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Cable Management
(Tuesday, February 08, 2005)

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Rack Cable Management
When planning a rack or enclosure, be sure to include ample space for cable management products. By limiting patch panels to 48 ports and installing a 2U high cable management panel between each patch panel, users can prevent patch panels from becoming over crowded and difficult to work with.

Route all cables to the side of the rack before moving up or down to a switch. This prevents cables from over-lapping other ports. This will allow users to maintain a clean front panel where they can still reach into the panel to make changes. Here, using the correct length cable is critical. A one-size fits all strategy does not work when running patch cables.
Color Codes
Color-coding is another way to identify groups of cable. By designating a particular color to cable groups, users can easily identify cables and their purpose. Group the cables into common groups such as LAN, Voice, Security, HVAC, etc.

Cable Bend Radius
When organizing network cables with cable ties and other methods, it is important to avoid damaging the integrity of the cable assemblies. Click here to see five common mistakes made while securing network cables.


Cable Labeling

Standardizing on a cable label format should be the first step taken prior to the design process. This requires thought and planning, as this labeling system will be around longer than the installation itself. In this plan be sure to accommodate all possible types of cable to be used. Break down each identifying aspect to simple codes that can easily be understood. Below is an example of label markings and how they work:
Example:V-2151-A2 = Voice, Second Floor, Room 151, Work Area A, Port 2

D-3011-B4 = Data, Third Floor, Room 011, Work Area B, Port 4

F-2151-A3 = Fax, Second Floor, Room 151, Work Area A, Port 3

The above label example is short and can fit on a small label surface while still allowing quick port identification. This system could be tailored to an individual installation but once a system is adopted, it should be used throughout a cabling project. Be sure to create a training guide to help new workers to quickly understand the system used.

Click here to view on a tip on what size cable label is appropriate for the cable you are using.

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