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Blog Category: Industrial Ethernet

Posted by: Heather MacKenzie on September 17, 2014

Nowadays, the primary goals for many industrial engineers are maximum productivity and minimal downtime. However, some of the key components critical to reliable network communications are often overlooked. These components include cables, switches and connectors, items that are difficult and time-consuming to troubleshoot or replace.

In addition, disruptions in a cabling system are more common than you might expect. Plus, if a cabling system component or Ethernet switch fails, the repair and labor costs alone could be 15-20 times the cost of the component itself.

Investments in high-quality, rugged Ethernet infrastructure – designed specifically for use in harsh environments – can therefore provide tremendous peace of mind to network engineers and administrators. Let’s take a look at nine tests to determine if your industrial grade cable is secure and ruggedized.

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Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: Heather MacKenzie on September 15, 2014

The age of malware specifically targeting ICS systems began in 2010 when Stuxnet was revealed to be disrupting operations at one of Iran’s nuclear enrichment facilities. Since that shock we have seen advanced malware such as Flame and Duqu target energy companies for espionage purposes and unsophisticated but highly effective malware massively infiltrate Saudi Aramco.

Today I am writing to let you know about a new malware, coined as coming from the “Dragonfly hacking group” by Symantec. What does this have to do with everyday ICS and SCADA security? Let’s take a look at the Dragonfly malware in more detail and see what we can learn from it.

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Blog Category: Data Centers

Posted by: Michael Salvador on September 11, 2014

Over the past couple of years, data center infrastructure management (DCIM) vendors have done a better job of delivering features that help reduce the complexity of the integration process.

When it comes to evaluating DCIM solutions, there are several capabilities to consider, but one of the most important to look for is mobility.

Why is mobility so critical to infrastructure management? Mobility is a key feature that goes a long way in easing deployment, enabling auditing and maintaining accuracy as the data center and the DCIM system evolves.

Let’s take a closer look.

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Tags: DCIM

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Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: Heather MacKenzie on September 10, 2014

The End of Service (EOS) for Windows XP means it is going to be harder to keep existing industrial networks cyber secure and available.
Fortunately there is an easy fix for mitigating Windows XP risk now. It is as simple as installing industrial firewalls to protect your control networks from malware, whether introduced accidentally or maliciously.

Now, many vendors’ claim that using their products is “easy”. Just like programming a VCR was never as easy as it was cracked up to be, you might be suspicious of our assertion that installing industrial firewalls is easy.

Today one of my colleagues shows you just how easy it is

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Blog Category: Data Centers

Posted by: Paul Kish on September 04, 2014

Two important channel transmission parameters that most are familiar with for Category 6A cabling to support 10GBase-T applications include alien crosstalk and insertion loss (IL).

Alien crosstalk is a measure of the noise coupling between adjacent channels that are in close proximity (i.e., sharing the same pathway). Insertion loss is a measure of the received signal and is dependent on the length of channel (i.e., the longer the channel, the weaker the signal).

But did you know that other unmentioned parameters related to the pair balance of cables and connectors are also good indicators of noise immunity and hence support for 10GBase-T?

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Blog Category: Industrial Ethernet

Posted by: Heather MacKenzie on September 03, 2014

If your mailbox is filling up with information on mobile apps and tablet solutions but you don’t believe that industrial wireless technology is dependable enough, I have news for you. New advances in technology and standards mean that the number one concern about it – reliability – has been completely overcome.

Questions such as:
• Will it work in my noisy environment?
• Will it be robust enough to ensure my data makes it to its destination?
• Can it ever provide me with the assurance I need that it is stable enough?

can now all be answered with a resounding “Yes”.

Furthermore, there is an easy way to learn all about what’s new and even get hands-on experience using the latest wireless technologies. All you need to do is block out three to four days to attend an event we are holding this fall in Houston, Texas (Sept. 21-24).

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Blog Category: Data Centers

Posted by: Michael Salvador on August 28, 2014

While it might be tempting to paint unshielded twisted-pair (UTP) cables or patch cords to match wall color or other surrounding environments, you could be painting yourself into a corner.

UTP cables are NOT designed to withstand exposure to the chemical compounds found in common paint products. In fact, Belden's longstanding policy is that cables should not come in contact with any type of paint contamination, regardless of application.

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Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: Frank Williams on August 27, 2014

Industrial network security is a top of mind concern for managers in industrial automation organizations. However, there isn’t a simple formula for applying it and many engineers either don’t know where to start or don’t know how to develop practical skills in this area.

For those of you looking for a straight forward solution, consider attending our upcoming Industrial Ethernet Infrastructure (IEI) Design Seminar, being held Sept. 21-24 in Houston, Texas. Many of Belden’s top security experts will be there presenting a special “track” of sessions related to network security. Our goal is to help event attendees learn where to start with their security strategy, in a practical way that’s not overwhelming or complicated.

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