Today, users not only need connectivity testing but also performance testing to ensure that a link will support high-bandwidth applications. To allow contractors to test links before patch cords or equipment cords are installed, the TIA channel performance task group, formerly known as the link performance task group, has defined a "basic link," previously known as the "contractor`s link." A basic link includes up to 90 meters of uninterrupted UTP cable with connecting hardware on each end. This allows the contractor to install the horizontal or backbone subsystem, test the subsystem, provide the results to the building owner and get paid--and all before the building is occupied, much less networked.
Donna Ballast is a communications analyst at the University of Texas at Austin and a BICSI RCDD. Questions can be sent to her at Cabling Installation & Maintenance or at PO Drawer 7580, University of Texas, Austin, TX 78713. Phone (512) 471-0112, fax (512) 471-8883. Internet ad