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Structured Cabling

Industrial strength IT is built in layers, and the foundation layer is the copper and fiber optic cabling in the building. Great structured cabling is required for great IT.

Info

In telecommunications, structured cabling is building or campus cabling infrastructure that consists of a number of standardized smaller elements (hence structured) called subsystems. Structured cabling components include twisted pair and optical cabling, patch panels and patch cables.1

In the figure below, the colored lines represent the wiring in the walls over which all data and voice traffic flows.

structured-cabling-example

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The quality of structured cabling installations runs the spectrum all the way from complete disasters to textbook perfection.

These wires originate from server rooms, telecom rooms, or closets called MDF's (main distribution frames) and IDF's (intermediate distribution frames) and travel through walls, ceilings, and floors to terminate at wallplates that house network jacks. Computers, phones, and other devices are plugged into these network ports with patch cables.

The reason structured cabling is so important is because it acts as a bottleneck to any other device that is connected to it. E.g., if there is an electrical short in an Ethernet wire that causes a flaky network connection and packet loss, then even the fastest, most reliable attached computer will experience severe operating problems. The devices attached to a network will never be better than the network.

Example

Here is an example of an MDF we had to replace. bad-mdf-example

Example

And here is an example of an MDF we built from the ground up. new-bitstream-mdf-example

Bitstream has been been creating network rooms and structured cabling infrastructure since 2003. We place these systems under our long term managment for our clients and ensure that they operate properly for years to come. We will evaluate your wiring during our site survey, and if it fails to meet a viable minimum standard, we will repair or replace it.


  1. "Structured cabling". Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 15 May 2020, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Structured_cabling