Linked by JoanneRodgers on Thu 15th May 2008 23:02 UTC
Features, Office In a June 2003 Wired Magazine interview, Martha Stewart said, "Bill Gates' house, for example, is totally out of date now. He built it right before wireless happened. The big tunnels for all his wires - he doesn't need any of that stuff anymore." The article wasn't about networking, or even technology, but I was struck by that statement because it was echoed by several people when I was explaining that I was running many thousands of feet of cable in OSNews' "house of the future." "Is all that cable really necessary now that there's wireless everything?" people said. As much as I respect Martha Stewart's business and design acumen, neither she, nor those people who talked to me, know what they're talking about. When it comes to networking, there's no substitute for a wire, when a wire's available. -- This is the latest entry in our 2008 Article Contest.
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There is a 3rd option
by Laurence on Thu 15th May 2008 23:21 UTC
Laurence
Member since:
2007-03-26

Some of my mates have ditched wireless for running their networks through the power sockets using devices like this:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Twin-Pack-Homeplug-Ethernet-Adapter/dp/B000...

Never tried it myself, but they swear by it.

Reply Score: 4

RE: There is a 3rd option
by flanque on Fri 16th May 2008 00:16 UTC in reply to "There is a 3rd option"
flanque Member since:
2005-12-15

I went to the effort of runnig Cat5e through my roof to multiple points in each room (except the bathroom) and have never looked back.

It's far more reliable and secure than wireless in my view, plus I split my phone line twice into the patch panel which also makes each 'network socket' a handy phone point as long as it's patched in the cupboard.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: There is a 3rd option
by thebin on Fri 16th May 2008 02:06 UTC in reply to "RE: There is a 3rd option"
thebin Member since:
2007-03-17

I too have done this for all the same reasons. We even have "pull-out" cat5e cabling in all the rooms so that it can easily be hidden from discriminating guests (my mother-in-law) but still be useful for the LAN party. Buying a cabling kit at Home Depot for about $125 is the way to go to make this cost effective.

Reply Score: 2

RE: There is a 3rd option
by Doc Pain on Fri 16th May 2008 15:51 UTC in reply to "There is a 3rd option"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

Some of my mates have ditched wireless for running their networks through the power sockets [...]


Oh how I love this concept, turns all your power carrying wires in your house into a beautiful wideband HF emitting antenna. Very healthy, for sure. :-)

Reply Score: 2

If I could lay fiber throughout the house
by tyrione on Thu 15th May 2008 23:33 UTC
tyrione
Member since:
2005-11-21

I would. I'll take a house designed to pull and replace older wire for new mediums any day of the week.

Reply Score: 3

Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

I would. I'll take a house designed to pull and replace older wire for new mediums any day of the week.


Fibre would be interesting for inside usage, but your house will be connected to phone lines, TV cables and DSL cables made from copper anyway. Here in Germany, after 1990, fibre connections were put into the ground for some districts in my home town. Today, these regions suffer from not being able to get DSL connections because they do require a copper wire, or, which would be as expensive as a replacement of the fibre, a converter from / to fibre.

As far as I remember, the famous SGI computers (e. g. Octane) had optical connectors many years ago. The idea isn't that bad. And maybe optical connection cables could be made cheaper than those that involve metal...

Reply Score: 2

fascination with wireless
by sc3252 on Thu 15th May 2008 23:40 UTC
sc3252
Member since:
2005-09-06

I never did understand what was so great about it. My file server agrees, having both wireless and wired I have tested out copying files over wireless just 15 feet away and it takes around 5-10 times longer then using standard cat 5 cables.

Reply Score: 4

RE: fascination with wireless
by stabbyjones on Fri 16th May 2008 00:03 UTC in reply to "fascination with wireless"
stabbyjones Member since:
2008-04-15

People who like wireless tend to like shiny things.

If there's a way to run a cable to it i'll do it. I'm renting and instead of sticking holes in my walls and floors i've got cables running along the top of the walls across the house.

~40m of network cable
~10m tv aerial cable
~8m for surround satellites
And because my only phone plug is in the worst place ever. (My kitchen)
~4m for telephone cable
~4m for modem connection

All stuck with command strip type things and nobody notices till i tell them to look up at the roof. All this cost me less than the price of a wireless router and in my opinion works a whole lot better.

The only way to break into my network is to hack my server or hack down my front door and take a pc's ethernet cable. Which i feel is a whole lot safer.

Reply Score: 3

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Wifi is definately about some people liking shiny things but there are uses beyond "I have it becuase it's the latest thing".

In the case of my N800, macbook and thinkpad that move around the house freely; wifi makes more sense. They are not doing heavy network transers and more of a hassle when bound to a leash. In some cases like historic buildings and homes, pulling wire is not possible.

Wired is definately better if you don't need mobility as it will always be more secure and faster. If the notebooks need to move a large amount of data then they can both attach too a cable feed. I also wouldn't dream of putting a storage or media center server on the network without a wire. Naturally, wired gaming hardware will always be a step up from wireless for most of the same reasons.

