In This Issue: CAT6 Ethernet Patch Cable, Half-Moon, Booted | Understanding the Basics of Network Switches | News to Start Your Day
Happy Thursday! This week has seemed to fly by but also drag itself out, anyone else agree? I’m sure many of us are ready for the long weekend ahead. We hope it’s filled with celebrations, lots of fun, and some time to relax!
The CK Daily – Time for a Break
If your life has been anything like mine lately it has been C.R.A.Z.Y. I know a lot of people have kids graduating, ending school, work starting to get crazy again, summer vacations, etc. I don’t have any kids (besides the dog) but it has been crazy enough because of the house stuff, health stuff, family health stuff, and work.
All that being said, by the time you are reading this I will be on day 2 of a short vacation time. This will be the longest I have taken off in over a year. I have been super excited about it for a while. I have a buddy coming into town this week to help me with some stuff around the new house. The list includes changing out about 7-8 light fixtures, switching out the kitchen faucet, and building a few things for the garage and patio. Of course, on top of that, I am using this as a good excuse to buy some new tools. It is always a good time to buy new tools and I have had my eye on a new set of Dewalt tools for a while. After all that we will be grilling out a lot this weekend, and trying to enjoy the crazy Georgia heat we are already experiencing down here.
What big plans do you have for the Memorial Day weekend or the summer? Cooking or grilling anything good or what’s your favorite summer holiday cookout food? I will be checking any responses to this email for ideas for the weekend.
Hope everyone has a great rest of the week and an awesome, safe holiday weekend.
Product Spotlights & Updates
Happy Thursday! Today’s product spotlight is our 20ft. Black CAT6 Ethernet Patch Cable, Half-Moon Booted cables, PC6-BK-20. The CAT6 Half-Moon boot cables have been replaced with the new CAT6 Easyboot Ethernet cables, offering you the same great cable but with an easier to use tabbed boot!
With demands on network performance, each segment and part must perform with precision and accuracy. Cabling is no exception. Our CAT6 standard boot patch cables offer the reliability of pure copper leads (no copper coated aluminum or CCA) and the durability of CM jackets and boots. CAT6 Cables are the standard for gigabit networks and enable high-speed networks to function at optimal performance.
Give them a try and we know you will love the difference!
Understanding the Basics of Network Switches – CK Learning Center
Networking is a big topic. In fact, it’s too big for a single conversation. In order to distill such a massive concept into manageable bites, it’s best to look at one component of a network at a time. This time around, that bite is network switches. They come in many shapes and sizes, but you can navigate through the field of options pretty easily when you break switch features into three categories.
Managed vs Unmanaged
These two options have a simple trade-off. Unmanaged switches are much easier to deploy. They come with pre-configured networking protocols, security and traffic management. They are typically plug-and-play devices that can make simple and fast additions to an existing network.
Managed switches are the opposite. They require manual configuration before they can be fully deployed. That component grants vastly superior control over security, resource distribution and the overall functionality of the switch. The time and effort spent on deploying managed switches returns a more secure, better managed network (provided the network administrator does the job correctly).
Choosing between these configurations is not a matter of want. They serve separate roles in a robust network. Major nodes should be run by managed switches. They can do the heavy lifting. Where a network might need rapid changes, unmanaged switches shine. Since they are ultimately tied into the properly managed nodes anyway, the easy deployment makes them perfect for simple additions to the whole.
The point of a switch is to add ports to a network. When choosing, you have to consider three points. The first that comes to mind is speed. Everyone wants a fast network, and in enterprise networks, that want is more of a need. If a switch cannot match the bandwidth capacity of the greater network, then it creates a bottleneck. That isn’t always bad, but you absolutely need to consider the speed of the switch. It can range from 10/100 (fast Ethernet) to tens of Gigabits per second.
Your second consideration is interface. Fast networks often have fiber optics carrying the workload, but fiber optic cables don’t come with a single connector type (unlike Ethernet). In a large enough network, there’s a good chance you’ll be working with a variety of connectors (ST, SC and LC just for starters), and each switch needs to support all of the interfaces expected of it. Double check your connectors before any purchase.
The third consideration only applies to Ethernet, but it’s widely important since most of your devices will tie into the network via Ethernet or WiFi. In particular, Power over Ethernet (PoE) adds a lot of versatility to any network switch. As the name implies, it can carry power for a device through the Ethernet line. This is ideal for endpoint devices that don’t thrive on battery power. Security cameras and WiFi repeaters are two devices that come to mind.
Switches have to be stored somewhere, and the housing design is going to have a lot of say in where you can put it. Mostly, the two varieties are stackable and standalone. Standalone switches are best when they are physically isolated. If you have a single switch working as a relay for a few devices, standalone is the way to go. Stackable are designed for networking closets and server-style housing. They can be organized more efficiently than standalones, and they can be configured in bulk. They’re a requirement for major nodes on a large network.
This covers the basics of switches. There are still plenty of additional considerations. We haven’t touched on routers, firewalls, signal repeaters, cables or any of the other big topics, but with this overview, you should have a good feel for what you want out of your switches. When you know the ports you need, the housing style and how a switch will be managed, the rest is just trying to get the most performance and features for you buck.
This post is from the CK Learning Center.
Today’s News to Start Your Day:
- As of this morning, in the US, active COVID cases are on a decline and are reported at 5,702,760.
- After years of talking about it, Facebook officially released its likes-hiding option on Facebook and Instagram. Users of both apps can choose to hide the number of likes and reactions for their own posts or others on their feeds.
- After months of rumors and anticipation, the Friends reunion of our dreams is going to become a reality. The cast is set to gather tonight for a special on HBO’s streaming service, HBO Max, to honor the iconic sitcom’s 25th anniversary!
- Walmart and Gap will launch a new brand, Gap Home, with bedding, bath, and decor. The initial collection will debut on Walmart’s website on June 24 and eventually be available in the discounter’s stores. With the multi-year deal, Walmart aims to drive more online sales and Gap wants to strengthen its brand among shoppers.
- Jeff Bezos will formally step down as Amazon CEO on July 5.