Consistent Identification Standards: Exactly how important are they?

Managing cable plant is simplified with consistent identification standards for rooms, racks, panels, faceplates, and network hardware. It is best practice to use the recommendations outlined the EIA/TIA606B naming standards guide.  Using this approach to identify hardware, ports and cables throughout the cable plant infrastructure helps to easily pinpoint a device’s location and connection during maintenance or in emergency situations.

As an example,  a faceplate may have a structure similar to:

BLD1.2D566.STA1.3

which identifies Jack 3 in Workstation 1 of Room 2D566 in Building 1.  This identification is ideal, as simply reading the label can tell you exactly where the object is located.

One issue we’ve encountered with numerous clients is inconsistent identification standards that have evolved as the cable plant has grown and changed over time.  Perhaps the original installation standards were lost or not given to replacement staff, who then created different standards, causing inconsistencies between newer and older infrastructure.  This is poor practice and should be resolved by ensuring that all identifiers are normalized to a common standard across the entire infrastructure.  This consistency not only assists in daily operations and maintenance, but provides a common approach to querying and locating cable plant data in the database.  Also, if under consideration, it improves the ability to organize data for eventual import into a comprehensive Configuration Management System.

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