New Fluke Networks LinkIQ Troubleshoots Network Cabling
Published on : Tuesday 04-05-2021
By : Editorial Team
New tester combines the company’s advanced cable performance technology with switch diagnostics.
Fluke Networks has introduced the LinkIQ™-IE Cable+Network Industrial Ethernet Tester designed to troubleshoot network cabling, the leading cause of Industrial Ethernet failures. With Ethernet-based technologies increasingly the default for automation networks, the need for easy-to-use tools to troubleshoot these networks is growing rapidly. By combining Fluke Networks’ state-of-the-art cable measurement technology and basic tests for Industrial Ethernet switches, LinkIQ-IE speeds and simplifies the discovery of network failures in a simple to use touchscreen interface, akin to a smartphone.
Ethernet is becoming critical as it becomes the dominant technology for automation. In their annual survey, HMS Networks, a provider of industrial communications solutions found that 70% of newly installed factory automation nodes employ Industrial Ethernet. Research from Indu-Sol, a leading industrial network support organisation, finds that more than half of their Industrial Ethernet service calls result from cabling-related issues. Clearly, the ability to test and troubleshoot this cabling is critical to supporting industrial automation.
“Troubleshooting Industrial Ethernet problems often involves the use of complex tools such as protocol analysers that require years of training or trial-and-error approaches such as running bypass cable in the hope of solving the problem,” said Walter Hock, vice president of product for Fluke. “We designed LinkIQ-IE to provide answers to key troubleshooting questions in seconds through an easy-to-use touchscreen interface and a price that puts it in the reach of factory teams.”
“With the ability to display switch port, VLAN, and PoE information, LinkIQ-IE is a great addition to our toolkit,” said James Sinn, owner of Sinn Development, an Oakville, Ontario-based provider of design, installation and troubleshooting services. “And the cable tests are essential as well. The first thing I did with LinkIQ-IE was to test the cabling for a face shield production line. It instantly showed me that the cause of the problem was a disconnected shield that made the cable susceptible to the EMI from a nearby machine tool with a large induction motor.”
The LinkIQ-IE is based on a single-test approach that automatically provides the appropriate measurements based on what’s at the other end of the cable. For an open cable, it shows the length and pairing. If it’s terminated with the supplied remote, the test result shows the maximum data rate the cable can support – up to 10 Gb/s. If the cable is connected to a switch port, LinkIQ-IE shows the name of the switch plus the port name, speed, and duplex. If PoE is advertised, it will display the power and class (up to 90 W or Class 8) and then load the switch to verify the power can be delivered.
The LinkIQ-IE features an RJ-45 type connector and includes cabling and adapters simplifying connection to M12-D, M12-X, and M8-D connectors commonly used in industrial applications.
1. The LinkIQ™ Industrial Ethernet Cable + Network Tester solves the #1 cause of Industrial Ethernet Failures.
2. The Link IQ can be used to validate cable performance to support Ethernet/IP, PROFINET and EtherCAT, using frequency-based measurements. Identifies mis-wired and split pairs on RJ45, M12X, M12D and M8D terminated cables.
3. The LinkIQ also performs nearest switch diagnostics to identify key network issues and validate switch configuration, eliminating the need of using another device.
Cable testing one can trust
a. The LinkIQ™ is capable of measuring lengths up to 1000 feet (305 m) and provides distance to faults such as opens, shorts, and unterminated cable.
b. Using the specially designed Industrial Ethernet cabling remote ID allows for a complete wire map of the cable pairs which helps identify mis-wired and split pairs.
c. The primary cable testing feature of LinkIQ™ is the cable performance test which qualifies the cabling bandwidth from 10BASE-T to 10GBASE-T (10 Mb/s up to 10 Gb/s). It performs these tests via frequency-based measurements.
Along with the robust cable testing features, the LinkIQ™ also provides detailed information on the nearest connected switch. The LinkIQ™ negotiates with the switch to identify the advertised data rate (up to 10GBASE-T), half/full duplex identification, the switch name, port number, and VLAN info.
In-depth PoE testing
While Power over Ethernet makes installation of devices such as security cameras and access points simpler, a survey by the Ethernet Alliance of over 800 installers, integrators and end users found that four of five respondents experienced difficulties in integrating PoE systems.
To simplify PoE installation and troubleshooting, the LinkIQ displays the pairs where power is provided, including the different power levels and pairs for dual-signature implementations. Further, the LinkIQ will place a load on the connection to ensure that the advertised power is actually being delivered by the switch across the cabling infrastructure.
• Generates Analog or Digital tones compatible with the IntelliTone™ Probe or Pro3000™ to assist in locating cables in a wall or telecommunications room
• Blink Port light on switch to help identify the connected switch port
• Compatible with MicroScanner™ PoE Remote Identifiers for Ethernet outlet identification
• Touch Sensitive gesture-based display
• Rechargeable Li-Ion battery
• Easy Feature and Network Testing Upgrades via USB-C via LinkWare™ PC
• Charging via standard USB-C port
Availability: The Fluke Networks LinkIQ-IE Cable+Network Industrial Ethernet Tester is available for purchase from resellers worldwide or directly through the website:
For more information about the LinkIQ-IE, please visit www.flukenetworks.com/MeetLinkIQ