01/15/2018
UFiber Rollout to 320 apartments
Reason for Installation
UFiber 8 port OLT with three active channels and eventually 320 end users.
Used Products
×1
×1
Location
5234 Jigger Ave, Firgrove Rural, Cape Town 7110, South Africa
Description

In July of 2017 one of our wholesale customers passed away unexpectedly. He ran a one man operation, was unfortunately lax on documentation and had no line of succession in place for his business. We suddenly inherited his ageing wireless network, that promptly collapsed.

 

The entire network consisted of mostly Mikrotik equipment that was well past it's prime. How he managed to keep 12 year old routers operational - and earning him money - is beyond me. The wireless side of things is another story for another day.

 

For many years, our client had the sole right to sell wifi internet in an apartment block. This is where I must mention that all his routers were locked down and nobody knew the passwords.

 

When the network died, we had no choice but to make the clients part of our existing network.

 

The clients in this block who were still with him grew agitated after three weeks without internet. We needed to do something... fast...

 

You can't offer clients reliable 100Mb connections using one of these in the basement.

 

2017-10-03 15.28.35.jpg

 

Up to that point, we had rolled out several active FTTH and FTTB networks. We love the Ubiquiti 12 port fibre switches. They are set and forget.

 

2017-11-17 17.09.36.jpg

 

2017-12-19 18.03.06.jpg

 

 

Looking at the size of the project, I realised an active rollout was not financially viable, so PON it would have to be.

 

In the end it was down to BDCom and Ubiquiti. Although the Ubiquiti OLT is locked down with regard ONUs, I decided to rather go that route.

 

Fortunately, we have working fibre in the business park next to these apartments. Running the backbone involved less than 300m of digging.

 

The apartments are in three wings. Block 1 is the oldest and has about 100 apartments. It is to the left of "Kinds Company" in the picture below.

 

Blocks 2 and three are about 220 apartments and are to the right of "Kids Company".

 

 

Cover.JPG

 

 

Our first step was to sort out a POP and connect the security office and nursery school.

 

But before we could even do that, we had to learn how the Ubiquiti PON system works.

 

These photos show our test lab in our one tech room.

 

2017-10-05 07.21.25.jpg

 

2017-10-05 07.21.33.jpg

 

2017-10-05 07.21.46.jpg

 

2017-10-05 07.22.04.jpg

 

2017-10-05 07.23.20.jpg

 

 

Once we were up to speed with how everything worked, it was time to get serious on site.

 

The Ubiquiti OLT has a 1:128 ratio per port. Unlike most of the competitors, that port can handle 2.5Gb.

 

We started by running a 12 fibre backbone from the one end of the block to the POP and from the POP to the other end, looping above where we would split off to clients.

 

The next step was installing splitter boxes. This turned into the proverbial neverending story. It went on for days. Eventually all 20 were done, each with associated cable trays. The cable trays ended up costing more than the OLT. I'm sure you get the idea.

 

2017-10-06 21.39.06.jpg

 

2017-10-16 18.19.55.jpg

 

 

As this is a low rise apartment block, every apartment is serviced with it's own drop fibre from the basement.

 

We then built the POP. Initially with a RB3011, but that soon changed.

 

2017-10-05 19.31.57.jpg

 

2017-10-06 at 15.48.16.jpeg

 

2017-10-16 18.11.15.jpg

 

Even though we are only using one fibre in one direction and two fibres in the other, we have terminated 8 in each direction. If 1:128 becomes a bit too contended, we can take it down to 1:64 or 1:32 quite easily.

 

Port 1 goes to box 1.

 

Box 1 has an 8 way splitter.

 

One of the 8 fibres goes into a 16 way splitter. Those 16 then go off to apartments.

 

The next one of the 8 fibres goes to box 2 and a 16 way splitter.

 

And so on.

 

2017-10-23 19.00.16.jpg

 

 

We have Ubiquiti ONUs in the customers' premises, all connected to MT hAPs or hAP AC Lites.

 

Our reason for using the MT's is simple. We have an extensive IPv6 network. MT speaks IPv6. AirRouter used to speak IPv6 very well. We loved that product. Unfortunately, there's no replacement for AirRouter so the customer gets a Routerboard that we lock down to provide a managed service.

 

The great thing about the 'tiks is POE out on ether5 to power the ONU.