Really, it's about the right transport medium for the specific use. wifi gives you adhoc and mobile setups, wire gives you spead and security.

Reply Score: 2

People are afraid of wires
by Square on Fri 16th May 2008 00:05 UTC
Square
Member since:
2005-10-01

At least that is the impression that I get. It's getting harder and harder to find mice and keyboards that are wired.

I know people that refuse to buy wired keyboards, and would rather replace the batteries then have the thought that a wire might be connecting it to the computer. Many of these people never move the keyboard or the computer.

Same with video game consoles. People look at me strange when they see I went out and bought a wired controller instead of dealing with batteries

Ive also seen people get a wireless router and a wireless network card in order to connect a computer that is 2 feet from the router

I find it mind boggling at times, I can't tell if people are deeply afraid of them or if its some kind of fetish

Reply Score: 5

RE: People are afraid of wires
by TemporalBeing on Fri 16th May 2008 01:05 UTC in reply to "People are afraid of wires"
TemporalBeing Member since:
2007-08-22

At least that is the impression that I get. It's getting harder and harder to find mice and keyboards that are wired.
[snip]
Ive also seen people get a wireless router and a wireless network card in order to connect a computer that is 2 feet from the router


I think it has more to do with the sales people pushing wireless, and people just listening to them saying "yeah, if that's what I need", which of course is all the sales person knows about so they tell them it is. Never mind that it is not really what they needed.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: People are afraid of wires
by renox on Fri 16th May 2008 08:37 UTC in reply to "RE: People are afraid of wires"
renox Member since:
2005-07-06

I think it has more to do with the sales people pushing wireless, and people just listening to them


Well, it's possible that this is only a temporary fluke: I've used a wireless mouse for some time, but when I replaced it, I've chosen a wired mouse.
Having to remember to put the mouse on the charging pad to recharge it wasn't worth the cable's removal..

Reply Score: 2

RE: People are afraid of wires
by kaiwai on Fri 16th May 2008 06:46 UTC in reply to "People are afraid of wires"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

At least that is the impression that I get. It's getting harder and harder to find mice and keyboards that are wired.

I know people that refuse to buy wired keyboards, and would rather replace the batteries then have the thought that a wire might be connecting it to the computer. Many of these people never move the keyboard or the computer.


It has to do with this stupid that 'wires are old fashioned, wireless is new and modern'. So there is this stupid idea that some how, if you remove all wired devices with wireless, it makes you more modern.

Sure, I can understand the attraction of wireless; I use it right now, but at the same time, for wireless keyboards and mice that will never move from a desktop - its all stupid.

Funny enough, those who own them will also claim they care of the environment - what about all the batteries they go through in a year!

Same with video game consoles. People look at me strange when they see I went out and bought a wired controller instead of dealing with batteries

Ive also seen people get a wireless router and a wireless network card in order to connect a computer that is 2 feet from the router


Or even more funny, a desktop that is 2 feet from a router.

I find it mind boggling at times, I can't tell if people are deeply afraid of them or if its some kind of fetish


There are lots of things that don't make sense. There is a tonne of technology being sold that is inferior to the last generation one - and yet, people go for it, because it is the latest and greatest.

People seem to make decisions, not on what is best, but what is the latest.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: People are afraid of wires
by theTSF on Fri 16th May 2008 14:53 UTC in reply to "RE: People are afraid of wires"
theTSF Member since:
2005-09-27

It is not as much that some features are a decade behind other technology it is more that the new feature value is better for the particular use. The example of wireless video game controllers. I always hated having to wrap up the cables before putting them away and back. The same with wireless networking. I don't do heavy internal networking in my house. My wireless is a tad faster then my internet connection so I am happy. Would you set up a business intranet like that probably not. But for home use it is good for most people.

Reply Score: 2

RE: People are afraid of wires
by Loki_999 on Fri 16th May 2008 10:08 UTC in reply to "People are afraid of wires"
Loki_999 Member since:
2008-05-06

Its a conspiracy by the battery manufacturers to make people buy more batteries!

Reply Score: 2

RE: People are afraid of wires
by Doc Pain on Fri 16th May 2008 16:00 UTC in reply to "People are afraid of wires"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

I know people that refuse to buy wired keyboards, and would rather replace the batteries then have the thought that a wire might be connecting it to the computer. Many of these people never move the keyboard or the computer.


Those people would run into massive problems if they had to setup a computer at a secured setting. There, no (!) wireless devices are allowed, simply to protect confidental data. Wireless keyboards' signals can be received with the proper hardware, and even a "super secret" system password can be obtained very easily because any keystroke can be recorded.

In the same manner, wireless data transfers can be decoded with a certain amount of computing power, so wired connections are explicitely forced in secured settings.

