Installing Optical nTAP
Decide where to place the nTAP and physically mount it, if desired. Depending on the form factor purchased, this may be in a drive bay, rack mount bracket, or wherever it is most convenient.
Connect your device of interest (for instance, switch, router, etc.) to the 10/100 Copper nTAP using standard optical cables with an LC connector to complete the pass-through connection.
Connect the nTAP to your analyzer or other monitoring device using optical cables. Be certain to connect to the receive ports of the capture card in your analyzer.
The network adapter you connect to the Analyzer side of the 10/100 Copper nTAP must have auto-negotiation disabled, otherwise no traffic will be passed to that network adapter. This also means the network adapter must support the ability to disable auto-negotiation; not all third-party network adapters support this. However, all Gen3 capture card models can enable and disable auto-negotiation.
An Optical TAP splits the full-duplex signals, allowing the monitoring device access to a copy of the data stream while maintaining uninterruptable data flow through the monitored link. Optical TAPs require no external power. They are available in various split ratios to match the optical signal strength requirements of the network connections and of the monitoring equipment.
When traffic comes in to Link A, two copies are made in the TAP. One copy is sent out Link B to the switch and the other copy is sent out the Analyzer port A to the analysis device. A similar thing happens with traffic that comes in Link B. Two copies are made. One copy is sent out Link A and the other copy is sent out the Analyzer port B. Due to how the TAP is designed, it is not possible for traffic from the Analyzer side to pass to the Link side.
Figure 15: Cabling the Optical TAP
Caution: Before you temporarily break the link between the device of interest and the network, you may want to shut down access to that device and notify users of the down time.
1. Disconnect the cable from your device (typically a switch) and connect it to Link B.
2. Use another full-duplex cable to connect the network device (or primary device in a failover arrangement) to Link A port, thus completing the pass-through link.
3. Use a Y-cable (i.e., a splitter cable) to connect the Missing glossentry for "optical_ntap"‘s Analyzer port to the receive sockets on your analyzer’s capture interface. Be certain to connect the cable to the capture card in your analyzer. As an alternative, you can split your own duplex cable (or use two simplex cables) to connect each side of the Analyzer ports on the TAP to the receive ports on each of the NICs in the analyzer.
4. Ensure that auto-negotiation is disabled on the receiving capture card in your analyzer. See the documentation for your capture card or analyzer for details. If auto-negotiation is enabled, the analyzer will not be able to receive the stream from the TAP until it is.
All Optical TAP devices contribute to optical attenuation. See a fuller discussion of it in Attenuation.
Optical Technical specifications
This section lists the dimensions, power requirements, supported media, and environmental requirements.
Both power connectors are located on the back panel, along with the model information and serial number.
Power requirements
AC Input
Environmental requirements
Temperature range
-40° to +185° (F) / -40° to +85° (C) (operating)
-52° to +185° (F) / -47° to +85° (C) (storage)
35-85% (non-condensing)
Supported media
Multimode or Single-Mode
LC (but MPO if 40 Gb short-range)
Fiber diameter
Multimode: 50 or 62.5/125 micrometers (µm)
Single-Mode: 9/125 micrometers
Wavelength ranges
Multimode: 850 or 1300 nanometers
Single-Mode: 1310 or 1550 nanometers
Wavelength tolerance ranges
850/1300 (Dual-window) Multimode
+/- 20 nanometers
1310 or 1550 (Dual-window) Single-mode
+/- 40 nanometers
Insertion losses
5.62 in/14.28 cm
1.15 in/2.93 cm
7.79 in/19.78 cm
LC connector adds .476 in/1.213 cm