Initial RFTS-400 Configuration | Quick Start Guide

This document shows how to perform the initial configuration of a VeEX RFTS-400 Remote Fiber Test System

1. Introduction

VeEX RFTS-400 with one Control Unit, four small optical switch modules and one full 19" multiport MPO switch

VeEX's RFTS-400 modular platform is a self-contained Remote Fiber Test (monitoring) System capable of operating in serverless mode or as part of VeSion® centralized monitoring system (cloud). Its design incorporates an Optical Control Module (OCM) and Optical Switching Modules (OSM) that support fiber monitoring expansion from 1 to 108 ports in a single 1RU rack enclosure, using four OSMs with the standard LC/APC or MPO-24 connectors, or up to 384 ports using three 1RU trays. A fully expanded system can support up to 4608 monitoring ports, using 16 1RU high-density MPO-24 OSMs.

The RFTS-400 is VeEX’s third generation Optical Remote Fiber Test Unit.  The RFTS-400 fits into a 1RU tray, offering six single width slots. The OCM occupies two slots, leaving four remaining slots in the main modular tray to allow up to four single-slot OSM modules or additional OCM modules. The RFTS-400 is field serviceable, expandable, and upgradable.  An unparalleled selection of OSM modules is available to support the many network type monitoring applications using the RFTS-400 such as dark fiber, in-service, Passive Optical Network (PON), Optical Distribution Networks (ODN), R-PHY Distributed Access Architecture (DAA), utilities infrastructure & security monitoring.

One RFTS-400 OSM module can be configured to support up to 288 ports in 1RU for high fiber density monitoring applications. All OSM modules can also be configured with integrated Filtered Wave Division Multiplexer (FWDM) filters without needing additional shelf space for in-service monitoring. By incorporating the FWDM into the OSM module, we also simplify the system installation and reduce the system commissioning time while eliminating the possibility of cross-over connection concerns.  The RFTS-400 can operate as a serverless (standalone) remote fiber test system or as part of a centralized server monitoring system powered by VeSion, VeEX's State of Art monitoring software platform.

2. Becoming Familiar with the RFTS-400

2.1 The RFTS-400 Modular Platform

Front view of the RFTS-400's Control and Switch modules

  1. Optical Control Module (OCM) – This self-contained system provides local processing, analysis, data storage, control, scheduling, user interface, network access, a built-in OTDR engine and optional primary optical switch (up to 1x16 ports).  A standalone OCM is considered a small RFTS system on its own.
  2. Optical Switch Modules (OSM) – The main RFTS-400 chassis, with an OCM, can host up to four 1x24 optical switches or six on an empty 1RU shelf. OSMs are available in different configurations with LC, SC and MPO-24 connectors.

  3. Power Button.

  4. Dual -48VDC Power Inputs.

  5. Management Controller Unit’s (MCU) Ethernet port (system configuration)

  6. OCM's Ethernet Port.

  7. USB-A Ports.
  8. Control Interface (OUT) - This serial port controls daisy-chained OSMs. Connect to the first OSM module. It also provides power to the OSMs.
  9. Status (STA) and Alarm (ALM) indicator LEDs.
  10. OCM Test Ports - Main built-in Optical Switch (up to 1x16) provides the test signals.
  11. Reset Button - Brings the RFTS-400's MCU back to its factory default configuration.
  12. Alarm Relays.
  13. Ground Terminals - The grounding screws are located on both side walls of the rack tray, towards the back.

For ease of reconfiguration and maintenance, the modules are inserted from the front and secured with one screw, below the connector panel.

2.2 RFTS-400 Optical Switch Module (OSM) Options

Front view of the different RFTS-400 Switch modules

There are different OSM types available for the RFTS-400. They are to be selected depending on the application and desired monitoring port density:

A.  1x24 LC-APC Optical Switch Module (OSM), single slot.

B.  1x24 MPO-24 Optical Switch Module (OSM), single slot.

C.  1x24 SC-APC Optical Switch Module (OSM), triple slot.

D.  1x288 MPO-24 high-density Optical Switch expansion unit (OSM), full-width 1RU, self-contained.

These are their main elements:

  1. Control Input (IN) - Connects to the OCM's control (first module) or to the previous OSM OUT.
  2. Module's power indicator (LED)
  3. Control Output (OUT) - Connects to the next OSM IN.
  4. Monitor Port - Connects to one of the OCM (OTDR) ports.
  5. Test Ports - Connect to the different fiber links being monitored.
  6. RFTS-400 module addressing DIP switch, located on the back of each OSM module.

