The effectiveness of data transfer over wired networks

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Wired networks make up a large percentage of all Internet communications due to their reliability and ease of installation. Unlike wireless networks, wired networks are not affected by physical obstacles.


The most common type of wired network cabling used in networks (as of February 2011) is Category 5 (Cat5) and Category 6 (Cat 6). This cabling is cheap and offers gigabit speeds. Like any other cabling, interference can occur.


Crosstalk is used to describe interference on a cable. In wired networks, crosstalk occurs when a wire interferes with another wire on the same cable. This issue can cause data loss and poor performance. This issue is greatly reduced with modern cabling due to the use of "twisted pairs," the wires are wound together to prevent interference from other wires.


Power cabling can be another issue for wired networks. Although less common with smaller household cables, large power cables can cause problems to wired networks if they reside in close proximity. These problems are often data loss, data duplication and slow transfer speeds. This issue can be resolved by ensuring power cabling is kept separate from wired network cabling or that the network cables are shielded from each other.


Under normal operating conditions, wired networks offer effective, reliable data transfer. Network devices, such as switches and routers, are used to transfer data between devices. When a router receives continuously large amounts of traffic it can commonly become congested and leading to slow transfer speeds and data loss.