How should Network Cables be Labeled?

March 21, 2013 2 By Eric Shanks

I’ve recently had to label more network cables than I care to discuss, but found my mind wondering over the best method to label these cables.  I’ve come up with three different ways to label networking cables and wanted to get some thoughts from other Engineers about how they go about this.

Method 1:  Same label on both sides

This method creates 2 labels that are identical and puts one label on each side of the cable.  This give the advantage that if you’re running multiple batches of cables all at once, you can determine exactly which cable you’re working with.




Method 2:  Label the side it’s plugged in on

In this method, you put a label on each end for where it’s plugged in.  To me this seems to be a silly way to label Ethernet cables because you can obviously see where it’s plugged in.  The only reason I can fathom to do it this way is if you’re moving equipment around a lot and want to remember where each cable goes when you need to plug it back in.




Method 3: Label opposite sides

This is my preferred way to label, but I’m flexible 🙂

Put a label on each side of an Ethernet cable describing where the other side of the cable is plugged in.  This adds the benefit of being able to immediately tell from looking at one end, where the other end of the cable is.  I like it better than Method 1 because once everything is plugged in, you may have to go hunting for the other label just to find out where it’s plugged in at.  This also has the benefit that if you’re unplugging your devices, you can still tell where the cables should be plugged back in, although you must think a little and do everything backwards.



What do you think?  I’d love to hear some feedback on this!

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