I’ve always been frustrated by the speeds & limitations of wireless and with the addition of a home server, 802.11G just doesn’t cut it. Sure it’s great for flexibility but there’s certain limitations when you want to stream content. Now that I own my own home, I can do something that I’ve wanted to do for a long time – setup a wired home network.
The existing cable wiring was a mess, running from outside to the garage (on the opposite side of the house) then out to each room. I wanted a more convenient location for my wires, so I pulled all the wires from the garage into a closet close to the outside wall where the wires come in.
I tried to run lines where there was already cable/phone outlets so I wouldn’t have to cut too many new holes in the wall. Ran about 3-4 CAT6 drops per room.
I bought a 16 port CAT6 patch panel, although I’m already wishing I had picked up a 24 panel just to be on the safe side. In addition, a 4U wall mount bracket and a rack mountable surge strip.
Most of the materials weren’t too expensive, aside from the 1000′ of solid CAT6 cable and 1Gbps network switch.
I did have to replace most of the wall plates, so picked up a bunch of 2/3 keystone plates with various CAT6/Coaxial connectors. I did use blue to signify what is supposed to be a phone line, but I don’t currently have any of those actually hooked up at the moment.
I do plan on fixing up the phone/coaxial parts at some point, but I’m honestly in no rush considering I don’t have cable/antenna/phone hooked up.
I didn’t have any kind of fancy label maker, so I simply used white electrical tape and a permanent marker to label the wires on both end should I ever find the need to figure out what’s what.
It was a decent amount of work, but all in all I’m pretty happy with it. My 1Gbps network happily chugs along at 30-40MB/sec, although I’m sure it’s a bit slower than I expected due to my HDD read speeds.
Update – Cable/Antenna RG6 Wiring
After months of procrastination, I finally terminated the dangling RG6 cables and hooked them up to a home-grown antenna. I used up a DataShark compression kit from HomeDepot to terminate the cables. However if you use the same kit, I really would recommend picking up a coax stripper as the one included was pretty crappy.
In addition, picked up a new Motorola SB6120 modem which was capable of wall mounting:
Sure the wires aren’t exactly neat but the setup does what it’s supposed to do. Simplified management of my home network and easy access should I ever find the need to change anything.