What Is Blank Patch Panel and How to Use It?

Proper cable management is always a must for data center networks to ensure tidy and organized cabling environments. We have introduced fiber optic patch panels, fiber enclosures and other fiber cable management products in previous posts for fiber cabling solution. How about copper cabling solution? This post will introduce copper blank keystone patch panel and its installation method. Also we’ll compare blank patch panel vs preloaded patch panel in order to give you best selection guide for Ethernet cabling.

Cat6 and Cat5e cables are terminated on the same blank patch panel

Figure 1: 12 Cat6 cables and 12 Cat5e cables are terminated on one single 24 port blank patch panel while installed with Cat6 and Cat5e insert modules.

What Is Blank Patch Panel?

Blank keystone patch panel, or unloaded patch panel, is an optional Ethernet patch panel. Different from pre-loaded patch panel with built-in RJ45 ports, blank keystone patch panel is designed with 24/48 reserved holes. The empty slots allow one to install different keystone jackets such as Cat5e/Cat6 insert modules according to his need. Thus the blank patch panel can terminate different cables while different connectors fit on, and one same patch panel enables several types of cables to be connected. All blank keystone patch panels from FS.COM are high density 1U rack mount, no matter 24-port or 48-port. They can easily mounted into a standard 19’’ rack, cabinet or wall bracket. All empty ports are also pre-numbered for easy connection and identification.

keystone jackets or insert modules to customize 24 port blank patch panel

Figure 2: Using different keystone jackets or insert modules to customize 24 port blank keystone patch panel.

What Are the Types of Blank Patch Panel?

Generally FS manufactures two types of blank patch panels, with 24/48-port, STP/UTP and Ethernet/multimedia network cabling for option.

For Ethernet cabling only, take this 24 port blank keystone patch panel. The Ethernet patch panel is an unshielded patch panel with 24 blank slots in a compact 1 U. This RJ45 patch panel is used to manage and organize Ethernet cables such as Cat5e patch cables and Cat6 cables.

To enhance network cabling resiliency, consider for blank keystone/multimedia patch panels. The multimedia blank patch panels come witch 48 port patch panel UTP and 24 port patch panel STP/UTP in 1U rack mount in FS.COM. Different from the aforesaid 24 port Ethernet patch panel, their ports accommodate various snap-in jackets, including RJ45 Ethernet, HDMI audio/video, voice and USB applications. This allows users to customize their patch panels for different schemes.

How to Use Blank Patch Panel for Ethernet Cabling?

  • To use blank keystone patch panels for Ethernet cabling, follow the instructions below.
  • Choose the proper quantity of Cat6 or Cat5e RJ45 insert modules according to your Ethernet cable types. You have RJ45 insert modules shielded in metal silver and unshielded in various colors for option.
  • Inlay Cat6 or Cat5e RJ45 insert modules (from the rear panel to the front) into the empty ports on the blank patch panel.
  • Install the equipped Ethernet patch panel onto a 1U rack with screws and screwdriver.
  • Plug Cat6 cables or Cat5e cables into corresponding Cat6 modules or Cat5e modules.
  • Manage cables with the help of cable management accessories such as cable managers, lacing bars and cable ties.

Blank Patch Panel vs Preloaded Patch Panel

Blank keystone patch panel has advantages of personalized setting and installation, which allows one patch panel to terminate different types of cables as long as corresponding insert modules are installed. Say loading both Cat5e and Cat6 insert modules on a 24 port keystone patch panel, then we can terminate both Cat5e and Cat6 cables into matching ports. So blank patch panel is an ideal choice for skillful operators who want to configure his own patch panel for customized cabling requirements.

To seek for a most user-friendly RJ45 patch panel, go for feed through patch panel instead of blank patch panel. Feed through patch panel is an optimized pre-loaded patch panel, which leaves the troubles of punching down wires to the ports required by traditional punch down patch panel. The feed through 24 port patch panel has built-in RJ45 ports both at the front and rear sides for directly terminating Ethernet patch cables. The front ports are marked with sequential numbers for easy identification. The feed through patch panel is an ideal choice for HD cabling environment with convenient and efficient installation requirements. FS feed through patch panels come with Cat6 patch panels and Cat5e patch panels. The Cat6 patch panels are unshielded only whereas the Cat5e patch panels are STP and UTP available.

Conclusion

Blank keystone patch panel is unloaded copper patch panel, which provides customized configuration with different keystone jackets. The various RJ45 insert modules installed on the Ethernet patch panel allow different cables to be terminated. The 24 port and 48 port keystone/multimedia blank patch panels offer copper cabling solution for Ethernet, video/audio, voice and USB applications. For the choice between blank patch panel vs preloaded patch panel, here’s the reference. Blank patch panel is perfect for operators who prefer to configure network patch panels by themselves to cater for their data center cabling. Preloaded feed through patch panel is a better choice for anyone requiring easy and direct access for Ethernet cabling.

