Home LAN network with cables

Hi. I'm just trying to get some ideas of what would be involved if we stopped using WiFi in our home and went for a cabled LAN instead. I tried googling for info but can't be putting in the right search words as everything comes back to WiFi. Would it be expensive to go back(wards) to the days before home WiFi? Cheers

geek_henpen, Apr 21, 9:23 am

only of you want to have cables run in walls under floor etc
Depends what you are trying to achieve but cables is by no means a backward step.

geek_king1, Apr 21, 9:28 am

Depends on the layout of your house, but cat6 cable is fairly cheap. You can get a RJ45 crimping tool and have a go at terminating the cables yourself.

If needed an Ethernet switch is fairly cheep also.

geek_jeremy_74, Apr 21, 9:29 am

You just need to price a 100 (Fast Ethernet) or 1000 (Gigabit Ethernet) Switch. I got a 5-port one second-hand for $22. Then you just have to price the CAT5E cables according to the number and lengths you require.

The optional extra expense would be hiding the cables rather than running them around room edges.

geek_r.g.nixon, Apr 21, 9:30 am

Quite a few variables here. How far apart the various equipment locations are will make a big difference. All need to feed back to your Router either directly, or in some cases via an intermediate hub/switch. ie, if you have a two story house, and say three rooms upstairs, it may be better to run those three rooms to a single hub, and then it's only one cable from the hub to the main router rather than duplicating the three cables from each room (some will argue if you're going to all that trouble, just run all the cables individually and be done with it).

If all rooms are on the same level, what's under-floor access like?, running cables under the house is generally simple and relatively easy, but don't leave them lying on the ground, use cable clips to hold them up. You can either drill through the floorboard right against the skirting board and put small surface-mount RJ45 sockets on the skirting (or preferably just above), or for a really professional job you'd drill up into the wall cavity (good planning and measurements needed) and install the RJ45 flush-mounted in the wall.

Another option if there is no underfloor access but you can get into the ceiling is to go over the top. If you are really lucky you may find a wall cavity with a fall all the way from ceiling to floor but more often than not you'll hit a dwang. In this case, you can run a cable down the corner of a room inside plastic capping. Cablers and savvy Sparkies have all sorts of tricks and tools to do exactly this including super-long drill bits, using existing telephone wiring to pull cables through etc. All comes down to how inventive, handy & creative you are :-)

geek_cookee_nz, Apr 21, 6:37 pm

I went under floor with Cat6 and followed existing TV or phone jacks up (or just drilled the wooden floor right near the skirting boards). No backwards step with a gigabit network with no dropouts! Wireless used for devices like an ipad.

geek_gibler, Apr 21, 6:47 pm

To answer your original question, just search for home structured wiring this should bring up what your after.

geek_loud_37, Apr 21, 7:10 pm

I have a home office (laptops, printers and back up drive) wired to a 16 port switch, plus a 20m cable from that switch to a modem/4 port router in the lounge. That router feeds to a docking station for a laptop that sends Lightbox to the TV. The lounge Belkin modem router has the modem function switched off but is also a wireless port for my laptop when I want to have it beside me in the lounge. Main modem is in office connected to internet and 16 port switch. Office modem is also wireless and gives good signal in the bedroom. Bought the 3Com 16 port switch second hand on TM for $30. The lounge modem/router in a 300N Belkin with internal aerials and is quite inconspicuous. Bought that second hand for $40. Main modem/router is Asus bought new from PB Tech. The whole system works flawlessly and speed is never an issue. Easy to plug cables in and turn things on in the right order. Office modem runs DHCP and assigns IP addresses automatically and Belkin one runs just as a router.

geek_mojo49, Apr 21, 8:42 pm

geek_spyware, Apr 21, 9:51 pm

No rocket science involved, and you don't even need to stop using your wireless, the wired and WiFi will co-exist seamlessly.

As others have said, buy a simple 1gb switch with enough ports, cable that to your existing wifi router, then run a cable to each device you want hard wired. That can be the tricky part depending on your house design, but within reason it doesn't matter where the cable goes. Anything that's too hard to reach? Just leave it on Wifi, it will work just the same as it did before.

We support various small business customers with commercial applications, and Wifi is a last resort. Speed and reliability of cabled connections is still so much better than wireless. We usually install it for their cellphones and tablets for light duty like email etc. Not for any intensive database work.

geek_ianab, Apr 22, 9:59 am

Wired = Constant speed/ consistent speed /reliability / ease of connection & good security but can be messy.
Wireless = portability & tidy but fairy easy to hack / have to enter a password to connect 1st time/ possible single interference resulting in speed issues

geek_mrfxit, Apr 22, 11:00 am


This
All my PCs/consoles in my house are wired and connected to a switch then into modem/router my PC is straight into modem/router as its right next to it, WiFi has come along way over resent years but there is no doubt wired is always better for reliability in connection.
I just went under floor, all phones, tablets etc use WiFi, Wife's Laptop is connect via cable but if she wants portable, simply unplug turn on WiFi and connects.

geek_neoslowmo, Apr 22, 11:15 am

Ubiquiti UniFi is a popular ceiling mounted Access Point. Controller is software based and doesn't need to run unless using guest portal.

https://www.ubnt.com/unifi/unifi-ap/

geek_spyware, Apr 22, 3:32 pm


Perhaps - but its still WiFi and it will never be as fast ( or secure ) as ethernet

geek_trade_menow, Apr 22, 4:03 pm

I never said it was - I'm all for structured cabling, I'm implying to run cable to the ceiling in the living rooms to provide decent wireless coverage for tablets and phones.

geek_spyware, Apr 22, 6:23 pm

easy as i just went the (easy) convenient way and just got a pile of keystone jacks , which meant picked up a few blank wall plugs from jaycar or somewhere like that easy as just get patch cables short ones from switch into 6 jack ( what i have in the lounge by switch) wall plug, and you just plug keystone jack ( once plug plate installed, similar to house plug to do ) push in cable in front and just plug in cable at back run under the house same at other end of house now kids have 3 plugs in each room for when the friends come around no need for crimp tool just brought cables already made ( can do cables couldn't be bothered) took me about 2 hours though i did drill holes through bottom plate of house to get cables into room, but way way better than wi-fi cost about $180 at a guess plus cost for switch, cheers

geek_hypertech, Apr 22, 9:31 pm

Also worth noting that you aren't limited to one switch.

If you need 3 or 4 outlets in a room, run one cable and plug in another 5 port switch in that room. We run 3 switches, a wifi access point, and a router here. There is a spare 16 port 100 mb switch if I need more ports.

geek_ianab, Jan 23, 3:31 pm

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