Fibre-to-the-Desk: The Ultimate Cabling System

What does the future of your network hold? Networking products seemingly evolve every month. From contention to connection-based, from routed to switched, from low-speed to high, change is constant. One thing is clear: tomorrow’s networks will run faster, support a greater number of applications and provide service to an increasing number of geographically diverse users.

With network requirements changing constantly, it is important to employ a cabling system that can keep up with the demand. Cabling systems, the backbone of any data communications system, must become utilities. That is, they must adapt to network requirements on demand. When a network needs more speed, the media should deliver it. The days of recabling to adopt new networking technologies are past. Today’s structured cabling system should provide seamless migration to tomorrow’s network services.

One media that provides utility-like service is optical fibre. Fibre-optic cabling has been used in telecommunication networks for over 15 years, bringing unsurpassed reliability and expandability to that industry. Over the past decade, optical fibres have found their way into cable television networks — increasing reliability, providing expanded service and reducing costs. In the LAN, fibre cabling has been deployed as the primary media for campus and building backbones, offering high-speed connections between diverse LAN segments.

Today, with increasingly sophisticated applications like high-speed ISPs and e-commerce becoming standard, it’s time to consider optical fibre as the primary medium to provide data services to the desktop. We will review the standards, discuss next-generation cabling systems and show how fibre can be used effectively to reduce costs and improve network connectivity.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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