Why you shouldn’t buy symmetric 10Gbps of fiber at home

All operators are already preparing to launch the new ultra-fast fiber optic modality, using XGS-PON technology that allows us symmetric speeds of up to 10Gbps, therefore, we can achieve speeds 10 times higher than the current 1Gbps that already they market several operators in Spain. This new 10Gbps speed does not make much sense to hire it in your home, and it is not that we do not want to have it in our homes, but that it is too early to be able to take full advantage of it. Today in this article we are going to give you all the reasons not to hire a 10Gbps fiber mode.

Reasons not to hire 10Gbps from any operator (for now)

Why you shouldn't buy symmetric 10Gbps of fiber

Currently in the vast majority of homes we have Gigabit Ethernet equipment, therefore, we will be able to achieve a speed of a maximum theoretical 1Gbps in the local network and the Internet, which remains at approximately 940Mbps real approximately due to the loss of effective data due to TCP headers. / IP. In more “advanced” homes, with new computers incorporating Multigigabit network cards, it is possible that they have speeds of 2.5Gbps, that is, slightly more than twice the speed of the typical Gigabit Ethernet interface, however, these speeds remain very far from the 10Gbps that operators such as Digi are beginning to commercialize, and other operators that already have their XGS-PON network ready will also follow soon.

Does it make sense to hire these new Internet speed modes? Next, we are going to give you all the reasons why it does not make sense, currently, to hire these ultra-fast speeds.

You will only get it via Ethernet network cable

Thanks to the WiFi 6 standard we can achieve real high speeds in the wireless network, generally laptops with WiFi 6 cards and mobiles support 160MHz of channel width in 5GHz, in addition, they usually have one or two internal antennas, currently there are no WiFi clients with more than two antennas. The maximum speed that we can achieve via WiFi using two antennas and the 160MHz channel width are 2.402Mbps theoretical, this speed translates into a speed of about 1200Mbps real via WiFi, therefore, we can squeeze the maximum via WiFi Internet connections of 1Gbps, because these connections reach up to 940Mbps real, but we will not be able to take advantage of higher speeds, much less pretend to reach up to 10Gbps with a single client device, this is simply not possible today.

Therefore, we cannot achieve these speeds through WiFi , we can only achieve these speeds through an Ethernet network cable, but this is also an added problem, and that is that not all users will have a 10Gbps network card or the cabling needed to get the most out of these speeds. In order to achieve these 10Gbps speeds, you will need at least:

  • 10Gbps network card.
  • Cat6 Ethernet network cable, although it is recommended that it be Cat 6A or higher.

In the new motherboards of high-end Intel and AMD computers, they usually incorporate Multigigabit network cards, some models have a 2.5Gbps port, other motherboards support up to 5Gbps Multigigabit, and the top of the range and the most expensive already incorporate a card of integrated 10Gbps speed network, therefore, these latest top-of-the-range boards are the only ones that could take advantage of these speeds.

Another option is to buy a 10Gbps network card for your PC, in this case, you will have to necessarily connect it to an available PCIe 3.0 port on your computer, once we have punctured it, we will already have 10Gbps connectivity, but this means having to buy one network card, disassemble the computer, click the card and install the corresponding drivers. In other words, it is not within the reach of all users to have to go through all this process to achieve these Internet speeds.

As for network cabling, the truth is that Cat 6 cabling is cheap and will work for you, as long as it is a quality cable and is not too long, however, today there are patch cords (short network cables) that are Cat 7 and they have a very good price, therefore, we recommend buying a Cat 7 patch cord directly to avoid problems with network cabling.

Cost of new network equipment

When we hire a speed of 10Gbps, the operator will provide us with a router with a 10Gbps port to be able to achieve these speeds from the fiber optic to the home, however, what happens if we want to connect several devices to achieve these speeds? We will have to buy additional network equipment, taking into account that you already have a 10Gbps network card and the corresponding cabling.

The minimum we should buy is a motherboard with an integrated 10G port , however, if you already have a computer mounted, the best option is to buy a 10G ASUS XG-C100C network card that has an excellent value for money, and is that for only about 65 euros you can buy this network card that has a 10Gbps Multigigabit port, therefore, you can also synchronize at speeds of 5Gbps and 2.5Gbps, in addition to 1Gbps and 100Mbps. This model of network card is one of the most recommended for its price and good performance, in fact, we are the network card that we use in our PCs.

asus pce-xg c100c

Once we have a 10G speed network card, we will need to buy the proper cabling. Although according to the 10GBASE-T standard it is allowed to use Cat 6 network cabling, we will only achieve these speeds over short distances and without any type of problem of external interference or unfavorable crosstalk, therefore, our recommendation is to buy a Cat network cable directly 6A or higher, it is now very fashionable to buy flat Cat 7 or Cat 8 patch cords that are S / FTP for maximum isolation and the best possible signal.

cable de red CAT 7

If you need to buy the network card and the cabling, we will have to spend approximately € 75 to buy the appropriate equipment.

If you want to connect several computers to the 10Gbps network, you will need to buy a switch with 10GBASE-T ports, otherwise, you can only achieve this speed of up to 10Gbps on a PC. Of course, you will need that in the other PCs you have 10G network cards and also the corresponding cabling. 10G switches are quite expensive, depending on whether you want it to have all 10G ports, or just some of them. If you want a 10G switch with all 10G ports and that provides great performance, the D-Link DXS-1100-10TS model is one of the most recommended, the price is approximately 850 euros.