Ive also seen people get a wireless router and a wireless network card in order to connect a computer that is 2 feet from the router


And they offer their computers and their Internet connections to the public for free, even for criminal actions, I know. :-)

Reply Score: 3

wireless
by Lengsel on Fri 16th May 2008 00:13 UTC
Lengsel
Member since:
2006-04-19

I don't really see much of a difference. I use OpenBSD and don't see the difference in speed. Whether unsecure or use IPSec to secure the connection, and I don't see the difference in speed between wired and wireless. However with Cat6 cables I've gotten 5.5MB/s transferring behind the network. But with wifi-n and only use IPSec for security, I don't see how there is any speed difference.

Reply Score: 1

RE: wireless
by elektrik on Fri 16th May 2008 01:08 UTC in reply to "wireless"
elektrik Member since:
2006-04-18

I don't really see much of a difference. I use OpenBSD and don't see the difference in speed. Whether unsecure or use IPSec to secure the connection, and I don't see the difference in speed between wired and wireless. However with Cat6 cables I've gotten 5.5MB/s transferring behind the network. But with wifi-n and only use IPSec for security, I don't see how there is any speed difference.


I would dare say that your experience isn't indicative of much of anything-When I try to transfer files from my Linux file server to my laptop Via 802.11G less than 20 ft from the base station, it takes 3 x the amount of time to transfer than when I direct connect a network cable...

Reply Score: 3

It's about flexibility.
by shyouko on Fri 16th May 2008 01:07 UTC
shyouko
Member since:
2005-12-31

Certainly it is more flexible for devices placement if there's no wires. If the user doesn't care performance like there's no tomorrow, I don't see a reason why wireless technology should not be deployed to facilitate possible future changes.

Reply Score: 1

I'm missing something
by zombie process on Fri 16th May 2008 01:42 UTC
zombie process
Member since:
2005-07-08

I agree, more or less, entirely with the article. Any newly built house should be wired for phone and data - it's asinine not to. The author also missed the whole half-duplex issue (at least I believe they did - I admit to skimming) which is one glaring weakness of wireless. Wire doesn't take the place of wireless, though - I'm sure as hell not stringing a cat5 cable across the floor in my living room to my couch or out onto my back porch. On the other hand, I'm not going to setup my file server with a wireless card and expect to stream music and video from it, either. Both mediums serve a purpose. The argument made is analogous to saying that the PSTN kicks ass on cellular - sure it does, in a number of cases, but I'm not going to throw my cell away and grab a slimline "Freedom Phone" and a 10k foot spool of cat3 to "prove" it.

Edited 2008-05-16 01:43 UTC

Reply Score: 5

RE: I'm missing something
by elektrik on Fri 16th May 2008 13:43 UTC in reply to "I'm missing something"
elektrik Member since:
2006-04-18

Wire doesn't take the place of wireless, though - I'm sure as hell not stringing a cat5 cable across the floor in my living room to my couch or out onto my back porch. On the other hand, I'm not going to setup my file server with a wireless card and expect to stream music and video from it, either. Both mediums serve a purpose. The argument made is analogous to saying that the PSTN kicks ass on cellular - sure it does, in a number of cases, but I'm not going to throw my cell away and grab a slimline "Freedom Phone" and a 10k foot spool of cat3 to "prove" it.


I think the part you may be missing is the article's (rather long-winded way) of implying that wires have numerous advantages over wireless (speed, security, etc.)...

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: I'm missing something
by zombie process on Sat 17th May 2008 17:03 UTC in reply to "RE: I'm missing something"
zombie process Member since:
2005-07-08

No, I got that pretty clearly. I guess what I'm missing is why the article didn't just clarify where each has strengths rather than trying to justify running cat5 in their house. There are numerous reasons to run either, obviously, and neither trumps the other as being the obvious choice in every case. "CATV FTW!!!!" doesn't really hold water. I dunno, I guess maybe I'm too used to reading whitepapers in this space and spend too much time reading the NANOG list for my own good.

Reply Score: 2

The Mainframe Thought Pattern
by theTSF on Fri 16th May 2008 02:00 UTC
theTSF
Member since:
2005-09-27

Just like how the desktop PC would never over take the Mainframe. Yes Wired is better in term of performance and security. But you fail to miss the advantage of not having to lay out cable to custom spots. I have a desktop in an other room and I cannot lay cable to that room so using Wireless is good enough for my needs, as well for most everyone. Just as todays Mainframes and as the old mainframes at the time are far superior to PC The fact of their size caused them to become relegated for more particular tasks.

When I want speed I plug my laptop in with a wire. If I want mobility I use wireless or if speed isn't an issue I use wireless. Being able to use internet independent of physical location is important to me. and for others. As for internal networking it is slow. But most of us know that right...

Reply Score: 2

Wireless in an old house
by solidsnake on Fri 16th May 2008 02:03 UTC
solidsnake
Member since:
2006-06-04

It was said in the article that wireless is better used in an old house because of the difficulty running cables through the existing structure. While this is true to some degree, good planning and reasonable investment in time and money make wiring your home for internet communication definitly worthwhile. I tried using a cheap wireless(Belkin)router in our old two story home(circa 1934). It simply failed to deliver. (partly because it was cheap) Even if I had poured more money into my wirelss setup, I felt security would still be a big issue. I also have a server and computers in my office, my wife's office and our living room not to mention the one I use in my shop. Buying wireless cards and installing drivers for each presented time and cost considerations. Furthermore, having to figure out how to get it working on my linux system would be a little much for my skill level. Wired networks in their basic form work fine in Windows or Linux.
I figured I would save a lot of time and effort if I had put a little extra investigation into the practicality of running cable. Lucky for me I only spent a minor amount of money before I figured out that I really needed, a wired network.