2.3 Scalability

Empty 19" RFTS-400 1U rack tray, with six module slots

RFTS-400 Main 1RU modular chassis, with MCU without modules

RFTS-400 chassis with one Optical Control Module (16 ports)

Three RFTS-400 1RU modular chassis, with MCU without modules

Three RFTS-400 trays with one OCM and capacity up to 16 switches (384 ports)

On the upper end, a single 16-port OCM can drive up to sixteen 288-port MPO OSM switches, for a total of 4608 test ports.

3. RFTS-400 Hardware Installation

File:Simple Alert.svg - Wikipedia Only trained and qualified personnel should be allowed to install, replace or service this equipment. Improper or unsafe use can cause physical harm and damage your equipment. Read the Electrical Equipment Safety Guideline section before beggining the installation.
Soubor:Information.svg – Wikipedie Users should be familiar not only with the RFTS-400 hardware and cabling, but also with electronic circuitry, wiring practices, and safety precautions.

When working with electrical equipment, follow these guidelines.
•  Always unplug the power cable before installing or removing a chassis.
•  Locate the emergency power-off switch for the room in which you are working. If an electrical accident occurs, turn off the power immediately.
•  Do not work alone if potentially hazardous conditions exist.
•  Never assume that power is disconnected from a circuit. Always check.
•  If an electrical accident occurs, proceed as follows:
•  Use caution. Do not become a victim yourself.
•  Turn off power to the system.
•  If possible, send another person to get medical aid. Otherwise, assess the condition of the victim and then call for help.
•  Determine whether the person needs rescue breathing or external cardiac compressions, and then take appropriate action.

3.1 Equipment Placement

The RFTS-400 should be installed at a Central Office or Headend facility in a restricted access location.
With the appropriate rack mounting kit, the RFTS-400 can be mounted to a standard 19-inch, 21-inch or 23-inch equipment rack at least 300mm deep.

File:Simple Alert.svg - Wikipedia To meet safety and electromagnetic interference (EMI) requirements, the RFTS-400 MUST be rack mounted with proper grounding connection.
Make sure the rack is properly anchored to the relevant specification and the RFTS-400 is securely fastened to the rack

3.2 Rack Mounting the Chassis

File:Simple Alert.svg - Wikipedia Exercise caution when rack mounting this or any other type of equipment. Ensure that all equipment is properly secured along the specified hardware. Equipment must be installed in a safe manner to prevent overloading, tipping over, or other unsafe conditions.
To rack mount the chassis:
  • Remove the eight (8) mounting screws on the left and right front sides of the RFTS-400 Tray to install the rack mounting brackets (19" brackets included).
  • Install rack mounting brackets to the left and right sides of the RFTS-400 Tray using the eight mounting screws previously removed. See diagram below.


Soubor:Information.svg – Wikipedie VeEX recommends arranging the modules in the RFTS-400 Tray from left to right. Start by using the first two positions on the left for the OCM module. Then, populate the remaining four positions from left to right with additional OCM/OSM modules.
  • OCM modules require two positions and secured with two front screws on the RFTS-400 Tray.
  • The width of OSM modules varies depending on the number and type of test ports they have. They are attached to the front of the RFTS-400 Tray using one to four screws. For more detailed information, refer to section 2.2.

  • There are two grounding terminals located on the side walls of the RFTS-400 tray towards the back. Connect a grounding wire to one of these terminals before securely mounting the equipment to the rack using the appropriate mounting screws.
  • Mount the equipment to the rack and securely fasten it with the appropriate mounting screws for the rack system. See diagram below.

3.3 Connecting Power

RFTS-400 is powered by -48 VDC, please check that the DC supply breaker is turned off. Connect the Return wire of the power cable from the DC power source to the Return terminal of the -48V termination block of the equipment, and the -48V wire of the DC power cable to the -48V terminal on the equipment. Check that the termination screws are tightened, the power wires are properly routed and secured.

4. Turning ON and OFF the RFTS-400 OCM

Turn ON: Press and hold the button for 2 seconds until you hear a confirmation tone. The STA LED will turn green once the OCM is fully operational.

Turn OFF: To turn OFF the RFTS-400 OCM, press and hold the button for 3 seconds until you hear the confirmation tone. This initiates a graceful shutdown process to keep the integrity of the data. It is important not to power off the OCM by disconnecting the main and backup power supplies.

5. RFTS-400 LEDs

The OCM has two LEDs to notify users about different events.

STA LED (Status Indicators):

Blinking green: The RFTS-400 is either in the process of starting up or performing a graceful shutdown.

Solid green: The RFTS-400 is functioning properly without any system alarms being detected.

Solid red: A system alarm has been triggered. It is advised to review the unit's system log for further details.

ALM LED (Alarm Indicators):

Solid green: There are no active monitoring alarms.

