My ~3 month follow up to Installing Bell Fibre Internet is due and there’s not really a whole lot to say.
- I’ve had no outages and no technical issues between Bell’s CO and my own router.
- Latency and bandwidth seem stable and consistent with what I’ve paid for, when measured. I plan on gathering data and publishing some analysis in the future.
- The price is about the same as what I paid TSI for a lower bandwidth cable service.
- The hardware is aimed primarily at bundling Internet and entertainment, but it works.
- There is an acceptable method of configuring the modem to act as a pass through device so I can manage my home network using my Turris Omnia router.
- Bell is difficult to deal with and likes to obfuscate their billing details.
So, I suppose this is to say that I’ve gotten more or less what I expected in the best case scenario.
In summary: It’s great to have a highly reliable fibre service into my home. It’s also a shame that Canada’s telecommunications industry is so moribund that Bell isn’t forced to do a better job. I have no complaints, just laments!
Unfortunately it appears that TSI is throwing in the towel as a truly independent ISP. So for this and some technical reasons (it’s the only way I can get FTTH where I live), I’ve decided to go back to being a Bell Canada Internet customer.
It’s the first time I’ve been with Bell for home Internet service since my original DSL connection! Though to be fair, in general, I’ve never had any big problems with their technology, just their business practices.
So I now have a Bell HH4000, a Bell branded Sagemcom F@st 5689, on my shelf. The hardware itself seems fairly well made, though it’s definitely intended for Bell’s average customer, and out-of-the-box it is configured as a combined modem/gateway/wifi-router.
I’ve been reading through the various forum and blog posts from people who have successfully configured the HH4000 to act effectively as a PPPoE passthrough device, but I’m not totally satisfied with the results I’ve had based on this advice.
That said, in my limited usage, the service seems fast and stable. I’ve not seen any evidence of packet loss and the general performance and latency seems good when tested directly from the modem. (I seem to have some overhead on the link between my modem and router in the current config, possibly due to PPPoE in openwrt, possibly due to the physical topology of my old network devices).
I’m going to be making some changes on my router when I get around to upgrading my first-gen Turris Omina to my new third rev model that supports WiFi 6 and uses a 2.5Gbps SFP+ for its WAN link to the modem. At that point I’ll worry about refining the configuration. Once I’ve sorted out these details, I’ll be documenting my configuration in the wiki.
Note: A very short 3 month follow up can be found here.
This week the CBC sent most of its employees who could reasonably work remotely home. It came fairly suddenly on Monday shortly after the federal government announced it’s formal recommendation, formalizing something that was starting to happen organically in various parts of the organization late last week.
The Data Centres team routinely is required to connect to systems remotely to deal with support requests and other operational needs off hours, so for us this is a lot less disruptive than it might be for a journalist or somebody whose primary job function requires a lot of face-to-face meetings. It’s still a strange experience. I’ve had jobs in the past where I often chose to work from home, but since I’ve been a member of the Data Centres team, I’ve generally only been working remotely when I’ve been sick or had an appointment or delivery that I needed to be at home for. This is a big adjustment. Not only is it less than ideal to not have my primary workstation setup, I’ve also been thrust into coordinating team meetings and other collaborative activities via telework tools that we don’t have a lot of experience with as a team, and with almost no warning.
The positive side of things is that everybody’s been pretty helpful and seems to be doing their best to adjust to the new circumstances, under the conditions there’s not much more I could ask for in this respect. We’re all in this together, and it could be a long haul depending on how things go and how seriously Canadians decide to take our guidance with respect to social distancing — a term we didn’t know a few weeks ago.
I’m going to make an effort to log the experience here. Even if this has been a very busy week that has left little time to dwell on the situation, I’m sure that once things settle in I’m going to have a lot of time to think about things, so this is as good an outlet as any. Might as well make lemonade out of this and try to do some non-work related writing, something that I’ve been doing much less of in the past several years.
It’s my birthday tomorrow, this is likely one that I won’t forget!
Toronto is now is an early stage of a pretty strange situation that none of us have probably ever faced before. I’ve been working from home for the past two days now and I’ve been trying to figure out just what the rules are.
The good news is that it turns out that not only are you allowed to go outdoors, at least for the time being, the official medical advice is to do so for your own health. Just try to avoid close contact with other people. So with that in mind I thought I’d share this useful guide that the City of Toronto has put together for people trying to navigate the current confusion.
COVID-19: Practicing Social Distancing
A few people who know I like to read have asked me questions related to the current coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19), but I’m just some dude on the Internet and I’m not qualified to give any kind of advice. Here are some of the reputable online information sources I’m aware of on the topic.
If you believe you may have come in contact with the 2019 novel coronavirus and are feeling ill, the Ontario Ministry of Health has published an online self-assessment page to help you determine what to do while reducing the stress on the health care system.
I will update this page from time to time if I come across additional useful information.
Most recently updated on March 18, 2020.
Public Health Agency of Canada
Canadian Regional Information
International Public Health Agencies