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Old Mar 29, 2013, 04:14 AM   #1
tekboi
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Cat5e vs Cat6 Ethernet Cables for NAS storage

So, i've recently discovered that I only have Cat5e ethernet cables (not surprising since I haven't bought any in a while. I have a NAS (by Wester Digital) and the speeds are slow. I was wondering if it would help if I had a Cat6 Cable instead of the 5e. Especially since my router has gigabit ports on it.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 05:06 AM   #2
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Cat5e is needed (over Cat5) for 1000BASE-T because of changes which result in lower crosstalk. 100m is the maximum run. While I haven't used Cat6, it appears to be a slightly larger gauge and, is actually certified for 1000BASE-T. Although for most installations (especially shorter runs).

Cat5e should be fine unless it's a long run (>100m) and/or an especially noisy one, (it's rated for up to 350GHz). Lower noise environments would be good for either (plan cable routing as best you can).

The article I'm referencing also says if you are or intend to use 1000BASE-T, and all components in the network are rated for 1000BASE-T, it might be worth getting 6.

You didn't say what the slowdown speed actually was and if the NAS was RAID or?; also all interfaces: routers, switches, iNICs, etc all need to be rated for 1000BASE-T.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 06:14 AM   #3
nightmars
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What gr8fly wrote!!!

Cat 5e is absolutely enough - except if you ant to spend more money or built networks >100m (300ft)

Cat 5e at home usually works great up to 80 MB/sec

Actual network speed depends on your NAS - I am used to approx. 14 - 18 MB/sec (WD MyBook World - everything connected to a 1000 Mbit network) which usually is considered relatively fast for a private NAS (NAS only) - small server boxes (with CPU, RAM,...) can go up to 60-80 MB/sec, but are way more expensive.

If you have a 100 Mbit switch /router - then get used to 6-10 MB/sec transfer speeds.

cheers
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Old Mar 31, 2013, 10:59 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tekboi View Post
So, i've recently discovered that I only have Cat5e ethernet cables (not surprising since I haven't bought any in a while. I have a NAS (by Wester Digital) and the speeds are slow. I was wondering if it would help if I had a Cat6 Cable instead of the 5e. Especially since my router has gigabit ports on it.
I have a feeling the terrible speeds are actually due to your Western Digital NAS, not your cabling.
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Old Apr 1, 2013, 04:09 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by troy14 View Post
I have a feeling the terrible speeds are actually due to your Western Digital NAS, not your cabling.
I think u are right
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Old Apr 1, 2013, 09:45 AM   #6
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I think u are right
It's definitely the NAS. My old house was wired with CAT5 and I was still able to get gigabit ethernet speeds at most locations with no issues. Cat5e would be more than plenty. The problem with a NAS is that many are very slow. You really need to do your research before purchasing to see whether it is a "good" one or not. Frankly, I stick to DAS and just use file sharing because I can almost guarentee decent transfer rates compared to a NAS. But that's just me.
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Old Apr 1, 2013, 10:01 AM   #7
utekineir
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question.


assuming all devices and hardware on a home network is capable of saturating gbe, would cat 5e vs cat 6 make a real world difference?
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Old Apr 1, 2013, 10:09 AM   #8
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question.


assuming all devices and hardware on a home network is capable of saturating gbe, would cat 5e vs cat 6 make a real world difference?
No. At least not anything you would really notice from day to day use. Besides, outside of file transfers, there is very little in your home network that would saturate gbe. Video streaming doesn't even max it out (you would need several streams). Internet surfing uses a fraction of the bandwidth (at least for the "average homeowner", at my house I get a choice of 7mb or 12mb depending on the service). Music uses almost no bandwidth really. The only thing you are left with (as previously stated) is file transfers and frankly whether a file would arrive at 80MB/s or 100MB/s, I'm probably not going to notice since most of the time I start a file transfer and come back to it at a later time (so whether it completes if 4 minutes vs 5 doesn't really matter to me).
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Old Apr 1, 2013, 10:14 AM   #9
utekineir
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Originally Posted by paulrbeers View Post
No. At least not anything you would really notice from day to day use. Besides, outside of file transfers, there is very little in your home network that would saturate gbe. Video streaming doesn't even max it out (you would need several streams). Internet surfing uses a fraction of the bandwidth (at least for the "average homeowner", at my house I get a choice of 7mb or 12mb depending on the service). Music uses almost no bandwidth really. The only thing you are left with (as previously stated) is file transfers and frankly whether a file would arrive at 80MB/s or 100MB/s, I'm probably not going to notice since most of the time I start a file transfer and come back to it at a later time (so whether it completes if 4 minutes vs 5 doesn't really matter to me).

let me rephrase it,

is there a difference greater than nothing and dick on file transfers assuming all hardware is capable of saturating gbe and is currently doing so i.e. file transferring

i.e. 80mBs vs the supposed 120mBs gbe is capable of.
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Old Apr 1, 2013, 10:16 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by utekineir View Post
let me rephrase it,

is there a difference greater than nothing and dick on file transfers assuming all hardware is capable of saturating gbe and is currently doing so i.e. file transferring

i.e. 80mBs vs the supposed 120mBs gbe is capable of.
No difference.
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Old Apr 1, 2013, 12:37 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paulrbeers View Post
It's definitely the NAS. My old house was wired with CAT5 and I was still able to get gigabit ethernet speeds at most locations with no issues. Cat5e would be more than plenty. The problem with a NAS is that many are very slow. You really need to do your research before purchasing to see whether it is a "good" one or not. Frankly, I stick to DAS and just use file sharing because I can almost guarentee decent transfer rates compared to a NAS. But that's just me.
I'm getting mixed results with my NAS. When I first purchased it the speeds were decent. But now it's almost pointless to use it. I did move to a new location recently and I wonder if that has something to do with it sometimes.
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