RJ45 Straight-through and Cross-over Cabling standards

The information listed here is to assist Network Administrators in the color coding of Ethernet cables. RJ-45 conductor data cable contains 4 pairs of wires each consists of a solid colored wire and a strip of the same color. There are two wiring standards for RJ-45 wiring: T-568A and T-568B. Although there are 4 pairs of wires, 10BaseT/100BaseT Ethernet uses only 2 pairs: Orange and Green. The other two colors (blue and brown) may be used for a second Ethernet line or for phone connections. The two wiring standards are used to create a cross-over cable (T-568A on one end, and T-568B on the other end), or a straight-through cable (T-568B or T-568A on both ends). Please be aware that modifying Ethernet cables improperly may cause loss of network connectivity.

Straight-Trough Cable:

To create a straight-through cable, you have to wire T-568A or T-568B on both ends of the cable.

The TIA/EIA 568-A standard which was ratified in 1995, was replaced by the TIA/EIA 568-B standard in 2002 and has been updated since. Both standards define the T-568A and T-568B pin-outs for using Unshielded Twisted Pair cable and RJ-45 connectors for Ethernet connectivity. The standards and pin-out specification appear to be related and interchangeable, but are not the same and should not be used interchangeably. Both the T-568A and the T-568B standard Straight-Through cables are used most often as patch cords for your Ethernet connections.

The straight-through cables are used when connecting Data Terminating Equipment (DTE) to Data Communications Equipment (DCE), such as computers and routers to modems (gateways) or hubs (Ethernet Switches). The cross-over cables are used when connecting DTE to DTE, or DCE to DCE equipment; such as computer to computer, computer to router; or gateway to hub connections. The DTE equipment terminates the signal, while DCE equipment do not.

Cross-over Cable:

To create a cross-over cable, you have to wire T-568A on one end and T-568B on the other end of the cable.

To connect two computers without a hub, a cross-over cable is used. Cross-over cable is also used to connect a router to a computer, or ethernet switch (hub) to another ethernet switch without an uplink. Most ethernet switches today provide an uplink port, which prevents a use of cross-over cable to daisy chain another ethernet switch. Straight-through cables are used to connect a computer to an ethernet switch, or a router to an ethernet switch.


RJ45 Pin Number Designations:There are pin number designations for each color in T-568B and T-568A.

                 T-568B                         T-568A
       --------------------------      ------------------------
Pin    Color             Pin Name      Color           Pin Name
---    -------------     --------      -------------   --------
 1     Orange Stripe     Tx+           Green Stripe    Rx+
 2     Orange            Tx-           Green           Rx-
 3     Green Stripe      Rx+           Orange Stripe   Tx+
 4     Blue              Not Used      Blue            Not Used
 5     Blue Stripe       Not Used      Blue Stripe     Not Used
 6     Green             Rx-           Orange          Tx-
 7     Brown Stripe      Not Used      Brown Stripe    Not Used
 8     Brown             Not Used      Brown           Not Used



RJ45 Color-Coded Scheme:

RJ45 cables have 8 color-coded wires, and the plugs have 8 pins and conductors. Eight wires are used as 4 pairs, each representing positive and negative polarity. The most commonly used wiring standard for 100baseT is T-586B stanrard described above. Prior to EIA 568A and 568B standards, the color-coded scheme was used to wire RJ45 cables. The table below depicts pin and color schemes used in traditional and standardized setup.

Pin Colored Scheme T-568B (Common) T-568A
1 Blue Orange Stripe Green Stripe
2 Orange Orange Green
3 Black Green Stripe Orange Stripe
4 Red Blue Blue
5 Green Blue Stripe Blue Stripe
6 Yellow Green Orange
7 Brown Brown Stripe Brown Stripe
8 White (or Grey) Brown Brown


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