Reply Score: 2

Powerline and the bus
by jonsmirl on Fri 16th May 2008 02:31 UTC
jonsmirl
Member since:
2005-07-06

Powerline networking is the way to go for things like security cameras. Just hook them up anywhere there is A/C and you're done. Powerline is plenty fast enough for cameras.

A very important point that is being missed. Powerline and wireless are shared medium networks. Shared medium means there is only one 802.11N wireless channel available. Start using this single channel for HDTV and everything is going to suffer. Don't believe the eleven wireless channels, there are only three non-overlapping 802.11g channels; 11N stomps on all three. And your neighbors stomp on you too.

Modern Ethernet is switched. This makes a tremendous difference in bandwidth. Each pair of devices is getting a dedicated 1GB channel. Watching HDTV off from a media server is not going to impact your web surfing.

Trivia - powerline networking uses exactly the same modulation techniques as 802.11g/n.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Powerline and the bus
by Soulbender on Fri 16th May 2008 08:03 UTC in reply to "Powerline and the bus"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Modern Ethernet is switched.

Each pair of devices is getting a dedicated 1GB channel.


That's not how it works. You're only getting 1Gb between your computer and the port on to the switch, anything beyond that is shared.
Ethernet is a shared media, btw.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Powerline and the bus
by Kokopelli on Fri 16th May 2008 11:38 UTC in reply to "RE: Powerline and the bus"
Kokopelli Member since:
2005-07-06

That's not how it works. You're only getting 1Gb between your computer and the port on to the switch, anything beyond that is shared.
Ethernet is a shared media, btw.


Incorrect. A gigabit ethernet connection allows for 1Gb bidirectional. Assuming the switch used has a non-blocking design, which all but the cheapest ones do, a switch has a maximum throughput of 2 times the number of ports. So the maximum theoretical throughput on an 8 port 1Gbps switch is 16Gbps. Obviously the theoretical maximum will never be achieved but a a switch is rarely limited to 1Gbps per direction as you suggest. In the old days of hubs sure, but not modern switches.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Powerline and the bus
by Soulbender on Sat 17th May 2008 11:49 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Powerline and the bus"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Obviously the theoretical maximum will never be achieved but a a switch is rarely limited to 1Gbps per direction as you suggest.


That is not at all what I suggest. You get a dedicated, two-way channel to the switch but unless you only ever send data to and from the switch itself all other data is shared. You don't get a dedicated channel per device you're talking to. If you stream music from a media server, browse the web and download from another server they all share the same 1Gb two-way "channel" you have to the switch, they dont get a channel each.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Powerline and the bus
by Kokopelli on Sun 18th May 2008 02:21 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Powerline and the bus"
Kokopelli Member since:
2005-07-06


That is not at all what I suggest. You get a dedicated, two-way channel to the switch but unless you only ever send data to and from the switch itself all other data is shared. You don't get a dedicated channel per device you're talking to. If you stream music from a media server, browse the web and download from another server they all share the same 1Gb two-way "channel" you have to the switch, they dont get a channel each.


I think we are in agreement, though I will spell it out more explicitly. If you mean a single desktop doing multiple things only gets 1Gpbs then you are correct. However each machine connected to the switch does get an independent channel. That was my point.

- You have a 1Gbps per direction capacity to the media server.
- A 1Gbps per direction capacity to your separate file server.
- A 1 Gbps per direction for each of your gigabit connected desktops.
- A separate connection to your outbound router (Unless you are extremely fortunate not 1 Gbps)

So, as an example, desktop A could be copying a file from the file server chewing up 1Gpbs outbound from the file server and 1Gbps to the desktop. At the same time desktops B and C could be streaming HD video and what have you, chewing 1Gbps between them on the Media server. And finally Desktop C could be browsing the web. The aggregation of usage across these activities exceeds 1Gbps in each direction, it just does not exceed 1Gbps in any direction on any port.

So a single desktop user might not care about the difference between a gigabit switch and a gigabit hub. A group of users on the same network probably will notice a difference though.

Coming back to the point of the OP on this chain: A wireless network shares its bandwidth capacity across all users. On a modern wired network the full bandwidth is available on all ports. So the fact that one machine is pulling a huge file from a local file server will not effect a different user streaming audio over the web as an example. With wireless someone will lose some performance under a stressed network.

Edited 2008-05-18 02:26 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Powerline and the bus
by jonsmirl on Fri 16th May 2008 13:56 UTC in reply to "RE: Powerline and the bus"
jonsmirl Member since:
2005-07-06

Kokopelli is correct. You get full Ethernet bandwidth between the pairs of devices. But you need to use a little common sense, if there is only one cable between two switches and you run five sessions through that single cable the bandwidth is obviously going to be shared. To fix this add more cables and alternate paths.

