There are many reasons why cables break and fiber networks go down. In the design phase, it’s important to spend significant time on contingency planning and developing networks that are built to last.
One of the best ways to avoid network problems is by testing all components and routes thoroughly. Visually inspect every piece of equipment used within the network and measure performance against expected industry standards.
When determining the layout and architecture of a network, always consider how to build in redundancy in case the primary route goes down. That way, it’s possible to keep end users online on a secondary route while primary cables are fixed. Also, build power backups into the network architecture that automatically kick-in when primary power sources fails.
Another helpful strategy is to build geographic diversity into networks. If all cables are installed in the same way, a natural disaster could impact every fiber in the network. With installation diversity, operators avoid exposing entire cable routes to environmental challenges.
Maintain accurate documentation on all components, including where they are located, how they are accessed, how they are repaired, and who to contact for replacements. Remember that field technicians rely on accurate documentation to diagnose and address network issues, which is why this practice is so important. So much network downtime can be avoided if operators think critically about troubleshooting in the design phase rather than after a network is live.