A length of installed cable connecting two network components that are not in immediate proximity to one another. Laying cable runs is the main work of installing premise cabling in a customer premises. Types of cable runs include:
Different grades of cabling must be used for different runs to ensure compliance with building codes and safety standards. Examples include PVC (polyvinyl chloride) cabling and plenum cabling. The EIA/TIA wiring standards specify guidelines for using cable types and grades.
Cables connecting computers to patch panels (drop cables) and connecting patch panels with hubs and switches (patch cables) are generally not referred to as cable runs because they are not permanently installed and are usually quite short. The term “cable run” generally applies to cables that run from the patch panels in a wiring closet to other parts of the building.
When installing horizontal or vertical cable runs, use the highest grade that your budget will allow in order to accommodate future upgrades of your network’s speed and bandwidth. Use the enhanced category 5 cabling—which is a variety of unshielded twisted-pair (UTP) cabling—for all copper cabling installations. If you can, install parallel vertical runs of fiber-optic cabling with copper cabling in vertical rises to allow for future expansion of your network backbone. Installing two cables at once saves costs later, even if you need only the copper cabling now.