Structured cabling is a type of infrastructure that is constructed inside a building and which supports the performance of an organisation’s cabling system or network. It connects all the communication systems, such as computers, phones and other devices, and creates one reliable, flexible and cost-effective solution that meets the high demands from communication requirements.
Here’s a look at the 6 subsystems of structured cabling and how this could benefit your business.
- Building entrance
As the name suggests, building entrance facilities are the point at which outside telecommunications cabling connects with the backbone cabling inside the building. It generally consists of the cables, network demarcation point, connecting hardware, protection devices and other equipment that connect to the access provider or private network cabling.
A telecommunications closet is a room or cabinet within a building that houses the telecommunications cabling system equipment. This includes the terminations and/or cross-connect for the horizontal and backbone cabling system. There should be a minimum of one wiring closet, of which the size is dependent on the scale of the service area.
The equipment room is a central area which contains the equipment required for the structured cabling. The equipment is typically of higher complexity than what is housed in the telecommunication closets.
- Backbone cabling
Also known as vertical cabling, backbone cabling creates the connection between equipment rooms, telecommunication rooms and entrance facilities. The cabling system includes the backbone cables, intermediate and main cross-connects, and mechanical terminations. The cables can run between floors (known as risers) or between buildings (interbuilding).
- Work area
Work area refers to space where cable components are used between communication outlets and end-user telecommunications equipment. The cable components often include station equipment (telephones, computers, etc.), patch cables and communication outlets. Work area wiring is deliberately simple to interconnect so that any upgrades, moves and additions are easily manageable.
- Horizontal cabling
The horizontal cabling system extends from the work area telecommunications outlet to the telecommunications closet and consists of horizontal cabling, cable terminations and cross-connects. This wiring systems is set down horizontally above the ceilings or within the floors. Much like the backbone cabling, horizontal cabling must meet certain specs. For instance, the maximum distance allowed between devices is 90 meters. An extra 6 meters is allowed for patch cables at the telecommunication closet and in the work area, but the combined length of these patch cables cannot exceed 10 meters.
The benefits of structured cabling
There are many advantages of a structured cabling system. These benefits will vary from business to business, but on the most part, it will ensure a reliable and highly cost-effective network that will go the distance.
For companies expecting to expand quickly, one of your main priorities is to secure a network that is scalable and can respond quickly to industry changes. This is possible with a structured cabling system as it will give you a high bandwidth. You can rest assured your network infrastructure won’t become out-dated and will support all emerging applications, and cope with the increasing demands as your business expands.
Out-dated, unorganised cabling structures are at risk of human error, which can result in workflow disruption and significant network downtime. However, well-planned, modern cabling structured efficiently, will be easier to troubleshoot and thus any faults can be fixed quickly. This means that one seamless structured cabling system requires little in maintenance costs, and eliminates the time and money spent on locating and rectifying any issues.
If you are are interested in finding out how your company’s structured cabling measures up, please contact us for a comprehensive cabling health check, whereby we can put forward our recommendations within a report and construct a plan to help your business meet it’s data requirements for both now and in the future.