How to Manage Cables in Server Rack?

In data centers, we run all enterprise network equipment (server, storage, network switch, etc.) into the server rack. And various wires such as fiber optic cables, Ca5e/6 Ethernet cables and power cords are spreading all over the floor. It’s rather a disaster to see all these cables tangling together without knowing which ends they are tracing to, which is inconvenient for operators to implement troubleshooting. Besides, interwined wires also cause cooling problem, crosstalk and interference, which causes performance issues. Fragile fibers under neglected management will easily break. All these reasons confirmed the necessity of proper cable management. So how to manage cables in server rack?

cable management accessories installed in server rack

Figure 1: An array of cable management accessories are installed in open server racks to manage cables.

Deploy Proper Server Rack

Above all, estimate your enterprise network scale, cabling numbers and other requirements to choose proper server rack. There are mainly three types of server cabinets in the market, making sure to choose the one for your network environment. All these server racks price are competitive in FS.COM.

  • Open Frame Server Rack

The open frame rack has no sides and doors to restrict it from reaching the open air. It provides easy access, sufficient open space and airflow for cable management, ideal for high-density cabling for server room and data center racks. You’d better to use open server rack in applications that don’t require security protection for cables. 2-post and 4-post are two types of open frame racks. The former requires less depth whereas the latter supports more weight.

  • Enclosed Server Rack

The enclosed server rack is a sever cabinet with front and back doors and side panels. The doors can be locked to prevent intentional sabotage and dust invasion. Black server rack 42U/45U is available in FS.COM to offer you with abundant rack cabling space. FS elaborately designs efficient brush guards on the roof to facilitate airflow and ensure better cooling.

  • Wall Mount Server Rack

Wall mount server rack is used to hold network equipment such as network switch and network accessories such as fiber patch panel. It features functionality to be attached onto the wall to save floor space. FS manufactures 9U/12U 4-post wall mount network cabinets with glass front door. The defect is that wall mount server rack is not as big as other server racks to room large quantity of network devices. In this case bigger network cabinet is the better choice to go. Here is a comprehensive data center cabling solution video guide for your reference.

Deploy Other Cable Management Products in Server Rack

After choosing optimal server racks for your cabling solution, take other cable management accessories into consideration.

  • Deploy right fiber patch panels or cassettes to terminate your fibers, and use matching fiber enclosures to load them and other enclosure accessories such as fiber slack management spool. An intact loaded fiber enclosure ensures safe entry and exist of fiber patch cables and stores an excess of fibers in a compact of 1U/2U/4U.

a loaded FHX fiber enclosure with fiber patch panel for server rack

  • Use cable organizer – horizontal cable manager and vertical cable manager to keep scattered running cables in right place and ensure a neat rack environment. Besides, employ cable ties/zip ties to fix wire bundles.

different types of cable managers for server rack

  • Put emphasis on cable identification tools. Cable ties are available with different colors to help figure different types cables or end devices. Color coded fibers and Ethernet cables are also helpful for recognition. Or you can buy color-coded cable labels with different numbers to mark your wires.

color coded cable ties and cable labels for server rack

Conclusion

Proper cable management cannot be accomplished in one action. First of all, carefully plan your cabling solution on the basis of your data center scale. Then deploying proper server racks or cabinets and other cable management products – fiber enclosure, fiber patch panel, cable organizer/cable manager, cable ties, cable labels to manage cables shipshape and facilitate cable identification. All these jobs done orderly will make a clean and decent server room, and endow cables and the whole systems with security warranty.

Related Article:

Fiber Optic Enclosure: What to Benefit From It?

How to Choose Cable Manager for Rack?

How to Choose Cable Manager for Rack?

In data centers, cable management is of great concern in addition to functional data transmission devices. A mass of cable wires scattering and tangling together is bothersome for operators to implement maintenance. The neglect of effective cable management also leads to cable damage and low performance issues. To make clean and safe entry and exit for each cable, one must employ proper cable rack manager to ensure an organized and neat rack environment. However there are an array of cable manager products in the market. How to choose right cable manager for rack? This post may help.

deploy cable manager for rack to make a neat sever room

Figure 1:Deploying cable manager for rack and other cable management products to make a clean and neat sever room in FS data center.

Overview of Cable Manger for Rack

Cable managers own following functions – organizing and protecting running cables, reducing crosstalk and signal interface, facilitating airflow and cooling, and ensuring a clutter-free data center. In general, there are two types of cable manager for rack: horizontal cable manager and vertical cable manager. Further, each type has different styles available to cater for diverse cabling environment. Other cable management products frequently used in collation with cable manager are fiber optic enclosure, fiber patch panel, cable wires, cable labels and so on.