Another very interesting model is the QNAP QSW-M408-4C that has a total of 4 10G ports and 8 Gigabit Ethernet ports for only € 350, therefore, with this switch you can connect up to 3 PCs via cable at 10Gbps plus cable to the router to the 10G port, if you are interested in another more complete model you can buy the QNAP QSW-M1208-8C but it is worth twice as much (about 700 euros approximately). As you can see, a 10G switch is quite expensive, therefore, you should assess whether it is worth it or not.

Your teams must be very powerful

Although we have network electronics at speeds of 10G, it is absolutely necessary that our PC has a powerful processor capable of adequately managing all network traffic, generally processors from about 3-4 years ago until now can support these speeds without problems. , but beyond that you may have a bottleneck in some cases. We must bear in mind that transferring at speeds of 10Gbps will cause high processor consumption if it is very old, therefore, you could have slowdowns if you use other programs simultaneously, or directly that you cannot pass a certain download bandwidth or rise.

Another very important aspect to consider is the storage , if you are going to use this connection to download a lot of content from the Internet or upload a lot of content to the Internet, you will not be able to use hard drives or SATA3 SSDs, because this data interface will only provide up to 6Gbps of bandwidth, that is, the local network will run faster than the data interface of the SATA3 SSD. You absolutely need to use NVMe SSDs to take advantage of these blazing-fast speeds, otherwise you’ll have a storage bottleneck. If we carry out tests with programs such as iperf3 to measure bandwidth, you will see that even if you use hard drives you will achieve speeds of 9.8Gbps without problem, this is because this data does not “touch” the hard drives, but rather the data traffic it is done from CPU and RAM, which are clearly faster than storage.

You won’t get these speeds outside of the carrier’s network

Digi has been the first operator to launch the symmetric 10Gbps modality in Spain using XGS-PON, and other operators will launch these modalities very soon. According to the operator itself, at most we will achieve a speed of up to 8Gbps real download and upload, with a minimum speed of 5Gbps. Although it is a super fast connection, we are no longer getting the promised 10Gbps, not even the actual 9.8Gbps if we remove the headers from the TCP / IP packets. This means that our 10Gbps connection will actually work at a speed between 5Gbps and actual 8Gbps , but you should also know that this speed is for each OLT port .

We must bear in mind that in an XGS-PON architecture, dozens of clients hang from the same OLT, therefore, this speed is shared with the rest of the clients that hang from this same OLT, generally there are 32 clients for each OLT port , but it depends on how each operator has sized it. So you may never get these internet speeds if your “neighbors” hanging from the same OLT are also downloading or uploading data.

In the hypothetical case that you already have your 10Gbps network configured and working, and that your “neighbors” are not downloading or uploading data at the same time as you, you should know that these speeds will only be achieved on the operator’s own network . If you do a speed test using a server that is hosted on the same network, you may get these ultra-fast speeds, however, if you do this same test outside the operator’s network, you may not get a speed higher than 1Gbps at best. the cases. Why can we only get these speeds on the operator’s network? This is where the peering with the different neutral points of the Internet and also the transit comes into play, and what flow it has with them to be able to reach other networks, achieving these speeds within the operator’s network is quite simple, things get complicated if we pretend get these speeds on an outside server.

The same happens if we use P2P downloads intensively , in this case for you to download others the data must be uploaded, therefore, it is unlikely that you will be able to take advantage of these download and upload speeds, because before you can connect to enough peers , you will have finished the download with almost total security. In addition, the different peering and transit agreements of the different operators also come in here.

You will pay more than the monthly fee to your operator

Hiring a higher Internet speed usually entails an increase in the monthly fee of your operator, therefore, it will be necessary to see operator by operator what are the prices of this new 10Gbps FTTH modality, which we can hardly make the most of due to everything what we have explained above. If the difference between the 1Gbps and 10Gbps mode is very small, about € 5 or € 10, then maybe it could be interesting because you will get sustained speeds higher than 1Gbps in some cases, but think if it really is worth it. In a domestic environment, in our opinion, we believe that such high speeds do not make sense today.

In this article we have been saying for a couple of years that 10Gbps networks are the present and the future, but in the local network, where we can transfer data at maximum speed and take full advantage of NAS servers with this type of connectivity, however, With regard to the Internet, we are not going to be able to take advantage of these speeds yet. If you already have a 10G network in your home with switches, network cards and cabling, then the money outlay is not as important as if you did not have any of this, and maybe you want to hire this new card to test how it works.

Conclusions

FTTH Internet connections at speeds of 10Gbps are clearly the future, but today we do not believe that you can take advantage of these ultra-fast speeds, no matter how much network equipment you have in your home or a really powerful PC. The main problem with these connections is the different peering and transit agreements, something that means that we can almost never achieve the promised speeds of up to 8Gbps as indicated by Digi, although the exact same thing happens to other operators at the network level. .

You will only be able to achieve these Internet speeds in very specific cases, if you have adequate network equipment, a powerful PC, the OLT port is not too congested by the traffic of your neighbors and that the server is on the same operator’s network . Is it worth hiring this Internet connection if the price only increases by 5 or 10 euros compared to the current rates of 1Gbps? In this case we believe that it could make sense in order to test the connection and see what it is capable of, it is possible that, due to our use, we can take advantage of speeds higher than 1Gbps of our current connection, although for the vast majority of users You will not notice this improvement in speed at all other than when doing the typical speed tests.