Network Computing is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Notes from the Lab

We've all heard about "security through obscurity", but working in labs has taught me that absolute clarity is much more secure than is confusion when it comes to know which devices and segments are connected to the network. With that in mind, I've got nothing but great things to say about the Dymo RhinoPro 5000, a professional labeler that helps keep cables, ports, and devices straight when we're moving too many boxes around in the racks.

The RhinoPro 5000 fits into your hand (OK, it fits into MY hand), so it's easy to carry behind the racks when you need to label a cable that's already in place, or put an identifier next to a device port to help keep things in order. If you're doing things the way they should be done (labeling before installation), the 5000 has hot-keys for pre-formatted labels for wires and cables of various sizes, terminal blocks, patch panels, bar codes, and more. You can print the labels on a variety of different label stocks designed for flat surfaces, pebbled surfaces, and curved surfaces (like cables) of different sizes.

Now you have to understand that I'm a big fan of labeling things anyway, since I've seen far too many problems caused by the rather simple mechanism of plugging dead-end cables into active ports, or vice-versa. I've used other labelers (a Brother p-Touch sits on my desk), but I find that I really like the RhinoPro--it's the sort of thing that will end up in my tool bag next to the hand-held cable analyzer, multi-meter, and other layer-1 goodies.

This isn't to say that the RhinoPro 5000 is absolutely perfect. The rubber bumper that's supposed to protect against dings and scratches is a bit awkward for my fumbling fingers to move on and off, and I wish that the tape cartridges held more linear feet of mylar (or plastic, or nylon) than they do. These are small quibbles, though, and don't take away from the fact that this is a rugged-feeling device that is a major tool in achieving greater security through clarity.