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Running a long Cat5 cable

Discussion in 'Networking & NAS' started by cunnas, Jul 10, 2007.

  1. cunnas

    cunnas Member

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    Hi all
    For around 8 months I have been with VM for broadband and can't really fault them so far. However, the setup I have was fine until now....

    I have the cable coming in the front of the house, up the stairs and in to the back bedroom as I wanted the modem there so I didn't have to *rely*on wireless. I bought a rangebooster wireless router as my house is fairly large - this I hoped with cover the rest of the house for the laptop, PSP and 360. Recently I have started using the 360 a lot for Media Centre type stuff and have found that the wireless signal just isn't strong enough or reliable. I would like to therefore run a cat5 (network) cable from the router back down to the front room where the cable actually comes in behind the telly. For this (I assume) I need a 30-40m (roughly measured) cat5 cable that I can run from the router, and basically staple right next to the cable running up the stairs so it looks pretty tidy - a few holes need to be drilled to get to the front room but that's no big deal.

    Anyway, is this the solution you lot would go for for a wired network? Where would you recommend getting a 30-40m cat5 cable? I'd rather it was made up too as I'm not overly confident with the crimping etc.

    TIA
    Tim
  2. Derek22

    Derek22 Member

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    I would agree that if you need the bandwidth/reliability go with a either a cat5 or cat6 cable. But If suitable try terminating each end with a box. This allows you to terminate the cables easily with a crone tool and you can then use pre-made short leads at each end to make the connection. Any damage in a few years is likely to be in the last couple of meters so can be easily replaced. Also if you need to change lead type can be easily done, ie crossover for straight through.

    also if possible consider running the cable in an under floor space. if doing this then run two cables rather than one. Fell for that one, then 6 months down the line regretted it as needed a 2nd connection in that location but couldnt face the days work to get the cable through the under floor space.
  3. stratagem

    stratagem Guest

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    Best to buy the cable as solid conductor and terminate each end to a Cat5 wall mount box, then use flexible patch cables from each box.

    Solid conductor is better for long run, but not flexible for final connection, and you'll need smaller holes.

    Use Cat5e not Cat5.
  4. cunnas

    cunnas Member

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    cheers for the reply folks. However, I am a 'newbie' when it comes to this kind of thing so the idea of running things under the floors (which isn't possible anyway) scares the hell out of me - plus I would not have a clue how to create the box on the wall!

    If I just want cat5 (what is cat5e?) cable - and about 40 metres of it - where is a good place to get it from? I will 99% just be stapling this to the wall on the way down the stairs - as long as it is white it will be fine.
  5. phil-uk

    phil-uk Member

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    Cunnas - I'm a bit puzzled as to why you would run a cable all the way up your stairs to the router and then another cable back down for the Xbox?

    Wouldn't it be better to move your router downstairs next to the xbox, you can then run a short CAT5 cable (say 1M) into the xbox for it's connection. Then run your long 40M cable from the router up the stairs as planned to an ethernet hub upstairs in the back bedroom, if you need more than one connection that is, if not you won't need the hub.

    At least that way you only have one cable going up the stairs?

    Just a thought!
  6. phil-uk

    phil-uk Member

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    Derek - why not add a small 4 port ethernet hub (cost about £20) for your second connection?

    Just plug your 1st cable into the uplink port on the hub and you'll instantly have 4 available ethernet ports.

    No need to run multiple CAT5's
  7. cunnas

    cunnas Member

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    haha, was wondering when someone would spot this!

    Well, the thing is, the modem was install upstairs as I didn't want my main PC to be run on wireless- after 6 months it turns out that wireless just isn't an option with the size of the house and internal walls - plus I'd rather rely on cable anyway for media centre. Moving the modem downstairs is now a valid, and probably the best option. However, it would mean shortening the broadband cable - and that means cutting and crimping. VM do this but it costs £75! Ideally this is the solution I want as I can then just run a single cat5 cable upstairs to the PC, so just the one wire being stapled to the wall and I can use the holes already drilled in the wall. But, as I say, I do not have the skills (or the balls) required to cut the broadband cable, crimp the end back on and put it in to the modem. Same goes for the cat5 cabling -otherwise it would be problem solved! If there is anyone based in the North East willing to help me out with this then please say - I am willing to pay!
  8. stratagem

    stratagem Guest

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    The box is this or similar, it's colour coded same as the wires, you just push the wires into place with a cheap plastic IDC tool, no need to strip wires.

    http://www.maplin.co.uk/module.aspx?ModuleNo=27245&doy=10m7

    Cat5e is enhanced Cat5 and is the usual cable you'll find, it's capable of up to 1Gbps datarate.

    Cat5e has either solid conductors or stranded conductors, the solid has much less loss and is for runs between boxes, the stranded is what you'll find in patch leads as it's flexible.

    http://www.maplin.co.uk/Module.aspx?TabID=1&DOY=10m7&ModuleNo=76&criteria=

    There's 6 wires in twisted pairs just match the colours to the terminals on the boxes, try to not untwist the wires too much, just enough to fit them.

