Fiber Quickstart

Setting up a fiber connection is easy.

A fiber line is carried on a glass fiber. These are expensive to install but are very fast and very reliable.

The telephone companies have their own brand names for fiber, such as "FIOS" or "Uverse". Actually Uverse can mean most anything, it may or may not be fiber.

If your connection is 25mb or faster, it is probably fiber.

We will give general information on fiber setup here. Specific instructions for specific equipment pieces will be found in the equipment section of our support pages.


The telephone company brings the connection to your home or office with an "ONT", which is a fiber modem. These are mostly manufactured by Alcatel or Arris, which is part of Motorola.

We have a separate page with pictures of the ONT.

The ONT typically has two outputs, one ethernet (which looks like a big telephone cord) and one coaxial (which looks like a cable tv cord).

We ALWAYS prefer to use the ethernet port, because it is faster, and because it gives us a wider choice of compatible routers. If you see the installer putting in a coaxial cable, tell him to put in ethernet instead.

If the ONT has both Coaxial and Ethernet ports, it will automatically use whichever one is plugged in.

You will also have a router. Sometimes these are supplied by the telephone company, sometimes by us, and sometimes by the customer.

The router you need is a standard ethernet wifi router. Connect by ethernet cable to the ONT.

If the router came from the telephone company it's probably "Arris" or "Actiontec". Note that the telephone company often paints their name on equipment manufactured by other companies, so check the label on the back to see who really made it.

If the router came from us, it is probably TP-Link or Netgear or Actiontec.

There is a long list of routers in our support pages that will work with a fiber connection. Have a look there to find instructions for the particular router that you have,

The router should be set up for DHCP (dynamic) connection type. For most routers, this is the default setting. So this means that if you get any standard router from Best Buy or whever, it should connect to your fiber line right out of the box.


Since the setup for a fiber line is so simple, there isn't much to troubleshoot.

Make sure your router has a good ethernet connection to the ONT. Check the lights and make sure you have both ethernet and internet.

Often problems will be fixed by restarting the router and computer.

Several times recently we have seen customers who were down because the ethernet cable for the upstream connection was plugged in the wrong port. This varies by manufacturer, but most of the time a router will have four ports for computers which are all the same color, and one port for the upstream connection, which is a different color. If you have plugged and uplugged things, double check that this is right.

We also had a customer whose line was down recently because the lines had been chewed by a rat. It's very possible for an ethernet cable to go bad even without rats, so check and replace cables if it looksl ike there may be a connection problem.

Occasionally the ONT itself may require a restart. Note that it usually has a battery inside which must be disconnected to do a real restart.

If the line itself is down, this may be reflected by a red light somewhere on the ONT. This will require us to call the telephone company. You can't call them yourself, you have to call us.

If nothing else works, restart everything again, say some magic words, and if that doesn't work, give us a call at 310 395 5500.