TechSpot

A N00B needs help wiring a home network

By aksd
Aug 25, 2006
  1. I have a few questions regarding wiring a home network.

    First the main building where the modem will be located, I'd like to go wireless. Then there's a detatched garage which I'll need a few hardlines in. It is located aprox. 100ft away. First question is which wire to use. I've surfed around and found basic data on Cat 5, Cat 5e, and Cat 6. which would be the best for running from the house to the garage? to get to the area needed it'll need to go aprox 200ft, 100 down and 100 through the walls. Which leeds to my next question: do I run 2 cables down and through to where they need to be or run one to a switch box? If so what is the best wireless G router, cause I bought one for another house and had problem after problem with it, plus if I'm going to need a switch box, what ar ethe good ones?

    Thank you in advance for your help.
     
  2. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 6,305   +52 Staff Member

    CAT-6 cable is going to be a better quality cable. CAT-6 is ideal for 1Gbps where 5 and 5e handle 100Mbps admirably. 5e is also rated for 1Gbps, but you're better off sticking with CAT-6 consider the the distance you're running it.

    You have the choice to invest in 'standard' cable, or the outdoor type. Outdoor cabling is going to be (usually) substantially more expensive, but will last longer. The wire itself isn't necessarily of better quality but the jacket is, so it is more resistant to weather, sun and abuse. Personally, I'd use regular CAT-5e or CAT-6 cable.

    Depending on your speed needs, I'd just run one cable to a switch in the garage which will be fed to multiple network devices. My setup might look like this:


    In House: Modem --> Wireless Router
    To Garage: Single Cat 5e or 6 line
    In Garage: Single line to switch --> Wireless access point (if you want wireless in the garage and it doesn't reach) and other networked devices

    Good switches? I don't think there should be much concern over this for your purposes. Good router? This is much more of a concern. A recent router that I would deem very good is the Zyxel 550-X. My recent experiences with a number of D-link, Linksys, Netgear and Belkin devices has been spotty, but that particular Zyxel seems solid.
     
  3. aksd

    aksd TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 83

    "CAT-6 cable is going to be a better quality cable. CAT-6 is ideal for 1Gbps where 5 and 5e handle 100Mbps admirably. 5e is also rated for 1Gbps, but you're better off sticking with CAT-6 consider the the distance you're running it.

    You have the choice to invest in 'standard' cable, or the outdoor type. Outdoor cabling is going to be (usually) substantially more expensive, but will last longer. The wire itself isn't necessarily of better quality but the jacket is, so it is more resistant to weather, sun and abuse. Personally, I'd use regular CAT-5e or CAT-6 cable.
    "-Rick

    Would getting the standerd cabling be better if it's run underground in conduit? Also here is one of the cables I was looking at, and dues to the ease of getting it, it made this one ideal. Homedepot.com sku# 190519 What do you think?

    "Depending on your speed needs, I'd just run one cable to a switch in the garage which will be fed to multiple network devices."-Rick

    The main use in the garage will be high bandwidth gaming. My work computers are located in there. I was thinking of having the whole LAN at 1000mbs and 108mbs Wlan; I'm not sure if that's overkill or not. What are your thoughts? Do you know of where I can find affordable cat6 cable spools?
     
  4. s3xynanigoat

    s3xynanigoat TS Rookie Posts: 141

    I'd go with the Cat 5e cable. I would also run the two lines into the garage as cosmetically this would be more attractive to future home buyers once you are wanting to sell the home. If you need a good switch I would go with something from Dell, they offer some SoHo switches that are nice and very cheap. You need to do the underground conduit thing for sure. Don't worry about the outside rated cable as nothing should be getting through the conduit. While you're at it you might want to run a 3rd line so you can have it wired as a phone.

    I got a detached garage also and did this same project to it. Ran Coax cable as well so I could watch TV out there.
     
  5. aksd

    aksd TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 83

    How much of a performence increase would I get going with Cat6 or Cat6e over Cat5e? Is there enough increase to spend a little more? The main use is just going to be gaming, VoIP, and data transfer, I know that pc to pc data transfer speeds with-in the LAN will increase but will any heavy bandwidth programme just bottleneck once it leaves the network?
     
  6. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 13,517   +336

    ZERO. better cables provide better shielding and therefore less interference.
    the chain is only as strong as the weakest link -- ditto for network thruput.
     
  7. aksd

    aksd TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 83

    Has any one had experience with D-link's dgs-2208 8 port 10/100/1000 switch? Or the D-link DGL-4300 router? I've heard that there are some stabiliy issues with the DGL-4300, can anyone confirm? Also any other wireless router with 1000mbs LAN support please let me know.
     
  8. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 6,305   +52 Staff Member

    You're going to hear about stability issues with EVERY 'consumer' wireless router. You might pay more than shopping online, but you might want to buy a router you think is good at an electronics store like BestBuy, Frys, CompUSA etc.. so you can try it out and take it back if you don't like it.

    I've had pretty good luck with the Zyxel 550 I mentioned, but I don't have one myself that I've been using for years, so I can't attest to it. I just get good feedback and have had good experiences with it. I recently installed a D-Link 634m MIMO X2 router and that was working pretty well. The customer uses P2P applications and its been running reliably... This is a sign it might be another good one to choose.
     
  9. aksd

    aksd TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 83

    Good point. I think when the time comes to get all the equipment I'll just have to pick one.

    Thanks for the advice.
     
  10. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 10,074   +13

    the problem with most electronics stores is that they often have a restock fee or a no-return fee if the box is unsealed.
     
  11. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 6,305   +52 Staff Member

    I've returned a LOT of items to a variety of stores. I find big stores like BestBuy and Fry's just honestly don't care and I've never been charged a restocking fee... Although they certainly should.

    I've even returned things past the warranty period.. without receipts.. and from one company store to a different company... And I've never had to pay a restocking fee. These things include motherboards, processors, memory, soldering stations, printers, ink, routers... LoL.

    Maybe I'm just a smooth talker. ;)
     
     
  12. aksd

    aksd TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 83

    /\ Yep...lol

    Here's how I'll do it:
    In house -> Modem to wireless router
    To garage -> 2 lines, Cat5e
    in garage -> run through walls to two wall plates

    I haven’t yet had the DSL hooked up, and as soon as I do, the router will be purchased, and installed. I think I’ll go with the D-link dgl-4300 router, since it supports 108mbs WLan and 1000mbs Lan. Thank you all for your assistance.
     
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