CAT6 & 6 Other Essential Considerations
Today CAT6 is the most commonly used form of network cable for dental offices. Why? – Because CAT6 is composed of 4 pairs of copper wire for higher performance and was designed to support Gbps Ethernet that can transmit one gigabyte per second for performance, reliability and security.
Are You Using CAT6 Cabling?
CAT6 is the 6th generation of twisted Ethernet cable that’s a standard defined and specified by TIA/EIA. TIA/EIA standards define best practices in design, build, and management for structured cabling systems.
Computers are connected through Ethernet cabling. CAT6 is completely backward compatible and can be applied for any application where you generally use CAT5e cables. CAT6 cable also has more stringent specifications for system noise than CAT5e. The result is fewer errors.
CAT6 cables came out a few years after CAT5e and have the ability to support a 10 Gigabit network. CAT6 offers benefits like fast speed and improved security. You’ll also save on costs as you add more computers to your network.
Who Should Install Our CAT6 Structured Cabling?
Most people think CAT6 is more difficult than other cabling to install. That’s because CAT6 conductors are twisted tightly, and there’s more insulation. So, you must be very careful when cutting CAT6 cables.
Has Your Dental Office Undergone A Cabling Assessment?
Before spending money on structured cabling, you should consult with network specialist who can help you overcome complications or problems that you could run into when installing structured cabling.
Your IT provider will help you consider important factors before moving forward with your CAT6 environment. These are 6 essential things they will consider:
1. Will You Need A Wireless Network?
Most dentists today want the ability to use mobile devices like laptops, tablets and smartphones throughout their offices. In this case, you’ll want to set up a wireless network.
2. What Speed Will You Require?
They will determine the speed that your workstations are using. Most run at 70-80 Mbps with a maximum of 100 Mbps. The speed for network cables differs so this is an important consideration.
3. Will You Need Wireless Adapters?
Each of your computers will need a wireless adapter for your wireless network. Most desktops don’t come with them, although laptops and notebooks do. So, you’ll need to add a USB adapter or PCI (Peripheral Component Interconnect) for each system.
4. Is Your IT Security Adequate?
Your IT provider will ensure you use a WPA setup to secure your wireless connection. This can only be used on the computers you connect to your network and by turning off the wireless network’s broadcasting. Wireless systems typically come with security turned off. So, this is important to check for.
5. Are There Any Distance Limitations?
The accepted distance limitations for UTP (Unshielded Twisted Pair) cabling (up to 1 Gbps) is 100 meters (328 feet). If you need distances greater than this, it’s essential that you use CAT6A or better cabling.
6. Is Electrical Cabling Going To Cause Interference?
Network cables, including CAT6, use wiring with two conductors twisted together to cancel out any electromagnetic interference. But if they are installed next to electric cables, this raises the chance that there will be interference which could result in an inferior signal or slow-running network.
Don’t Go IT Alone
Don’t try to install cabling on your own. Structured cabling is an integral part of your IT network. It’s vitally important that the infrastructure has been expertly installed and tested to ensure ultimate performance and that you’ve met best practices.
For more information, contact the team at NOVA Computer Solutions. We can answer your questions about CAT6 and determine the network cabling that’s right for your dental office in Northern Virginia or the DC Metro Area.
In the meantime, visit our Blog to stay up-to-date on important news in IT. Here’s a sample of what you’ll find:
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As a consultant to dental practices, I help my clients maximize what can be done with their technology to maximize production and profit.