Ethernet extension cable

in Techie Stuff
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I've recently had fibre installed from Plusnet and as I'm sure most of you will know, the modem has to be plugged into the master socket, which is my case, is right beside my front door (along with the wireless router).

In order to tidy things up, I want to move the modem and router upstairs and I understand that I will need an ethernet (RJ45?) cable to plug one end into the master socket and the other into the modem.

Can anyone recommend what cable I should buy? There seems to be so many different variations on the market, so if anyone has any links to the one I should buy, it would be most appreciated! I suspect that I'll need one approximately 20-30m in length (haven't measured it yet, but better too long than too short!)

Also, if I wanted to feed it through a stud wall, is it easier to drill a hole big enough to feed the connector through and then fill around it, or to cut the connector off and wire a new one on later on? Would I need any specialist tools for the latter?
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  • edited 29 November 2014 at 10:52PM
    CornucopiaCornucopia Forumite
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    edited 29 November 2014 at 10:52PM
    Are you sure that the Master Socket-Modem connection is Ethernet? I have fibre BB and this connection for me, is not.

    Personally, I would suggest keeping the modem with the Master Socket, and extending the connection between the Modem and the Router, which is definitely Ethernet.

    You can buy Ethernet cables very cheaply (eBay and Poundshops) and you can also get the male-male couplers very cheaply, too, to make longer cable runs from cheaper, shorter cables. I have a cable run of about 8m between the Modem and Router made from cheap cables and couplers, and it works fine.

    I would highly recommend simply passing the connectors through walls, rather than cutting them off. It is possible to fit new plugs with a specialist tool, but it's tricky to get the same kind of perfect result you get from factory fitted connectors.
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  • Money_Grabber13579Money_Grabber13579 Forumite
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    I'm not actually sure to be honest, I will admit to not knowing very much about all the various cables required for networking! All I know is that supplied with the modem was a yellow and a red cable, both of which have the same connections.

    However, the instructions were very specific that the yellow cable should go between the master socket and the modem, and the red cable for between the modem and the router (possibly the other way round, I'm not able to check at present). So maybe there is a difference?

    I think that's what confuses me most - everything looks exactly the same, but it isn't...

    Anyway, back to the original question! Our hallway is very narrow, not much wider than the front door, so even leaving the modem in situ wouldn't be ideal. Does moving the modem result in a degraded connection, or is it just the uncertainty over the type of connection?
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  • flashg67flashg67 Forumite
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    My Plusnet setup is the same as yours and the connection from master to the BT modem is the smaller type jack (RJ11?) so this is the cable you need to extend if you want to move both the modem and the router.

    Could you wall mount the modem above head height and above the door as you don't want to extend this cable too much - I found it degraded the signal on standard ADSL (not tried it on fibre though). Better if you can, is to leave the modem close to the master socket and extend the router Ethernet cable.

    NB I think the yellow ended cable is a standard ethernet cable used to connect the router to your PC for set-up purposes, or where you don't have wireless?
  • forgotmynameforgotmyname Forumite
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    RJ11 to the modem. Then black cable with yellow ends from modem to router.

    Although i have several routers here, From TT and BT also so not sure which box this cable came from?

    The BT router worked fine on the PlusNet connection. The TT one didnt.
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  • edited 30 November 2014 at 3:59AM
    esuhlesuhl Forumite
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    edited 30 November 2014 at 3:59AM
    If you want to make your own cable to the right length, you'll need some cat5e (or cat6) ethernet cable, an RJ-45 crimping tool and some RJ-45 plugs. And ideally a cable tester (to check your wiring).

    The cable comes in two main types -- fairly stiff cable for laying permanently and tacking in place, and much more flexible patch cables. If you need to lay a long cable, you might want to install RJ-45 sockets at one or both ends.

