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Networking my home



Hope you can help me with something here.

I have 4 rooms in my house networked up to a central location (back of the garage) which was converted to a room + utility room).

Now the utility room has a shelf near the ceiling that has a couple of servers, switches, internet routers etc.

The cabling was done outside and has a mixture of different types of sockets.

I want to re-do the whole thing and do it properly but adding proper wall flush plates, 4 ports in 1 bedroom, 2 ports to 2 other bedrooms , 4 ports to the lounge, 2 ports to the conservatory (where the family pc is) and 2 to the dining room.

The reason for all the ports is because i want some Wireless AP's, future Cat5 AV Distribution + Audio Units etc.

Now here's the deal, to get the wiring from my garage to the loft of the house is going to be a pain, that's where all the mains wiring goes as well. The consumer unit is also in the utility room and central heating unit).

Do you think it's worth running a single Fiber cable between 2 switches (one in the upstairs loft or bedroom) and one in the garage, and run all the sockets from a switch there ?

Or should i go for shielded cat5 cable?

Should i pay a friend who does Security systems (he also deals with CCTV over CAT5 to drop the cable for me?

I'm quite experienced but worried about physically getting the cable to the places without going near mains cables.

Many thanks for your input.


You don't need a fibre backbone for a home network, that's more a corporate solution and would be expensive, I'd definitely link the switches using gigabit ethernet cat5e/cat6. I got an electrician to run all the cat5e in my house as he was doing a re-wire anyway so I asked him to lay the cat5e at the same time.

If you're competent at DIY then you can run the cables yourself, in my case I wanted them hidden in walls which were then replastered so I'd never trust myself attempting something like that, I know I'd make a mess of it! Far easier to leave it to the electrician who knew exactly what he was doing.


Thanks for the reply, 20m Fiber patch lead is about £45 I have a netgear 24 port gigabit switch with Fiber connectors on it anyway

The idea behind using fiber was i can put 1 run along with the mains cabling upto the loft, no problems

Also 1 quick question, when installing the sockets is it best to lay the cables under the floor and come upto the sockets, or have it all in the loft and down to the sockets?

Thanks for your time and help :)


Well-known Member
You'll be okay with a couple of inches separation between Cat5E and power cables. STP/FTP would help as long as it's terminated properly at both ends i.e. shields/patchpanel grounded, assuming single building Earth and one consumer unit. Obviously with fibre you'd not have this problem.

With Cat5E you can run multiple cables for little extra cost - recomended. Cat5E can run at Gb with no problem, as can the fibre.

If you go with fibre just make sure you get the correct connectors for the kit you are connecting - SC, ST, LC or MT-RJ. Also make sure you match the right type of fibre for the kit i.e. single mode (8/125) or multimode (50/125 or 62.5/125). It will most likely be multimode, however.

Regarding your cable installation question: whatever is easiest/quickest/cheapest/aesthetically pleasing. Just try not to plaster directly over the cables - use conduit/caping because the cable sheath is water permeable (low risk of cable fault).




Well-known Member
I've just (well, last month) finished my home networking somewhat similar to yours. Ran around 3 drums of CAT5e's to central location & 2 runs to each room. I've power cables crossing & and running near (not very close) to network cables.

You can have a look at my thread in sig, also there are several similar projects in AVF DIY section


Thanks for all your replies :) i just dont wanna end up 1/2 way through it thinking 'I should have done it differently'

My idea of running 1 fibre was to make a 'backbone' as you were, between the loft of the house and the garage. This would have 2 Netgear Gigabit switches at either end. This would greatly reduce the pulls of Cat5 between the exteror wall of the house (which is in the garage loft) and means i could easily feed this up through the channel where the mains cabling goes....

The house has a metal clad channel where the TV antenna drops from the loft to the TV socket in the lounge. I'll run Cat5 down that way for the downstairs.

While i'm up there i'm gonna run a few drops of CT150 for TV.


Well I have been weighing it up, i'm kind of going against the idea of the backbone, becuase this won't give me the flexibility of being able to re-patch the cables for Telephone / AV over CAT5 etc. etc.

I think it'll be worth offering my mate a few quid to drill a hole up from the loft of the garage through the exterior wall of the house, into the airing cupboard, then going upto the loft of the house that way.

I'm gonna run as much cable as is possible. i.e. like 20 runs of Cat5 i'm also tempted to run a pipe that way and leave some string in place to make future pulls easier.

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