Old Ethernet with coax was a bus like 802.11N and powerline. With old Ethernet only one device could talk at a time. In bus networks there is no way to add alternate paths. With old Ethernet you used hubs instead of switches.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Powerline and the bus
by Soulbender on Sat 17th May 2008 11:54 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Powerline and the bus"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

But you need to use a little common sense, if there is only one cable between two switches and you run five sessions through that single cable the bandwidth is obviously going to be shared
To fix this add more cables and alternate paths.


Common sense? Adding more cables and paths? Heh. Hilarious. For the love of God, please tell me you're not doing this for a living.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Powerline and the bus
by Tyr. on Sun 18th May 2008 01:07 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Powerline and the bus"
Tyr. Member since:
2005-07-06

Read, understand and stop being an ass, you're embarrassing the real professionals :

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Link_aggregation
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EtherChannel
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPMP

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Powerline and the bus
by Soulbender on Mon 19th May 2008 03:30 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Powerline and the bus"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

I'm not the one embarrassing myself. Maybe all you guys who talks so much about this need some real world experience? Link aggregation/etherchannel/bonding is great, but in practice you still dont get a dedicated "channel" to every device you talk to. Sure, you could put a hundred NIC's in your server but that's not good design by any stretch of the imagination.
This has nothing to do with gigabit by the way. Everything everyone has mentioned in this thread could be done with good ole ethernet and fastethernet. The main reason you're getting better performance with gigabit NICS is not because they can handle a higher wire speed, it is because the cards have better buffering and interrupt mitigation techniques than what most ethernet/fastethernet cards has.

Gigabit is great but there's going to be some time before it is needed on the endpoints and currently it's mostly useful in the backbone.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Powerline and the bus
by Tyr. on Mon 19th May 2008 06:16 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Powerline and the bus"
Tyr. Member since:
2005-07-06

I'm not the one embarrassing myself. Maybe all you guys who talks so much about this need some real world experience?


Don't make assumptions about my experience, you don't know me. My point was you treated the guy like an idiot for suggesting you can increase bandwidth by using technology like etherchannel, which is in widespread use.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Powerline and the bus
by Soulbender on Mon 19th May 2008 11:01 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Powerline and the bus"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Don't make assumptions about my experience, you don't know me


Then dont talk about me embarrassing myself.
I was pointing out, perhaps too sarcastically, that etherchannel, or any other bonding technology, can not realistically give you a dedicated wirespeed channel between you and every device you communicate with.

Reply Score: 2

MMmmm.. CAT6
by kev009 on Fri 16th May 2008 03:42 UTC
kev009
Member since:
2006-11-30

All structured cabling here, put in to old construction after wireless became the norm. Laptop has WWAN if I feel like walking around with it or something in the house (which is never...).

Reply Score: 1

Cat5e and 6
by chrono13 on Fri 16th May 2008 04:02 UTC
chrono13
Member since:
2006-10-25

Though it does cost more, Cat6 is close in price. Isn't it worth it for home wiring to wire for the future rather than what is standard now?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category_1_cable

As an example, a few years ago one could have had this question regarding cat3/5. Sure 5 cost a little more, and you can't imagine needing more than 10mb/s network *now*, but later, in the future, won't you have wished that you spent the little extra toward future proofing*?

*I understand that future proofing is in no way fool-proof in that we could shift to optical quickly or something else entirely. But when you see the next step, and it isn't that much more - why not?

My question then is, why so many going with 5e rather than 6? Are you getting huge discounts on 5e? If so, links please : )

Reply Score: 3

RE: Cat5e and 6
by progoth on Fri 16th May 2008 04:15 UTC in reply to "Cat5e and 6"
progoth Member since:
2006-10-28

Cat6 cabling was about 30% more per foot at home depot than cat5e. What's worse was the ethernet jacks for the wall - cat6 was $10/jack compared to about $2 for cat5e. I figured I'll go with the more expensive option in case I still live here when 10gigE (or whatever is coming that requires cat6) arrives.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Cat5e and 6
by chrono13 on Fri 16th May 2008 05:28 UTC in reply to "RE: Cat5e and 6"
chrono13 Member since:
2006-10-25

Cat6 cabling was about 30% more per foot at home depot than cat5e. What's worse was the ethernet jacks for the wall - cat6 was $10/jack compared to about $2 for cat5e.

Thanks. That was the info I was looking for. The last time I bought some, they were somewhat close to each other. I'd wager the cat5e then was rather high priced where I was shopping.

Edited 2008-05-16 05:30 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Cat5e and 6
by ormandj on Sat 17th May 2008 02:32 UTC in reply to "RE: Cat5e and 6"
ormandj Member since:
2005-10-09

You'll need cat6a to run 10gigE. ;) It goes for ~600-700$/300m for PVC, almost double that for plenum.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Cat5e and 6
by SodaAnt on Fri 16th May 2008 04:28 UTC in reply to "Cat5e and 6"
SodaAnt Member since:
2005-11-15

Though it does cost more, Cat6 is close in price. Isn't it worth it for home wiring to wire for the future rather than what is standard now?
proofing*?

