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Wiring for the future

2020-07-11 by: Dan Lyke
From: Dan Lyke 

Okay, I have my garage wall open. I have Cat 5e to the workshop
(probably a 50' run), and to a central drop in the house, and I think
I need to wire the Eero repeater in the middle of the house, 'cause my
wife has complained about dropouts at the far end of the house.

Do I just hook my gigabit router to the Cat 5e? Should I spend $180 on
a roll of Cat 7 and re-run it? Do I need different ends, or is the
pack of ends I've been using for 10 years sufficient?

=============================================================== From: Eric Wolf ------------------------------------------------------ I didn't realize your house had a far end. -=--=---=----=----=---=--=-=--=---=----=---=--=-=- Eric B. Wolf 720-334-7734

=============================================================== From: Eric Wolf ------------------------------------------------------ I've been playing with tuning my wifi. I'm seeing a solid 100Mpbs with 4ms latency over the 2.4Ghz band. That's consistent throughout the house. I get better throughput (250-300Mbps) on the 5Ghz band but coverage is spotty. I mention this because 10 years ago, 100Mbps would be acceptable performance for physical wiring, especially for home use. I don't run a SAN at home so I don't think I'll need 10Gbps or 25bps on my home network before wireless supports it. Do you really need more performance than wifi can / will provide? If you really want to future-proof, just run fiber. Anything else is a tradeoff. -Eric P.S. I ended up buying a Netgear Nighthawk E6000 X6S Wifi Mesh Extender. It takes my existing wifi and extends it like a mesh network, repeating the SSID and creating newer wifi. It's been a little quirky to set up and I'm still not 100% happy. I'm actually wondering if I just took out the really old router and used just the TP Link AC1900, if I would have fixed everything. -=--=---=----=----=---=--=-=--=---=----=---=--=-=- Eric B. Wolf 720-334-7734

=============================================================== From: Dan Lyke ------------------------------------------------------ Yeah, it surprises me too (for those of you who don't know what we're talking about, it's a 768 square foot 2 bedroom cottage), but something about the living room is a wireless nightmare, both for cell phone and WiFi (I can step outside and have 4 bars, but we have a microcell because that damned living room). We've tried various theories. Turned off positively everything that could be interfering (like at the breaker box). Kinda wonder if there's something about the 2 picture windows we have in the house that cause weird reflections or something. And, really, there's little that requires the speed that isn't plugged in near the main hub.There's no reason at all that Charlene should occasionally get Zoom buffering (especially since, down right by the primary WiFi AP or plugged in, I haven't seen any Zoom problems), but when she's in the office on her computer she's having those issues, and if I'm gonna try to fix things I'm gonna nail it down hard.

=============================================================== From: Dave Brockman ------------------------------------------------------ You should ignore CAT7, it's not an IEEE standard and has not been approved by TIA/EIA. If you really want 10Gb over any distance, you need to look at CAT6A. Which is shielded, and thick, overall just a pain in the arse to deal with. If all you need is 1Gb, then feel free to stick with CAT5E, but if you do move up to CAT6, do make sure you get better 8P8C connectors, especially if you're using no-name CAT5E ones now. Also, don't use solid core riser cable to terminate 8P8C connectors, they are designed for stranded wires, and riser cable is designed to terminate in a patch panel or keystone. Cheers, -Dave

=============================================================== From: Dan Lyke ------------------------------------------------------ Ahah. That explains why 6A is apparently more expensive. Good to know. I'm also not seeing any bulk 6A that's stranded. Which raises the question: Should I go to punched-down in-wall sockets and use patch cords to get to devices? It's kinda feeling like maybe I just put in some sockets and close up the wall with the 5e, get some good patch cords, and see what happens. And while I'm ripping things out and reconfiguring, anyone want a one of these? https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B015PR20GY/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

=============================================================== From: Dave Brockman ------------------------------------------------------ run a My home network has been Gig since the late 90s. Highly doubtful you will see 25Gb over wireless in our lifetimes, especially not for a home network. Yes, I constantly plug myself in when I'm done with my zoom calls from the basement office. 0.2 ms of latency vs 4.0 ms latency is *quite* noticeable! To really future proof that fiber, you need single mode, and that's a bit expensive compared to MMF runs and equipment. =2E k out I told you not to do the mesh thing :( -Dave

=============================================================== From: Dave Brockman ------------------------------------------------------ Tinted/colored glass tends to have metal additives. Pretty much the only way you could make it more RF hostile, is double-sided with water between. Cheers, -Dave

=============================================================== From: Bret McHone ------------------------------------------------------ Is it an older building with plaster walls? My old employer had plaster walls with chicken wire in them for added strength and it made wifi a serious PITA. -B

=============================================================== From: Dave Brockman ------------------------------------------------------ Shielded 22 AWG Riser cable :) "CAT6A Stranded Bulk" @ Google should help you out. You don't have to use shielded in patch cables. You will need 6A rated Keystones/Patch Panels/Connectors. Patch Panel to Keystone jack is always the correct answer. Machine made patch cables that are more accurately terminated than human hands can terminate is also always the correct answer. 5E will support Gig just fine. CAT6 will be more immune to EMI. Cheers, -Dave

=============================================================== From: Eric Wolf ------------------------------------------------------ I remember a time when it was common knowledge that speeds greater then 9600 baud were impossible over copper. The one constant is that we always seem to figure out a way around pesky laws of physics.

=============================================================== From: Dave Brockman ------------------------------------------------------ y It's not all about the physics, vendor greed also plays a large part. It's 2020 and (new) 10Gb switchports are still way overpriced and out of reach for "consumer" application. They are more expensive today than they were 5 years ago. We might see commercial grade MIMO AP gear that can transmit 25Gb, but we won't see a card you plug into your computer that does 25Gb over WiFi anytime soon. There isn't a card capable of real 1Gb transfer speeds available today that I am aware of currently. Cheers, Dave

=============================================================== From: Eric Wolf ------------------------------------------------------ Granted, it's a manufacturer claim, but this is a $20 USB device that claims 1.2Gbps wireless. https://www.amazon.com/1200Mbps-Wireless-USB-WiFi-Adapter/dp/B07SBCKTV6 My point is what we see today (my 3 year old ASUS UX300 laptop), manages 228.43 Mbps measured via Ookla Speedtest connecting to a 4 year old TP Link router that I bought off the shelf at Target (so not fancy pro gear). And I just unplugged the Nighthawk Wifi Mesh Extender. I assume it was the source of my problems connecting to my default Wifi network. It was an interesting idea but I think Netgear didn't get it right enough. Instead, I'm just going to upgrade my primary router and have an ASUS Rapture GT-AX11000 on order. The answer to my original question might be "Just buy the biggest, baddest router you can afford." -Eric -=--=---=----=----=---=--=-=--=---=----=---=--=-=- Eric B. Wolf 720-334-7734