Structured Cabling Primer
Having Internet access in a commercial building is no longer an option. It is a must. That means every commercial building needs some sort of structured cabling system and many of them require a full wiring closet or server room including racks, panels, patch cords, lightning protectors, routers, switches, and media converters, all supported by a staff of IT professionals. Even if you are doing most of your file sharing and other network activities in the cloud, you can't get by without the basic cable linking your office to an ISP. As you'll see, L-com is your "one-stop" source for everything you'll need to maintain your structured cabling and LAN.
A Structured Cabling System is the cabling, connectors and accessories that make up the LAN (Local Area Network) inside a commercial building. At a minimum, this consists of a modem, router/network switch and Ethernet cabling. Click here for L-com's Telecom / Modular (Premise Wiring) Tutorial page.
"But often, you need something more complex than just a computer connected to the Internet. That means you'll need an Ethernet router to handle internal network addressing and probably Ethernet switches to distribute traffic to many computers. L-com offers a large variety of name brand commercial and industrial grade switches, as well as its own line of industrial switches.
But routers and switches can't work alone. You will require Ethernet cabling, possibly a lot of it. And when you have a lot of cabling, things can get messy. L-com carries one of the largest stocks of high-quality right-angle Ethernet patch cables along with cable management rack panels to keep your area neat. With all the different cables going to different systems, things can get confusing. For that reason, L-com supplies a wide range of colors for Ethernet cables, allowing you to color code your network. If you specify that a certain color cable carries a certain signal type (such as phone or network traffic), you ensure that everyone who works on your network wiring can visually identify critical connections before they are disconnected.
As your network grows, you need your structured cabling system to be scalable. One good way to do this is to employ a well organized rack layout and utilize good cable management practices. This will make future growth easier to manage within your server room. Plan for future expansion by including blank filler panels between patching sections in a rack and in network switching equipment. Around the building, set up plenty of user access points by terminating a minimum of two network ports per office workspace. Installing keystone jacks in aesthetic wall plates or surface mount boxes will give an office space a finished look.
For remote locations, use enclosures to house wireless equipment, amplifiers, antennas, and more. To power these products, install Power over Ethernet (PoE) injectors and splitters that will eliminate the need for complicated electrical re-wiring. If the location is too far for traditional Ethernet wiring (about 100 meters and further), consider setting up a fiber optic link using commercial or industrial grade media converters.
Finally, never forget the importance of lightning protection. Electrical surges can occur anywhere with devastating effects on expensive and critical equipment. Nearly anything that carries an electrical current is vulnerable, but fortunately L-com has solutions for the vast majority of situations.
All of these products are available off-the-shelf for same-day shipment. Browse our extensive print catalog or order everything you need from our convenient web site. Don't buy from dozens of different suppliers; get it all at one place saving you time, money and headaches. With our award winning Customer Service department, you know you'll get top-notch service solving your connectivity problems.