No. Cat5E is sufficient for 1Gbit Ethernet, and Cat6 is NOT sufficient for 10Gbit Ethernet, so Cat6 is just a waste of money.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Cat5e and 6
by zombie process on Sat 17th May 2008 17:08 UTC in reply to "RE: Cat5e and 6"
zombie process Member since:
2005-07-08

Thanks for posting this. I've seen a number of issues caused by using cat6 in a 100baseT environment - lots of older (maybe even newer) COTS equipment meant for cat5 doesn't seem to like cat6. No idea why, and I have never seen a paper explaining the issue, but I can say for sure that factory terminated cat6 has failed or sucked in many cases where self-crimped cat5 worked fine (again, IME).

Reply Score: 2

Comment by progoth
by progoth on Fri 16th May 2008 04:13 UTC
progoth
Member since:
2006-10-28

Yeah, I cut holes through two walls and wired cat6 through a closet between two ethernet jacks in the walls. When you're trying to stream 1080p h.264 movies to your PS3, 802.11g doesn't cut it. Maybe if the PS3 had 11n, but I don't know. GigE 4tw.

Reply Score: 1

Ideal vs Reality
by elsewhere on Fri 16th May 2008 04:37 UTC
elsewhere
Member since:
2005-07-13

there's no substitute for a wire, when a wire's available.


I think that's the crux of the matter. I prefer running my laptop on AC power, but that requires having an AC outlet available.

I live in a condo, and at any given time can usually pick up 18 or so wireless networks. It's a PITA, the interference. My fricking work laptop often associates to a random network, even though it's configured only to connect to a preferred network (XP). My personal laptop (openSUSE) sometimes doesn't recognize that my network is available. My wife's work laptop (Vista) needed a registry hack in order to work with our wireless router (my own personal that dual-boots Vista needed it as well). My wife's personal laptop gets dead zones for wireless throughout our condo. The issues with wifi are endless...

But it has it's advantages. We have a Wii in our bedroom, and running Cat5 isn't an option, so the wifi is a blessing. We have a PS3 in our living room, and even though that's where our router exists hidden on a shelf, the available Enet ports are all in use, so it would have required an additional router/switch if not for the Wifi option. I like to sit on my balcony drinking a beer or two when getting caught up on work emails or such things, wifi rocks for that. Plus I still have a brick-like Nokia 9500 that no longer serves phone duty, but makes a handy handheld web surfer when I want it. And speed isn't an issue for most broadband connections; wifi can generally handle throughput for the average broadband connection that isn't coming in via fiber.

Being "that guy" that people less-experienced with technology always call when they have technology problems, I can attest that wifi causes more headaches than benefit for Joe Average. The unsecured networks I can see in my condo that are called "Dlink" or "default" are testament to that. XP's hacked-together wifi capabilities don't help matters.

Certainly wired is always preferable to wireless, except when it isn't available. But the convenience of wifi, warts and all, as well as the "aesthetic" appeal, still ultimately rocks. Even for Joe Average. Or Martha. ;)

Reply Score: 3

RE: Ideal vs Reality
by jonsmirl on Fri 16th May 2008 14:08 UTC in reply to "Ideal vs Reality"
jonsmirl Member since:
2005-07-06

Powerline networking is a good solution for you. The odds are that none of your neighbors have it and you get the shared bandwidth all to yourself.

There are only three non-interfering 802.11G channels - 1,6,11. Routers ship on 6 as a default. Move yours to 1 or 11 to reduce interference.

Best way to combat neighbors with 802.11N is to get 11N yourself. The more expensive 11N units with 5Ghz support are likely to get you clear bandwidth.

11G's 54Mb is a lie. If any router on the channel is configured for 11b support you get 18Mb. And that 18Mb is theoretical, 10Mb or less is realistic. Switched Ethernet is not a lie, you really get the bandwidth.

Run kismet and see how busy the wireless net is, you'll be surprised.

Reply Score: 3

Servers need Cables only
by hraq on Fri 16th May 2008 04:39 UTC
hraq
Member since:
2005-07-06

I have a server at home that has dual NICs each with a gigabit/Sec connection to help me speed up data transfer of over 20GB/Day and the wires I use are Cat6, and I cannot imagine running the slow wireless N that I have to serve my needs.
Wireless technology is way less reliable than any wired alternative and it could be garantted in work and it should be the only one available when you run critical applications where you need your device available 100% of the time.

I had quickbooks and Network printer to serve the business I am in and I had times when I create an estimate or invoice and after 15 minutes of creating it Quickbooks tells me the communication with my file server is lost and I can no longer enter that data I spent 15 precious minutes prepairing.
Wireless in my opinion is a luxurious networking technology that can be used in laptops or very limited desktop applications.

