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Switches or Hubs?

By TomSal ·
I'll keep this as short and to the point as I can....we are a rapidly growing company (70+ employees, $15 million a year, growing about 25% a year) we are securing a new location this summer...we have a new budget...do I get hubs or switches for my new networking design for a 100mb Fast Ethernet NT network, we will have 5 departmentalized servers, a web server (all users need internet access)...we plan on being at roughly 150 employees in 2-3 years time. Also, what exactly is the best advantageof Switches over Hubs? Besides the dedicated bandwidth issues.

Just looking for input and information from pros with experience instead of opinions and comments from someone who just reads magazines or books.

Thanks.

-Tom

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switches vs hubs

by awilliam In reply to Switches or Hubs?

i'd opt for the switches...

to keep it simple...switches and hubs are essentially the same thing. main difference being that switches direct packets to ports based on mac addresses. they dynamically learn the mac's then when a packet comes in it forwards it on to the corresponding port (not all ports, unless its a broadcast packet, then it is sent to all ports). other nice features include spanning-tree (protocol used to provide loop-free environments) and vlans (seperates your broadcast domains).

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I vote for the switches..

by ARG CIO In reply to Switches or Hubs?

a switch is a cross between a router, and a hub. Not as configurable as a router, but more features than a hub. If you ever plan to have more than 100Mb moving on your LAN, use a switch. If your just serfing, and serving, and you only have a T-1, then hubs are fine, but if you transfer files, print, surf, serve, and do ANYTHING that requires high bandwidth usage during office hours, use a switch. You would be surprised at how much better your network runs when everyone has 100Mb to each other, rather than sharing 100Mb for EVERYONE.

But, depending on your LAN setup, you may want both.. Internet connection to switch, and 6 or 7 hubs connected to switch. Work stations connected to hubs, Servers directly to switch if possible, or spread them out over different lines on the switch. There really are several possiblities, and the variables are speed requirements, budget, security, and number of users. I have a four port 100Mb switch. 768Kb ADSL internet line and web servers connected to 10Mb hub, which connects to switch. The (small) office is divided three ways. Our PDC, and "west wing" users are on 100Mb hub to switch. Our BDC and "east wing" are connected to 100Mb hub to switch. Our Second Floor connects to 100Mb hub, which is connected to the last port in the switch. Speed between computers is very high (only about 35 users), and we still have a lot of bandwidth available.

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