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Not Getting gigabit link at my workstation (only 100MB), with gigabit switches - any ideas why?

Posted on 2006-07-06
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Last Modified: 2009-12-16
We just connected our network to new gigabit switches, a Cisco and a Linksys.   We also just ran new cat5E patch cables from our old network closet to our new network/server room.  When I connect the servers, which are also located in that network/server room, to the gigabit switch, they get a gigabit connection.  When I connect my laptop directly into the gigabit switch with a short patch cable, I get a gigabit connection.  When I connect from my desk, through the patch cables, I only get 100Mb.  The patch cables at my desk is 5' cat5e to the wall, and the patch cable from the old network closet to the new server room is 75' cat5e.  I can't vouch for whether the old wiring in the wall is cat5 or cat5e.  Is there a length limitation on being able to get gigabit to my desk (i.e. ~95' of patch cable from my desk to the server room is too long), or might the old wiring in the wall be what's blocking the gigabit connection?  Any other ideas?
It's not a huge deal for me, but it would be if we had another server located outside the network room that needed gigabit....

Thanks in advance for your thoughts!
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Question by:atyar
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by:bigjimbo813
ID: 17051893
are you sure your desktop has a gigabit nic?
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by:bigjimbo813
ID: 17051923
agh doh! read the question wrong i thought it was a desktop computer.

Cat5 will support gigabit. check the wiring to the wall verify 4 TP wires.
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giltjr earned 100 total points
ID: 17052130
Cat5 may or may not support gigabit speed.  The standards say Cat5E at minumum.  If your Cat5 cabling meets the Cat5E requriments then it may work.  Some manufactures were exceeding the Cat5 requirments but as there were no higher standards, they could only lable them as Cat5.  The distance limitation is 333 feet (100m)

However, some installers did not follow standards when doing the wire installations.  I have seen:

  more than a 1/2" Untwisting more that 1/2 inch at the ends where they are connected to wall jack

  using cat3 wall jacks instead of cat5

  connecting to voice grade 66/110 blocks and using voice grade riser cables between floors (this will normally cause you to get 10 Mbps connections if you are lucky)

  splicing cables in the middle of a run


You may need to get/borrow a cable tester and check the wiring.  Not an el'cheapo box that just makes sure that the correct cables are connected, one that will test/verify operation at 1000 mbps.
 

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by:bigjimbo813
bigjimbo813 earned 100 total points
ID: 17052160
Cat5 is capable to support gigabit. you just need to verify all 8 wires are used. Some older CAT5 closets i have seen only used 4 of the 8 wires.

http://www.controlcable.com/43041687.html
http://www.networkworld.com/news/tech/2000/1016tech.html
http://searchnetworking.techtarget.com/sDefinition/0,,sid7_gci211752,00.html

just a few, google and you will turn up more
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by:giltjr
ID: 17052519
Yep, those articals state that.  You know I can even find articals that state IBM mainframes are all going to be replaced by windows servers, by 1996.  Guess that happned too.

Again, it is "capable" of supporting it.  If correctly run, terminated, using the correct equipment and staying within all of the specs, it will work.  Normally it did NOT, because cable installers were a bit sloppy and at 100 Mbps that did not matter.

This is why Cat5E came out.  The last time I looked at the revised standards for 1000-T it stated Cat5E as a minumum.  This was because of all the problems and issue that people had attempting to get it work with existing Cat5 runs, that were well under the 100m distance.  So they said, use Cat5E to make them re-run cables and to make sure that they were run according to specs.  Most people who attempt to run gig over Cat5, don't.
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by:bigjimbo813
ID: 17053644
giltjr, i can also find articles statements that state the world will only need 5 computers...whats your point?

Yet i never stated that it was a standard, BUT that it is possible.

Do I recommend it...NO, can it be done YES, under the proper conditions. As i noted, its possible if all 8 wires are connected.
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by:bigjimbo813
ID: 17053648
PS: CAT5e has support up to 10Gbit
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by:advega
ID: 17053953
Have you tryed to set up auto negotiation = off on your gigabit switch and nic's? most of cisco hw is tricky about auto negotiation, try it...
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by:giltjr
ID: 17054097
I never stated that it could not.  I stated that it may or may not.  Which means it might work and it might not.  You make it sound as if the only reqirment is that all 4 pair are wired through.  There is more than just that.

Yep, Cat5E is supposed to support 10 Gbit, just like Cat5 is support to support 1 Gb.
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by:0xnull
ID: 17054886
Check you switch port's link speed and duplex as well as your local duplex setting.  Gigabit only goes full duplex, so if you have autonegotiate for speed, but your duplex set to half, it will never connect.
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by:atyar
ID: 17200329
Sorry - I've been away from the office for a while and had forgotten about this topic.  As it turns out, when I take my laptop out to the wiring closet and plug directly into the patch cable that leads to the gigabit switch, I get a gigabit link.  Going from my cubicle, however, I still get just 100MBFull.  Conclusion - it's the wiring to my cubicle.  Maybe when I have some more time, I'll crack open the junction box at my desk and re-punch it down.  Maybe I'll get lucky.....
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