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During the years I've collected many ethernet cables. I'd like to know the speed of each one (10Mbit / 10BASE-T or 100Mbit / 100BASE-TX or 1000BASE-T). How could I find out the speed of each Ethernet cable?

Most cables have codes written on it but I don't know how to figure out the speed from this codes!

For example:

  • Cable 1: E244650 (UL) TYPE CM 24AWG/4PRS (Red Color)

  • Cable 2: E189529 9V AWM 2835 24AWG 60°C VM-1 (Blue Color)

  • Cable 3: ENHANCED 4P 26AWG 350MHZ E188630 ISO11801 EIA/TIA 568A EN50173 VERIFIED UTP CAT.5E (Black Color)

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If the cable has 4 twisted pairs (Orange, Green, Blue, Brown) then it's capable of 1gbps link speeds, provided there's a gigabit adapter/switch at both ends. Cable 3 is a Cat5E, which is definitely capable of gigabit speeds. The other cables are, most likely, also Cat5 or Cat5E.

Whether you get 100 mbit or 1000 mbit speeds is really dependent on the Ethernet adapter at each end. If you have a 100 mbps switch then you'll only get 100 mbps speeds even if the cable is Cat6. As long as you have 4 twisted pairs you should be able to get gigabit speeds from gigabit adapters unless there's a physical problem with the cable.

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Google E244650 + cable, EN50173 + cable, and so on. If this is for home usage, I don't think it would matter anyway. If you're building a server farm, throw them all away and buy new ones.

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I would read up about the different categories of Ethernet cables. Wikipedia pages are very comprehensive in there coverage.

The different CAT or categories are used to differentiate the use of the cable. It is about the quality of the cable and how well it will handle different type of interference. How well it is suited to the environment it will be used in.

CAT 5 Older cable, and the most commonly used. used for 100mbit connections, It is capable of 1000mbit connection.
CAT 6 better quality then CAT5, designed for 1000mbit, some specification of CAT6 are also used for 10gbit connections.

Considering all the other Stuff printed on the cables. The Wikipedia articles could probably help as well. It refers to the different standards organisations and there codes for referring to exactly the same thing. A category 5 or 6 cable. It also tells you what type of plastic insulation is used. How many twists are in the cable.

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