Network cabinets are generally used for the storage of routers, patch panels, switches and a wide variety of networking equipment as well as networking accessories. In most cases a network cabinet will be far shallower than a server rack cabinet, generally measuring in at less than thirty one inches deep.
A Local Area Network (LAN) is comprised of multiple networking equipments like network switches, routers, UTM appliances, Servers, patch panels, cables, modems, etc. These equipments are generally kept inside a network rack, which is a closed or open enclosure that can hold them. The size occupied by networking hardware equipments follow certain industry standards so that they could fit in to the network racks, which too follow those standards. The common width of a network rack (and the networking equipments) is 19″ (Inches) – most of the racks are made to accommodate any equipment that can fit in to this space. Also, the networking equipments have fixed heights that are mentioned in terms of Rack Units.
Network racks are required for neatly, efficiently and safely holding all the networking equipments. If there are no network racks/ patch panels, then the cabling would look cluttered. Network racks can hold many components in a relatively smaller space, which enables one to utilize the available storage space very efficiently. Network racks are required for the physical safety of all the equipments kept within, as most of them could be locked and access denied for unauthorized personnel.
Network racks are also required for improving the health of the networking equipments stored inside. For example, when the cables are taken carefully and neatly through the cable managers in the racks, there is little chance of data loss due to excessive cable bends. Also, the cooling fans in the network racks provide additional cooling to prevent any damage to the networking equipments kept inside them, due to over heating.