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gigabit ethernet workgroup switches

I'm fortunate in that my house is wired with CAT 5e throughout.  I'm currently reworking my home network to

1) accomdate a mythTV media server in the living room

2) do high speed network application testing

I want to upgrade to gigabit ethernet, and a few low cost workgroup layer 2 switches from linksys, dlink, and netgear have come on the market.  They are going from around the $80 range from amazon, newegg, etc. for 5 ports.  Since they are pretty new, I can't find much information on them.  Has anyone tried any of them? 

The prices jump dramatically when you go beyond the low-end of gigabit switching to say a mid-end layer 3 switches such as the Cisco Cat 2950 at $3000. 

I just wonder what the performance of these low end switches is like.  I doubt the CPUs can keep up with a loaded gigabit network.   

christopher baus (
Thursday, January 22, 2004

What awful problems to have! :)

Thursday, January 22, 2004

Yeah I am interested in low cost gigabit baby switches/hubs as well, any recommendations in this area is welcome. I like to know the going price, which companies makes the best ones, throughput snake oils to look out for, etc.

Most of us at work or at home are tired of having the NIC card being the bottleneck too. The effective bandwidth of the PCI, the memory, the hard drive all seems to be perfectly capable of pushing through at least 200-350Mbps, my understanding is that gigabit NIC cards right now does 400Mbps effective, what's everyone's opinion on this?

Li-fan Chen
Thursday, January 22, 2004

Baby switches: DGS-1005D and D-Link - DGS-1008D, inexpensive and very popular;

NIC cards goes for USD$25+, CAT6 or CAT5e are usually just a slight premium over no name CAT5s.

You'll have to ensure your PC is fast enough to transfer and receive at this rate though, not all PCs are equal.

Li-fan Chen
Thursday, January 22, 2004

Note that some of the cheaper ones (like Linksys's "gigaswitch", IIRC) consist of one gig-E port and the rest are 10/100--I guess you're supposed to put your gig-E server on the 1000 port and your 10/100 clients on the rest.

null fame
Friday, January 23, 2004

I've noticed that.  There are some 5 ports by DLink and Linksys that are < $90.

christopher baus (
Friday, January 23, 2004

I've had a Netgear GS105 in my home office for a few months now.  I really like it.  It's fanless!  No fan = no noise and nothing mechanical to break in 3 weeks.  It does run a little  hot.  It won't burn you but it's uncomfortable to leave your hand on it.  It's case is metal and very nice.  My only complaint is the lights are on the same side as the ports.  I like to have the ports out the back and the lights out the front, it keeps the wiring clean.

I looked at the Linksys EG008W recently and almost bought one but I read a review somewhere and it mentioned it had a fan and was exceptionally loud.  My switch is mounted too close to me to have a fan in it so that was out of the running.  Linksys also has the new SD2008 which is under $200 but I haven't heard if it's fanless or not.

The D-Link DGS-1005G and DGS-1008D are priced well  but I cant find any info about fans.  Does anyone know if they have fans in them?

Netgear has the GS-108 out now which they mention is fanless and silent in the documentation.  I found it for good prices  (under $170) so it's probably a good option. 

FYI, I found that I could transfer files across my GS105 at about 25 MB/s.  It's not 100MB/s but it's a lot better than 10 and in my opionion worth the money.  I suspect the limitation was my machines or the switch.  25MB/s pretty darn fast. 

Eric Garland
Tuesday, March 9, 2004

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