Types of Cable Manager for Rack

Making clear of different types of cable manager for rack helps you to make a wise decision when buying cable management products for racks.

  • Horizontal Cable Manger

Horizontal cable management panel is often installed in front of equipment such as network switch in parallel. Most cases horizontal cable manager for rack is matched with patch panel and rack-mount enclosure to provide cables a safe and organized pathway from switch ports into the vertical cable manager. And a dozen of wires often bundled with a cable tie to fix loose cables.

  • Vertical Cable Manager

Rack vertical cable management panel is installed erectly in each side of the cabinet walls to take over cables traversing out of the horizontal cable manager. Usually there are several horizontal cable managers for rack placed in different ladders and two bunches of wires are hanging down from each ladder. Thus the bilateral vertical managers play important role to make a clean multilayer cabinet.

Both horizontal cable manager rand vertical cable manager for rack are installed in a server rack or cabinet to run cables away from equipment neatly. To achieve an optimal rack environment, these two cable rack managers are used together in a server cabinet.

Considerations for Choosing Cable Manager for Rack

In addition to the aforesaid horizontal manager vs vertical cable manager for rack, there are other factors for considering.

  • Cable Management Environment

If you should deal with massive cables for a big enterprise data center, then you could consider the perfect combination of horizontal cable manager with vertical cable manager for rack in each of your server room cabinet. If you just handle a small business or office cabling, you can choose to save some money by omitting rack vertical cable management deployment.

  • Rack specification

Server rack usually comes with standard 19-inch wide while depth is flexible in some degree. However rack heights are available with different rack units (1U=1.75 inches) such as 1U, 2U and so on. Accordingly cable manager for rack is designed with different rack units, make sure to buy a right size. Highlights, the bend radius finger bracket can be stacked to reach any heights, ideal choice for high rack environment.

  • Cable Manager Style

1. To prevent equipment from overheating, choose horizontal cable manager with brush strip to ensure better cooling.

horizontal cable cable manager for rack with brush strip

2. For optimal cable care and protection to protect fragile fibers from damage, you can choose horizontal cable manager with finger duct.

horizontal cable cable manager for rack with brush strip

3. To enable flexible routing of massive cords in proper bend radius, pick cable manager with D-ring. It is made with steel for strength and durability, available with 1U and 2 U in FS.COM.

cable manager for rack with D-ring

4. For managing different cable types and quantity, choose different styles of cable manager for rack. For example, vertical cable manager with bend radius finger provides extra-deep cable capacity for applications requiring large thick cable bundles (Ethernet cables: Cat5e/6/7). FS 5U 3’’ wide plastic vertical cable manager with bend radius finger owns ultra-high cable capacity up to 23 Cat6 cables.

cable manager for rack with D-ring

Conclusion

Cable manager for rack is one of the important cable management products in data centers. Making clear of horizontal cable manager vs rack vertical cable management is the first step for right deployment in cable rack management. Considering your cabling environment, rack specification (esp. U size), and various cable manager styles to cater for special requirements will help you to choose the best cable manager for rack.

Fiber Optic Enclosure: What to Benefit From It?

In data centers, there are a variety of cable management accessories used in collocation with enterprise network components, such as fiber optic patch panel, fiber optic enclosure and cable ties. In my previous post – Patch Panel vs Switch: What’s the Difference? – I have introduced the role of fiber optic patch panel as a cable management tool. Fiber optic enclosure/fiber optic box is also a frequently used tool for rack cabling solution. This post will introduce fiber enclosure and what we can benefit from it.

What Is Fiber Optic Enclosure?

Fiber enclosure/fiber spice box may refer to an empty box or an intact unit after installation. A loaded fiber optic box contains installed assembly units to connect and separate various fiber optic cables. Usually fiber optic enclosure unloaded comes with 1U/2U/4U available, which can house corresponding quantity of fiber optic cassettes or fiber patch panels. Some people mention fiber optic enclosure and fiber optic patch panel as the same thing since they are matching devices.

FS slide-out 1U rack mount FHD fiber optic enclosure interior structure in data center application

Figure 1: FS slide-out 1U rack mount FHD fiber optic enclosure interior structure in data center fiber cabling application.

What to Benefit From Fiber Optic Enclosure?

Cable Management Function
  • In general, fiber enclosure functions cable management in data centers for a clean and tidy cabling environment.
  • It houses and fix fiber optic patch panel or fiber optic cassettes in a box for better management and protection.
  • Fiber optic enclosure inside accessories such as fiber slack management spool provides a proper bend radius for cables and helps to route, manage and store fibers.
  • Different types of adapters installed-in enable various incoming fibers to be terminated in high density and protected them from damage.
Optional Design for Different Deployment Scenarios

Fiber optic enclosure has different types available. They may differ from configurations such as fiber enclosure rack mount and fiber enclosure wall mount. Further, rack mount enclosure has different open-close designs, rack unit sizes, and patch panel/cassettes capacities. Different types of fiber optic enclosures cater for different deployment scenarios.

