How The NBN Came To Campbelltown

Or more accurately: a pictorial record of how the NBN optical fibre network came to our home in Leumeah, NSW.

The National Broadband Network was established by the Australia Government in 2009 replace the ageing Telstra copper phone network.

In essence, we had been using a telephone network to run our computers. Now we are using a computer network to run our phones!

It was announced in about 2012 that Leumeah would be one of the early roll-outs but it was not until late 2014 that we saw the first local  activity – the replacement  of the asbestos street pit:

2014-12-08 NBN Pit Replacement From Window
2014-12-08 NBN Pit Replacement – The Asbestos Sucker-Upperer
2014-12-08 NBN Pit Replacement From Driveway

Then in mid 2015, we observed nearby construction activity as new conduits and a street connection cabinet were installed along the street:

2015-07-10 NBN Construction
2015-07-10 NBN Construction Work in Progress

A couple of months later, the new optical fibre cables were pulled into the street pits from the nearby distribution cabinet:

2015-09-07 NBN Cabling
2015-09-07 NBN Cabling

Right at the end of 2015, NBN required access to our sub-floor and installed an external NBN connection box, with a coil of optical fibre cable:

2015-12-08 External Box Installed
2015-12-08 External Box Installed

A month later, the coil had been removed. I’m not sure where it went (probably to the street pit) – but it seemed to clear the way for the final work to be done inside the house:

2016-01-10 NBN Coil Gone
2016-01-10 NBN Coil Gone

Finally, in February 2016, an appointment was made to bring the NBN into the home, with an optical fibre cable through the sub-floor to a central cupboard. At this point, NBN internet access became available and I was able to make a temporary connection into my computers. The telephone was still on copper :

2016-02-02 NBN Activation
2016-02-02 NBN Installed And Activated

All that was left to do was create a permanent home for the router next to the NBN box and find out how to convert the phones to VOIP.

We connected an analogue telephone adapter (ATA) into the router and we had VOIP activated on a new phone number:

2016-03-10 NBN in Cupboard
2016-03-10 NBN in Cupboard With New Shelf, Router, ATA and Cordless Phone

The only thing remaining now is to wait for the old phone number to be “ported” to replace the new VOIP number and it will be complete.

…………and that is how the NBN came to Leumeah.


Problems along the way?

Both NBN and our ISP were rather weak on providing information about the consumer’s installation:

1. It took several phone calls and e-mails to confirm that our existing router was ‘NBN capable’ and that we did not need to purchase the replacement router which my ISP said I would require.

2. Trying to establish how to rewire our home phone network was even harder, which led to us abandoning all wired extensions and purchasing a cordless phone with extra extensions.

3. There was no advice available regarding Analogue Telephone Adapters (ATAs).

4. The period between NBN connection and ADSL/phone line disconnection has been about six weeks so far, due first to the lack of information about the VOIP phone installation, followed by an astonishing three week waiting period for “porting” the old phone number. This has meant paying for two services concurrently from the activation of NBN to the deactivation of copper, which I hope will be soon.


The end result?

Our old 3.5 Mbps ADSL copper phone line has been superseded by an internet bandwidth of 11 Mbps and VOIP phones, at the same reasonable monthly price that we were paying previously for ADSL and phone line – $39.00 per month including 100Gb per month broadband and telephone.

All images © R.Powell



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