Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why is it important for a carrier to own/operate its network end-to-end?

A: In short, it ensures the carrier has complete control. Control to upgrade, troubleshoot and fully manage the network 24x7x365. When a carrier operates it’s privately owned network, it can deploy services and upgrade capacity quicker. This set-up also eliminates finger-pointing if an issue arises – ensuring faster resolutions all around. UFD’s network is 100% owned and operated by UFD.

Q: What does ‘purpose-built’ network mean?

A: A purpose-built deployment is the installation and configuration of networks where none existed before – built from scratch, brand new, from the ground up. We purpose-built our fiber routes end-to-end so that you have the most reliable, state-of-the-art network possible. Our network is newly built and engineered with specific high performance, high capacity requirements in mind. And considering UFD also 100% owns and operates its network, as described above, we have increased control and flexibility across the board.

Q: Why is it important for my service provider to have relationships with other carriers?

A: Expertise and relationships matter. By having strong working relationship with Competitive Local Exchange Carriers (CLECs), city/local government entities, utility companies, service providers and other carriers, UFD can get things done. UFD’s team has decades of experience in telecommunications and leverages its relationships everyday to ensure core network builds and customer deployments are completed on time.

Q: What is dark fiber?

A: Dark fiber is optical fiber infrastructure (cabling, switching and repeaters) that a company puts in place but is not yet using. It is ‘dark’ because no light pulses are being sent across it and, thus, it is not yet part of the network.

Q: What are the main benefits of dark fiber versus lit fiber services?

A: Typically, organizations that purchase or lease dark fiber will manage the equipment themselves to ‘light’ it rather than buying lit fiber, which is commonly referred to as ‘bandwidth’ or ‘leased line capacity’. Dark fiber is used more and more by organizations of all sizes as costs decrease, and because it provides limitless bandwidth along with increased control to the organization. With dark fiber, organizations can buy multiple strands of fiber and then turn them up (light them) when they want to build out for the future and when they need to add bandwidth. They can implement a dark fiber solution that gives them the control to create their own wide-area network (WAN), increase security and provide limitless bandwidth options for their company.

Q: What role does dark fiber play in the growing need for bandwidth?

A: Fast, efficient and reliable bandwidth cannot be underestimated in today’s business world. It is truly one of the most important driving factors in determining a company’s success. Connectivity and a reliable network are not luxuries, but absolute necessities. The rate of growth in the realm of bandwidth requirements makes dark fiber an incredibly attractive asset for organizations. It gives businesses the ability to access more fiber than is presently needed so that they can turn it up as their requirements and growth dictate. Dark fiber is exceedingly attractive because it allows organizations to implement a solution that gives them the control to create their own network and build for the future with the assurance of scalability.

Q: What types of organizations benefit from dark fiber?

A: In short, businesses in every vertical and organizations of every size can benefit from dark fiber – it is not just for large enterprises anymore. Dark fiber allows for a flexible, scalable network with limitless bandwidth that also meets latency requirements. Companies can select the appropriate equipment and protocols for deploying the network, while enjoying consistent and predictable pricing, even as bandwidth increases. A private, fully dedicated network also ensures that the network is secure.

Q: What if I leverage a fiber-based service and a better technology is developed?

A: Fiber networks have been used for decades to transmit large volumes of traffic. The inherent capabilities make fiber networks future-proof. With new electronic developments, the speeds capable on fiber networks are ever-increasing. These networks will have paid for themselves many times over before becoming obsolete.

Q: What are the differences between diversity and redundancy?

A: Network diversity is when you have connections that are physically separate from one another. UFD’s fiber network from New York to Washington, DC is highly diverse as it was engineered along a different pathway that is not used by other providers. This ensures high-speed and secure transmissions and avoids the congested pathways that are more susceptible to fiber cuts.

Redundancy is the duplication of components or functions of a system with the intention of increasing reliability. Simply put, it’s smart to have two of everything as a backup in case a component fails. Like any reliable fiber network should be, UFD’s is redundant, as well.

Q: What happens if a fiber connection is damaged/cut?

A: Fiber cable deployments are very robust and secure. UFD designs its fiber paths across diverse routes — physically different paths — for added reliability. All routes are engineered to provide instantaneous failover (backup) in case there is a fiber cut or network interruption. UFD also ensures that there is redundancy built along its routes across multiple levels such as redundant equipment, cards, cabling and the actual fiber paths themselves.

Q: What does latency mean?

A: Latency is a networking term to describe the total time it takes a data packet to travel from one node to another, that is, the amount of time it takes a packet of data to move across a network connection. When a packet is being sent, there is “latent” time when the computer that sent the packet waits for confirmation that the packet has been received. UFD designs its routes with the lowest latency possible.

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