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Old 12-30-2020, 07:49 PM   #1
jetskier
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Post Internet Question

Hi all,

Does anyone know whether the Atlantic Broadband cable infrastructure will continue to work in the event of a power outage. I would like to monitor my house remotely and can put the cable modem on a ups if the rest of the infrastructure remains operational.

Thank you in advance.
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Old 12-30-2020, 08:47 PM   #2
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Hi all,

Does anyone know whether the Atlantic Broadband cable infrastructure will continue to work in the event of a power outage. I would like to monitor my house remotely and can put the cable modem on a ups if the rest of the infrastructure remains operational.

Thank you in advance.
Jetskier
We have trouble with it working when there is no power outage!
Now seriously, they sometimes run a generator down the street from us during power outages. It is at the base of a pole which appears to have a battery box mounted on it.
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Old 12-30-2020, 08:54 PM   #3
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That depends on the location of the outage. We have had a few power outages when on generator where the ABB internet still worked. One was today when our house was the only power outage in the area. A squirrel was executed on top of the transformer. For most of the outages that we have had, the internet was also down when on generator. We had to setup hot spots using our phones.

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Old 12-30-2020, 09:37 PM   #4
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Default Internet

We depend on our Consolidated Telephone internet service when we have power outages on Bear Island. So far, so good with our portable generator supplying power. Atlantic, like old Metrocast, usually goes down within a couple of hours.
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Old 12-31-2020, 08:24 AM   #5
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I would say, it depends. If a tree falls and breaks the ABB cable along with the power lines, you are dead in the water. Further, power will be restored before the cable is fixed. In severe storms, the cable repair may be way out from the power repair.

I don't know if and how ABB cable equipment uses line power to push it's signal? If it only requires a "push" at certain key points and the cable is intact, the signal may continue to go through. If it needs a periodic boost from the power line to rebuild power levels, the signal will degrade as the power is no longer available along the way. The farther it travels the weaker it gets.

In addition, internet signals travel through a complex path to get to your home. In a major storm, an interruption could happen far from your home and still drop your connection. Systems are self healing to a point, automatically rerouting to establish a connection, but that can lead to bandwidth problems and other issues causing erratic behavior.

I would say that reliable monitoring via internet during conditions likely to cause a general power outage is NOT dependable. If you lose your monitor info, you could wait a few hours and then ask someone local to check your house. You can also check the power company outage maps to see if there is an outage in your area, when it is likely to be fixed, and go from there. If power is restored and you still can't monitor, the cable is probably down. You could call your cable company to see what outages they are reporting.
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Old 12-31-2020, 09:08 AM   #6
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Default Power and Internet Outage

If there is cable service at the modem and the power is out, yes there is internet if the modem is on UPS or gennie. Happens a few times to me. I know folks on Consolidated Communications have the same luck.
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Old 12-31-2020, 12:18 PM   #7
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Hi all,

Thank you for the replies. I was hoping that ABB had a coherent infrastructure relative to services during a power outage especially given 911 requirements around VoIP.

So, it sounds like internet availability is not coherent and infrastructure may or may not be backed up in their distribution networks.

Without further guidance, I will probably crap shoot by installing a cheap UPS and see if that actually provides some survivability.

Bruce
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Old 12-31-2020, 12:32 PM   #8
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Default Have ABB in Meredith

Power doesn't go down too often- and maybe only for an hour or so when it does.
I'm still confused how, sometimes, the power will "blink off" for just a few seconds and then come back on- still need to reset clocks! PITA!

Anyway- when the power does goes down, so does the internet.

Good luck!
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Old 01-01-2021, 08:14 AM   #9
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I'm still confused how, sometimes, the power will "blink off" for just a few seconds and then come back on- still need to reset clocks! PITA!
I am waiting for all powered clocks to "get smart" and be able to reset themselves from a wifi timebase. I have seen them for businesses where they don't want to go around resetting dozens of clocks after a power outage but I'm not sure if they are available in the home market.
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Old 01-01-2021, 08:33 AM   #10
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I am waiting for all powered clocks to "get smart" and be able to reset themselves from a wifi timebase. I have seen them for businesses where they don't want to go around resetting dozens of clocks after a power outage but I'm not sure if they are available in the home market.
They've had atomic clocks for years, which set themselves without the need for a complex network, so if it were important I'd think that'd be a much simpler option.

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Old 01-01-2021, 08:58 AM   #11
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They've had atomic clocks for years, which set themselves without the need for a complex network, so if it were important I'd think that'd be a much simpler option.

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Most of these clocks use a RADIO signal ("La Crosse technology?") to get their time from. That's great if the radio signal is strong enough where you are, think cell phones and dead areas. I've owned one. It didn't work where I was at the time because the radio signal wasn't strong enough. Plus, the radio signal is often unavailable 24/7. Many systems that use this tech only update at night when the signal is stronger because of atmospheric issues during the day.

