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What makes Instacomm Network Installations different from everyone else?

Networking; what's it all about?

What type of cabling should I have installed?

What is the difference between a Hub and a switch?

How do I install a Switch?

What does a Wireless Access Point do?

I want to buy a cabinet, how do I know what size to order?

Installation practices

 

What makes Instacomm Network Installations different from everyone else?

Instacomm Network Installations are uniquely positioned to help their customers obtain the most out of their existing infrastructure whilst building for the future.
Each and every customer receives the same high level of attention to detail from their dedicated team of project manager and coordinator whether it be for the installation of a single outlet or many outlets across multiple locations.

As standard Instacomm will allow for up to 30% expansion; this minimises any future costs by avoiding those costly one off additions to the network.
All works undertaken are subject to the latest industry standards and a quality inspection by the project manager and customer on completion. When installing Instacomm will work with the dedicated site contact to minimise disruption to the working day.

Not only are installation works subject to strict quality standards the level of service offered by the internal and external staff is too. Instacomm strive to visit site and survey for any requirements within 7 working days of being contacting followed by a completed user friendly quotation within 7 working days either by post, email or fax.
If you contact the office through our website your call will be returned within 24 hours.

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Networking; what's it all about?

The purpose of a network whether big or small is for all users on the network to share resources and communicate. Networks can be used for relatively simple tasks like sharing a printer, or they can be used for more advanced tasks such as complex point of sales systems or world wide video conferencing.

A network can be anything from a simple collection of connected computers in one location to a variety of network devices, computers, switches, routers, printers or servers to name but a few across a variety of different locations.

Benefits of networking include:

File Sharing
Files on a particular user's computer can be shared on a network or files can be placed on a file server, which provides a central location for all files needed by the user on the network.

Hardware Sharing
Users can share devices such as printers, computers and networked hard drives. Once networked, computers can share their own local devices, or take advantage of high speed printers or other devices that are provided by a particular server on the network.

Program Sharing
Applications such as spreadsheets and word processors can be run over the network. This allows you to keep most of the files that make up the application on a special application server on the network. This makes installing the software on a computer easier (as it can be done via the network). It also makes upgrading an application easier because the upgrade only has to be performed on the server itself.

User Communications
Networks allow users to take advantage of communications media such as electronic mail, newsgroups and video conferencing because voice, pictures, and video can move across the network as data.

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What type of cabling should I have installed?

A Copper UTP (un-shielded twisted pair) cable is generally installed from the distribution cabinet to the data outlets up to a length but not exceeding 90 metres. All copper UTP cabling should be terminated (linked) onto patch panels and modular face plates by way of 8 pin 8 conductor modular sockets commonly know as RJ45.

Fibre optic cable is generally installed between distribution cabinets and should be a minimum of 50/125 OM3. All new multimode (fibre that uses several modes of light) fibre optic cabling systems should be terminated into patch panels using SC (square end) connectors.

All cabling systems whether copper or fibre should be capable of transmitting gigabit (1000 mbps) speeds to ensure you received the maximum performance from your network.

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What is the difference between a Hub and a switch?

During day to day conversations about networks it is more than likely you will come across the terms "hub" and "switch", you may well be asking what is exactly the difference; especially as a switch can look exactly the same as a hub with the only recognisable difference being the word hub or switch being displayed on the front of the device!
A hub or a switch is the concentration point or centre of a network where all localised devices (Internet, PC's, Printers etc) connect to in order for different users to share.

A hub offers a single broadcast domain, or can be thought of as a single lane road. The more users that are active upon it the more congested it becomes. Traffic will still pass quite happily along the road, but the speed of reaching the end location will be reduced in line with the increase in amount of users.
A switch offers multiple broadcast domains and may be thought of as a multi lane motorway. From the point of being turned on the switch learns what is connected to each of its ports. Then when a particular device wants to communicate, or enter the motorway, the switch knows which port to direct it to, or which lane it needs to be on because it has travelled there before. The end result of this facility is that the speed of travel is far greater than in the case of a Hub

In the early days of Hubs a more expensive device known as a switch was openly available, but in many cases the higher price outweighed the benefits. These days hubs are no longer actively sold as Switches are now no more expensive than a Hub so why pay the same price for lesser technology??

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How do I install a Switch?