  • Mount Type Option

Wall mount enclosure usually fits for wall mount applications such as cross-connection in telecommunication room. Fiber enclosure rack mount is a very popular one for rack cabling solution in cabinet.

  • Slide-out Design

Rack mount enclosures have two models available in FS.COM: slide-out type and cover removable type. By using slide-out rack mount fiber optic enclosure, you don’t need to remove the enclosure from the rack for internal access. The transparent cover also allows fiber check under cover close state. This facilitates cabling management, maintenance and installation process.

  • High Density

Fiber optic enclosure also provides high density cabling while FHD and FHX fiber enclosure rack mount are designed. FHD fiber enclosures come with 1U, 2U and 4U model, correspondingly housing 4/8/12 FHD fiber adapter panels or 12 x FHD MPO/MTP cassettes and allow terminate 96/192/228 fibers. FHX rack mount enclosure is an ultra HD fiber optic enclosure, which holds up to 144 fibers in a compact 1U form factor to largely save you rack space.

FS IU FHX ultra HD fiber optic enclosure rack mount

Figure 2: FS FHX ultra HD fiber enclosure rack mount holds up to 12 FHX MPO/MTP – 12 cassettes/fiber optic adapter panels (144 fibers) in 1U.

Conclusion

Fiber optic enclosure is a box to load fiber optic patch panel/fiber optic cassettes and other accessories in to provide a cable management solution for fiber cabling. Fiber enclosure ensures a tidy cabling environment and protects fragile fibers from outside damage. Also, the elaborate design of various types of fiber optic enclosures allows different deployment scenarios and better caters for specific requirements. Fiber enclosure rack mount or fiber enclosure wall mount enclosure provides optional mount applications. Slide-out and transparent cover enables convenient inspection and maintenance. FHD rack mount fiber optic enclosure offers high density fiber termination in 1/2/4RU options. FHX ultra HD rack mount enclosure achieves high density fiber capacity in space-saving 1RU.

Patch Panel vs Switch: What’s the Difference?

In network setups we see everything is plugged into a switch, but before that fiber cables are also connected to another supply – patch panel. Thus one question is often confusing: patch panel vs switch: What’s the difference and what’s the significant function of them respectively?

What Is Patch Panel?

Patch panel (fiber optic patch panel, fiber optic enclosure) is a terminate unit of network ports centralized together. It is a cable management solution component used to organize fiber cables and keep everything neat for a clean wiring closet. In data centers, a mass of cable wires scattering all over and mixed together can be bothersome, in this case a patch panel is indispensable and rather helpful. It not only offers ease of management, but also protect the terminations from being knocked. Besides the fiber optic patch panel, other cable management accessories including cable ties and cable labels are also used to keep cables tidy and easy for identification.

patch panel vs switch: fiber optic patch panel

Figure 1: This photo shows the application of patch panel by FS.COM for cable management in a data center.

What Is Switch?

Switch, commonly known as network switch, is an appliance in a data center that connects all devices (such as PCs and servers) as a whole to achieve intercommunication and data sharing between different network devices. It channels the incoming data from multiple input ports to the specific output port so as to deliver the data toward its destination. In Ethernet LAN or WAN, modern network switch usually determines which output port to use by network address.

patch panel vs switch: network switch

Figure 2: This photo shows the application of network switch by FS.COM in a data center.

Patch Panel vs Switch: What’s the Difference?

Table below shows the main difference of patch panel vs switch.

Name Patch Panel Switch
Price Cheap Expensive
Role playing Cable management tool:
Centralizing cable wires together; protecting fiber cables from damage.
Functional performance: connecting all devices together to receive and transmit exact messages to the target device end.
Form feature  fiber optic patch panel  network switch
·Role in Date Center

Comparing patch panel vs switch, we can make the following conclusion. Patch panel is nothing but an essential cable management tool, which exerts no functional influence to the performance of data transmission. However, a switch is an irreplaceable functional supply in network setups.

Why Patch Panel Is Commonly Set Up in Network Installation?

As mentioned above, patch panel has no effect on the data transmission process. Can it be omitted in fiber optic cabling? Or can wires just directly plugged to a switch? The answer is yes when you just deal with several fiber cables. However, Ethernet patch panel is a must in data centers where there are a large number of Ethernet drops. No doubt you don’t want to see all the things tangled together. A patch panel in place provide ease management of classification, maintenance, repair, installation and upgrades.

