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It’s a major frustration when you can get a decent wireless signal in one part of your house, and yet experience dead zones in other parts. Most wireless routers aren’t powerful enough to cover an entire house (especially in multi-story dwellings), so some sort of extension of the wireless network is necessary.

A wired backbone is by far the most reliable way to distribute WiFi coverage throughout a structure, and provides a central LAN for fixed computers and devices like printers or non-WiFi equipped gear.

Standard network cabling uses cat5 or cat6 (GigE) ethernet lines, and runs can be up to 500 feet long. If you don’t have enough outputs on your primary router to run a cable to each access point, a switch can be attached to any port to provide additional ethernet jacks for distribution. Many newer homes and businesses have ethernet cabling and wall jacks already installed. With older buildings a bit of elbow grease or an electrician’s help may be required to get things setup.

That’s where we come in. There are certain design considerations that need to be addressed based on your needs. We’ll discuss this before materials because these questions will affect quantities, tools and materials needed.

1. Which room/s do I want wired?

2. How many ports do I want in each location?

3. What is a good location for distribution?

4. What path should the cables take?

5. What network speed do I need?

 

Next up, tools and materials!

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