Network Cabling Explained

3 Mins read

An Ottawa network cabling company FirewallTechnical believes that network architecture is “an indispensable enabler for reliability, innovation, and performance within any organization, company or business.” It is a vital part of today’s workplaces.

There are various ways to achieve seamless interconnectivity within the work environment. Network cabling is just one of them.

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What is network cabling?

The wires that you see in offices that connect computers, switches, routers, and storage area networks are called network cables. It is through these cables where data flows between devices.

There are several types of network cables that can be used. The type to be used in a network system depends on the IT requirements, topology and structure of the environment where it will be installed. IT companies specializing in network cabling design the overall architecture of the system with operations efficiency in mind.

The “twisted pair cable” is the most commonly used communications cable in workspaces, commercial and retail sites, organizations, etc. This type of cable is particularly used in developing local area networks or Ethernet networks.

Twisted pair cable is comprised of four thin wires or conductors that are bounded and protected by an outer sheath or insulation. The pair of wires is twisted further. These twists are impermeable to interference from other devices and adjacent cables.

In environments that require high bandwidths of data transfers, fiber optic cables are recommended. Unlike twisted pair, fiber optic cables can handle high volumes of data with utmost speed and efficiency. They are most commonly used in data centers, particularly in high data load environments such as banks, airports, schools, hospitals, etc. Over recent years, fiber optic cabling has become the preferred material of network cabling because of its data capacity.

Other types of cables are also used for connecting devices, such as multi-pair cable and coaxial cable.

Advantages and disadvantages of network cabling

Given the convenience and advantages of wireless networking, one may wonder why an organization should invest in a wired networking. Despite advances in wireless technology, there are still a lot of aspects to fix to make it a viable alternative to network cabling. However, this doesn’t mean that wired networks are free of flaws and downsides.

Here we take a look at some of the hits and misses of network cabling.

Advantages of network cabling


Despite the advances with wireless networking security, network cabling is still unbeatable in terms of security. Unlike wireless networks, shielded network cables cannot be tampered or hacked since they provide a single connection between equipment and the network. No other workstations can see or access a shielded network cable. In wireless networks, hackers can get a way to intercept even encrypted data.


The wireless network connection can be affected by several things, such as issues with the router or static interference from electrical and radio frequency. Without the potential interference that wireless network is exposed to, network cabling offers more reliable connectivity. Furthermore, wired networks offer consistent connection, which is a very common problem with wireless connections.


The speed of a network connection depends on the network infrastructure. The latest network cables such as fiber optic cables can transmit volumes of data in high speed. Meanwhile, twisted pair data cables can have different speed and data capacity, with some cables operating at 10 gigabit.

Disadvantages of network cabling


Maintaining network cables in tiptop shape can be quite a challenge. There are numerous reasons why a wired network fails, and diagnosing them isn’t always easy. Often, you will need the help of a service provider to check network cables if there are problems. Unlike wireless, network cables can be bent, stepped on, get pulled out, and cut, which can damage them.

Keeping organized

Usually, network cables are installed beneath the floor or within the ceiling’s space. The distribution cables are then dropped to various parts of the office. Adding new equipment or moving workstations require changes in the cabling. Without proper planning and design, things can get messy. It can also add to the installation time of equipment, cause delays in the operations and reduced productivity.


One of the biggest disadvantages of cabled networks is that the equipment needs to be ‘physically wired’ to the network. On the other hand, the wireless network offers maximum mobility for electronic devices. As long as the device is compatible and within range, it can connect to a wireless network.

Set up

The major benefit of wireless networks is that they come in a plug-and-play set up. With network cabling, you will need to manually install the wires and terminals to set up a network. This means going through the interior walls, beneath an elevated flooring or through the drop ceiling. Some even invest in a raised floor system to accommodate large amounts of cables. Normally, you’ll need to hire professional IT service providers to set up your network.


Originally posted 2018-11-22 11:12:13.

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