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Everyone should get Naked! (dsl….)

By July 6, 2012 Broadband

Ever wonder why, or hear the story where a business in an industrial park, or retail location is able to get ADSL, or the new ADSL2/VDSL2 speeds for Internet and MPLS services yet their neighbor (IE: possibly you) is not?

The phone company has never been too helpful on this one. Availability of higher (or any) premium broadband services have often been handed out on a ‘yes’ it is available or ‘no’ it is not available basis. If the answer is no, the immediately disinterested call centre employee is far too focused on selling you the next available service like a T1 (1.54 Mbps link or a cellular 3g / 4g LTE service) vs. trying to figure out routing options or examination of such a strange phenomenon of random availability

Frontier Networks provides different types of delivery methods to deliver our Internet or Private Networks (MPLS) services.

Quickly summarized:

Service Type


Typical Application

Cellular 3G/4G 1 – 2 mb Backup to ADSL line National
ADSL, ADSL2+/VDSL Up to 25 mb Retail, small business internet or MPLS National
SDSL Up to 45 mb Small to medium business internet or MPLS Limited
T1 1.5 or 3.0 mb All applications National
Cable 2 – 10 mb All applications Limited (not common in commercial areas)
Wireless Point to Point Up to 40 mb All applications Limited by footprint
Fibre 10, 100, 1000 or 10,000 mb All applications Was limited, less these days

But what is ADSL?

ADSL today is the most common form of broadband. And it is one of the 7 classes of service that Frontier Sells:

xDSL in all of its forms, either ADSL, ADSL2+, VDSL2+ or SDSL (Asymmetric/Symmetric Digital Subscriber Line) – uses an existing phone line to provide broadband access at high speeds, while still allowing the phone line to be used for phone calls/faxes. It does this by transmitting data at very high frequencies.

So here is where the problem starts.

If the phone company had such a thing as a ‘department of helpfulness’ they would probably tell you the following.

If your phone line that you inquire on (phone number) is provided by, or registered with the incumbent phone company (or telco as we call it), then the telco is able to determine what piece of copper is in your building and to what Central Office (or CO) it is connected to.

So far so good, right?

Often, they can even tell you the distance, and effectively provide a good solid opinion on what effective rate of speed you will get.

Problem is some phone lines, albeit using telco provided copper, and terminating to the telco CO, are not terminated to a telco phone switch, but instead, they are connecting to a deregulated providers switch.

Why is this problem?

It means the phone number that you make an inquiry on is simply not being cross referenced in any way geographically. So, even though you are told it is not available, it may be.

This really became a problem as early back as 1997 when the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) established a framework to open the local market to competition. Today, there are a ton of copper lines that are simply not properly registered or accounted for, and many phone numbers are not registered to the telco databases.

It also has one more problem, in some cases, your ADSL line is tied to the phone line. If you switch your phone line provider (as many people do) your service may inadvertently be interrupted – sometimes for days, often without notice. This is often just a case of bad inventory control of the copper pairs.

Frontier has a simple fix to this problem.

We always pull in a dry loop, often referred to as Naked DSL.

In Canada, the CRTC ruling of 21 July 2003, made it possible to have Dry loop available (or a naked dsl loop). These lines are what our ADSL service will actually run on. There is not yet widespread adoption of this technique, due largely to a lack of consumer awareness, and also it is a case of cost control since the phone company charges an additional fee for dry loop based on the Band Rate of the area.

It goes by a number of names: naked, dry line, unbundled, dedicated loop or standalone service. No matter what you call it when Frontier Networks terminates a business class Internet or MPLS circuit into your building, it is a dedicated piece of copper, shared with nothing, that is properly tagged and registered.

If it isn’t broke, break it, shoot it, shoot it twice to make sure it is dead!

As your business considers a renewal of your broadband service, consider that perhaps the time is right to actually change the link that you have used historically to terminate your service into your building. Imagine, a shiny new piece of copper, a new router, properly tagged and terminated – a great way to get those new high speeds that everyone is talking about.

Or, you could just renew your old contract, and keep using that awesome 5+ year old dusty router!

Think of Frontier as that Department of Helpfulness.