 

2017-10-17 21.15.58.jpg

 

2018-01-15 at 12.38.07.jpeg

 

2018-01-15 at 12.39.05.jpeg

 

2018-01-15 at 18.21.53.jpeg

 

2018-01-15 22.36.06.jpg

 

 

unms does what it says on the box:

 

unms1.JPG

 

I can see what's going on in the OLT:

 

unms2.JPG

 

I can see what each end user is getting up to:

 

unms3.JPG

 

 

We offer 5Mb, 10Mb, 20Mb, 50Mb and 100Mb uncapped offerings on this network.

 

Of the 320 apartments, we've rolled out to about 90. We're adding two to three a day.

 

Economy of scale means that for the first time, we are able to offer free installations with 24 month contracts. Something that we simply could not do using active electronics. The entire POP fits into a 12U network cabinet and is powered by one little 1KVA inverter with 2 x 105Ah batteries, which is enough to keep it going for the best part of a day.

 

I'm sold. We're installing our next 8 port OLT as I write this. This time for an housing development with 900 houses.


 

UFiber Rollout to 320 apartments

by on ‎01-15-2018 01:58 PM - last edited on ‎02-12-2018 08:23 AM by Ubiquiti Employee

In July of 2017 one of our wholesale customers passed away unexpectedly. He ran a one man operation, was unfortunately lax on documentation and had no line of succession in place for his business. We suddenly inherited his ageing wireless network, that promptly collapsed.

 

The entire network consisted of mostly Mikrotik equipment that was well past it's prime. How he managed to keep 12 year old routers operational - and earning him money - is beyond me. The wireless side of things is another story for another day.

 

For many years, our client had the sole right to sell wifi internet in an apartment block. This is where I must mention that all his routers were locked down and nobody knew the passwords.

 

When the network died, we had no choice but to make the clients part of our existing network.

 

The clients in this block who were still with him grew agitated after three weeks without internet. We needed to do something... fast...

 

You can't offer clients reliable 100Mb connections using one of these in the basement.

 

2017-10-03 15.28.35.jpg

 

Up to that point, we had rolled out several active FTTH and FTTB networks. We love the Ubiquiti 12 port fibre switches. They are set and forget.

 

2017-11-17 17.09.36.jpg

 

2017-12-19 18.03.06.jpg

 

 

Looking at the size of the project, I realised an active rollout was not financially viable, so PON it would have to be.

 

In the end it was down to BDCom and Ubiquiti. Although the Ubiquiti OLT is locked down with regard ONUs, I decided to rather go that route.

 

Fortunately, we have working fibre in the business park next to these apartments. Running the backbone involved less than 300m of digging.

 

The apartments are in three wings. Block 1 is the oldest and has about 100 apartments. It is to the left of "Kinds Company" in the picture below.

 

Blocks 2 and three are about 220 apartments and are to the right of "Kids Company".

 

 

Cover.JPG

 

 

Our first step was to sort out a POP and connect the security office and nursery school.

 

But before we could even do that, we had to learn how the Ubiquiti PON system works.

 

These photos show our test lab in our one tech room.

 

2017-10-05 07.21.25.jpg

 

2017-10-05 07.21.33.jpg

 

2017-10-05 07.21.46.jpg

 

2017-10-05 07.22.04.jpg

 

2017-10-05 07.23.20.jpg

 

 

Once we were up to speed with how everything worked, it was time to get serious on site.

 

The Ubiquiti OLT has a 1:128 ratio per port. Unlike most of the competitors, that port can handle 2.5Gb.

 

We started by running a 12 fibre backbone from the one end of the block to the POP and from the POP to the other end, looping above where we would split off to clients.

 

The next step was installing splitter boxes. This turned into the proverbial neverending story. It went on for days. Eventually all 20 were done, each with associated cable trays. The cable trays ended up costing more than the OLT. I'm sure you get the idea.

 

2017-10-06 21.39.06.jpg

 

2017-10-16 18.19.55.jpg

 

 

As this is a low rise apartment block, every apartment is serviced with it's own drop fibre from the basement.

 

We then built the POP. Initially with a RB3011, but that soon changed.

 

2017-10-05 19.31.57.jpg

 

2017-10-06 at 15.48.16.jpeg

 

2017-10-16 18.11.15.jpg

 

Even though we are only using one fibre in one direction and two fibres in the other, we have terminated 8 in each direction. If 1:128 becomes a bit too contended, we can take it down to 1:64 or 1:32 quite easily.

