Network Patch Panels

Ever seen the inside of server rooms infiltrated with hundreds of thousands of meters of network cables, shamelessly clogged into alien looking machines filled with hundreds of sockets? Network patch panels are exactly what you most probably saw, which made today’s network infrastructures possible. Network patch panels houses network cable connection, in a generally rack mounted frame. The main objectives of network patch panels is to ensure that the network cables from or to the switches or other distribution equipment are arranged properly and distributed in a minimal clogged structure.

Patch panels enable network technicians to replace or repair a faulty connection or cable without having to operate on the expensive dedicated switching equipment. They also enable rerouting broadcast signals in the easiest possible way, and since the beginning, have been an intimate component of any large or medium scale network. Patch panels in general was first used in the telephone industry, and later symbolised any networks all around the world. Today patch panels are used in stage lighting, audio instalments etc. to name a few.

Patch panels usually come with around hundred CAT-5 connection sockets although there are variations depending on models and prices. A typical network patch panel package comes with the main panels, extra clips, screws to mount them in the racks – and the warranty on specific components might vary. The prices of patch panels vary however can be negligible when compared to that of the more expensive switching equipment. Typical network patch panels are rack-mounted, and play a massive role in proper wire management of a network. Generally, the assembly is done in such a way so that the longer network cables have to run through the back, usually permanent cables for example to the network servers. The shorter patch cables are generally installed in the front which contains the connection to the switches.

Lately many small business and home office users are discovering the enormous benefits of networks, with the enticing idea of sharing printers or home entertainment across any part of the instalment. Patch panels are idea in these situations, where users can set up a network quickly and easily. Generally there are specialized companies which handle the network setups for medium to big organization, however, a small business or home user can easily install a network themselves. Wiring a patch panel is extremely straightforward for setting up a network, and can be very easily maintained by one person if the numbers of overlaying cables are low. A professional panel setup is very important, since a recklessly laid out patch panel setup can easily result in physical connection errors in the future.

There are a few underlying rules to be maintained when setting up a network patch panel. There are few fingers installed in the rack to round off the cables, and in order to keep clog or jitter as minimal as possible, no wires should ever overlap each other. One single overlap can wreck the whole setup. The cables should not generally be dragged from one side to another through the face. If cables are required to connect from one side to the other, they should be passed via the fingers located at the top of the rack, and rounded off to the other side. Generally, the cables should be plugged in forming a definite pattern, and usually the sockets at the sides are plugged in first. Usually it is recommended that the right sockets at the bottom row are plugged in first, and then filled through the left before moving to the above row. It is also recommended that no cables are rounded off twice across a single cable holder.

This Network Patch Panels Review is Written/Updated on May 10th, 2010 and filed under Computer Hardware. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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