Most carriers have a rectangular cross section, inside which the cables lie. Cross bars along the length of the carrier can be opened from the outside, so that cables can be easily inserted and plugs connected. Internal separators in the carrier separate the cables. Cables can also be held in place with an integrated strain relief. Mounting brackets fix the ends of the carrier to the machine.
Besides only bending in one plane due to the rigid jointed structure, cable carriers also often only permit bending in one direction. In combination with rigid mounting of the ends of the carrier, this can entirely prevent the enclosed cables from flopping in undesired directions and becoming tangled or crushed.