Server Rack Cable Management: 5 Tips for Improvement
Why Server Rack Cable Management?
Server rack cable management is deeply important for a number of reasons. Managing your cables makes your data center or server room operate much more efficiently and smoothly. No one wants to spend time constantly untangling cords and trying to track where each one goes. If your cords are a mess, it makes simple tasks like changing certain equipment difficult. Messy cords can also cause lots of damage. For example, if the wrong cord is unplugged, it can hurt operations. Tangled cords are more likely to cause a spark which can lead to a fire. Lastly, tangled cords make it much more difficult to perform simple troubleshooting tasks. Part of troubleshooting is checking the status of certain cords, and when dozens of tangled cords, it is almost impossible to find which cables are correct. If you want to avoid some of these major issues, simply follow the tips below:
1. Label your Cables
Save yourself the headache of sorting through cables by labeling them right off the bat. Every cable should have a label at both ends, regardless of size or type. This will save you a lot of trouble down the road when you are having to test circuits or can’t remember default cable locations. Be sure to have a good label printer on hand to make this process easy!
2. Color Code
There are a few different ways you can color code your cables:
- Cable Type – Having one color for CAT5, one for Fiber, and so on, will make it easy to determine the type of cable with just a glance.
- Cable Purpose– Using a specific color for internal wiring, wiring to go to user equipment, and wiring that goes outside of the building can be an effective strategy. In larger areas, color coding for a specific purpose is especially important.
- Cable Destination– For some buildings, it makes sense to have cables color coded based on which floor or office area they are going to.
3. Create Pathways
When you are creating pathways for your cables, it is important to think ahead. Don’t just plan for the cables you have now, think about future growth! Below are some different products that can help with pathways for your cables!
4. Plan for Expansion
It is extremely important to plan for expansion for your data center. When you are planning, make sure all of your cable trays and ladder racks can support up to 50% growth after the first installation. It is important to make sure your cables are long enough and aren’t stressed around corners or racks. Keep weights mind, your heaviest cables should be at the bottom of the tray or separated from other cables. This will ensure that the heavier cables aren’t putting stress on the lighter ones. A good way to prevent damage to the connectors from the weight of the cables is to use a strain relieve bar like this ↑
5. Use a Cable Comb
A Cable Comb is used by professionals to ensure that large cable bundles not only look good but are easy to maintain. Cable Combs are jigs that hold cables in place during the installation so no tangles occur. The result is a clean, organized, professional installation and improved server rack cable management.
Separating different cable types will make organization and function much easier. It’s always a good idea to keep the different cables grouped together and separated from other types. Also, be sure to keep your cables snug and properly connected!