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Best Practices for Network Cabling Management

The proliferation of data and the explosion of cloud-based applications has changed the game when it comes to network cabling management. No longer can you simply run cables willy-nilly and hope for the best. Now, there are best practices that need to be followed in order to ensure your network cabling is able to handle the demands placed on it.

The Importance of Wiring the Network Correctly

As networks have become increasingly complex, the importance of network cable management has grown. An organized and well-managed network cable infrastructure can save time and money by reducing downtime, improving performance, and increasing efficiency. A well-managed network will also be more scalable and easier to troubleshoot.

The best cable management strategies in a business setting depend on the amount of storage space available, the frequency of service, and how well network cables are protected. As storage space is finite and the density of network cables will inevitably increase, the best management strategies are often time-tested and designed for a particular industry and specific network storage needs.

Use Thin and High-Density Cables When Possible

When choosing network cables, consider whether the network infrastructure and devices can handle the additional load. While thicker cables have more loops and are therefore able to handle more traffic, they also heat up and can cause issues with adjacent devices. Thicker cables may be able to handle more traffic in a specific path, but over time, the extra traffic will cause their performance to decline.

Use Clear Labels

At every termination point, a cable should be labeled with its destination. This helps to ensure that the right device is connected to the right cables. It also helps reduce the amount of time it takes to track down a specific device or terminal point. Printed labels are best, but if you must use handwritten labels make sure it is legible by anyone who might need to work with those cables in the future.

Avoid Physically Stressing Cables

Multiple bundles of cables should not be placed over each other, nor should they be over-bundled. Doing so can lead to premature decay in performance. Likewise, avoid applying more twists than needed for twisted cables. Avoid stretching the cable beyond its pull load rate or bending it beyond the bend radius. Finally, do not staple, use plastic zip-ties, or otherwise apply sustained pressure to the cable.

Do Not Block Access To Other Components

Cables should not block access to other network components. If a cable must be placed in a small space, do not place it blocking access to other cabling routes. This can prevent potential network traffic from reaching its destination and can cause issues with latency and throughput. Also avoid blocking ventilation from equipment or otherwise disrupting the airflow.

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