When do I need to keep my ISP-provided Gateway (modem/router)?
If you subscribe to other services from your ISP, such as telephone (VoIP), television (IPTV), and home security, the residential Gateway device (modem/router) provided by your ISP is likely required for those services in addition to your internet service.
Although the specific implementation of these services will vary based on your service provider and equipment, the following articles will provide guidelines to set up Plume with you Gateway and Service.
Home Telephone (VoIP)
ISPs provide homes with residential telephone service using Voice Over IP (VoIP). There are three common ways residential telephones are connected to the ISP-provided Gateway.
- Ethernet (RJ-45)- VoIP phones are connected to the Gateway via Ethernet cables. Click on this link to view a variety of setup options.
- Wireless (VoIP over DECT) - The ISP-provided Gateway acts as a base station for all the DECT handsets in the home. These wireless handsets use radio frequencies specifically designed to avoid impacting WiFi signals. Plug one or more pods into the Gateway and operate Plume in Bridge mode since the Gateway must continue handling routing duties.
- Copper Telephone wire (RJ-11) - These Gateways include residential phone jacks (RJ11). You can plug a phone or the home's central distribution block into this jack.
In all of these cases, you will not be able to bypass the router in the Gateway and Plume will be operating in Bridge Mode to provide WiFi connectivity. Unless the WiFi radios of the Gateway are being used for another service, they should be turned off to prevent impacting Plume and your WiFi-connected devices.
Subscription Television Services (IPTV)
Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) services provided by your ISP come into your home using the same broadband connection as your internet service. To provide connection flexibility, the Gateway will then distribute the television signal in three possible ways to the Set-Top Boxes (STBs) connected to your televisions throughout your home:
- Ethernet - If you can use the Ethernet in your home to connect the STBs to the Gateway you may also be able to wire them to your pods. This is particularly useful if you want a TV in a room without Ethernet or Coaxial cables. Connect as many STBs to the Ethernet going directly to your Gateway as possible to minimize the bandwidth consumed by IPTV over the pods' WiFi connection.
- Already having Ethernet wired throughout in your home from a central location or distribution cabinet also means you can hardwire both pods and Set-Top Boxes, improving the performance of both.
- Connecting a switch to the Ethernet coming from the Gateway allows the connection of several devices, including a pod on the same Ethernet cable.
- Media Over Coaxial (MoCA) - The signal for your STBs will be sent from the Gateway through the coaxial cables in your home. Since WiFi is not needed to provide IPTV service, you should disable all WiFi being broadcast by the Gateway. Plume will handle the WiFi for the home.
- You can also use the MoCA capabilities of these Gateways to create network connections over the coaxial cable running in your home which terminates at a MoCA to Ethernet adapter in another room. This capability can be helpful to make hardwired connections to pods in far away rooms.
- WiFi - Depending on how your ISP has configured the Gateway and STBs, there are a few possible scenarios:
- The STBs can use any WiFi network available, in which case you are able to use the WiFi signal from the Plume network to send the data to your STBs. In this case, you'll want to disable all the WiFi radios on your Gateway to eliminate a possible source of WiFi congestion. You will need to go into the settings of each STB and connect to your Plume network.
- STBs are required to be connected to a designated SSID being broadcast from the Gateway. In this case, that SSID needs to be left broadcasting so you can continue to use IPTV. When you look at the WiFi settings of the Gateway, that designated SSID will either be hidden or will be given the name that clearly identifies its purpose. You should disable only the other SSIDs being broadcast by the Gateway for internet service and let Plume handle the WiFi for the rest of your devices.
- In cases where the STB requires a specific WiFI channel to be used, you need to continue using the WiFi provided by the Gateway. The adaptive nature of Plume prevents the use of a specific WiFi channel. Use a different SSID for your Plume network and forget the old WiFi network on all devices except the STBs. This will allow Plume to manage the WiFi for all devices except the STBs, which are connected directly to the Gateway.
Some ISP-provided Gateways and Set-Top Boxes are able to use a combination of these connections to provide IPTV service throughout your home. If that is the case, use the hardwired options as much as possible to keep the airways clear for your Plume network.
Hybrid Television Set-Top Boxes
Hybrid Set-Top Boxes use a combination of traditional television services through the coaxial cable and Internet capabilities through either WiFi or Ethernet. In many of these cases, Plume will be able to supply that internet connectivity to the Set-Top Box, although the coaxial cable will need to remain.
Examples: Virgin Media
Home Security Services
Some ISPs also offer home security services. In many cases, these services require the use of a specific dedicated WiFi on the provided Gateway. You may be required to keep the router capabilities of the Gateway, running Plume in Bridge mode to provide WiFi for your devices.
Check with your provider for details on setup requirements and if the WiFi can be disabled on the Gateway. If not, ensure you forget the old WiFi network on all of your devices to prevent them from connecting to the old WiFi.