Also I have seen many routers (<200$) fail regularly with wireless if there are heavy traffic passed through them.
I have replaced hundreds of Linksys, D-link routers with such problems and the other brands are like a plagaue, that you have to avoid.

Even if you want a more reliable wireless connection they will ask you to buy an APs (Access Points) and connect then via wires to your router to make you SSID more powerful and available throughout your house or business.

Reply Score: 2

Wired network = 1GBits/s !!!
by Manuel FLURY on Fri 16th May 2008 07:51 UTC
Manuel FLURY
Member since:
2005-07-05

and Wireless network = 300MBits/s

What else ?

Reply Score: 1

The State of Wireless
by segedunum on Fri 16th May 2008 08:56 UTC
segedunum
Member since:
2005-07-06

The problem with wireless is that the vast majority of wireless equipment and access points out there are rubbish. Their default security settings are woeful and their reliability isn't fantastic either. If you want wireless get yourself a decent AP:

http://www.ruckuswireless.com/

You'll then have to spend a little bit of time positioning your access point correctly and working out where you want the best reception to be, possibly by doing a site survey with something like Air Magnet:

http://www.airmagnet.com/

Too many people think they can pop down to the local store, buy an access point and it will miraculously provide them with brilliant speed and reliability. There is a price to pay for the freedom of wireless, but not having to connect to a particular network point, especially for people with laptops, and actually being able to work in the garden on a nice summer's day (the adverts make it look so easy) are certainly worth the effort and the payback. Networking has always been based on geographical location mattering less and less.

Edited 2008-05-16 08:58 UTC

Reply Score: 4

There is no substitute for cable
by siraf72 on Fri 16th May 2008 13:03 UTC
siraf72
Member since:
2006-02-22

Currently i have both wireless and CAT5e around the house. Needless to say for transferring large amounts of Data the wireless doesn't compare to wired.

If I was designing my house from scratch I would have CAT6 structured cabling everywhere with a view to distribute telephony, TV, and Data from a central point. You can always add wireless after if you so desire.

Reply Score: 1

It's just convenient
by REM2000 on Fri 16th May 2008 15:56 UTC
REM2000
Member since:
2006-07-25

I don't think there is anything bad going on with the selling of wired/wireless it just comes down to convenience. Most of the posters on here are technical enough to install Cat5/6 cable with sockets, however the majority of people are not. These same people only really stream/surf/email and print across wireless anyway. So when you have the choice of spending a few quid on a wireless router or hundreds getting a builder/professional in to install your cable, your gonna go with convience and cost.

Personally i have 1GB Cat5e network for desktops and wireless for laptops, the laptops are only really used for surfing and light network stuff anyway.

Reply Score: 2

5e rather than 6?
by Bounty on Fri 16th May 2008 17:01 UTC
Bounty
Member since:
2006-09-18

Well to implement real 10Gig you probably need at least CAT6a, and I don't think 10Gig is comming down in price or mass market soon. I don't think people used a ton of Cat3 before everyone knew that Cat5 what going to be the real deal. And as long as you're using 10/100 switches on your backbone it doesn't matter. Now that small SOHO Gig switches are getting more popular, Cat5e is really only starting to flex it's muscle. Also Cat6a doing 10Gig is really pushing it... if you're that paranoid you might as well run fiber.... but none of your end devices will support it.

Think of Cat5e as a really fast pull string, for the fiber project you're gonna do in 2023.

EDIT: P.S. I agree with the article. Wireless is great..... for wireless stuff, but you won't see my workstation, wife or kids PCs, Media PC or server with it. Laptops, cell phones other toys sure. BTW, with Cat5e you can also do POE for your security cameras, AP's etc. While you're up there laying cable, you can put in your surround sound also.

Edited 2008-05-16 17:07 UTC

Reply Score: 1

poor Martha
by transputer_guy on Fri 16th May 2008 17:38 UTC
transputer_guy
Member since:
2005-07-08

Reading Martha Stewart on wired networks is that better or worse than Brittany Spears on driving tips, surely?

Anyway she mentions Bill Gates house as so out of it. Does she know how big that place is, how many floors, it must also have a fair amount of concrete in there. Wiring for such a house is the only way to go, plus local wireless access point for visitors.

I have a wired living room, couple of machines all different OSes on a switch next to the cable modem. I wanted to add upstairs and basement to the setup. I investigated wireless and all I could see was a lot of confusion and marketing of inferior technology. The boxes all tell me, don't buy the old slower standard, buy this newer faster, more powerful signal, more bucks version. Looks like a few hundred $ in hardware and lots of setup time per OS. Running a 25ft cable up the staircase edge 15 mins. Drilling a hole in the floor to the basement ceiling priceless. Where ever the wire ends up, the setup is always as simple. I do wish that pushing wires through walls, floors could be simpler though.

On power line.
I actually spent a couple of years working in that industry on the chip set design. I used to root for it hoping wireless would never take off. When I do see it in the stores, it seems pretty expensive per node, I always wondered who would buy it. I still wouldn't recommend it myself over wired, but it perhaps could be a solution for polluted wireless spaces.

