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TDI on twisted pair.


Dartmouth Bank in Hooksett, N.H., was moving from 16,800 to 97,000 square feet. Resources from four subsidiaries were consolidated as part of the bank's plan to become a centralized regional organization offering customers full access to funds, records, and account data at all branches statewide.

The bank was using a Unisys A-Series mainframe with a CP2000 TDI controller which ran over a Belden 9272 cable. This double-shielded coax was tailored to the Unisys TDI marketplace.

The building had been wired with a 100-pair voice-grade cable that would not do for future 10Base-T applications--applications critical to the bank's five-year plan.

The bank needed two types of bussing, for single fixed-wall office sites and areas with clusters of terminals or work-stations.

The bank's vice president of operations first suggested converting from shielded coax to unshielded twisted pair (UTP)--an inexpensive, versatile medium.

Maurice (Moe) Fortier, vice president of MIS, contacted MOD-TAP System, Harvard, Mass., which designs, develops, and sells products and system-level solutions for integrating data and voice over a single cabling grid. Judith Sawdon, MOD-TAP New England regional manager, met with him and Anthony Melendy, the bank's datacomm analyst.

New Scheme

"There were many concerns," says Sawdon, "regarding use of UTP instead of the Belden cable. Unisys wasn't ready to support the system> they weren't familiar with this type of cabling scheme for TDI applications."

Fortier adds: "We really had one major question. Would it work?"

In a test using 1000 feet of cable and 10 devices, bank staff input data for a day. That convinced Melendy that "this was the way to go."

The solution involved universal cabling over UTP using a four-pair 258A wiring sequence. The system would provide a flexible, expandable architecture for any computer system or LAN the bank might implement, with allowance for at least 50% expansion over five years.

The vendor prepared a system-cabling design for 293 data and voice sites. It included all cabling needed to carry data and voice circuits from a main distribution frame (MDF) to terminal locations, or "drops," on two floors of the building.

To accommodate current TDI applications, bussing was done in the wiring closet for offices in fixed wall locations. for clusters of terminals or workstations, bussing was done in the office area.

Ready Access

Communications closets, vertically aligned, provided ready access for the trunk (or riser) cables to be pulled, terminated, and tested. New cable pulled for the datacomm system conformed to specs required for 10Base-T and TDI applications. All data circuits were wired from the sub-distribution frame on the second floor to the datacomm room on the same floor.

Each drop location had wall plates that incorporated voice and data in two separate eight-wire jacks. One four-pair cable was pulled, terminated, and tested for each voice jack at the MDF and wall plate.

Where the MOD Barrel wall plate was used, there were two voice jacks for each plate. One wall plate was surface-mounted in all areas that had demountable partition units, or "uniwall construction."

For areas with several workstations, a MOD-Tee adapter was affixed to the wall plate and a 6-inch patch cord run to an eight-wire harmonica, allowing up to eight terminals to connect in one area.

All cables were fed through a telco pole or wall partition for each area.

The bank had a month to centralize operations. There were three cutovers:

* Bookkeeping, reading, sorting, and other behind-the-scenes functions.

* A week later, the computer room, accounting department, and loan-servicing operations moved.

* Finally, the bank moved headquarters from branches and consolidated operations to the central site.
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Copyright 1990 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Dartmouth Bank
Publication:Communications News
Date:Dec 1, 1990
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