A patch panel brings the cables from all the individual network outlets in the building or area together in one place. Each individual outlet will be cabled back to a socket on the patch panel and usually identified there by a number or some other code. Short cables, known as pach cables or patch leads, are then used to connect the outlets as required into the network switches. Using a patch panel in this way makes the network very flexible as any given outlet can be reconnected to something else whenever required simply by moving its patch lead.
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