Clean and tidy installations with Startech enclosures

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It is important that we technologists install clean, tidy networks. There are no ifs or buts about it.

As you know, my company provides 3rd party IT support services to clients. Part of these services includes network installation and deployment. About a year ago, we were called up by a new client asking if we could look at their network and maybe clean it up and replace anything that needed replacing. They were experiencing some intermittence but persistent issues and wanted them resolved. So I headed over there and took a look at the setup. Here it is, in original form before I touched it:

OK I’ve seen some pretty bad cabling and shoddy looking installations before, but common. This is a small network with only a few elements to it. Why are the 2 Linksys routers being held up only by Ethernet cables ? Why is the Dell switch being sandwiched between the wall and the SonicWall to keep it up ? Why is there a random power cord, not plugged into anything, dangling by the breaker box ? So many questions that I’d love to ask the person that actually built this mess.

Here’s how it looked after we got finished with it:

I’m not a esthetician, but I’d have to say that looks a lot cleaner. Everything makes sense, and you can see what’s going on. No random wires dangling. Nothing being suspended with Ethernet cables. Nothing sandwiched using pressure to defy the laws of gravity. Just a professional, clean installation with a quality, vented enclosure by Startech.

There’s something we technologists always seem to forget: clients and users (for the most part) don’t know how computer networks function. They don’t know if issues they are experiencing are the fault of their local network, their specific computer, the internet, or whatever. However, they do have the ability to use their eyes and see what their network physically looks like. If they’re having issues, and they see that the installation looks like the first picture, they’re going to assume that’s what’s causing the issues, even though it might not be. In this scenario, the Linksys routers were pooched, which was to be expected given their age and deployment in a business environment.

Remember, how your work looks aesthetically is a statement to your professionalism. Neat, tidy installations prove that you care about your work. Messy installations prove that you just want to get the gear in and get paid. The latter certainly won’t get you much referral work.


Martin Lehner

Martin Lehner is an technology professional working for an IT services firm in Whitehorse, Yukon (Canada). He has been working in the technology field for over a decade. With a degree in Business Admin and numerous industry certifications, Martin leads a team of IT professionals that provide third party support for clients. Originally starting a company to offer web development services, Martin quickly realized that clients wanted the entire spectrum of technology services. When Martin is not at work (which is not often, since his company offers 24/7 support), he is busy at home spending time with his family.

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