Network cabinet – structure and connection

For me personally, one of the most important things at my company is the network. I need connections everywhere, whether it’s for endpoints, TVs, mesh, cameras, bridges, or even just phones. About it will be switched very much. The whole network was built on Cat.6a, but the cables still offer reserves for Cat.7a and beyond. Should be enough for a few years. ;)

Since it’s slowly but surely getting to the final expansion, the next thing on my list was the network cabinet. Even in my old house I already had a cabinet from Digitus and was very satisfied with it. So it was clear for me that I wanted to use a cabinet of this brand again. Only in size and equipment I could not decide right away. But I decided for a 600x600cm format in a height of 26U, because that was still very good with the slope of the roof. It was also important to me that the side and front door can be removed easily to work on it later on. So it has become the Digitus Professional Unique Line 26HE (DN-19 26U-6/6-1). Another plus point for me was that the cabinet is completely open on all sides, and not like many other cabinets only has a few ventilation slots. So the warm air can be dissipated better. In case it really should get too warm, a fan unit (DN-19 FAN-2-N / DN-19 FAN-4-N) is installed in the upper part of the cabinet. This is temperature-controlled and switches itself on/off independently.

Network cabinet - structure and connection

Connection

The most difficult part is always to tame all the cables first. The usual problem. I have laid a total of 32 cables in and around the house. These I put in the cabinet below in the floor first in a loop and then led upwards to the patch panel. Until I had found the best position for me, I needed 2-3 attempts. Now the cables are coming from the right side and then give to the panel. So the UPS can still be behind the cables comfortably on the drawer (DN-19 KEY-2U). The cables were laid on keystones (DN-93615) in a modular carrier field (DN-91424). Simply, because I like the principle better and if necessary. easier to get to individual places.

At the network sockets in the house I also used Keystones, but due to lack of availability I used complete sockets from Telegartner with AMJ-S modules. You can get these at reasonable prices as single as well as double socket set. But you have to be careful, in normal installation boxes is difficult to impossible to use these boxes. I have in the house everywhere where network was intended upward open installation boxes. There the installation was no problem. However, I had the drywall beautiful so my problems to accommodate this.

Power supply

In the cabinet itself is a five-wire supply line, which comes directly from the distributor in the house connection. Thus I have three separately fused phases, which I can use completely in the future. I also have a ground connection. Currently only one phase is connected directly to a surge protected power strip (DN-95407). This is positioned at the very bottom of the cabinet and is only used to connect all devices that are not relevant in case of a power failure. So things like switches, UPS, ventilation, lighting etc.

By chance I got an APC Back-UPS 500VA for a very good price. This was actually not planned, but for the price I just could not leave them standing. ;)

So now I have a USV. This stands as already mentioned simply below in the cabinet. Connected to it are two more protected power strips, which are mounted behind the upper shelves (DN-97614). Here are then the central systems like z.B. NAS and NVR connected. Thus these devices remain supplied then with short power failures furthermore. Unfortunately my small UPS doesn’t have a USB output so I can shut down the devices in a controlled way in case of a power failure. But it is already enough if I can bridge short failures in the house. In purely mathematical terms, half an hour of downtime should be able to be bridged.

Technology

Whenever I am asked about network technology in the private sector, my first answer is: TP-Link! In my opinion unbeatable hardware for the price. I have been using these for many years, having had my problems with well-known names like HP and Netgear as well. I use three switches from TP-Link. One 24-port (TL-SG1024) and one 16-port (TL-SG1016) gigabit switch for most devices. Two switches simply because it’s cheaper to buy and you still have redundancy in the house in case of failure. There is also an 8-port PoE switch (TL-SG1008PE) in use, which forms a dedicated network for the security camera.

Wiring

For the patch cables I stocked up at LogiLink. The price range for such cables goes very far apart. In my opinion partly completely exaggerated or really quite cheap stuff, which I do not trust over the way. LogiLink is not too unknown and I have already worked with their Keystones. So I ordered lots of colorful cables from it.

I distributed the cables for me according to the following pattern:

  • red: Camera, security, PoE
  • blue: network relevant cabling, uplinks, central units, etc. in the cabinet
  • yellow: Normal network connections in the house

For my cable management I decided to use bushings with covers and lamellas (DN-97616). In general, I still think it’s a good idea, but unfortunately it didn’t completely convince me in practice. The cages are a bit too deep for my taste. If you stand in front of the cabinet and look at it from above, you can barely make out any of the switches or connectors. These take simply very much view. But otherwise solid and sufficient for the Monk in me.

I also got myself some cable management brackets from Rittal (DK 7112.000) ordered to run the cables along the side in the cabinet. I didn’t want these to be at the front. Finding suitable brackets for the position in the cabinet was not easy, as there is little space in the depth and the holes for the cage nuts are a bit awkwardly placed. Therefore, I unfortunately had to spend a little more money for the Rittal solution. But it was worth it, now the cables sit well on the side. In addition, one still has reserves for the future by the 10er package.

Light (unimportant)

Since I’ve been asked about it several times: Yes, the cabinet is lit. ;)

It’s a bit dark in the room after all and as mentioned above, the cable runs cast a lot of shadows on the lower devices due to the great depth. So I have installed a small LED lamp. However, not a "real" oneRack lighting", as you could buy it for a lot of money, but simply an under-cabinet lamp and some cable ties. Probably more intended for the kitchen, it also makes enough light in the closet for little money.

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