    Easy...
  9. cunnas

    cunnas Member

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    I think if I ever re-plastered the walls then this may be an option - and a very good one too come to think of it. However, that's just not going to happen for a long, long time! Pinning a wire to the skirt is the way it will have to be done and to be honest I'm quite happy with that!
  10. peevo

    peevo Member

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    Hi,

    A simple solution is to buy a 40m cable already made from Ebay
    Belkin is a quality cable aswell. Depending on how you install obviously the holes will be larger to pass through walls. Other than that i cannot see what else you can do other than doing it properly i.e underfloor wraggled wall sunk in faceplate etc etc
    Cat5e is more forgiving than cat6 but better performance than cat5.
  11. phil-uk

    phil-uk Member

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    £75 to cut and re-crimp a cable, OMG!!!

    I assume you mean the cable that runs from the ADSL filter plugged into your BT socket to your ADSL/modem router?

    You should have got a short (about 1-2M) one with your modem\router, is that not long enough? If not you can run a normal telephone extension cable (with a 2 into 1 adapter) from the BT socket to the router, then plug your filter into the end of that as telephone extension leads are cheap as chips!

    Just make sure to put an ADSL filter at each telephone point.
  12. phil-uk

    phil-uk Member

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    He doesn't need CAT5e or CAT6, his xbox only has a 10/100Mbps port, why do you need anything other than CAT5?
  13. stratagem

    stratagem Guest

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    There is no sense in taking the trouble to run old Cat5 when CAT5e is much better and costs about the same, Cat5e is the norm now and future proofs it.

    I doubt you can buy Cat5 now.
  14. hornydragon

    hornydragon Member

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    Its a "f" connector nothing special at all mate £1.99 from Maplins..........Screw fit.
  15. cunnas

    cunnas Member

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    you've lost me - what's an F connector and why would I need one?
  16. phil-uk

    phil-uk Member

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    An F-connector is for coax cable, same as satelite. The little silver screw on bit at the end of your satelite cable that you would attach to your sky digibox for instance. This is used for some cable modems supplied by some companies but I don't think you're using that type are you?

    If your using a standard BT box with a filter then F-connectors won't apply.
  17. cunnas

    cunnas Member

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    I am not with BT (ADSL) I am with Virgin (cable DSL). The cable that I would need to shorten looks a bit like a TV arial type cable - either way I'm not confident with cutting and crimping etc....
  18. stratagem

    stratagem Guest

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    If you are really not happy with terminating cables you could look at using powerline adaptors 200Mbps, just plug them into a mains socket, 1 upstairs, 1 downstairs. These create a network from your mains electric circuit.
  19. cunnas

    cunnas Member

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    can you recommend any of these plug things to me mate? Are they hard to setup? Does it use any kind of wireless?
  20. stratagem

    stratagem Guest

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    There are the easiest, just plug them in, no drivers, no setup.

    They use wirleless in a way, 2-28Mhz transmitted via the electrical circuit, so no walls to go through.
  21. phil-uk

    phil-uk Member

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  22. cunnas

    cunnas Member

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    the problem I have with these home plug devices is (after reading a number of reviews) that they are not 100% efficient. You have to have a good electric circuit running in your house - I have no idea what mine is like, it's not new and it's a 100 year old house. What I am after is a 100% reliable solution and from what I know (albeit limited knowledge) only a cat5 cable from my router to another device gives me that?
  23. hornydragon

    hornydragon Member

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    F connector is conenction use for Cable TV and cable broadband from the cable that comes into your house and terminates at the box (STB or Modem)

    Cat5 is the best bet run cat5 from modem downstairs to PC upstairs I would reconmend getting a router (which you already have) and locate router with modem if you require extraconnections upstairs for a NAS/ printer etc thne you can add a hub.
  24. Derek22

    Derek22 Member

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    putting a small hub/switch is a good option, for me i put a small switch in. But longer term wished I had dragged that second cable through at the time as wall box can take a double module.

    would have been neater and didnt require extra hardware and something else using electricity all the time. trying to pass on lessons learnt from mistakes i made.
  25. phil-uk

    phil-uk Member

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    Derek - I see your point. If you were runnig to a double wall box it would make sense to run two cables it's true, we live and learn a!
  26. stratagem

    stratagem Guest

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    Yes, if you can hide it, the more the merrier, Cat5 is all purpose, it can carry network traffic, or video and audio for, or telephone, or ADSL etc.
  27. cybrey

    cybrey Member

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    Shortening your existing VM cable is incredibly easy and cheap. Satcure do a very good guide to fitting F Connectors;

    http://www.satcure.co.uk/tech/fconn.htm

    tbh I've never used silicone grease or Vaseline, just cut and re-screwed the F-Connector on.

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