Fiber U 

Cabling Jargon

Objectives: From this lesson you should learn:
The language of premises cabling
The meaning of specialized cabling terms
The jargon to help you understand the next lessons more easily

The key to understanding any technology is understanding the language of the technology the jargon. This lesson is an overview of cabling jargon to introduce you to the language of the technology and help you understand what you will be reading in this section. We suggest you read this section carefully to help your understanding of the rest of the pages and refer back to it when you encounter a term that you do not recognize.   

What is Premises Cabling?
By premises cabling, we mean the cabling used inside buildings (and in restricted geographic areas like campuses or among business facilities) that follows industry standards. Mostly we are refering to structured cabling systems defined by TIA-568 or ISO/IEC 11801  and related standards that are used for LANs, telephone systems and even other systems adapted to structured cabling like CCTV, security or building management. Other systems that depend on cabling such as security and building control are migrating to structured cabing for its widespread availability and predictability.

To begin with, what do we call this technology of cabling?
People call it lots of things:
  • VDV (for voice/data/video) cabling
  • Premises (e.g. indoor) cabling
  • Structured cabling (from the standards)
  • Data/voice cabling
  • Low voltage cabling (less than power cables)
  • Limited energy cabling (mostly harmless)
  • Teledata cabling (a made-up word from telecommunications and data)
  • Datacom cabling (an abbreviated version of data communications)
  • Some people just call it "Cat 5" from the first widely used copper cable
....but most people call it"premises cabling" for its application or "structured cabling" after the "568" standard.

Student Assignment:
Read the references and take the quizzes (Test Your Comprehension)

Online FOA Reference:
There is also an online glossary  with definitions of many more technical terms you can use for reference.

Book Chapter:
            FOA Reference Guide to Premises Cabling, Chapter 2, Appendix C Definitions of Terms

Test Your Knowledge:
Online Quiz

Next:  Lesson 3: Communications Networks and Applications        
Return to Lesson Plan


Fiber U Homepage

(C)2011-20, The Fiber Optic Association, Inc.