As with Fibre Cabling, Copper within a Data Centre environment is expected to have a usable lifespan 2-3 times longer than the networking hardware. This has become more difficult to achieve with copper as it is already struggling to keep up with the latest advances in bandwidth.

However, for sub 90m links, copper can still be a viable option offering a more cost effective alternative to fibre.  The number of shipped copper GbE and 10GbE ports far outweigh fibre ports which helps to drive the purchase cost down.  10GBase-T requires a minimum standard of Category 6A; it's currently unclear if you will be able to run 40GbE over Cat6a, even if it is for a shorter length (the draft standard is based on Category 8.)  Without doubt Shielded cabling will be needed however.


For switch to server/switch patching, our double shielded Cat6a cables are hard to beat in terms of available performance.  Assembled using Datwyler Cat7 cable here in the UK. This ensures plenty of performance headroom and cables are guaranteed to deliver 10GbE performance.  All cables are individually Fluke tested to ensure 100% compliance.

Data Centre image

We also pre configure patching looms, presenting RJ45 shielded Cat6a sockets mounted in a pair of 19" panels, with pre-connected lengths of Cat6a solid cables between the two.  This saves time in building rack to rack copper connectivity.

Other copper connectivity options

- DAC (Direct Attach Cables) which are 10GbE cables hard wired to SFP+ transceivers, and are a cheap way to interconnect devices with SFP+ slots provided they are in the same rack (10m max distance).

- CX4 cables which are similar to Infiniband, although these are becoming less common now that 10GBaseT is ratified.


  • 10GbE supported over SFTP cables - lower cost option compared to fibre

  • Pre-Patched 19" 10GbE Panel Looms - simply mount and patch into, saves installation time

  • 100% individually tested cables - reliable performance guaranteed


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