A moderately large set of offices has lots of cables for computers, phones, and peripherals. If technicians just added cables as needed, without any overall plan, they'd soon find themselves entangled in a mass of spaghetti. Fortunately, a structured cabling system — a set of cabling and connectivity products that integrates your building's data, video and management systems — provides a standardized approach which technicians can understand and suppliers can accommodate.
Structured cabling uses the TIA TR-42 and 568 standards. These cover cable architecture, length, termination, pinouts and more. Backbone cables connect entrance facilities, equipment rooms and telecommunication rooms. These lead to patch panels from which horizontal cabling (a term that has nothing to do with physical direction) connects the outlets for work areas to the network. The work areas hold devices such as telephones, computers and printers, accessing the infrastructure through connectors such as the familiar RJ11 and RJ45. Backbone cables often use fiber optics, while horizontal cables usually employ copper wire.
The overall structure is a star configuration, with any number of horizontal cables reaching out from the backbone. This approach limits the effect of any one cable's failure. Routers are located in the equipment room and connect to horizontal cabling through patch panels. The configuration covers both voice and data connections.
Accomodating Your Needs
Standardization doesn't mean that all structured cabling setups are alike. Every office has different needs, and the standards offer many options. They allow a high level of flexibility and prevent being locked into a solution that only one vendor supports.
BICSI (Building Industry Consulting Service International), a worldwide association focused on cabling design and installation, supports structured cabling standards with training, standards and publications. Many businesses and technicians understand structured cabling, so installations are reliable and maintainable.
For information about how TelWare can offer video, voice, and data connections following structured-cabling standards, contact us 1-800-637-3148 or firstname.lastname@example.org. TelWare is a national leader in the installation of voice, video, data and unified communication solutions. TelWare is an authorized Avaya, Star2Star and SimpleWAN dealer.