Conclusion

This article gave an brief introduction to patch panel and switch respectively and then discussed the differences between them. Patch panel vs switch : what’s the difference, and why is a patch panel commonly set up in network installation whereas a switch is already used? Can you answer these questions now? Simply put, patch panel is an essential cable management tool whereas network switch is a significant functional supply in data center. Both of them play important role in their respective positions.

Tips to Simplify Your Data Center Management

Data center houses a network’s most critical systems and is vital to the continuity of daily operations. Many of us have seen what it looks like. As we all know, the more complex a data center is, the more difficult it can be to ensure efficiency and orderly management—not only of the systems and equipment but of the working staff as well. How to simplify data center management? This post may give you the answer.

data center management

When several different types of product, tools, and resources are used to support a network, complication cannot be avoided. With the rapid development of society, many business demands require the data center to operate quickly and effectively. In order to achieve this goal, various mix-and-match occur, which lead to a complicated data center. Here are several tips to simplify data center management and make it work efficiently.

Emphasize Standardization

With the fast advancement of communications, equipment used in data centers is replaced frequently. Therefore, product standardization is something to keep in mind when upgrading and replacing the equipment, as well as the infrastructure that supports it. By utilizing standardized data center hardware, maintenance can be finished smoother and faster with common approaches, which save time, resources and money.

Choosing Easy Installation and Space-saving Components

A complicated data center environment makes it difficult to identify the root cause of errors or misconfigurations. So selecting some easy installation and space-saving products mean shorter installation times, less training time for staff and lower maintenance costs. There are many examples of products that make installation and maintenance simpler for data centers. Here are some examples.

LC Uniboot Patch Cable

Designed to deliver maximum connectivity performance in a minimal footprint according to standards, LC uniboot patch cable uses a single, unified jacket for both fibers. With this unique structure, it allows up to 68% space-saving in cabling volume, offering easier maintenance and operability. Besides, LC fiber optic connectors can offer higher density and performance in most environments, which makes it popular in many applications.

push-pull-tab patch cable

High-Density Push-pull Tab Fiber Optic Patch Cable

Push-pull tab patch cable has a special “pull” tab design that enables the connector to be disengaged easily from densely loaded panels without the need for special tools, allowing users easy accessibility in tight areas when deploying in data center applications. With this unique design, high-density optical cable, such as MTP/MPO fiber cable, offers high-density connections between network equipment in telecommunication rooms and data centers. They can be easily installed or removed with one hand, which improve efficiency greatly.

High-Density Fiber Enclosure

Fiber optic enclosures are designed to house, organize and manage fiber connections, terminations, and patching in all applications, providing the highest fiber densities and port counts in the industry contributing to better rack space utilization and minimizing floor space. Loaded with different numbers of FAPs, HD fiber enclosures offer a high-density flexibility for cabling installations of data centers to maximize rack space utilization and minimize floor space.

4u fiber enclosure

Of course, except for the cables and enclosures mentioned above, other small components in data centers also cannot be ignored. For instance, cable ties and labels also play a critical role in cabling installations of data centers. In a word, every detail should be taken into consideration when managing a data center.

Preparing for Future-proof Cabling

As we have mentioned above, under this rapid development environment, data center management should be equipped to handle current needs while offering a clear path for future technology requirements. Complex data centers can be simplified when components are deployed that allow you to grow and migrate to new systems in the future without compromising performance or reliability. For example, solutions that offer support for both traditional ST and SC and modern LC and MPO applications support cost-effective, simpler migration to 40G and 100G applications with only a simple cassette or adapter frame change.

Summary

When data center processes and components are simplified, installation and maintenance for data center management become easier and less costly, staff resources are freed up for more strategic tasks, troubleshooting becomes less cumbersome and migration is also more easily achieved. All components mentioned above are available in FS.COM. Welcome to visit our website for more detailed information.

Effective Solutions for 10G/40G Connectivity

As the growing demand for faster access to larger volumes of data, coupled with emerging high-speed network standards and rapidly advancing technology, fiber optic cables and cabling components have become a very popular element in data centers and high-speed networks. And when 10G fiber is the norm in most data centers today, the 40G fiber is also becoming commonplace. In this article, three effective solutions for 10G/40G connectivity will be introduced.

Breakout Cabling Solutions

A breakout cable is a multi-strand cable which is divided into different specification cables. For example, a 40Gb breakout cable has four 10Gb duplex cables totaling eight strands, while a 100Gb breakout cable has 10 duplex cables and 20 strands.

How Does Breakout Cable Work?

