Many network administrators keep hearing that the network is down because of some or the other reason. Various researches indicate that in many cases, the network is down on account of inferior cabling systems. And installing standards-complaint structured cabling systems can eliminate much of this downtime. Another important factor that needs to be taken into account is that the structured cabling system, though it outlives most other networking components, represents just five percent of the total network investment. The structured cable is the only one that needs to be installed to contend with the needs of telephone and data communications now and in the future. It is a system that provides a very "structured" approach to the entire cabling system—a single-mixed media network that handles all information traffic like voice, data, video, and even big complex building management systems. In brief, it could be described as a system that comprises a set of transmission products, applied with engineering design rules that allow the user to apply voice, data, and signals in a manner that maximizes data rates. Structured cabling divides the entire infrastructure into manageable blocks and then attempts to integrate these blocks to produce the high-performance networks that we have now come to rely on. To the user, this means investment protection. In addition to investment protection, structured cabling also provides administrative and management capabilities. All cables originating from the different work locations are terminated on a passive centralized cross-connect in the network room. Simple labeling and colouring mechanisms provide for easy and quick identification of work outlets. Hence, it provides for a single point for all administrative and management requirements. Another underlying factor is management of change. It must be realized that system architectures keep changing as the system evolves. And the cabling architecture should be able to change with minimal inconvenience. The provision of a central administrative panel provides the flexibility to make additions, moves, and changes. The changes can be facilitated with simple switch over of patch cords. Apart from this, structured cabling is also technology independent.
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