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Wiring house for Ethernet

stoney

Part of the unwashed, middle-American horde
Jul 26, 2006
14,401
1,502
Colorado
I need help. We're well out of my "I can figure this out" range and need help. I am trying to install Cat6 wiring for my house. We're dropping cable and putting in a business line at guaranteed 50mb down/10 up. We have ~30 WiFi attached devices at any given point in the house and once we start streaming TV, nothing's going to work right.

The basic layout is as follows (apologies for the Paint):

Basement (walkout) -
Entertainment area in one corner. This is already pre-wired for speakers and cable.
Plugged office area in opposite corner. This is pre-wired for cable and has ethernet ports, but I'm not sure what they are attached to (need to get into the sub-basement)


I have access to the sub-basement in the basement and to the entertainment center corner of the basement from above the ceiling using fish tape. The outer walls in the basement are cement - shocker, I know.

Main Floor -
Entertainment area is directly above entertainment center in the basement, but offset by ~2ft. In theory, this should be an easier run, just use two fish tape's - one down, one across and pull the lines accordingly.

I want to add a port on the main floor where our phone line is located. This is on an outside wall, making it harder, as the basement has a cement wall. I might be able to drop a line straight down, but I can't see how much space is between the cement wall and inner wall until later.


Second Floor -
Four bedrooms upstairs. I have access to the attic and can drop lines into the bedrooms from above. It's about getting the runs dropped into the right place. I will likely have the twin rooms mirror each other, the master will have a drop where the TV lives, and then a shared wall location with the office.


One thing that I am stuck on is placement of the switch rack. I will probably put in ~20 different lines (2 to each bedroom, 4 to each entertainment, 4 to office, 2 to office area of basement) and I still want to have WiFi. Wifey would prefer that I don't have all of this visible around the house. I was thinking about putting my switch and modem by the basement entertainment area, then putting the WiFi router on the main floor with that entertainment area. We have pretty bad signal between the three floors and everything is currently based out of the office upstairs. Even with a WiFi repeater, the basement is moderate at best.

Current setup:
Comcast WiFi 3-in-1 Modem/Router (WiFi router disabled)
Cisco Linksys EA3500 WiFi Router

What's attached:
Desktop (1)
Laptop (2)
TV (3)
Vizio Sound System
Solar City box
Sprint WiFi phone converter
Tablet (1)
Phone (2)
XBox
Sony DVD Player/Surround system
Chromecast (3)
Firestick (1, pending second)
Magic Jack
Alarm System



My help needed points:
1. What Cat6 (do I need that much level?) line should I get? This will all be run interior of the house.
2. What switch should I get given I want ~20 ports?
3. Simplest tool suggestions?
4. Recommendations for how best to organize the routing of wires, etc. I intend on investing in labels, Velcro straps, etc.
5. How much venting is necessary for a switch? Where it gets placed depends on the amount of head that needs to be dissipated. If I have to put a little shelf in somewhere in the basement I will, but if I could drop it into a closet I would prefer that.

Thanks
 

Toshi

Harbinger of Doom
Oct 23, 2001
27,285
2,119
Cat 5e does gigabit just fine.

Switches don't emit that much heat, at least consumer unmanaged ones.

Don't use a wireless repeater. Since you're running Ethernet cable have a drop on each floor dedicated to a router. In my house I run an ASUS RT-AC68U in the basement as a router and access point; an Apple AirPort Extreme on the main floor as access point only (no DHCP, no NAT); and a third RT-AC68U on the second floor in the master bedroom also as an access point only.

Make sure you hardwire all that you can: desktop computers, smart TV, AV receiver, etc. Minimize the number of wireless clients. Also use AC/5 GHz for those clients whenever you can—having more access points clearly helps with this.
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
9,940
5,795
Canaderp
How much cheaper is cat 5e? If its significant, go with that. Remember that at the end of the day, you're going to have a single cable between your modem and router.

Are you going to terminate the cable themselves? You'll need a crimper or punch down tool to do it. Practice first and stick to either T568A or T568B to avoid any frustrations when your cables don't work.