Upon unpacking your switch, first, fix the rack mount brackets (one either side of the front of the switch with the flat side facing the front) by using the eight counter sunk screws provided. Next, fit four cage nuts by clipping then into the 19 inch profile fixing bars vertically mounted at the front and either side of the communications cabinet.
It is important to ensure the spacing of the cage nuts is equal to the spacing of the brackets on the switch.
Using four cage bolts (two either side of the switch) fix the switch into the cabinet ensuring your switch is horizontal and at the front of the cabinet.
Please remember to plug in the power cord into the rear socket of the switch and a three pin electrical socket.
Please also note that the cage nuts and bolts are not provided with the switch and would need to be purchased separately.

Adhesive grips are also supplied with the switch, these should be used when the switch is sitting in a shelf in the cabinet and is not being rack mounted.

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What does a Wireless Access Point do?

The purpose of a wireless network can take many forms, but in short will offer flexibility as well as the ability to link devices in areas where fixed cabling can not be installed. E.G. standard desks in a classroom, deployment of a mobile network of laptops or tablet PC's.
Wireless networking must be planned properly and consideration given to what you are trying to achieve by deploying such technology in order for it to be effective.


The primary device in any wireless network is known as the Wireless Access Point sometimes know as AP or WAP. This device is the link between the wired (cabled) and wireless network.

An AP will require a network cabling point (sometimes know as an outlet) to be close to it, so via an UTP standard patch lead (the same as you would use for you desktop computer, standards recommend no longer than 5m), connectivity to the network can be gained. The AP then propagates (broadcasts) a radio signal to devices (i.e. laptops, printers) that are within an acceptable range of it.

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I want to buy a cabinet, how do I know what size to order?

The size (width, depth and height) of any cabinet is determined by the amount of passive (patch panels or power distribution units) active (switches) and cabling equipment it is going to hold.
A cabinet's holding capacity is commonly measured in U's. Each U measures 1.75 inches or approximately 43mm in height. Therefore each piece of equipment which will be stored in a cabinet will have a U size, for example:
A standard cabling patch panel 24 port = 1U
A standard 24 port switch = 1U
A rack mounted server up to = 5U
A chassis based core switch up to = 10U
A cable management bar = 1U
A six way horizontal power bar = 2U

To determine the size of the cabinet your require add up all the equipment U size which it is going to hold and add at least 40% extra for future.
Next, measure the depth of the largest piece of equipment to determine the cabinet depth allowing for at least 100 mm for cable connections.

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Installation practices (Cat 5e)

In order to meet the stringent requirements of the ISO/IEC 11801 specifications for Category 5 wiring systems, the following guidelines are adopted. This ensures the installation provides an efficient and reliable service throughout it’s lifetime.

• Cables should not be joined to increase length. If cables are found to be short they must not be re-routed by a less suitable path, but must be re-run.

• Cables must be secured so as to relieve any mechanical stress on the terminations.

  
• Cable ties must be finger tight only. Over tight ties deform the geometry of the cable and effect its link performance. They should not be so tight as to distort the outer sheath of the cable.

• Cable bundles should be limited to 50 cables to avoid crushing the lower cables in the bundle.

• Care must be taken to avoid kinks in the cable during cable pulling.

• Any cabling over suspended ceilings must be laid in standard cable trays and supported every 1.2 to 1.5 metres to avoid any possible movement.

• The minimum bend radius during installation is 75mm, and 25mm once installed.

• Do not use undue strain when cable pulling (maximum 25lb)

• Avoid high temperature environments, power cable, lift shafts, switch gear and any other sources of interference.
  
• All cable runs should be concealed, and Cable Routes e.g. mini-trunking, should run parallel or perpendicular to walls.

• When cable routes pass through walls the holes must be sleeved and the cables exit and enter at 90° to the wall.

• All cables must be free of tension along the entire route, and cable supports should be used to distribute any strain.

• All metallic conduit and trunking must be earth bonded in accordance with the IEE wiring regulations.

• All cable exits must be bushed or sleeved so as not to cause damage to the cable’s outer sheath.

• Space should be left to allow for additional cables to be run in the existing cable routes. Net 5 recommend that conduit and trays should not be filled to more than 80% fill capacity therefore leaving a minimum of 25% spare cable route capacity available for future system expansion

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