    A crimping tool is like this (and just under the main pic, you can see RJ-45 plugs and a cable tester):
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Memorycapital-RJ45-CRIMPER-TOOLS/dp/B004J02DRU/ref=pd_cp_computers_0

    If you use wall-mounted RJ-45 sockets like in the link below, you'll also need a punch-down tool to connect the wires (also shown under the main pic here):
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Cat5e-Double-Socket-Ethernet-Network/dp/B000Q6JRCK

    You should follow the T-568B wiring pattern when creating cables/sockets (no one uses T-568A):
    http://intranet.daiict.ac.in/~ranjan/lab/lab-1/Wiring%20&%20Cable%20Color%20Scheme.htm
  • paddyrgpaddyrg Forumite
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    I'd keep three box as close to the master socket as possible. By the time the signal has got to that box, it's had many miles and hazards to get there, so is attenuated. Adding low quality domestic cabling to that won't help. Instead, the cable to the router can be longer, the signal has been boosted back to normal levels by then.

    OK, it's an oversimplification, but with broadly the same results, so not a bad metaphor.
  • esuhl wrote: »
    If you want to make your own cable to the right length, you'll need some cat5e (or cat6) ethernet cable, an RJ-45 crimping tool and some RJ-45 plugs. And ideally a cable tester (to check your wiring).

    Your chances of making a decent Cat5 cable which will do 100BaseT reliably using cheap hand tools and a continuity tester are low. Your chances of making one which will do GigE are yet lower. Your chances of the cable surviving any significant amount of flexing over time are lower still.

    I used to do IT in a telecoms company which, amongst other things, made ethernet equipment. So we had good crimping tools, exotic production-line test gear and big drums of good quality Cat5.

    We still bought in Cat5 patch leads, because our success rate in making them wasn't great and didn't have the equipment for moulding on strain relief boots; that meant that even if we got the cables to work first time, their life expectancy was short.

    Originally we made them ourselves, but I got sick of intermittent faults which were hard to diagnose, so told my staff to stop !!!!ing about, order in a few thousand patch cables in assorted lengths and colours and replace every fly lead in the building on a rolling basis. Lo and behold, the level of intermittent networking faults dropped through the floor, and we made back the ten grand (or whatever it had cost) almost instantly.
  • Returning to the OP:

    "In order to tidy things up, I want to move the modem and router upstairs"

    Moving the router is OK, but moving the modem is likely to cause trouble in the future.

    VDSL wiring is notoriously troublesome.

    Either leave them where they are, or leave the modem where it is and link to the router using ethernet cable (GigE ideally, to future proof it, so making it up yourself is unlikely to work). In principle you could link the modem to the router over powerline ethernet over the mains, but by the sounds of things that won't help you.

    Another problem is that even if VDSL works when you run phone wiring between the master socket and the modem, it radiates like crazy (home wiring often isn't twisted pair), so you might be buying yourself other problems with other equipment. It's a miracle that people get ~50Mbps over telephone wiring. Don't disturb the magic.
  • CornucopiaCornucopia Forumite
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    Looking at Plusnet installation guides, the OP looks to have misunderstood the installation instructions.

    The Yellow cable is a standard Ethernet cable which is intended to connect to the customer's own equipment on the network to the Router. (In practice, many yellow cables are sitting idle as this step is Wireless).

    The Red cable makes the Ethernet link between the Modem and the Router. It is standard Ethernet, and colour-coded for ease of understanding (it goes into the Red incoming Ethernet socket on the Router).

    The link between Modem and Master socket is typically a grey or white cable terminated in smaller (RJ11) plugs. I wouldn't personally mess with this cable. It's best kept short for the reasons other posters have given. It would also be even harder to fabricate a long cable run.

    The OP could, conceivably, put a small cupboard into the wall and place the Modem within it. Alternatively, get the Master Socket moved - though there will probably be a charge for this.
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  • JJ_EganJJ_Egan Forumite
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    For many years i ran ADSL with an adsl nation filtered faceplate and ADSL Nation SST extension cable with RJ11 plugs .
    Upstairs via this connection was near enough identical to master socket connection .
    Straight transfer to use this cable when switching to Fibre .
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