Solid red: There are one or more active monitoring alarms. It's recommended to review the unit's monitoring log for further details.

6. Adding Additional RFTS-400 Optical Switch Modules (OSM)

RFTS-400 OCM monitoring can be expanded with up to 16 RFTS-400 OSM modules (using three modular rack trays). The Control interface on the RFTS-400 OCM front panel is dedicated for communication with the optional RFTS-400 OSMs. Multiple RFTS-400 OSM modules can be connect to another RFTS-400 OSM, in a daisy-chain fashion, allowing a single RFTS-400 OCM to manage up to 16 RFTS-400 OSM switches.

File:Simple Alert.svg - Wikipedia RFTS-400 OSM modules cannot be connected or disconnected while the system is running. It is essential to power off the RFTS-400 OCM before adding a new RFTS-400 OSM module.
Soubor:Information.svg – Wikipedie Each RFTS-400 Optical Switch Module requires a unique switch ID, which can be configured using the DIP switches located on the back of the module. Please use the RFTS-400 Switch management software feature to help set the correct switch ID.

Use the control cable, included with each RFTS-400 switch, to connect multiple OSMs in series. When connecting the first switch module to the RFTS-400 OCM, use the control cable to make a connection between the Control port on the RFTS-400 OCM and the IN port on the first RFTS-400 OSM.

Every additional RFTS-400 OSM module is daisy-chained to the previous switch module, by connecting the OUT port to the IN of the next OSM. 

Then follow the DIP switch configuration for proper addressing of each of the optical test access units (OTAU) in the system, such as OSMs. Information about the individual DIP switch settings for each OSM can be found at RFTS Setup > RFTS Platform >OTAU Management. 

1. Select the OCM port that will be connected to the MON port of the OSM. Click "Add OTAU". The identification number for the OSM is determined by the port number of the OCM. 

2. Choose the "OSM" switch type and click Add The RFTS-400 OCM also supports the OXC-4000 series switches, which are not covered in this document.

3. Ensure that the Optical Switch Module (OSM) has the matching switch ID as displayed in the User Interface (UI).

4. Select the "Check connection" option to confirm the communication status between the Optical Switch Module (OSM) and the Optical Control Module (OCM).

5. Ensure that the system reads the OSM port count and the serial number and verify that both values match the newly added OSM module.

6. Press the "Add" button to create and store the new optical switch cascade configuration.

The OSM module ID is a logical address used by the OCM for signaling exchanges between the OCM and any particular OSM. This ID is independent of the physical OSM position or control wiring sequence (daisy-chain order).

7. Configure RFTS-400 OCM's IP Address

To connect a laptop or PC to the RFTS-400 OCM Eth-1 port, simply follow the steps shown in the image below. Make sure to set your laptop or PC network interface IPv4 address to for proper configuration.

Initial configuration of the RFTS-400 using the MCU Ethernet (Eth1) port

7.1 Log In to the RFTS-400 MCU (Management Controller Unit)

To access the RFTS-400 MCU Login screen, simply open a web browser and type in the IP address in the address bar. Once there, enter your username and password to log in. If needed, you can find the default login credentials on the sticker located on the back of the OCM module. Once entered, click the login button to proceed.

7.2 Modify the Default RFTS-400 OCM IP Configuration.

To adjust the OCM Eth-2 network settings, navigate to the "OCM Configuration" section. Here, you can customize the IPv4 Address, Netmask, Default Gateway, and DNS servers to align with your network setup. If the RFTS-400 OCM is connected via VPN or cellular network, consider setting a smaller MTU value. Save and apply the new configuration by clicking the  button. Afterward, access the OCM web interface by entering the updated IP address in a web browser. The default login credentials can be found on the sticker located on the back of the OCM.

7.3 Resetting the RFTS-400 MCU to Factory Defaults

If you can't remember the RFTS-400 MCU IP address or user credentials, use the Reset button on the back of the RFTS-400 OCM. Follow these steps to reset the MCU to Factory default settings:

  1. Power the OCM OFF.
  2. Press the Reset button (located on the back of the OCM).
  3. Power the OCM ON while keeping the Reset button pressed until beep sound is heard. This procedure will reset the MCU's IP settings, Username and Password to Factory default settings.
Soubor:Information.svg – Wikipedie This procedure will not affect any data or settings on the RFTS-400 OCM

8. Setting the System's Date and Time

RFTS-400 OCM can work in two modes:

  1. VeSion Operation Mode: VeSion controlled RFTS-400 OCM units automatically synchronize date and time information from the VeSion server without requiring any user configuration.
  2. Serverless Operation Mode: For optimal functionality, it is essential to synchronize every RFTS-400 unit operating in standalone mode to the UTC timescale. System administrators have the option to set up to two NTP servers to ensure that the time and date remain accurate and up to date. System administrator can modify the default NTP configuration in the Serverless environment: Go to RFTS Setup > RFTS Platform > Network & Time .
    To configure NTP synchronization using the MCU interface, go to the OCM Configuration section and locate the NTP Configuration option. Enter the Primary and Secondary NTP server details, then save to apply the configuration.