Reply Score: 2

I am Wired
by PunchCardGuy on Fri 16th May 2008 19:00 UTC
PunchCardGuy
Member since:
2006-04-14

When I moved into the place I reside in now, wireless was already pretty pervasive, but I decided to go with the wired approach.

In each of the eight rooms here, I have a dual CAT6 cable and an RF COAX cable terminated in a wallbox. These run upstairs to my office where I have a wall-mounted comms cabinet that contains my DSL modem/router (which also contains my ISDN phone system), my GigE Ethernet switch (unmanaged - pretty cheap), a patch panel for patching in any room in the place, and a StarSwitch which is connected to my dual Quadro-LNB satellite dish.

I can hook up a TV in any room just by connecting a digital SAT receiver to the RF jack in the wallbox. Of course I can patch in Ethernet everywhere via the RJ45 jacks in each room, but I can also patch through my ISDN telephones anywhere.

I expect to eventually set up a video on demand server, which can be expected to run flawlessly over 1GB Ethernet connections. I have very fast, glitch-free, and very reliable network capability throughout my place using a wired approach. I would not have that using wireless alone. However, wireless does have its place, and I can support that here too if need be.

In conclusion, I have to say that if it is practical and affordable, every permanent facility, be it at work or at home, should be wired. But that's just my opinion...

Reply Score: 2

component video over cat5e cable
by mnburnham on Fri 16th May 2008 19:39 UTC
mnburnham
Member since:
2008-05-16

How is the color quality of the TV in your exercise room? I was under the impression that the different lengths of the four pairs (due to differing pair-twists/inch) would cause unacceptable skew between RGB signals.

Reply Score: 1

JoanneRodgers Member since:
2008-05-15

It's a 23" LCD Oleiva TV, and as far as I can see, the color and picture quality are perfect. I understand that the preferred method of sending component over cat5 would be to use baluns, but I wanted to save the $.

Reply Score: 1

I hate wireless.....
by Phloptical on Fri 16th May 2008 22:45 UTC
Phloptical
Member since:
2006-10-10

period. Death to wifi and all who embrace it.

Reply Score: 2

I think you're all missing what's important
by FishB8 on Fri 16th May 2008 23:37 UTC
FishB8
Member since:
2006-01-16

Am I the only one asking myself "What the hell is this guy doing reading anything related to Martha Stewart?"

I'm scared that I'm going to come back to this site tomorrow and find it decorated with pastel colors and floral patterns, icons that look like little lace doilies and articles full of recipe tips for memorial day weekend.

The apocalypse is upon us. The dark horseman is leaving a wide swath of destruction and devastation wherever it goes, and it's name it Martha. Get out while you can or you will find yourself wearing polo shirts and khaki pants with *shudder* pleats!

Reply Score: 1

JoanneRodgers Member since:
2008-05-15

In my defense, the article was in Wired. It snuck up on me!

Reply Score: 1

PowerLine Networking to 400-Mbps
by maxim55 on Sat 17th May 2008 10:18 UTC
maxim55
Member since:
2008-05-17

Well I'm an huge fan of powerline networking. When the speed of 400-Mbps comes out. I think in 2009 we will sure see an increase in use of this technology.

Some interesting info here

http://www.powerlinenetworking.co.uk/content/category/3/7/25/

Edited 2008-05-17 10:19 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Microwaves
by AndyM103 on Sat 17th May 2008 14:38 UTC
AndyM103
Member since:
2008-03-18

To be entirely accurate, microwave ovens use microwaves to excite water molecules inside food - they have a lesser wavelength (around 10^-3 m) than radio waves (around 10^3 m). Otherwise, when possible I use wired, but wireless is, ofcourse useful, when further away from the base, or outside.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Microwaves
by sbergman27 on Sat 17th May 2008 15:07 UTC in reply to "Microwaves"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Most microwave ovens operate at almost precisely the same frequencies used in wifi. About 2.4GHz.

Reply Score: 2

comment batch
by mmu_man on Sun 18th May 2008 19:36 UTC
mmu_man
Member since:
2006-09-30

- coax ? isn't it deprecated for ethernet ? or you use it for A/V ?
- custom camera cable... seems overly priced, you can always use 1 coax + 1 pair instead.
- hmm cables... I recall when I was a student we passed (10Mb) ethernet through the unused pairs of phone cables in the residence... with a hub hidden in the phone dispatching box, and a linux box doing NAT to share a cable box (later DSL). That was fun ;)
- You miss one big item: people should be more afraid of invisible microwaves than cables. There are more and more studies indicating effects of microwaves at biological level, and for example in France we now have open recommendations to not give cellphones to children, although there is much controversy over it (and makers try hard at targetting them).

Reply Score: 2

RE: comment batch
by JoanneRodgers on Mon 19th May 2008 07:40 UTC in reply to "comment batch"
JoanneRodgers Member since:
2008-05-15

Yes, the Coax is for A/V,

Reply Score: 1