Tag Archives: SFP

What Cable Should I Use for My 10G Transceiver Module?

To deploy the optical network, the transceiver module and patch cable are the two basic components. According to the feedbacks of customers from FS.COM, one of the common problems faced by them is what cables they should use for their transceiver modules. To solve this problem, we make this post of patch cable selection guidance. Since the order for 10G transceivers ranks top, we are going to take 10G modules as a reference.

An overview of 10G Transceiver Module

Transceiver module, also called fiber optic transceiver, is a hot-pluggable device that can both transmit and receive data. By combining a transmitter and receiver into a single module, the device converts electrical signals into optical signals to allow these signals to be efficiently transferred on fiber optic cables. As for the 10G transceiver, it refers to the optical modules with 10G data rate. In FS.COM, there are mainly four types of 10G transceivers: XENPAK, X2, XFP, and SFP+. Even though these optical transceivers are all accessible to the 10G networks, they have different matching patch cables and applications.

10G Transceiver Module

Figure 1: 10G Transceiver Modules

Patch Cable Basics

Apart from optical module, the patch cable is the other vital role in networking. Patch cable, also called patch cord, refers to the copper or optical cable. It’s designed to connect one electronic or optical device to another for signal routing. Conventionally, the patch cable will be terminated with connectors at both ends. For example, the LC fiber cable refers to the optical cable fixed with LC connector. Typically, there are LC, SC, ST, FC and MTP/MPO fiber patch cables. According to different features, we can get various classifications of patch cables, such as fiber types, polishing types, etc.

Patch Cables

Figure 2: Patch Cables

Factors to Consider When Choosing Patch Cable for 10G Transceiver Module

Recently, most of the 10G transceiver modules are compatible with different brands and support higher data rates. It will be much easier to choose optical modules for your networking than selecting mating patch cables. Based on most applications, there are three major factors that can be taken into consideration: transmission media, transmission distance, and transceiver module interface.

Transmission Media

Classified by transmission media, two types of patch cables can be found in the market: optic fiber cable and copper cable. Correspondingly, there are two kinds of optical transceivers available: copper-based transceivers and fiber optic based transceivers. Copper transceiver modules like 10GBASE-T SFP+, they have an RJ45 interface, connecting with copper cables. Typically, Ethernet cables that support 10G copper-based transceivers are Cat7 and Cat6a cables.

As for the 10G optical modules, they can support higher data rates over optic fiber cables. It will be more complicated to choose fiber cables. Generally, there are multimode fibers and single mode fibers. Based on the specified needs for transmission distance, the answer will be varied.

Transmission Distance

To select cables, transmission distance is also an important factor that you need to take care. In the following table, we list the basic information of common 10G transceivers, including their supporting fiber cable types and transmitting distance.

Transceiver Type
Wavelength
Cable Type
Transmission Distance
SR
850 nm
MMF
300 m
LR
1310 nm
SMF
10 km
ER
1550 nm
SMF
40 km
ZR
1550 nm
SMF
80 km

As for fiber cables, single mode fiber is used for long-distance transmission and multimode fiber is for short distance. In a 10G network, the transmission distance of single mode fiber (OS2) can reach from 2 km to 100 km. When it comes to multimode fibers, the transmission distances for OM1, OM2, OM3 are 36 m, 86 m and 300 m. OM4 and OM5 can reach up to 550 m.

Transceiver Module Interface

Another factor you need to consider is the transceiver interface. Usually, transceivers use one port for transmitting and the other port for receiving. They tend to employ duplex SC or LC interface. However, for 10G BiDi transceivers, it only has one port for both transmitting and receiving. Simplex patch cord is applied to connect the 10G BiDi transceiver.

Summary

For your 10G network cabling, transceiver module and patch cable are necessary components. With a wide range of patch cables, selecting the right patch cables will be more complex than 10G transceivers. Generally, three major factors can be considered: transmission media, transmission distance, and transceiver module interface. To apply what you have learned in this post in cabling, you can visit FS.COM for all the transceivers and patch cables at one shop.

