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help building a home computer network infrastructure

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help building a home computer network infrastructure

Postby dodecahedron on Mon Dec 25, 2006 4:10 pm

my apartment is buing built, and the contractor is making the preparations for a home network.
need some advice.

1. from this topic: Will Cat 6 cable work with a Cat 5e coupler?
what is the difference between CAT5, CAT5e, CAT6 ?

2. the contractor doesn't actually lay the CAT cable, only tubes with a pull-wire which will enable me to pull a cable throught the tubes (under the floor tiles) in the future.
the way the contractor had it planned originally was as follows: the cables (tubing) runs from the communications box (near the entrance to the apartment, where the phone, cable etc. feed into the apartment) to room A, from room A to room B, room B to room C etc., that is connected serially.
now the contractor's engineer said that from that it follows that if i will place the cables and their outlets in each room, i will only be able to connect one computer. i'll be able to connect it to the outlet of any room i choose, but only one.
(some smart home computer network, huh ?).
Question: is that correct ?

3. as a "solution" to this wonderfully smart design, the contractor suggested the following: instead of doing the above, to pull CAT cable in the same tube that runs the phone line. the phone lines run from the communications box to each room's phone socket, each room has a dedicated tube for that (connected in parrallel). so using these tubes for both phone and CAT cable, i'll have the computer socket of each room connected directly to the communications box.
Question: does that indeed solve the problem?
Question: does that mean that i'll have to place the router in the communications box ?
(a bit of a problem, since the box is rather small. and i'll also need an electricity socket in there to power the router).

thanks in advance, i'm sure there's plenty of folk here who are very knowledgeable about home networking (or computer networking in general).

if anyone knows of a link to some site dedicated to this subject and simple enough for the unintiated, i'll be grateful.
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Postby Ian on Mon Dec 25, 2006 8:01 pm

That is a pretty stupid design. Reminds me of appletalk or coax installs back in the day.

The second solution is definitely better. However, as you pointed out, the communication box isn't the best location to terminate all of the connections.

What you could do is terminate the connections in another room. Say in Room B. Run wires from room A and room C to there and try to run a cable from the main communications box for your DSL or whatever. You really wouldn't need anything fancy. Just a wall plate with a bunch of ports where you can plug a switch into.

Oh yeah.. don't bother with Cat6. Cat5e is plenty fast for home use and you don't have to jump through as many hoops to reduce things like crosstalk, etc.
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Postby dodecahedron on Mon Dec 25, 2006 10:18 pm

Ian wrote:That is a pretty stupid design. Reminds me of appletalk or coax installs back in the day.
yeah, these people maybe know how to builds building but not computer networks :(

Ian wrote:The second solution is definitely better. However, as you pointed out, the communication box isn't the best location to terminate all of the connections.

What you could do is terminate the connections in another room. Say in Room B. Run wires from room A and room C to there and try to run a cable from the main communications box for your DSL or whatever. You really wouldn't need anything fancy. Just a wall plate with a bunch of ports where you can plug a switch into.

obviously that would be best. but now things are tricky. the tubing is already laid out as per the plan (as described above), and the filling under the floor is already poured out over the tubing. can't change the tubing now. running cables from all rooms to room A (let's say, that would be my den) is not possible now i think.

[should asked this in the forum a week and a half ago when first discovered this issue, now i can kick myself real hard :evil: ]

i don't remember the wiring plan by heart, but that room is the 'last in the chain' in the original serial design, and running cables from all rooms to it now would mean running a cable from say room B to the comm. box (through the phone line tube) and from there to room A. which means again needing to run the cables from all rooms through the tube part from comm. box to room A. and that isn't possible, it's like 5 cables (for 5 computer points in the house) and you can't run that many in the tube.

so it seems like i'm stuck ? and the only solution for me is to have the router sit in the comm box ?
i don't know if that's even possible or practical.

Ian wrote:Oh yeah.. don't bother with Cat6. Cat5e is plenty fast for home use and you don't have to jump through as many hoops to reduce things like crosstalk, etc.
thanks.
what's the difference betweek CAT5 and CAT5e though ?
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Postby Ian on Mon Dec 25, 2006 11:19 pm

dodecahedron wrote:what's the difference betweek CAT5 and CAT5e though ?


