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#335832 - 01/27/11 01:07 PM Ethernet Switching question
michael_d Offline
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Registered: 07/23/04
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I'm re-wiring my communication hub where I have all my home network, cable and phone lines dropped into the house. It's been a mess for years and I have finally got the motivation to do something about it.

Regarding the home network, I have 14 cat 5 hard wired lan locations. They all route to the patch block. I then use patch cords from the block to the router or switch. My router is a Linksys E3000. I also have a Cisco 8 port switch. The switch uses one of the E3000's ports, so I have a total of 11 ports. Not enough. I don't want to move cables around anymore, and believe it or not, I'm always doing just that. I figured I'd swap out the 8 port switch with a 16 port switch, or add a second switch. Would it be preferable to add a second switch or replace the 8 port with a 16 port? If I add a second switch, does it plug into the first switch or the router? I'm just looking for some basic does / dont's before I go shopping. It's a rarity to find what I actually want, so I need to be flexible and make whatever is available at the local Radio Shack work.
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#335834 - 01/27/11 01:09 PM Re: Ethernet Switching question [Re: michael_d]
Ken.C Offline
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Replace the switch. If you get a second switch, for simplicity, I would plug it into the first switch. You COULD plug it into the router's built in switch, and that would probably work, but then you're trusting the router not to do anything funky with its switchports.
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#335841 - 01/27/11 01:58 PM Re: Ethernet Switching question [Re: Ken.C]
oldskoolboarder Offline
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Registered: 05/25/03
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Yup, replace the switch w/ a 16 port and let it do the switching vs the router. You could stack another 8 port but it'll be cleaner w/ just a 16 port.

Plug one port of the 16 port into the router and you'll be good. If you get an unmanaged switch, it won't be too expensive. Don't get a hub.

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#335842 - 01/27/11 02:11 PM Re: Ethernet Switching question [Re: oldskoolboarder]
michael_d Offline
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Registered: 07/23/04
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Loc: Up yonder
OK, just for clarification.... If I can not find a 16 port switch, just get a second switch and plug it into the existing 8 port switch? Depending on what they have, and the switch dimensions, I may have to go with the second switch. I only have 2.25" to work with, as that is my shelf height.

I was also reading up on the E3000 and realized it has a USB port for a USB storage device. I'm contemplating just plugging my HP Home Media Server into that verses using the Lan. Anyone tried this before?
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#335843 - 01/27/11 02:12 PM Re: Ethernet Switching question [Re: michael_d]
Ken.C Offline
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That would work, yes.

Plugging the media server into the USB port on the E3000 will not work.
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#335847 - 01/27/11 02:27 PM Re: Ethernet Switching question [Re: Ken.C]
michael_d Offline
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Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 4195
Loc: Up yonder
Figures.....

So is it better to use the switch(s) for all the hard wired things, verses plugging things into the router and the switch(s)?
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#335848 - 01/27/11 02:28 PM Re: Ethernet Switching question [Re: michael_d]
Ken.C Offline
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Just from the standpoint of being elegant. I suspect that in practice, it makes very little difference, as long as the things on the router's built in switch can still talk to the things on the dedicated switch.
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#335868 - 01/27/11 04:48 PM Re: Ethernet Switching question [Re: Ken.C]
jakewash Offline
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Registered: 12/26/03
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I have 3 PC Lan lines plugged into my router which has 4 ports, the 4th port is feeding an 8 port switch where I have 5 more lines and one of those lines I have another 8 port switch (located in my HT center) which feeds all the HT gear. I have had no issues what so ever running this way.

Having written that down, I guess I should try running the HT switch directly off the router just to see if the Xbox works even better this way, not that it has had any problems so it would be hard to verify any benefit.
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#335870 - 01/27/11 04:51 PM Re: Ethernet Switching question [Re: jakewash]
ClubNeon Offline
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Registered: 02/06/09
Posts: 3466
Loc: Western Maryland, USA
You may see a millisecond or so faster latency when all the devices are on the same backplane.
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#335886 - 01/27/11 09:12 PM Re: Ethernet Switching question [Re: ClubNeon]
michael_d Offline
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Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 4195
Loc: Up yonder
What's a backplane?
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