To understand how breakout cabling solutions work, take integrating 10Gb servers into a 40Gb network for example. For each port on the switch, an MTP/MPO breakout cable which has an MPO/MTP connector on one end and four duplex LC connectors on the other end is needed. The MPO/MTP connector is plugged into the transceiver that connects with 40Gb switch and each duplex LC connector plugs into a 10Gb port on each server. If the switch has up to 32 40G ports, up to 128 10G devices can be connected to it using breakout cables.

breakout-cabling-solution

Advantages

This breakout cabling solution enables slower equipment to be connected to higher-speed equipment successfully, such as the 10Gb servers and 40Gb switch in our example. Up to 128 10Gb devices can be connected to a 32-port 40Gb switch.

MTP Modular Cassettes Solutions

MTP cassette modules provide secure transition between MTP and LC or SC discrete connectors. They are used to interconnect MTP backbones with LC or SC patching. Supporting various network cabling standards, the cassettes are easy to mix, match, add and replace as the connectivity needs grow or change.

How Does MTP Modular Cassette Work?

Modular fiber cassettes are the key to modular systems. Available in multiple variations, the cassettes allow users to interconnect different fiber speeds simply by plugging standard LC cables into one side of the cassette and one or more standard MPO/MTP cables into the other side.

modular-patch-panel-solution

For 10G connectivity, MTP/MPO cassettes are used to connect 10G device to 10G device, especially when the distance between two devices is too long. And for 40G connectivity, MPO/MTP cassette is used to connect 10G device to 40G device. Modular patch panel solutions offer users an easy-to-use solution that works with the equipment of today and can easily be transitioned for the networks of tomorrow.

Advantages

Modular cassette solution also has many advantages. First, this solution offers flexibility and scalability for network upgrade. Second, with fiber modular cassettes, this solution allows users to manage cables in any direction—horizontal or vertical, front or back. Finally, by managing varying port densities and speeds in a single high-density patch panel, users can save valuable rack space and data center costs.

Fiber Breakout Panels Solutions

Fiber breakout panels are ready for plug-and-play deployment out of the box. They provide increased access between ports, thus enabling the ease of moves, adds, and changes of cables. It’s the increased access that help fiber breakout panels offer a cost saving, simple and efficient cable management solution for future high-speed network connection.

How Does Breakout Panels Work?

Fiber breakout panels offer a simple, cost-effective alternative to breakout cables. To understanding how it works, let’s take one of 40G QSFP+ breakout patch panel for example. The 96 fibers MTP-LC 1U Ultra Density 40G QSFP+ breakout patch panel has 48 duplex LC ports front and 12 MTP Elite rear ports. When it’s installed, the 40GE QSFP ports with MTP fiber cable will be connected to the back of the panel, and then LC fiber cables will be linked to the LC port. This 40GB QSFP breakout panel logically groups the ports in 4 duplex LC ports, and is available for single-mode or multimode applications.

multimode-singlemode-fiber-breakout-panel

Advantages

Breakout panels solution can connect different equipment such as 10G, 40G and 100G, offering more flexibilities for network cabling. Besides, as the breakout panels are pre-terminated, they can be easily installed and help save installation time.

Conclusion

With increasingly higher network speeds always just around the corner, network build and upgrade also get much attention. Choosing suitable connectivity solution for 10G/40G connectivity which allows you to meet your current connectivity needs while simultaneously investing in your future also should be attached more importance. The contents above give an explanation of three cabling solutions. Hope it may help you.

How to Build Your Data Center?

Today’s data centers are complex. It houses dozens of diverse bandwidth-intensive devices tightly such as servers, clustered storage systems and backup devices, all of which are interconnected by cables. Therefore, the importance of a reliable, scalable and manageable cabling infrastructure is self-evident. Then how to build a data center which can meet today and future growth? This article may give you some advice about it.

5

How to Plan?

As data center houses a number of servers which are connected by numerous cables, it’s important to make it organized. If not, the last thing you will encounter is a tangled mass of cables that make it impossible to determine how severs are connected. Let alone to build a high-efficiency data center. Here are some tips on how to start your data center.

Using a Structured Approach

Using a structured approach to make data center cabling means designing cable runs and connections to facilitate identifying cables, troubleshooting and planning for future changes. In contrast, spontaneous or reactive deployment of cables that only suits immediate needs often makes it difficult to diagnose problems and to verify proper connectivity.

Using Color to Identify Cables

Colors can provide quick visual identification, which simplify management and can save your time when you need to trace cables. Color coding can be used ports on patch panels, color sleeves, connectors and fiber cables.

Establishing a Naming Scheme

Once the physical layouts of a data center are defined, applying logical naming will make it easy to identify each cabling component. Effective labeling brings better communications and can reduce unnecessary problems when locating a component. The suggested naming scheme often includes Building, Room, Grid Cell, Workstation, etc.

How to Select the Necessary Cabling Components?

