Ethernet: Cables Used by Macintosh Computers

This document describes Ethernet cabling used by Macintosh computers.

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

Current and recent computers

More recent Macintosh computers, those with a PowerPC G3 or later microprocessor, are fitted for twisted-pair cable with an RJ-45 connector (Figure 1). The RJ-45 port looks like a wide version of a standard RJ-11 telephone jack (Figure 2). The Ethernet port on is located on the back or side of your computer, depending on the model. It is labeled with the Ethernet icon.

Figure 1 RJ-45 Ethernet cable connector

Figure 2 An RJ-45 Ethernet port below the Ethernet icon

This document does not cover the fiber optic Apple Gigabit Ethernet PCI Card. For information on that product, see technical document 58296: "About Your Apple Gigabit Ethernet PCI Card"

Earlier computers

Earlier Power Macintosh and Quadra computers have the Ethernet icon, as in Figure 1, but with a different style of port. This is the Apple Attachment Unit Interface (AAUI) port. This type of port requires a transceiver, a small box that adapts the AAUI to the type of cabling used (such as RJ-45). On Power Macintosh computers that came with both an AAUI and RJ-45 port, you can use only one at a time.

Speed rating of cabling

Ethernet cable is available in different speeds. For more information on cable speed, see technical document 106655: "Ethernet: Speed of Ethernet Cabling"

Other types of cable

If your Ethernet network does not use twisted-pair, RJ-45 Ethernet cable, you may be able to use a third-party adapter to connect to connect. You may search for third-party products at the Macintosh Products Guide (

Last Modified: Feb 19, 2012

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