Toshi has it down. Ditch the repeater and run an extra line for a second wireless "router". Simply turn off DHCP and don't use the WAN port (or change it to LAN if the thing is capable).

Most consumer switches use passive cooling, so you probably don't need to worry about venting them. It'll be dumb and not really doing anything, so I would shop by price. Perhaps a metal cased one would be better.
 

Toshi

Harbinger of Doom
Oct 23, 2001
27,285
2,119
The other important thing to do when setting up a wireless router as an access point is to change the IP from the default (usually 192.168.1.1). Pick something like 192.168.1.254 and put 192.168.1.1 (the other actual router doing routing-things) as the gateway.

Having two devices at 192.168.1.1, one ladling out IPs via DHCP and one not, is a good way to break one's network. I did this by mistake last night and had to hard reset the upstairs access point and set it up again/correctly.

:D
 

Toshi

Harbinger of Doom
Oct 23, 2001
27,285
2,119
Are you going to terminate the cable themselves? You'll need a crimper or punch down tool to do it. Practice first and stick to either T568A or T568B to avoid any frustrations when your cables don't work.
I would recommend just buying pre-crimped patch cables in appropriate lengths. Crimping connectors is a pain in the ass for someone who doesn't do it regularly.

Oontzy cables, which I might actually use since fishing cables is a pain in the ass best done once:

https://www.bluejeanscable.com/store/data-cables/

The cables I'm using are whatever came with various devices over the years/collected by me in my box o' cables. I think I finally used the last one last night!
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
9,940
5,795
Canaderp
I would recommend just buying pre-crimped patch cables in appropriate lengths. Crimping connectors is a pain in the ass for someone who doesn't do it regularly.

Oontzy cables, which I might actually use since fishing cables is a pain in the ass best done once:

https://www.bluejeanscable.com/store/data-cables/

The cables I'm using are whatever came with various devices over the years/collected by me in my box o' cables. I think I finally used the last one last night!
This is true. My concern would be fishing a cable through the wall with a connector on the end of it. It'll either get snagged or break the lock off. And then in the rooms, I assume he'll (or his wife) want the cabled terminated to an rj-45 jack. Then run a patch cable from the wall to whatever device.
 

stoney

Part of the unwashed, middle-American horde
Jul 26, 2006
14,401
1,502
Colorado
Cat 5e does gigabit just fine.

Switches don't emit that much heat, at least consumer unmanaged ones.

Don't use a wireless repeater. Since you're running Ethernet cable have a drop on each floor dedicated to a router. In my house I run an ASUS RT-AC68U in the basement as a router and access point; an Apple AirPort Extreme on the main floor as access point only (no DHCP, no NAT); and a third RT-AC68U on the second floor in the master bedroom also as an access point only.

Make sure you hardwire all that you can: desktop computers, smart TV, AV receiver, etc. Minimize the number of wireless clients. Also use AC/5 GHz for those clients whenever you can—having more access points clearly helps with this.
Scratch everything. Google WiFi with a dedicated, guaranteed* 50mb down business line gets me there for $300. Google FTW! I heart Google.
 

SkaredShtles

I love NEWCASTLE and will ONLY drink NEWCASTLE!!!!
Sep 21, 2003
49,008
3,001
In a van.... down by the river
Even 802.11ac is no match for gigabit Ethernet.
Pretty sure that any bottlenecks in @stoney's house will be the speed of the internet link, not the WiFi connection.

And a pre-emptive "SHUT THE FUCK UP" on the inevitable "I gots teh gig internet" crap. :D

Scratch everything. Google WiFi with a dedicated, guaranteed* 50mb down business line gets me there for $300. Google FTW! I heart Google.
Let us know how it goes... I have been interested - but only superficially.
 

Toshi

Harbinger of Doom
Oct 23, 2001
27,285
2,119
Pretty sure that any bottlenecks in @stoney's house will be the speed of the internet link, not the WiFi connection.

And a pre-emptive "SHUT THE FUCK UP" on the inevitable "I gots teh gig internet" crap. :D
:D Plebes...