After knowing how to construct the backbone network of a data center, selecting a right and suitable cabling components can quickly become overwhelming. Each cabling component has its own advantages and disadvantages. So it’s important to get the right equipment purchased and deployed to avoid future cabling problems. Below are some tips on how to choose corresponding cabling components.

Patch Panel

Patch panels enable easy management of patch cables and link the cabling distribution areas. How to choose a suitable one? First, the patch panels which allow different cable connectors to be used in the same patch panel are a good choice. Second, when choosing a patch panel, the main types of connectors within one panels are LC for fiber and RJ45 for copper. Finally, patch panels with colored jacks or bezels allow easy identification of the ports also can be taken into consideration.

angledpatchpanels

Cable Manager

Cable managers offer a neat and proper routing of the patch cables from equipment in racks and protect cables from damage. Generally, there are horizontal and vertical cable managers. And there are different requirements of these cable managers. When choosing horizontal cable managers, it’s essential to make sure that certain parts of the horizontal cable manager are not obstructing equipment in the racks and that those individual cables are easy to be added or removed. While choosing vertical cable managers, additional space used to manage the slack from patch cords is needed.

cable-management-panel

Cable Ties

Cable ties are used to hold a group of cables together or fasten cables to other components. Using cables ties can avoid crushing the cables and impacting cable performance. Velcro cable ties provided by Fiberstore are perfect for controlling and organizing wires, cords, and cables. Besides, using ties will help you identify cables later and facilitate better overall cable management.

cable-ties

Of course, except for what have been mentioned above, there are other cabling components which need to be selected carefully such as cable labels, backbone cables and so on.

What Should Be Paid Attention to When Installation?
  • Cabling installations and components should be compliant with industry stands.
  • Use thin and high-density cables wherever possible, allowing more cable runs in tight spaces.
  • Remove abandoned cables which can restrict air flow and may fuel a fire.
  • Keep some spare patch cables. The types and quantity can be determined from the installation and projected growth. Try to keep all unused cables bagged and capped when not in use.
  • Avoid routing cables through pipes and holes, which may limit additional future cable runs.
Summary

Building a data center is not an easy task. Each step and component selecting during installations need carefulness and patience. FS.COM provides all cable products including structured cables, patch panels, cable ties, labels and other tools needed in data center installation. All of them will maximize the efficiency and reliability of the data center installation.

How to Choose a Rack Cabinet

It is a commonplace nowadays to employ rack cabinets in data centers and other modern IT installations alike. Humble as the appearance is, rack cabinet actually plays a significant role in security and regulatory compliance, configurability, cooling and efficiency, as well as system availability. Moreover, it also helps to save much more space which is considered to be vital and precious for data centers. In this article, we will discuss how to choose a right rack cabinet that better fit your expectation.

What Is Rack Cabinet?

A server rack is a closed frame, specifically designed for holding monitors, servers, various networking equipment, electronic components, measuring instruments and other similar devices. Most commonly, the rack cabinets are installed for storing network equipment and servers. The rack cabinets provide an easy access to the networking equipment while enabling airflow, and they keep the working space well-organized.

rack cabinet

Rack cabinets are widely and intensively adopted to server rooms and data centers, audio/video installations, closets housing telecommunications equipment, and industrial environments such as a factory floor.

Common Types and Sizes of Rack Cabinet

Basically, there exist two types of rack cabinets in terms of different working conditions and requirements: floor standing rack cabinet and wall mount rack cabinet. If access control and equipment protection are important to you, floor standing rack cabinet is proved to be a desirable choice. While wall mount rack cabinet are ideal for securely housing IT equipment in classrooms or sites with limited floor space.

“Rack unit” is used to describe the height of a rack and the height of equipment in it. (a rack unit is 1.75 inches, or 44.45 mm). The actual height of a 42U rack is therefore 42 x 1.75 = 73.5 inches. A 2U server would occupy two of the available 42 rack units.

1 rack unit

Since the rack cabinet come in different sizes, when choosing a specified rack for your infrastructure you should at least take two factors into consideration: type of equipment to be stored inside and amount of space that is required. Be sure to make an accurate assessment of the amount of rack space you currently need, and allow for future growth.

In addition, before installing the rack cabinet, you need to make sure that the equipment to be placed in will match the rack cabinet. So the maximum rack depth required to mount your equipment should be taken into account. The rack depth of floor standing and wall mount rack cabinet is different, which will be explained in the following diagram.

Floor standing rack depth designation
Rack Depth (in.) Ideal for…
Shallow 27 A/V equipment, limited space
Mid-depth 31 Limited space
Standard 37 Servers
Deep 42 Extra cables, improved airflow
Wall mount rack depth designation
Rack Depth (in.) Ideal for…
Patch-depth < 16 Patch panels
Switch-depth 16-23.99 Switches
UPS-depth 24-31.99 UPS systems
Server-depth > 32 Servers
Benefits of Good Rack Cabinets

In terms of the benefits that every rack cabinet should provide, basically there are three main advantages:

Security—because the front and rear doors and side panels on most rack cabinets can be locked, access to equipment and sensitive data can be managed and controlled.

