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Choosing a router (NetGear DGN2200v4) which can support fibre in future?

I want to buy a router that will provide an upgrade path for future fibre connectivity. I've done some research and I think the DGN2200v4 will provide this. However, I thought I'd post the question(s) to clear up any misunderstanding on my part.


I understand that current ADSL routers such as the NetGear DGN2200v4 will have something like 4 ethernet LAN ports, one of which can behave as a WAN port. This WAN port accepts an ethernet cable providing the fibre connection. See page 11 and 14 of the DGN2200v4 manual for example.


So my questions, in the South African context, are:

  1. Should I always be expecting an ethernet connection providing the fibre?
  2. When considering ADSL WiFi routers, should I be looking to always buy a router that supports this WAN ethernet port?
  3. How do Telkom and other providers physically provide ethernet with the fibre connection? Do they simply provide an ethernet cable into your home, or is there some fibre modem (as in page 14 of the manual) that converts the fibre line into an ethernet connection?

thanks in advance!

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Re: Choosing a router (NetGear DGN2200v4) which can support fibre in future?

I have a Netgear DGN2200v4 although I am just using it for straight forward ADSL at the moment, more is not yet available in my area, but I had the exact same thought pattern.  Future proof.  I'll see what I can answer of your questions:

  1. I think both are possible, and your router allows for it, but fundamentally the fibre connection protocol is different even from a normal ethernet port.  Often on servers etc. there are other converters that are used referred to as gbics... the DGN2200v4 removes a bit of these complexities in that port 4 can be used as normal ethernet out or the fibre in.
  2. I think that is indeed a good idea.  It might take some time before we get fibre but it is best to be prepared.  The only other thing i have thought of planning for is to have a modem and switch as separate pieces of hardware.  Everytime a router goes you have to replace the whole thing.  Fortunately the cost is coming down, so it is not that painful anymore
  3. Generally I think this comes to you as a CPE device in your house that you will connect to directly with your machine before setting it up to work through your router.  Read here for more info and FAQs -
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Re: Choosing a router (NetGear DGN2200v4) which can support fibre in future?

[ Edited ]

1) Yes. You generally won't have to deal with the actual fiber connection and most of the time you'll be handed a basic router that converts the fiber connection to Ethernet, which you can then feed into your router or proxy server to serve internet to your home network. 


2) Buy an access point instead. You can look at something like the ASUS N55U-C1, which supports ADSL 2+ and has a WAN port, but it's best to separate your router and your modem so you can upgrade either part separately. It's also somewhat of a redundancy plan, because if your router is functional but your modem dies, you can replace the modem without interrupting the LAN traffic. If you're looking for a router, get one that supports 802.11ac and uses the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands on different antenna. TP-Link makes the Archer C5 AC1200, which I'm currently using for my hardware reviews.


3) Yep, you get a fibre "modem". That's the router your service provider gives you. You can buy one yourself, but usually the one your ISP recommends has been tested and validated to work with their network. 


If you haven't considered doing so before, I'd also recommend that you upgrade your LAN speed to gigabit (1Gb/s) and not fast Ethernet (100Mb/s). Having a gigabit LAN eases the pains of running a network on fast Ethernet which is ten times slower, especially when you might have multiple people accessing a NAS, networked printers, streaming media from something like Plex, sharing files, or backing up to a local server, all at the same time.

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