Do I need a switch, a router, or both?

By Curryman2323 ·
Hello. I'm planning a SOHO network setup for my dad. It needs to have seven wired ethernet ports (wireless is not an option for a variety of reasons), and support QoS (due to VOIP). It also needs to share his broadband (cable) internet access.

My question is, do I need a network switch for this, or a broadband router? I've always used routers in the past, but very few offer seven ports. I've never used a switch before, but they seem to be readily available with the ports I require. Can such a switch simply be plugged into his existing router to add some more ports?

Finally, I would be most grateful for any links to hardware that would fit my needs, if anyone has an reccomendations. Thank you kindly for your attention.

-John Price

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a switch, look for one with a website with directions

by sgt_shultz In reply to Do I need a switch, a rou ...

yes, a switch will plug into the cable modem which is a router, you won't need another router, just a switch with sufficient ports.
Ususally what you do is connect the cable modem to the switch via a special 'uplink' port on the switch, or by using a special ethernet cable called a crossover cable. then you plug all the other network devices into the switch.
linksys has a good website with instructions. once it's all connected and all the link lights are green, run the network setup wizard from control panel on each computer and bob's your uncle.

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by ozi Eagle In reply to Do I need a switch, a rou ...


First are you sure that your cable modem is also a router?
I have spent hours trying to network to a cable modem, which the manual implied was a router, only to eventually find out that there is no router function in it and an external router was required.

If the modem is a modem/router you just need a switch. Plug a LAN patch cable from the modem into one of the switch ports.

If the modem is a modem only you will need an external router, I have used wireless router / switches successfully, just leave the aerial off and use the cable ports. You may also need a switch to give you more ports. Again just plug it into one of the ports on the router ( not the WAN port, which connects to the modem). Switches now a days don't need special crossover cables, they auto detect the polarity.


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