The Benefits of Structured Cabling
If you’re a fan of Sci-Fi or horror movies, you’ll be familiar with the layout of your typical mad scientist’s lair: a jumbled mess of tubes, gadgets, and spaghetti coils of tangled wiring. You may even have experienced such an environment at home or in the office, due to ad hoc installations of computer and telephone equipment.
A nightmare to manage, work, and move around in – with a real negative impact on efficiency and productivity. Thankfully, it’s possible to bring a method to this kind of madness, through the use of a structured cabling system.
What Is Structured Cabling?
Structured cabling is a standardised and logical system for connecting multiple electronic devices. It includes cables, computers, phones, and all the associated hardware making up a complete telecommunications/office network infrastructure. The system crafts an integrated architecture of sockets, cables, and cable distributors.
A structured cabling system provides an environment for data transfers that integrates telecoms networks, local or networked computer systems, video surveillance, and security. There’s support for multiple voice, media, and data systems. Structured cabling provides organisations with an integrated platform on which their overall information management strategy may be built.
Order From Chaos
Structured cabling systems typically use a “star” configuration with a central communications network cabinet as its hub, from which cables may be run to different workstations. Cabling is done in accordance with the TIA TR-42 and 568 standards, which govern cable architecture, length, termination, connectors, and other factors.
The star configuration assigns a logical branch to each function (video, voice, data, telephone, etc.), with specific socket types for each category. A device (phone, computer, printer, fax machine, etc.) may simply be plugged into a structured cable outlet, rather than having to manually connect it to a specific wire. This eliminates the need for undisciplined jumbles of random cable all over the place.
For businesses, the system requires a one-time investment in a Structured Cabling Systems Installation. After that, all you need to do is plug your equipment cables into their appropriate sockets. No need to buy additional wires or adapters.
The segregation of data and equipment types into their own specialised outlets makes it easy to rationalise your office network infrastructure. Designated outlets allow you to use a simple configuration that supports a range of different devices, with a single hub for all your administrative and management requirements.
If you want to make changes to your network architecture, all you have to do is plug the cables for your relevant devices into their appropriate sockets in order to restructure your system. With the system providing support for data in all formats, devices may be swapped in or out efficiently and painlessly.
Troubleshooting Made Easy
With its ability to integrate multiple data types on a single administrative platform, structured cabling is a unified system. But it’s also a segmented one.
As each data type/business function occupies its own point of the star configuration, structured cabling effectively isolates each strand from all the others. This makes it easy to pin down the source of any problems that may occur – and to rectify them on their relevant branch without impacting negatively on the system as a whole.
Room To Grow
A structured cabling installation comes with a generous bandwidth allocation, so it’s able to cope well with emerging applications and technologies requiring high-speed connections. This high bandwidth is also a cushion against future growth, ensuring connectivity for your enterprise as your business expands over time or divests into new technological areas and equipment.