Central Offices: FairPoint- Derry, New Hampshire

Today is my thirtieth birthday (technically I am still twenty nine till 11:10 PM Eastern Time, however the year I was born was with the old DST rules, so technically I won’t be turning 30 till 12:10 tomorrow morning the 13th.)

Regardless I was happening to visit my former stomping ground, where I used to live in the nearby town. I was born in said town thirty years ago, so for kicks we drove the route my grandmother brought my mother to the hospital. And seeing what changed.

Since my last visit in the area, the central office for the Derry area had changed it’s exterior.  It looks like a house to comply with possibly some Planning policies set by the town. It’s nice looking since this central office looked no different than any other generic switching location.

The Derry, NH Central Office has a facelift – it looks like a house in the front. This is home to the 432 and 437 local code from childhood

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This central office supplies many numbers within the towns of Derry, Windham, Londonderry, East Derry, possibly Hampstead. I had Ma Bell service for most of my first couple of decades before I relocated to my current town, of which has their own central office. Because I lived on the fringe of Derry, we were tied to their central office. Prior to 2010, we did not use long distance, since the cell phones would take care of that. It wasn’t discriminatory, so if you dialed a number in towns like Merrimack, Goffstown, Concord, we would get charged ridiculously via FairPoint/Verizon. This is often why so many PBX systems require dialplans to prevent toll calls ether inadvertent or ignorance.

This is obviously outdated as me and my family both have cell phones and broadband services that eliminates the concerns of toll calls.

As described, for most of my life, we had a local code starting with 437, beginning in 1992 when my mother and I moved out from my grandmothers. Surprisingly we moved back the following year and lived for a couple of months before moving out. So the number was disconnected. When she ordered dial tone (NYNEX/New England Tel) that following summer, the number was available and was activated without much heavy lifting.

From 1970 to 1996, my grandparents had obviously a Derry number with 432, it was common in the neighboring town. When she surrendered her leased wall beige 564 telephone; she also dropped the number to let go of some baggage that went along with the number (similar to how I upgraded my iPhone – however my AT&T number had to be ported to Verizon to even begin to drop the number in the first place. This was part of switching carriers at the same time.) On topic, the 437 number was then transferred to my grandmother’s house as we moved back from 96 to the end of 2010.

According to Mike Sandman’s website, the central office is a 5ESS facility, however Verizon bit our behinds and sold it to FairPoint and bankrupted the Northern New England operation and really provides weaker services unlike what Comcast or a broadband provider can.


Fantasy: Lego Central Office, part two

Unlike the other central office, this one serves as Old World’s “Managed Services” facilities. This includes space for customers to store systems such as PBX and networking gear in lieu of PSTN trunks or lines. The local state government has several spaces for their G3r PBX carriers holding about 2,000 to 3,500 lines. This is not that far away from the government center. Remote buildings and facilities also tie to this central office acting as PBX extensions. Demarcs at those branch offices are basically PBX jacks or blocks.

A photo of a Lego built central office

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Central Offices In Montana

Check out more Central Offices from the Outside. (More tags in the singular sense)

Here are some pictures sent to me by one of my followers who asked to not be identified by name, but with this tight community, does everyone need to be identified everytime, all the time? 🙂 I did get permission to post these, and I want to keep the descriptions to a minimum. If you are accessing this from the home page, click to read more.

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Telephony 101: Centrex

Central Exchange (or Centrex) is a service provided by many telephone carriers to deliver PBX or Key-like services via the telephone company (or Telco.) Little to no hardware is required at the customer end, unless its special adjuncts for digital telephones for power, etc. Regardless of the hardware, the “brain” lives out in the “cloud” so to speak at the central office. If it’s a government, or a large corporation, rarely are these actually installed on site.

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Central Offices – Frontier (AT&T/SNET) – Hartford, CT

Never in my life have I been to Connecticut twice in the same month. Cross that off my bucket list!

Gawd how I miss the Nutmeg State.

Saturday, after my folks and I visited the Mystic Aquarium (110x better than the New England Aquarium!), we were heading home. I thought hooking up to Southeast Connecticut was easy. Um no. I was totally off. I395 is set up weirdly and apparently the last time I went on there was a while back. Suddenly you’re on 95 South once you get to the bottom. Getting back on 395 was a challenge. Well the thing was we never went back. We hooked up on Route 9 (which I went as a teenager) then went on I84, and went through Hartford. Getting into the city is easier by staying on 84, I91 actually is the bypass highway.

I guess SE CT is like the City of Lynn, Massachusetts, the area “of sin, where you never go back the way you came in.”

Anyways central offices stand out in this fine state. This was seen on I84 Eastbound heading into the city (with slight bottlenecks.) IMG_6146 IMG_6123 IMG_6124

Central Offices – Frontier – New Haven, CT

On my trip to New York City from last Saturday, the route was from I495, to 84, then to 91 in Hartford then to -95 in New Haven. When accessing Interstate 95 in New Haven, you can see the large central office for New Haven.

This central office has seen many name changes in just the last fifteen years. For a while it was SNET, then SBC/SNET to SBC fully then AT&T of Connecticut then to Frontier. A few years ago AT&T (err SBC) wanted to unload debt from declining wireline services. Like Northern New England, they sold it to Frontier (just they didn’t go bankrupt like FairPoint.)




This was one of their service vehicles along US 1 not to far away


Albany Central Offices

The following picture was taken in the fall of 2009, along with that earlier posted manhole cover taken in Vermont. This is the only picture I have, since that excursion to New York we didn’t stop. In 2011, we didn’t walk around the other side of the Empire State Plaza, where this central office is located.

I had this picture posted on my former Flickr account where I was baffled of why there was an AT&T central office when the entire state of New York where Verizon is the primarily LEC.

Supposedly someone commented on this picture and told me one side is for AT&T (for long distance or LD) and the other side of the building is for Verizon’s local exchange services. I don’t know what switches run at this location. And obviously that large PBX system the New York State government runs on, probably isn’t located here. It must be located in some tight location where their datacenters are and in many wiring closets, must be in the high hundreds. Maybe some of their Centrex lines might come out of here though.