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I found an open CAB Box!


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#1 DarkCow

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Posted 30 April 2007 - 03:17 PM

Right, I'm from the UK and a few days ago I walked past a CAB box (one of those green boxes you see by the road - maybe you've gone by when an engineer was working on it and got a quick look inside), and it was wide open.
No pictures yet, but it's still open and I'll be going back soon with a camera to get some photos to post here.

This one was fairly organised, so not just a massive jumble of wires, and I think I saw some folders (presumably with docs in them) in there.
I know they have all of the line pairs inside for the local neighbourhood, but not much more than that.

I can't really find any documentation on the internet about these boxes, so I want to know what to look for when I go back...

#2 BrakeDanceJ

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Posted 30 April 2007 - 04:45 PM

Right, I'm from the UK and a few days ago I walked past a CAB box (one of those green boxes you see by the road - maybe you've gone by when an engineer was working on it and got a quick look inside), and it was wide open.
No pictures yet, but it's still open and I'll be going back soon with a camera to get some photos to post here.

This one was fairly organised, so not just a massive jumble of wires, and I think I saw some folders (presumably with docs in them) in there.
I know they have all of the line pairs inside for the local neighbourhood, but not much more than that.

I can't really find any documentation on the internet about these boxes, so I want to know what to look for when I go back...


The chest-looking TNI cabinets? You can open those with a socket wrench; but with all this terrorist shit going down, I wouldn't recommend it. I myself almost got caught in one.

Basically you have columns of 'prongs' that represent a line. These are matched to 'lines' from the provider. Think of it as a junction between your home and your provider.

There's nothing much to do in these except hook onto a line, just as if you were on the side of the house.

WATCH OUT FOR DRY LINES! Any lines with a red cap (and some without 'em) are dry lines. These are used for security and fire systems, and in business sections, sometimes data. If you clamp onto these, you may interfere with/trip an alarm at the police/fire/someone's house. They rely on voltage to send/receive notices.

P.S. If you look at the top of these boxes, their are spools of 'pre-end-crympt' wire in a few colors at the top.

#3 PhreakerD7

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Posted 30 April 2007 - 04:47 PM

Yeah, thats what I was thinking. What is the size? 5/8, correct?

That's pretty interesting, I didn't know about the "Dry" lines.

#4 BrakeDanceJ

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Posted 30 April 2007 - 04:51 PM

Yeah, thats what I was thinking. What is the size? 5/8, correct?

That's pretty interesting, I didn't know about the "Dry" lines.


haha, dude it's crazy that you mentioned size; I have had *that* very socket tip taped with a line around it so I remember which it is in the future. I'll check when I get home from work tonight.

Also, opening and closing the cabinets are 'weird', it took me a few min to figure it out. You have to pop the bolt, then pull the end. and to lock it. push it back in. You'll see what I mean; I had to figure it out in a pinch, and it wasn't fun.

#5 PhreakerD7

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Posted 30 April 2007 - 05:01 PM

lol. I should honestly do the same, man. I keep on getting confused with all the sizes.

#6 chronomex

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Posted 30 April 2007 - 07:20 PM

Today I was walking home (I live in +1, not UK) and a Qwest guy was standing in front of such a box complaining on his cellphone about misassigned (or misdocumented) cable pairs. That can't be good... .

Some of the boxes here have five-sided bolts, like the fire hydrants. Most have normal six-sided bolts, though.

#7 regret

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Posted 01 May 2007 - 12:13 PM

The bolts are usually either 5/8 or 7/16....I seem to remember a HackTV episode with ZeroDB giving a guided tour of one...maybe HTVEpisode 2?

#8 BrakeDanceJ

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Posted 01 May 2007 - 05:13 PM

7/16th sounds right. ;-)

#9 Fone Ranger

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Posted 01 May 2007 - 07:28 PM

Right, I'm from the UK and a few days ago I walked past a CAB box (one of those green boxes you see by the road - maybe you've gone by when an engineer was working on it and got a quick look inside), and it was wide open.

I can't really find any documentation on the internet about these boxes, so I want to know what to look for when I go back...


Well, you can't have been looking very hard ;)

BT Wiring Cabinets
Combat in the Field: Field Phreaking (Plenty more on cabinets)

... Et cetera.

There's plenty I could say but those two cover it (and a lot more besides)

The only significant thing I would disagree with is that bit about using a hacked-up £2.99 phone in the second file – I accept nothing less than the real things, which are easy enough to obtain (the HB 290's my favourite for casual use.) On the subject of proper kit, you can obtain the 'keys pillar' to open cabinets (along with other useful stuff) from Mills here. That said, I've generally found the locks on old GPO cabinets are easy enough to open with a pair of pliers (probably because BT engineers can't be bothered tightening them all the way – it makes them a c**t to open again if they've been rusting away for months.)

#10 DarkCow

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Posted 05 May 2007 - 05:09 AM

Okay, I went back at 3AM last night and got a few pictures, but there were too many cars about to feel comfortable about hooking up with a beige box or anything like that.

I've put the photos here.

(I've also attached a zip of all of them to this message, so you don't hammer my server :P)

Attached Files

  • Attached File  all.zip   3.17MB   1 downloads





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