Switch and Router

By faz-image ·
Hi, I am a newbie in networking. I am going to start an internet service in a small and remote area but i still confused with the router and switch. I am planning to put about 21 computers in it. It will mostly be used for internet and not a lot of file sharing. How many switch and router do i need? Do I connect the ISP modem to router then switch or modem -> switch -> router? I would like to thank for any help in advance.

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All Answers

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On 24 port router would do the job well

by Deadly Ernest In reply to Switch and Router

The main difference between a switch and a router is:

A switch shouts out all communications and send them onto everyone on the network.

A router is very specific and identifies who's on the end of which line, so it sends the communications down that line and only than line unless it's message for all.

A router reduces the traffic to the minimum needed and there's less risk of communications clashing. In a router A can talk to V while C talks to D as E talks to F etc, while in a switch only one unit can talk at any one time. Think of a router like making personal phone calls while a switch is like a room full of drunks yelling at once.

The only reason anyone uses a switch is to save money, but I never put one in for more than five or six systems hanging off it, preferably a max of four units.

Almost forgot, A router can also be programmed to not allow traffic that doesn't suit certain minimums and some of the better ones now also include other security features like Network Address Translation etc.

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one switch one router

by 2BlueUK In reply to Switch and Router

But then again it also depends on the size of the premises.
If you are going to spread the network over two floors for example, or on the same floor in different parts of the building, it might be worthwhile considering two switches its better to have spaced out repeating points rather than long cables (assuming this is a wired network).
In a single office stick with one, even better instead of getting two 10/100 switches get a gigabit one.
Lastly I would suggest consider getting a Modem/Router rather than a modem, a switch and router, they are cheap as they are even BT sends them out for free to their business customers. If not you can pick one up for under ?50. It will cause less headache in a small environment on the long run.

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1 floor only

by faz-image In reply to one switch one router

All of the computer will be placed in 1 floor. I checked the gigabit switches, they only have 8 maximum port and the ISP in that area is very slow compare to the one in califonia. I am afraid, if I connect 4 or 5 router into the same modem will make the speed even slower or will it? I doubt they have modem/router there since the ISP is a lousy company who just worry about the money they make, I am saying this because the connection can be itterupted eventhough there are nothing happen or if it is raining the connection will not available and they charge $350 per month

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Yes you are correct the choke point will be the Internet connection

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to 1 floor only

The more that you add here the slower overall things will get particularly if the idea is to have everything on the Internet all of the time. If you use more than one router you will be isolating sections of the network from each other so every thing the other side of any additional routers will be invisible to any computers upstream of the router of if you where to fit 4 routers to the different output ports of a Modem the computers on different routers would be invisible to the others.

While your ISP may not provide 24 Port Switches that doesn't mean that they are not available but it may mean that they are not available in your area easily. Cisco have a large range available here

They also have a newsletter that may prove helpful here

While technically it is possible to run 1 large switch it would be better to use several smaller ones and break up the wiring. So if the modem has a 4 port switch included you could attach 4 8 port hubs to it or use 4 port hubs and daisy chain them till you have the required number. This would cut back the size of the individual bundles and make trouble shooting failed hardware easier.

Though 24 computers trying to access content on the Internet over a slow Internet connection will be very slow.


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Smaller switch port vs large switch port

by faz-image In reply to Yes you are correct the c ...

so, that means it is better to get 3 - 8 port gigabit switch and a router rather than 1 - 24 switch and a router? I found cisco retailer in other city, I am planning on contacting them as soon as I have the product type. Thank you for the input, that is really helpful

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1 server 15 clients

by faz-image In reply to Yes you are correct the c ...

If I need to connect to 15 clients computer to 1 server. will I be able to do it with 4 switches?

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It will work, but would be better with

by Deadly Ernest In reply to 1 server 15 clients

three switches and a router with the order of contact being

server - router - and three switches off the router.

You can use a fourth switch in place of the router but using a router there will cut back a lot on the network traffic and improve performance.

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Well here it all depends

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to Switch and Router

On how big the space is that you need to network these 24 computers. If you need to make any cable run over 175 Meters you need a repeater int he form of a switch to allow the signal to pass that distance.

Normally you would use a Router to connect to the Internet and these should be supplied by the ISP generally then with one of the Output Ports connect that to a Switch and then the 24 computers to the switch.

Depending however on the size of the space that you have available and if it covers more than 1 floor you may require more than 1 switch. I also agree that Ideally you should have a Gigabit Switch but if all or the vast majority of the traffic on this network is straight out to the net then 100 MEG Switch/s will suffice as your Internet connection will be considerably slower than this.

However if you are planning on using Wireless links to the computers and need to cover more than 1 floor you will need a WiFi Access Point for every Floor and then depending on the internal walls you may require more than 1 per floor. Normally WiFi has ranges of around 500 Meters but this can be shortened by Radio Absorbing materials between the WiFi Access Point and the Computer. Even a 54 MEG WiFi Network would be sufficient here with the vast majority of the network traffic being external and very little file sharing so Network Lags would hardly be noticeable. It would also save the initial costs of needing to run cable to the different computers and would be neater.

Though depending on the area in question if you need to share this over several floors or a wide area you would be better off running a cable between the areas that require the WiFi access points to improve network speed. Though here this is only 1 wire per WiFi Access Point so if you needed to cover 3 floors beside the initial cable in from the ISP you would only require 2 cables to be run to the other 2 floors and then connect a WiFi Access Point to the end of these cable runs.

Of course if this is in a small space the only cable involved would be the one from the ISP and even then most ISP's will supply WiFi Access Points that are incorporated into their Modems/Routers so there is only the one device needed to enable the 24 computers to access the Internet and no additional wiring involved.

But in answer to your original question the correct way is to feed the modem to a router and then the router to a switch to distribute the Internet connection to the 245 computers. The Switch would naturally have 25 Network Cables being the 24 to the computers and one from the router and then a power lead so there would be 26 wires involved. These can get messy if not correctly installed and bundled.


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Col, I can't believe anyone as knowledgeable as you

by Deadly Ernest In reply to Well here it all depends

would recommend putting 24 systems on a switch, unless you're assuming it's one of those fancy managed switches that are almost a router. In which case you may as well have a router as the cost difference isn't that much - at least not down here it ain't.

The signal clashes of 24 systems on switch, I shudder at the thought.

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DE I didn't say it was good practice

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to Col, I can't believe anyo ...

But just in light of the question asked as to what order that things should be fitted I did say that it would work.

I have severe doubts about the speed of any Internet access on that many systems over what is described as a Slow Connection but if that is all that is available then they will just have to work with it and hope for the best.


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