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A guide to what the various sockets are on the latest Openreach faceplate, master socket

How to get access to the test socket if you have a VDSL Interstitial faceplate

This page is intended to help as a guide as to how you can access the test socket, if you have one of the latest Openreach faceplates installed. The latest faceplate provides a filtered socket to which you can connect a VDSL (FTTC - Fibre to the Cabinet) modem, or an ADSL2+ modem. Originally this new faceplate was only installed on FTTC lines, but increasingly it is being installed when engineers fix faults on ADSL2+ lines, or when people buy one to tidy up their wiring.

NOTE: With self-install VDSL2 around the corner, while good quality micro-filters will work for the best performance fitting an Interstitial plate is the recommended solution.

Undoing the two screws holding faceplate on
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The black arrow is pointing at the socket to which you can connect your FTTC (fibre) modem, or an ADSL2+ modem. This socket can also be used to connection a twisted pair extension via a suitably wired RJ11 plug to allow you to locate your modem a few metres from the modem. The blue arrow is where you would connect your telephone, and this socket is filtered, so no need for microfilters. The faceplate will if installed and wired up correctly also filter all the telephone extensions in a property.

Modern Openreach Faceplate
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To remove the consumer faceplate, unscrew the two screws, the lower half of the faceplate will lift away, but be careful as your telephone extensions will be connected to the rear of this faceplate. In this picture there are no telephone extensions connected.

Lower half of faceplate removed
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Now with the faceplate removed, you might think you have access to the test socket, but as there is the Openreach Interstitial filter faceplate used on this master socket this is not the case. Again the black arrow points toward the ADSL/VDSL socket, and the blue arrow will still represent a filtered telephone socket. If your extension wiring was present and connected to the small faceplate we have already removed, you should find that none of the telephone extension sockets in the property will now work.

Interstitial faceplate removed
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Now you can lift the Interstitial faceplate away from the back part of the master socket. If there are wires connected to the upper left corner of this socket, then this will be a data extension that can host an ADSL or VDSL (FTTC) modem

The interstitial faceplate has now been fully removed, and the arrows are back. The black arrow is pointing at the test socket, which you can plug a phone into, or use a microfilter to let you plug in you ADSL or FTTC modem. By testing with the interstitial faceplate removed, you have removed any influence from a dirty contact or failing component in the faceplate, also the effects of any extension wiring, be that telephone or data wiring should have been removed.

Openreach test socket
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The yellow arrow is pointing at a small IDC block two which you can attach the two wires from a twisted pair to run an ADSL/VDSL extension. For VDSL services it is important to keep this data extension as short possible.

The red arrow is pointing at the IDC block where you would normally have your telephone extensions connected. As there is an interstitial faceplate in use on this socket, having the ring wire (pin 3) connected should have no affect on the ADSL/VDSL signal.