 

Port 1 goes to box 1.

 

Box 1 has an 8 way splitter.

 

One of the 8 fibres goes into a 16 way splitter. Those 16 then go off to apartments.

 

The next one of the 8 fibres goes to box 2 and a 16 way splitter.

 

And so on.

 

2017-10-23 19.00.16.jpg

 

 

We have Ubiquiti ONUs in the customers' premises, all connected to MT hAPs or hAP AC Lites.

 

Our reason for using the MT's is simple. We have an extensive IPv6 network. MT speaks IPv6. AirRouter used to speak IPv6 very well. We loved that product. Unfortunately, there's no replacement for AirRouter so the customer gets a Routerboard that we lock down to provide a managed service.

 

The great thing about the 'tiks is POE out on ether5 to power the ONU.

 

2017-10-17 21.15.58.jpg

 

2018-01-15 at 12.38.07.jpeg

 

2018-01-15 at 12.39.05.jpeg

 

2018-01-15 at 18.21.53.jpeg

 

2018-01-15 22.36.06.jpg

 

 

unms does what it says on the box:

 

unms1.JPG

 

I can see what's going on in the OLT:

 

unms2.JPG

 

I can see what each end user is getting up to:

 

unms3.JPG

 

 

We offer 5Mb, 10Mb, 20Mb, 50Mb and 100Mb uncapped offerings on this network.

 

Of the 320 apartments, we've rolled out to about 90. We're adding two to three a day.

 

Economy of scale means that for the first time, we are able to offer free installations with 24 month contracts. Something that we simply could not do using active electronics. The entire POP fits into a 12U network cabinet and is powered by one little 1KVA inverter with 2 x 105Ah batteries, which is enough to keep it going for the best part of a day.

 

I'm sold. We're installing our next 8 port OLT as I write this. This time for an housing development with 900 houses.


 

{"location":{"title":"5234 Jigger Ave, Firgrove Rural, Cape Town 7110, South Africa","placeId":"ChIJDQiLGVq1zR0RphZuuXm1VXI"},"addedProducts":[{"id":"ufiber-olt","count":1},{"id":"ufiber-nano-g","count":1}],"solved":"","numbers":"","description":"UFiber 8 port OLT with three active channels and eventually 320 end users.","mainImage":"138679i5081582B728317A1"}

Comments
by
on ‎01-15-2018 03:09 PM

Great write up.

 

For those us like me who are not familiar with Fibre and what some of the Ubiquiti Fibre products do, this helps alot to understand!!

by
on ‎01-15-2018 05:33 PM

Was the actual fiber install challenging in the existing building?

by
on ‎01-15-2018 06:46 PM

Excellent write up!   Very professional installation. 

by
on ‎01-15-2018 09:47 PM

@AaarrrggghThe first block was, and continues to be, difficult. It appears the developers took short cuts running conduit into the apartments. We've had to use telco cables and TV antenna cables as draw lines more than once because of blocked conduits. It can take anything from half a day to a day and a half to install in one apartment. Sometimes we even have to install new microduct.

 

The second and third blocks have clear conduits. The average install time there is two hours.

by Ubiquiti Employee
on ‎01-16-2018 12:24 AM

@cape-connect  - Great deployment. Thanks for the write up.

by
on ‎01-16-2018 07:22 AM

Well that is what customer ratings are for and why you should have mulitple people in a buisness..... Glad that you guys got things work promptly!

by
‎01-17-2018 03:05 PM - edited ‎01-17-2018 03:06 PM

Why do you Use routerboard for the customer 

router/WiFi  and not the ubnt air cube that has UNMS support. 

https://www.ubnt.com/accessories/aircube/

by
on ‎01-17-2018 09:51 PM

@stekkerdoosVery limited availability in South Africa.

by Ubiquiti Employee
on ‎01-18-2018 06:25 AM

Very nice install @cape-connect! Thanks for sharing!

by
on ‎01-18-2018 09:01 AM

Couple questions for you @cape-connect - looking to start rolling out something similar out here in Canada! 

 

 

Are you providing your own WAN circuit for the RB3011 or another company handles the WAN?

You use doing basic NAT with the hAP routers or anything else?  I agree managing the router is a good solution as 99% of a time a customers issue is the router they're using!