Great cooling flexibility—heat-sensitive equipment such as servers is isolated inside rack cabinets, allowing for more control over both active and passive airflow/cooling management.

Equipment protection from harsh environments—if your rack and equipment is going to be in harsh environments where dust, water and other debris could damage your equipment, a rack cabinet that protects equipment from the elements is for you.

Conclusion

IT infrastructure continues to expand and the need to organize, secure and cool servers, routers, hubs and PDUs is continuously increasing. Meanwhile, conserving space for future growth becomes more critical. All of these make rack cabinets an essential application in cutting-edge data center worldwide. I hope what we discussed above would assist you when you’re looking to purchase a rack to mount your servers and other network equipment.

Fiber Termination Box Overview

Fiber termination box (FTB), known as optical termination box (OTB) as well, is a compact fiber management product of small size. It is widely adopted in FTTx cabling for both fiber cabling and cable management. In some circumstances, fiber termination box can be regarded as the mini size of fiber optic patch panel and optical distribution frame (ODF).

Fiber Termination Box Classification

Currently, the market embraces a great amount of fiber optic termination boxes and other devices for cable management. And the names and model numbers of these fiber termination boxes vary from the design and idea of different manufacturers. Hence to identify the detailed classification of fiber termination box could be a hard task.

Roughly, fiber termination box can be categorized as fiber optic patch panel and fiber terminal box according to the size and applications. Judging by the appearance, fiber patch panel is of gibber size whereas fiber terminal box is smaller.

Fiber Patch Panels

Fiber patch panels are of wall mounted type or mounted type usually with 19 inch size. Generally, there is a tray inside the fiber box that helps to hold and protect the fiber links. Various different kinds of fiber optic adapters can be pre-installed in fiber patch panels as the interface, via which the fiber box could connect with the external devices.

Fiber Terminal Boxes

Besides fiber patch panels, one can also count on fiber terminal boxes for fiber distribution and organization. While typical fiber terminal boxes are with 12 ports or 24 ports, 8 ports, 36 ports, 48 ports and 96 ports fiber are available in the markets now. They are often installed with FC or ST adapters on the panel, either on the wall or put in horizontal line.

According to the design, FTB can be further divided into wall mount type and rack mount type.

The wall mount fiber termination boxes are designed for either pre-connectorized cables, field installation of connectors, or field splicing of pigtails. They offer an ideal solution for building entrance terminals, telecommunication closets, main cross-connects, computer rooms and other controlled environments.

wall mount FTB

The rack mount slide-out type fiber termination box usually for fiber splicing, distribution, termination, patching, storage and management in one unit. They support both cross-connect and interconnect architecture, and provide interfaces between outside plant cables and transmission equipment.

rack mount FTB

Moreover, in terms of installation environment, there are indoor FTB and outdoor FTB.

Indoor fiber termination box acts as the transition point between the risen cable and the horizontal cable, in this way, it provides operators much more flexibility when managing cables. Besides, indoor FTB makes it possible to leave space for overlength and terminated fibers, as well as for fiber splicing.

The outdoor fiber terminal boxes are environmentally sealed enclosures to distribute fibers for FTTX networks. They are also designed for fiber splicing, termination, and cable management.

Features of Fiber Termination Box

Fiber termination box contains the shell, the internals (supporting frame, set fiber disc, fixing device) and optical fiber joint protective element. Prominent advantages of fiber termination box lie in efficient cable-fixing, welding and its protective role in machinery of the optical fiber.

A insulation is always demanded between cable metal components and cable terminal box shell in a fiber termination box, which provides space for cable terminal and remained fiber storage. In addition, fiber termination box also facilitate the installation of different occasions since it is easy to access, which turns out to be time and cost saving.

Fiber Termination Box Application

Fiber termination box is universally used in telephone, agricultural telephone network system, data and image transmission system, CATV cable television series, indoor cable through force access and branch connection. Fiber termination box is available for the distribution and termination connection for various kinds of fiber optic systems, especially suitable for mini-network terminal distribution, in which the optical cables, patch cores or pigtails are connected. In addition to that, fiber termination box can be applied to joint fiber pigtail, protect fiber optic splices and share out the connectivity to individual customers.

Conclusion

Fiber termination box nowadays plays an indispensable role in the field of communication network with greater reliability and flexibility. This article may simply provide you a guideline when choosing fiber termination box for your infrastructure, for more detailed information and tutorial, please visit www.fs.com.

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