CAT5e is just the newer spec. Wikipedia has a good, but technical, description:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cat5e#Category_5e

To put it simply, it works better with Gigabit devices.
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Postby dodecahedron on Sat Dec 30, 2006 9:49 pm

read the Wikipedia, but it isn't too clear.
is the Cat5e physically different from Cat5 ?
if so, how ?
does it use different connectors (plugs, jacks) or the same ?

Ian wrote:What you could do is terminate the connections in another room. Say in Room B. Run wires from room A and room C to there and try to run a cable from the main communications box for your DSL or whatever. You really wouldn't need anything fancy. Just a wall plate with a bunch of ports where you can plug a switch into.

i'm not sure i understand.
let's say i have the cables from all rooms go to room B. then in room B i have an opening in the wall where all the cables terminate. what then ?
do i have to have the cables running out from the wall and down to the router ? or will i have to have say 5 sockets set into the wall and then have 5 (short) cables running from the output of the router to the 5 wall sockets ?
(sorry for my lousy descriptions, my lack of English proficiency is showing. that is what comes of not speaking a language on a regular basis...:( ).
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Postby Ian on Sat Dec 30, 2006 10:42 pm

dodecahedron wrote:or will i have to have say 5 sockets set into the wall and then have 5 (short) cables running from the output of the router to the 5 wall sockets ?


Yep, that's exactly what I would do. If you're crazy, you could get all of them to fit onto a single wall plate.

CAT5 and CAT5e is pretty much the same. If you buy CAT5e though, you know its been tested to those specifications.
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Postby dodecahedron on Sun Dec 31, 2006 7:45 am

thanks, but it's moot anyway.
as i explained in the prvious post the cables run from all rooms to the comm box.
i don't know if i'll be able to change that and have them run to the den.
even then i'd be in trouble - fit 5 sockets into the wall plate? not likely.
the embrasure in the wall is a standard one of fixed size.
and it's impossible to enlargen it, since that room (my den) will be in the MAMAD.
what the hell is a MAMAD you ask?
it's an acronym for Merhav Mugad Dirati, which means Apartmental Protected Zone. it's basically a bomb shelter, a room whose walls are made of cement, the door is a metal security door. and the window is a special window too, with a metal plate that can cover it from outside...
it's a compulsory thing in Israel in every new apartment/home built, ever sice the first Iraq war when Iraq fired Scud missiles at us...

so that room is already built, the cement walls already done and the wall cavities (for electricity, light switches, TV, telephone and yes! computer comm socket) are already in place (the cement was poured over them, so to speak).

i'm in a fix! :x :( :o
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Postby smartin4 on Sun Dec 31, 2006 10:09 am

i don't know if i'll be able to change that and have them run to the den.
even then i'd be in trouble - fit 5 sockets into the wall plate? not likely.
the embrasure in the wall is a standard one of fixed size.

I understand that you are in a bind right now,and this may not be much help, but they do make 6-port (single-gang) wall plates for network connections that fit a standard cutout. We use them at work on occasion (though we stick mostly with the 2-port & 4-port variety). We also use a flush mount adapter after we cut the hole in the wall to mount the wall plate to.

Another solution could be to buy a surface-mount box and attach it to the wall and get a 6-port plate for it. That would allow you to put the box almost anywhere that you want.

We buy all of our cabling supplies from Black Box here in the US (they are in Pennsylvania I believe), so the links probably wouldn't be much help to you. The WP274 is the adapter that I was talking about above, and the other pic is the surface-mount box.

http://www.blackbox.com/Catalog/Detail. ... 1&mid=1343

6-port wall plate:

http://www.blackbox.com/Catalog/Detail. ... 1&mid=4320
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Postby LoneWolf on Mon Jan 01, 2007 2:05 pm

These aren't cheap, but they may be a cool option for you. The 3Com IntelliJack is an unmanaged LAN switch designed to take the place of a wall plate.

http://www.3com.com/products/en_US/deta ... EBBNCNJSYS

They also support power over ethernet in case you wished to do a VoIP phone setup at some point. I believe they run fine off a single CAT5e cable, so if someone wasn't good at running enough wires for you, you'll still be okay. Some of them can also be uplinked with fiber optic cable, if that would be easier for you.
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