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cat5 cable went bad, why?


medman2000
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Just trying to avoid compounding any problems. I've had one controller in the middle of my display on for a while, no problems. This morning I tested a new sequence, it didn't work as expected so I shut everything down, took a break, and when I came back (booting up computer, using hardware utility) everything beyond this middle controller was no longer recognized. Ended up being the cat5 cable going to this middle computer, first time I've ever had one go bad.

Just a fluke? Or are there any types of sequences or other hardware issues that might make these fail?

thanks for any thoughts -

medman

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The typical failure causes I would expect in typical LOR use include:

1) faults in home made cable, including using stranded wire only connectors on solid cable, or using solid cable in an environment subject to flex.

2) damage to cable, including kinks, nicks, wear.

3) Corrosion to cables/connectors.

Not knowing the details of your cabling, it is difficult to know which is most likely.

- Kevin

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I could see the kink/damage part I guess (store bought, new last year) - one of the kids or maybe even me in trying to position controllers could have tugged/bent something.

I was just worried I might have something with the show itself that could have damaged the one cable, just wanting to try and prevent multiple failures if this were an issue for others. Sounds like I should just pick one of my seven kids and just randomly blame him for it :D

thanks- medman

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Category cables are really designed to be an indoor permanent installation. While most of us just know of cat-5 (there is a 5e, 6, 7) there were cat-1 thru 4 designed and used by the phone companies. The original expectation of these cables was they would live in walls and never move much. Then we started using them in patch panels, now as jack to pc cables. But by using them outside, as we often are, pushes their capabilities. Cold and water and crushing (stepped on them lately?) and bending and sunlight and pulling, all these things work to degrade them.

But sending data over them should never damage them.

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At work, we use lots of outdoor UV CAT5. We use a lot of the white Indoor/Outdoor that Home Depot sells, but we've also found that it's thick jacket has lots of room for water... the slightest nick will let moisture in and that KILLS computer networking, and I'm sure it also is a problem for LOR signals.

I also had a problem with some new boards last month that had flaky CAT5 jacks- the spring pins that press up against the connector would collaps and stay down. I kept putting new ends on and replacing cables until I figured that out. Dan sent out some replacement jacks right away.. Although one of the controllers has a toothpick holding the RJ45 wedged in just right to make contact... Will worry about that in January... maybe.

Randall

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