    RFTS-400 users can adjust the Time Zone and Date/Time format to match their regional settings.

9. How to Configure SMTP (Email & SMS) and SNMP Notifications

Serverless system supports different ways to notify a user about an alarm events. The most fundamental are:

  1. SMTP: The system can send emails to the user's email address. Additionally, the System Administrator has the option to configure the SMTP to SMS gateway, typically provided by a mobile operator or a third-party company, allowing users to receive SMS Alarm notifications as a paid service.
  2. SNMP Traps: The system can also send SNMP traps to a northbound monitoring system. Please ask VeEX Customer Care service to provide you with the latest Management Information Base (MIBs) files.

System administrator may configure the notifications in RFTS Setup > RFTS Platform >


9.1 SMTP Configuration

Please check your SMTP Server configuration before configuring the email & SMS notifications.

File:Simple Alert.svg - Wikipedia Certain Internet Service Providers (ISPs) may restrict SMTP traffic outside their network as a measure to combat spam. It is advisable to verify with your ISP for any limitations concerning SMTP traffic within their network.

SMTP configuration can vary depending on the setup. A basic configuration only requires the SMTP server address, server port, and a valid outgoing email address. A more typical configuration includes the server address, port, outgoing email address, and SMTP username & password if SMTP authentication is enabled. If the SMTP server uses an enterprise certificate for secure communication with the RFTS-400, you may need to disable certificate verification.

9.2 SNMP Configuration

The system can transmit SNMP traps using SNMP V1 or V3 protocols to a northbound NMS (Network Management System). These traps are identified by the Enterprise Object Identifier (OID) as assigned by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA). System administrators have the option to customize the OID if necessary.

  1. SNMP V1 Traps: A valid SNMP Community name is needed (default is public), along with the SNMP trap receiver address and UDP port.
  2. SNMP V3 Traps: The system follows the SNMP V3 User Security Model (USM) as outlined in RFC3414. It's important to note that some SNMP trap receivers may not fully support all the security features mandated by the standard. Therefore, it is recommended to discuss the trap settings with the SNMP Trap receiver administrator for proper configuration.

10. RFTS-400 User Role Description

The RFTS-400 Serverless software can handle up to 128 unique accounts, but it limits the number of concurrent user sessions to 5. The system has 4 different user roles to ensure the safety of the environment. A good security practice is to avoid giving the default administrator account to multiple users, and instead to make a separate user account for each user that has to use the system.

  • Administrator: RFTS-400 Administrators can control all system and monitoring settings. They can also create new users and do any tests they want whenever they want, such as the On-Demand test or turning on the Optical Laser Source (OLS). All notifications and alarms go to every user with the Administrator role.
  • User: RFTS-400 Users have no access to system settings, but they can modify settings and thresholds related to fiber monitoring. They can run any tests at any time, such as the On-Demand test or activating the Optical Laser Source (OLS).They only get monitoring alarms, not System notifications.
  • Viewer: RFTS-400 Viewers have access to the system datalog and can see the monitoring results. They do not have the ability to run the On-Demand test or activate the Optical Laser Source (OLS). RFTS-400 Viewers only get the monitoring alarms.
  • Notification Receiver: Users with RFTS-400 Notification receiver role only receive monitoring alarms.

11. Connecting the RFTS-400 OCM to VeSion RFTS Monitoring Platform (Optional)

To control the RFTS-400 unit from a VeSion RFTS system, you must configure the RFTS-400 OCM to connect to the VeSion server. There are two ways to achieve this.

  1. Using the MCU.
  2. From the Serverless environment (Not covered in this Getting Started Guide).

To configure connectivity to a VeSion RFTS using the MCU web interface, follow these steps:

  1. Click on "OCM Configuration" in the menu options provided on the web interface.
  2. Check the "Enable VeSion" checkbox to activate the connection feature.
  3. Fill in the Device Number, which is typically assigned by a VeSion RFTS Administrator for identification purposes.
  4. Enter the IPv4/IPv6 address or the server's Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN) of the VeSion RFTS server to establish the connection.
  5. Once all the necessary information is entered, click on the save button to apply the configuration changes.

Related Test Solutions

  • RFTS-400 - Remote Fiber Test System 
  • RTU-4000/4100 - Remote Fiber Test System
  • VeSion - Cloud-based Proactive Monitoring, Workflow and Results Management System