Structured Cabling System 101

Structured Cabling System 101

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The most efficient way to organize your business network cables and equipment is by having an organized cabling system that is planned and developed to meet your needs. This type of system works well because it is made from six smaller parts known as "subsystems." These smaller subsystems must all work together and serve the company as one infrastructure or else the structured cabling framework will not operate properly. Let’s dive into the nuances of each of these subsystems.

Entrance Facility 

An entrance facility marks where the telecom company cables end and the business starts. Cabling, demarcation points, connecting hardware and any other equipment to connect to the cabling of the external provider to the privately owned cable are available at the entrance facilities.

The main part of the entrance facility is the demarcation point, aka the "demarc,” is the official point where the circuit from the ISP ends and the private cable system starts. 

Rooms for Equipment 

Any room on the premise which houses any machine equipment or consolidation points is considered an equipment room. You will find switches and routers in this particular subsystem. Cabling from the entrance will be carried via a patch panel into the equipment room. From there, more cables can then run from a telecommunication cabinet into the equipment room. 

Backbone Cabling

The actual cables that run across the system are called the backbone cables. Backbone cabling connects an equipment room to a telephone cabinet, as do access provider points and entrance facilities. There are two types of backbone cabling:

  • Backbone cabling between horizontal cross-connects and intermediate cross-connects
  • Cabling between the intermediate cross-connect and the main cross-connect

As the name implies, this cabling serves as the system's "backbone." It connects all of the different subsystems, and the cabling that goes through this particular subsystem is governed by a set of standards known as the ANSI/TIA-568.

Telecommunications Room/Enclosure

The termination points for the system's backbone and horizontal cabling are housed in a telecommunications room (TR) or enclosure (TE). A telecommunication enclosure serves in a smaller area than a telecommunication space so every floor of a building should have its own telecommunications space.

Horizontal Cabling

In a structured cabling setup, horizontal cabling connects the telecommunications room/enclosure to outlets on the premises Horizontal cabling is usually an unshielded twisted-pair wire (UTP). To prevent electromagnetic interference, special requirements dictate how long the cables should be and where the horizontal cabling should be put in. Horizontal cabling is the stop before reaching a computer in a work area.

Work Area

The work area is the physical location of an end user’s equipment. In this area there are workstations with laptops, desktop computers, or other Wi-Fi activated devices. Work area components link the end-equipment user to the horizontal cabling subsystem's outlets.