSID and network key, I tried connecting to the router, and can get on fine... so I'm still not really impressed by Verizon's customer service.

Now the speed. I signed up for the low-end FIOS with a 5 mps downstream and 2mps upstream. I did two speed tests from my notebook (over a wireless connection) on the cable connection and FIOS. Here are the results:

Comcast Cable Modem:
Downstream: 902 kbs
Upstream: 721kbs

Downstream: 2972kbs
Upstream: 1473kbs

Three times faster downloading and double the speed uploading, not too shabby for $3 less a month!

I should mention I almost never had any connection problems with Comcast. It was down for maybe a total of 24 hours in the 3 years I've owned this house. Hopefully Verizon will have as good of a track record.


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