My house is wired with two Cat5e cables: one terminated downstairs, one upstairs. Currently, only the downstairs outlet is receiving signal, with the modem being hooked up to it. I'd like to move the modem before the two cables, so I can have ethernet upstairs too without having to run a new cable. Seems pretty straight forward, but don't want to operate on assumptions and break something.

My internet point of entry is the outdoor device pictured below. The cable coming out of the board is going to a junction box right below where it's spliced directly into the downstairs Cat cable. The upstairs cable is also in this junction box, unterminated.

Am I correct to assume that I can can simply run a cable from the pictured device straight into the modem, then have the two house wires connected to the modem, or am I missing something?

Thanks in advance


  • 2
    Wow, if that's supposed to be Ethernet it's very poorly done. (Bonus points for using the same cable for telephone as well – now it can never go above 100Mbps.) What kind of modem are you taking about – does it connect to the phone line for DSL or does it just directly get Ethernet in? Do you have photos of the rest?
    – user1686
    Jul 22, 2020 at 7:11
  • That connector wiring doesn’t look like the right pins for 100Base-T. That box is converting from fiber so I’d expect Ethernet on the LAN ports but I sure doesn’t look right, not to mention the wire colors being wrong for CAT-5 (or better) cable.
    – DoxyLover
    Jul 22, 2020 at 8:01
  • I will upload a photo of the junction box connection tomorrow, the cable pictured here is a patch cable gone wild.
    – Rubens
    Jul 22, 2020 at 8:16
  • 1
    While adding pictures, add pictures of your downstairs device. It's quite possible that this thing is already doing "modem and router" duty, (which you could check on by plugging in a couple of computers to the "LAN ports 1-6" and see if they both work at the same time when connected that way) in which case all you need is to bring up to 6 wires out to this device and plug them in. Whoever wired this was a Bozo, but there's no shortage of clowns in the industry, unfortunately. If it reaches, terminating your upstairs cable and plugging it in to another LAN port should work.
    – Ecnerwal
    Jul 22, 2020 at 12:47
  • What is the actual device you have that the downstair Cat-5 cable terminating into? Is it really a Modem (per your statement) that is used at the terminal end of the downstairs cable. It seem strange that a modem is connecting to a LAN connection. Please provide a picture and model of the device at the end of the downstairs cable. Jul 22, 2020 at 14:48

1 Answer 1


What you are showing in the photo is the internet provider's "modem". In this case it appears to be a FTTH termination with 6 "Ethernet" outputs.

There also appears to be a single, poorly done, connection to one of these Ethernet ports that is going somewhere, presumably to the working downstairs location.

The photo doesn't appear to show any additional Ethernet wires that might be used to distribute Ethernet signals to other parts of the home.

While you might be able to do it yourself, what is needed is a new Ethernet wire from another of the "LAN" ports to the new location you want to have a connection to. The simplest way would be to purchase a ready-made Ethernet cable of the suitable length and "fish" it through the walls in order to route it to the new location.

If that's beyond your capabilities, it might be wise to have a professional installer do this for you. While they are at it, the existing wire should be checked and possibly replaced.

  • 1
    Most "ready made" ethernet cables are patch cables and the insulation type is not appropriate for in-wall use. It's also a huge pain to fish a cable with a connector on it.
    – Ecnerwal
    Jul 22, 2020 at 12:53
  • @Ecnerwal I agree but it takes some degree of skill and proper tools to terminate your own cables. The OP appears to have neither of these.
    – jwh20
    Jul 22, 2020 at 12:57
  • Thanks for this, I addressed my misconception in a post comment above. The upstairs cable is already near the provider modem (in a junction right box below, as mentioned), so I can just extend & terminate it, then plug it in see what happens.
    – Rubens
    Jul 22, 2020 at 18:46

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