BTW, the name of "atomic clock" is a marketing misnomer. A real atomic clock is one that uses a hyper precise time base that "deviates only 1 second in up to 100 million years". La Crosse snazzed up the name because it had better buzz than "Radio clock".

I proposed wi-fi because it is becoming ubiquitous in homes. HOW you get your wifi varies, cable, phone lines, broadband, satellite but almost everyone is getting it somehow. If the clocks all linked to it for their time base, problem solved with no drop out areas. Obviously, if you don't have wifi, you wouldn't buy one of these clocks.

Beyond that, once you have the wifi connection, the clocks can get smarter to tell you things like the day's weather, flag alerts, etc.
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Old 01-01-2021, 10:32 AM   #12
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Most of these clocks use a RADIO signal ("La Crosse technology?") to get their time from. That's great if the radio signal is strong enough where you are, think cell phones and dead areas. I've owned one. It didn't work where I was at the time because the radio signal wasn't strong enough. Plus, the radio signal is often unavailable 24/7. Many systems that use this tech only update at night when the signal is stronger because of atmospheric issues during the day.

BTW, the name of "atomic clock" is a marketing misnomer. A real atomic clock is one that uses a hyper precise time base that "deviates only 1 second in up to 100 million years". La Crosse snazzed up the name because it had better buzz than "Radio clock".

I proposed wi-fi because it is becoming ubiquitous in homes. HOW you get your wifi varies, cable, phone lines, broadband, satellite but almost everyone is getting it somehow. If the clocks all linked to it for their time base, problem solved with no drop out areas. Obviously, if you don't have wifi, you wouldn't buy one of these clocks.

Beyond that, once you have the wifi connection, the clocks can get smarter to tell you things like the day's weather, flag alerts, etc.
Good point on the signal strengthóI've never had an issue, but I suppose an interior office, metal building interference, etc. could affect that.

I still see adding the "extras" as a questionable cost vs. benefit, but I also still wear a watch, so who am I to judge?!

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Old 01-01-2021, 12:53 PM   #13
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I am waiting for all powered clocks to "get smart" and be able to reset themselves from a wifi timebase. I have seen them for businesses where they don't want to go around resetting dozens of clocks after a power outage but I'm not sure if they are available in the home market.
We have two bedroom clocks that have 12v battery backup; they never lose time during an outage.

Now as for "smart clocks," how long would it be before they start reporting, on the sly, how often you look at the clock, prompting a conference with the boss? How long before the display of time "briefly" switches to an ad for the product your PC adblocker kept from displaying. Will your bedroom "clock" be able to see you and report all to the (insert gov't acronym here) spooks?
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Old 01-01-2021, 02:26 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by jetskier View Post
Hi all,

Thank you for the replies. I was hoping that ABB had a coherent infrastructure relative to services during a power outage especially given 911 requirements around VoIP.

So, it sounds like internet availability is not coherent and infrastructure may or may not be backed up in their distribution networks.

Without further guidance, I will probably crap shoot by installing a cheap UPS and see if that actually provides some survivability.

Bruce
Iíve had a UPS on our Modem / Router for probably over a decade and I canít tell you how many times Iíve received a call (over VoIP) from my Alarm system telling me we have no power. Iíd say more often than not it stayed up. But it has certainly gone down with it too. And occasionally itís gone down when there was power.

Down in MA we are on Fios. Fios rarely ever goes down.
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Old 01-01-2021, 05:19 PM   #15
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Most cable based Internet systems have a number of active elements along the path from the head end to you. Many are powered by voltage sent down the cable from power supplies fed by the electric utility, others are directly powered by the utility at the equipment location. Many have short-term (hours, usually) battery backup in the power supplies, so they may continue to operate for a while after utility power is lost.

Some cable companies will proactively deploy a generator to important points in their systems to keep them powered in the event of an extended loss of utility power. So it depends, how the system was designed, how well the batteries are maintained, and whether the cable company takes care of its customers in the event of an extended outage.

FIOS and some (but not all) other fiber optic networks have an outside plant that is totally passive, no power required. These are referred to as PON (or passive optical networks). Your ONT and router at home obviously needs power, and may have a UPS or (limited) battery backup. And the "head end" of the fiber system may have a generator backup, or only limited battery backup. Good luck on trying to get a straight answer from the provider. The techs will know, but the sales people will probably promise the world without any facts to back it up.

Historically, at least around here, FIOS and other FTTH systems have had a better record than coax based cable systems when it comes to reliability. No system is even close to perfect, just better.

New 5G systems claiming to provide high bandwidth without a drop to your house will require power at the cell site locations, and given that the "reach" is only about 1000 feet or less, they require many more cell sites in rural or suburban areas than 3 or 4G. Less likelihood that those cells will have anything more than battery backup if that. So a loss of utility power at the cell site probably will wipe them out.
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