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Diagnosing Problems And Staying Informed - A Guide To The Components Of A Backbone Cabling System

by Sylvia Miller

Since the importance of the internet has exploded into the economy and changed the face of the modern workplace, businesses have been trying to improve their infrastructure. One of the most important innovations was the development of structured cabling systems, but many office managers still remain somewhat ignorant as to their setup and function.

The central, indispensable components of your structured cabling system are known as the backbone cabling, and it's important that you have a full understanding of their form and function. Below, you'll find a guide to some of the aspects of that system, providing you with the knowledge you need to understand your workplace and diagnose potential issues as they arise.

Cable Pathways

One of the most difficult challenges in adapting older facilities to the needs of modern technology is developing spaces for cables to run through. The development of pathway technology and mobile inserts has provided internet contractors with the ability to adapt buildings to their needs without having to make significant changes to physical structures.

Your cable pathways also include the floor penetrations that may take the form of sleeves or slots which provide adequate routing space for your internet cables. If you detect significant cable damage, it may be the result of damage to these pathways, and they should be among the first problem areas you examine.

Connecting Hardware

A full blown cottage industry has sprung up alongside internet access. The development of connecting blocks, interface panels, cross-connections, and various other components has suddenly put small plastic and rubber pieces at the forefront of importance in nearly every modern office.

It's important that you make sure your connecting hardware is treated properly and delicately. Excessive removal of cables can weaken connections, and pulling cords with force and a lack of care can lead to significant hardware damage that will cause lengthy downtime and may even result in expensive repairs being necessary.


The cables themselves are, of course, analogous to the blood vessels which carry the lifeblood of information throughout your office. Make sure that you purchase cables which are fully shielded from electromagnetic interference and that they're only run through areas where sufficient clearance is guaranteed. This will help protect your cables from any excessive damage. You should also work with your IT department or relevant contractors to make sure the cables you've picked out will handle your data needs while simultaneously maintaining a long shelf life