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# 242798 14-Nov-2018 19:13
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I've been using standard Cat6 UTP leads for a long time. I'm now dipping my toes in the water with Cat6A SFTP cables.

 

Do these need any form of device end support to function effectively as a shielded cable? IE: Switch port, NIC, etc. I am not using any patch panels or wall sockets with these cables at this stage.





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  # 2126791 14-Nov-2018 20:18
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Hi one end needs to have a metalic cover that contacts thw plugs shield cover. Ideally only one end to prevent earth loops but if both ends capture the shield the you need to use caution. If neither end is earth captured then you can end up with a significantly worse interference issue than plain old utp.

Also be aware that even if a switch has earth captured sockets if it's fed from a floating supply it's not worth it.

We have SFTP patch and fly lead's at work, not for interference mitigation but for other reasons 😎 and the earth management can be a right royal pain.

My advise is in most commercial situations it's simply of no use and more of a hassle especially if you just creat earth loops or effective beverage antennas.

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  # 2126884 14-Nov-2018 22:56
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Or just run fibre like normal people.

 

Use SFPs and get switches that support SFPs and then you are sorted.






 
 
 
 


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  # 2126902 15-Nov-2018 06:28
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BarTender:

 

Or just run fibre like normal people.

 

Use SFPs and get switches that support SFPs and then you are sorted.

 

 

Yep, if its just home or smaller SME stuff then UTP and GigE is still the go, moving up from that, SFP+ switches are now much cheaper ($900 for a 16 port with 12SFP+ and 4 Gig/10G UTP) and always order servers with SFP+ ports (Mellanox dual SFP+ NIC's are <$400) and use either fibre or DA for in rack cabling.

 

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  # 2126914 15-Nov-2018 07:21
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cyril7: Hi one end needs to have a metalic cover that contacts thw plugs shield cover. Ideally only one end to prevent earth loops but if both ends capture the shield the you need to use caution. If neither end is earth captured then you can end up with a significantly worse interference issue than plain old utp.

Also be aware that even if a switch has earth captured sockets if it's fed from a floating supply it's not worth it.

We have SFTP patch and fly lead's at work, not for interference mitigation but for other reasons 😎 and the earth management can be a right royal pain.

My advise is in most commercial situations it's simply of no use and more of a hassle especially if you just creat earth loops or effective beverage antennas.

Cyril

 

I've seen to many cases where people have requested or installed STP or SFTP cable with absolutely no understanding of why it's been specced or used - with "to eliminate interference"  being the most common.

 

They don't realise that without proper earthing at one end that in the real world it will do nothing but introduce issues into a cable run that could have well been perfect had it simply been regular UTP.

 

 


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  # 2126932 15-Nov-2018 08:26
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Just another +1 for if you need 10-gig, just fibre or direct attach.

Company I work for has a contract for a hospital, they spec Cat6a for all new data outlets, but as others have said, the shielding is so bothersome and the vast majority of things are only just PC's and phones and APs.The switches are all fibre uplinked too so the cat6a just seems largely redundant.

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  # 2126948 15-Nov-2018 08:38
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I predict we will see more NBaseT (802.3bz) stuff come to be more common, which I predict will eliminate the enterprise move to 6a and back to just 6.

 

Reality is 1/2.5/5G to the desktop on cat5e/6 UTP with 10/40G fibre (and DAC within cabs) is going to be the more common layout.

 

Cyril


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  # 2126955 15-Nov-2018 09:00
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I think shielded fibre optic cable is going to be the next big thing!




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  # 2126960 15-Nov-2018 09:14
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sbiddle:

 

They don't realise that without proper earthing at one end that in the real world it will do nothing but introduce issues into a cable run that could have well been perfect had it simply been regular UTP.

 

 

I understand the part about earthing. What I am trying to learn if whether this will be achieved at the switch, which is a Dlink business series switch with inbuilt 230V PSU.





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  # 2126984 15-Nov-2018 09:35
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Hi, earthing should ideally be provided from one end only, typically it is from the switch via the patch lead and patch panel, and then into SFTP structured cabling, and typically (but depends on the situation) a UTP lead is used to connect to the end device, the UTP patch lead breaking any potential earth loop, but sometimes other actions are needed if a SFTP lead is required for interference or secrecy reasons to ensure no earth loop is created.

 

In small situations where all the gear is in a close location where all devices are on a close or same earth section, then just use SFTP directly between switch and device, earth loop issues should not be an issue.

 

The thing I need to ask, is what exactly are you trying to achieve. Standard UTP if used correctly provides sufficient interference mitigation to provide error free signals, is there some significant interference source that you believe is compromising that?

 

Cyril




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  # 2127006 15-Nov-2018 09:57
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Thanks for the responses.

 

The cabling is short run in an office environment so no need for fibre. I have confirmed with the Dlink distributor the switch provides the earthing so all good.





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  # 2127016 15-Nov-2018 10:16
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MichaelNZ:

 

Thanks for the responses.

 

The cabling is short run in an office environment so no need for fibre. I have confirmed with the Dlink distributor the switch provides the earthing so all good.

 

 

I'm really curious as to why you believe that environment needs SFTP cabling.


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  # 2127073 15-Nov-2018 10:41
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sbiddle:

 

MichaelNZ:

 

Thanks for the responses.

 

The cabling is short run in an office environment so no need for fibre. I have confirmed with the Dlink distributor the switch provides the earthing so all good.

 

 

I'm really curious as to why you believe that environment needs SFTP cabling.

 

 

And I still stand behind my statement if you "think" you need SFTP then getting a fixed run of Fibre and 1GB SFPs if you have switches at each end that already support SFPs then the cost difference between the two will be negligible. I picked up cheap 1G SFPs off TradeMe or Ali for sub $50 and then the fibre is cheap too so any concern about earth loops or interference is gone. 






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