I'm sure this question has been asked a hundred different ways, but I've been struggling to piece the various bits of information together and finding quite a lot of misinformation about ethernet cabling.

I plan to run 4x ethernet cables from my main switch to various points in my house. 3x are for PoE surveillance cameras (all external) and 1x is for my home office, which also requires an external run.

The cables will all pass through an external wall of the house, so here they will be at their closest (assuming I drill a single hole) and then for a couple of metres either side.

Although this is a domestic setup, there is a lot of local network traffic (e.g. continuous file backups) so Gigabit speeds are essential.

The longest run (furthest camera) is about 15m. None of it can be buried.

To summarise my main concerns:

  • Cable proximity (cross-chatter?)
  • Weather proofing (including UV)
  • Gigabit speed

What cable class would you recommend and what should I look out for to ensure the product is weatherproof?

  • You'll need Cat 5e cables (assuming 100/1000 Mbit/s links) that are explicitly suited for an extended temperature range. Normal TP cables don't handle that well and won't last long. Of course, you'll also need to protect the cables from sunlight, moisture and vandalism. Depending on speed and reach requirements, you should also consider fiber. However, product recommendations are explicitly off topic here, see the help center. – Zac67 Jul 11 at 10:26
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    Please get professional installation of your cabling. There are strict code requirements for indoor:outdoor wiring. – Ron Trunk Jul 11 at 13:32
  • NFPA/NEC doesn't say much about low voltage data wiring. (in short, keep it away from high voltage wiring.) As it sounds like the cables are going to be strung on the outside of a structure, I would very strongly recommend using outdoor rated, weatherproof conduit and fixtures. And use riser (CMR) or plenum (CMP) rated cable because they're designed to limit spreading fire. (CMP also limits toxic smoke) – Ricky Beam Jul 12 at 0:26
  • Thanks for suggestions of cable rating and conduit. No mention of proximity, so I'll assume a non-issue with cat5e. Regarding building codes, I should mention I am in the UK. I am disinclined to pay hundreds of pounds to run a few low voltage cables. – Tim Jul 12 at 8:51

Here are a couple of links that may be helpful. There are outdoor-specific data cables, mainly for waterproofing and UV resistance. A regular CMR or CMP cable will break down over time. I personally have installed CMR cable outdoors in an alley but it was a short-term solution.



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