Intra-house network speed matters for network shares for backups (you are backing stuff up, right, stoney?), media shares for DLNA devices, etc. (And it matters if you have fiber, booyah!)
 

stoney

Part of the unwashed, middle-American horde
Jul 26, 2006
14,401
1,502
Colorado
:D Plebes...

Intra-house network speed matters for network shares for backups (you are backing stuff up, right, stoney?), media shares for DLNA devices, etc. (And it matters if you have fiber, booyah!)
Everything saves to Dropbox or Drive. I live almost entirely online and Wifey has everything on a thumb drive that I download monthly (don't get me started on that...).
 

stoney

Part of the unwashed, middle-American horde
Jul 26, 2006
14,401
1,502
Colorado
Follow up question:
I have the above noted router and another unused one. Is it possible to use those as switches to provide myself with more hard-line plugs? I have 5-6 items that I would like to keep hard-lined in the office and I only have so many spaces to plug into.
 

SkaredShtles

I love NEWCASTLE and will ONLY drink NEWCASTLE!!!!
Sep 21, 2003
49,008
3,001
In a van.... down by the river
<snip>
Intra-house network speed matters for network shares for backups
Not really - unless you're *really* in some kind of hurry for this stuff. There really shouldn't be any practical issues with network shares over WiFi.

I mean, WiFi is getting fairly fast assuming you have some modern-ish WiFi router.

And another pre-emptive STFU about the gig-e to the house.

:D
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
9,940
5,795
Canaderp
@stoney yes. Turn DHCP off and don't use the WAN connection. Put a cable between the current router and that other one. Then you can plug stuffz into both. I'd turn off wireless on that one too.
 

Toshi

Harbinger of Doom
Oct 23, 2001
27,285
2,119
@stoney yes. Turn DHCP off and don't use the WAN connection. Put a cable between the current router and that other one. Then you can plug stuffz into both. I'd turn off wireless on that one too.
Daisy chaining two probably 4 port routers instead of buying a $25 switch that's appropriate... well, that actually seems like something stoney would do, nevermind.
 

IH8Rice

I'm Mr. Negative! I Fail!
Aug 2, 2008
24,554
488
Im over here now
you need a business line to get those slow speeds via comcast by you? i have their Blast package with a guaranteed speed of 150Mbps/down
 

StiHacka

Compensating for something
Daisy chaining two probably 4 port routers instead of buying a $25 switch that's appropriate... well, that actually seems like something stoney would do, nevermind.
I haven't checked the prices of home office hardware lately but can you get a decent l2 switch for $25? That sounds like a crappy bridge territory to me.
 

stoney

Part of the unwashed, middle-American horde
Jul 26, 2006
14,401
1,502
Colorado
you need a business line to get those slow speeds via comcast by you? i have their Blast package with a guaranteed speed of 150Mbps/down
You must live somewhere with competition. We have Centurylink that tops at 40mbs and Comcast. That's it; no other options.

Also, cost/speed. Blast (which I have) here is stupid expensive and even though I'm "up to" 200Mbs, speedtest is showing around 25 most often.
 
Last edited:

IH8Rice

I'm Mr. Negative! I Fail!
Aug 2, 2008
24,554
488
Im over here now
You must live somewhere with competition. We have Centurylink that tops at 40mbs and Comcast. That's it; no other options.

Also, cost/speed. Blast (which I have) here is stupid expensive and even though I'm "up to" 200Mbs, speedtest is showing around 25 most often.
no, theyre the only option i have around here if i want cable modem speeds. i wish their was competition for internets but there isnt.
 

stoney

Part of the unwashed, middle-American horde
Jul 26, 2006
14,401
1,502
Colorado
no, theyre the only option i have around here if i want cable modem speeds. i wish their was competition for internets but there isnt.
The blast here is fast. but it's data capped and not guaranteed speed. Business is not capped and has guaranteed speed. $95 vs. $115 - I'll take the $20 difference, although the required installment fee and required modem level for increase the price over duration.
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
36,644
3,464
Sleazattle
Why the speed requirement?

Are you hosting a live-cam pornhub site or is this some business line factor that I just don't understand?