SFP Transceiver Module Troubleshooting

SFP (small form-factor pluggable) is a compact, hot-pluggable transceiver module used for both telecommunication and data communications applications. With the increasing high speed data transmission demands of people, products, such as SFP+, CFP and QSFP/QSFP+ etc. have taken a share of the market. Nonetheless, SFPs have still played an important role in telecommunication and data communication. As a widely used component in data transmission, it is hard to avoid faults in using SFP, and sometimes even result in a bad situation and heavy loss. This paper will help you to diagnose the SFP problems (take Cisco for example) and SFP transceiver module troubleshooting. I hope it would be acted as a learning tool and a reference for both new and experienced technicians who work in this field.

Transceiver-Solution

To diagnose SFP problems, you can get statistics from the browser interface, the CLI (Command Line Interface) or an SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) workstation. The most common SFP problems include these aspects:

  • Poor performance
  • No connectivity
  • Corrupted software

Poor Performance (or Excessive Errors)
Possible Cause:
The possible causes of this problem include that cabling distance is exceeded or port statistics show excessive frame check sequence (FCS), late-collision, or alignment errors.
Resolution:

  • Reduce the cable length to within the recommended distances.
  • See your SFP module documentation for cabling guidelines.

No connectivity
Possible Cause:
This problem is most likely related to cabling. Using incorrect or bad cable, or incorrect cable wiring, or STP (Shielded Twisted Pair) checking for possible loops may probably lead to this problem.
Resolution:

  • Verify the pinouts are correct for the proper application of cables.
  • Replace the cable with a tested good cable.
  • Wait 30 seconds for the port LED to turn green.

Corrupted software
The corrupted software here we mentioned include the following three situations.
1.The port is placed in error-disabled state after SFP is inserted.
Possible Cause:
This problem is usually caused by bad or non-Cisco-approved SFP module(ie. the incompatible SFP).
Resolution:
Remove the SFP module from the switch and replace it with a Cisco-approved module. Use the irrdisable recovery cause GBIC-invalid global configuration command to verify the port status, and enter a time interval to recover from the error-disable state. The best advice is to use the Cisco original SFP or 100% Cisco compatible SFP (If you decide to use a third-party SFP, please ensure that your supplier is assured) that is adapted to the switch.

2.Device does not recognize the SFP module.
Possible Cause:
This problem is generally related to the SFP installation. Situations, such as SFP is installed upside down or does not snap into the slot can cause this problem.
Resolution:

  • Verify that the SFP module is not installed upside down.
  • Remove the SFP module. Inspect for physical damage to the connector, the module, and the module slot.
  • Replace the SFP module with a known good SFP module.

3.Excessive errors found in port statistics.
Possible Cause:
Bad adapter in attached device or STP checking for possible loops can cause this problem.
Resolution:
Run adapter card diagnostic utility and wait 30 seconds for the port LED to turn green.

Some common error message of Cisco Switch When Using With SFP Module
Error Message: Transceiver module inserted in port
Explanation: The online insertion and removal (OIR) facility detected a newly inserted transceiver module for the interface specified in the error message.

Error Message: INIT_FAILURE: Detected for transceiver module in port, module disabled
Explanation: An initialization failure occurred for the transceiver module for the interface specified in the error message. This condition could be caused by software, firmware, or hardware problem. As a result of the error, the module is disabled.

Recommended Action: Try reseting the module. Hardware replacement should not occur first occurrence. Before requesting hardware replacement, review troubleshooting logs with a technical support representative.


Error Message: NOT_IDENTIFIED: Detected for transceiver module in %s, module disabled
Explanation: The transceiver module for the interface specified in the error message could not be identified and may not be compatible with the interface. The transceiver module specified in the error message contains a transceiver code which could not be correctly interpreted. As a result of the error, the module is disabled.

Recommended Action: Replace the module with a compatible transceiver.


Error Message: UNSUPPORTED-TRANCEIVER: Unsupported SFP transceiver found on board. Warranty/support may void
Explanation: The transceiver module for the interface specified in the error message is not a Cisco supported module. As a result of the error, the module is disabled. When Cisco determines that a fault or defect can be traced to the use of third-party transceivers installed by a customer or reseller, then, at Cisco’s discretion, Cisco may withhold support under warranty or a Cisco support program. In the course of providing support for a Cisco networking product Cisco might require that the end user install Cisco transceivers if Cisco determines that removing third-party parts will assist Cisco in diagnosing the cause of a support issue.
Recommended Action: None.

Related Article: How to Install SFP transceiver?

                             Understanding Video SFP Transceivers