Shielded vs Unshielded Ethernet Cable: Which Should You Use?

Ethernet cables are classified into sequentially numbered categories (e.g. Cat6, Cat7) according to different specifications. And these categories are how we can easily know what type of cable we need for specific transmission speed, Cat5e Ethernet cable supports up to 1000Mbps, while the latest category Cat8 Ethernet cable can be up to 25/40Gbps. But as for shielded vs unshielded Ethernet cable, how to choose? To find this out, make sure you know the basic information and differences between the two types.

Shielded vs Unshielded Ethernet Cable: Basic Information

A shielded cable or shield twisted pair (STP) cable has an outside layer or “shield” of conductive material around the internal conductors, which needs to be grounded to cancel the effect of electromagnetic interference (EMI). The conductive shield can reflect or conduct external interference away without affecting the signals of the internal conductor. Therefore, shielded Ethernet cables are usually used to protect signals from EMI over the length of the cable run, so as to result in faster transmission speeds and fewer data errors.

Unshielded means no additional shielding like meshes or aluminum foil are used. Because of this, unshielded Ethernet cables, also called unshielded twisted pair (UTP) cable are lighter and cheaper. These Ethernet cables are designed to cancel EMI with the way the pairs are twisted inside the cables. Compared with the shielded cables, unshielded cables provide much less protection. These cables performances are often degraded when EMI is present.

Shielded vs Unshielded Ethernet Cable

This is a figure of Cat6 shielded and unshielded cable.

Shielded vs Unshielded Ethernet Cable: Difference

Different applications

The typical difference between the two types lies in the application. Because of the shielding material design, STP and UTP cable will result in different performance. For example, Cat6 shielded and unshielded cable can be up to 10Gbps speed. However, in some cases such as the radio or airports stations, Cat6 UTP cable will experience slower speed and more data transmission errors may be caused when they are close to the machines or other electronics that produce high EMI. But with the additional shielded safeguard, Cat6 STP cable can provide some protection from EMI, performing better than the UTP one. Therefore, STP cables are the best choice for the environments where there is a high chance of electronic interference, while UTP is most suitable for office or home LANs.

Different grounding methods

In addition, due to the different designs, their cabling grounding methods are different. UTP cables don’t rely on grounding to the same extent as STP cabling. This will decrease the installation time and cost. However, STP needs a more robust grounding and bonding process. And note that the wrong grounded shield actually can worsen crosstalk and electromagnetic interference.

Which Should I Choose?

As for shielded vs unshielded Ethernet cable, the best choice should largely depend on where you plan to install the cables. As mentioned above, STP and UTP cables are widely used in different fields due to EMI interference requirement. Airports, medical centres and factories often benefit from STP cabling, because these places need to process numerous machines that produce considerable amounts of interference. On the other hand, for home and office use, it’s wise to choose UTP cables.

Besides, the budget is another factor which may determine the final decision. It’s believed that STP cost much more than UTP since it can provide better protection from EMI. It’s true, but the gap is narrow. For instance, Cat6 Ethernet cable at FS, the Cat6 UTP of 10ft length costs 2.6 dollars while Cat6 shield cable with the same length needs 3.6 dollars, there is only a very small gap, which may be significant for large scale installations, but not for small networks.

Therefore, as for shielded vs unshielded Ethernet cable, it should be determined by the intended application. If you’re still not sure what type of cabling you need, please contact us via sales@fs.com for expert advice.

Copper Cable vs Fibre Optic Cable Price, Is the Copper Really Cheaper?

Budget is always the most direct choice factor when installing cables. Copper cable vs fibre optic cable price, it’s true that the popular impression is that copper is cheap, fibre is expensive. Well, at a certain period in the past decades, it’s true. However, today with the development of networking, is copper cabling really cheaper than fibre optic cabling?

Copper Cable vs Fibre Optic Cable Price

Copper vs Fibre: What’s the Difference?

Copper and fibre optic cable are different cable types. Copper cable, also called RJ45 Ethernet cable, transmits data by electrical impulses, which is perfectly adequate for voice signals. Copper cables have many types such as Cat5, Cat6, Cat7 and Cat8, which can reach different transmission speeds. Cat5 Ethernet cable is once as slow as 10 Mbps over 100 metres. However, on today’s market, copper is getting faster. That the latest technology Cat8 Ethernet cable speed now can reach 40Gbps for 20 metres, but note that it has the notable limitation with regard to distance.

Unlike copper cable, fibre cable is made from fine hair-like glass fibres, which transmits data via light. Therefore, fibre cable does not conduct electricity, which is impervious to radio frequency interference. It’s naturally more durable than copper that it can withstand tougher environments and harsher weather conditions. As for the speed, fibre definitely wins for sheer speed and longer transmission distance. For example, the maximum distance of single mode fibre OS2 can be up to 200km. The following table makes a clear comparison between copper and fibre cables.

 
Fibre
Copper
Distance
Longer
Shorter
Speed
Faster
Fast
Durability
Lower
High
Spark Hazard
Hazardous
No spark hazard
Noise
Immune
Susceptible to EM/RFI interference, crosstalk and voltage surges

Factors of Copper Cable vs Fibre Optic Cable Price

People always believe the cost of fibre optic cables are expensive. Is it true? The following will discuss it in two main factors.

Installation Cost

Due to the technological differences between fibre and copper cables, their installation cost are different. Fibre’s immunity to electromagnetic interference (EMI) can save users’ cost, because they don’t need to lay fibre optic cables in the pipeline for avoiding electromagnetic interference. But copper cables need some protection, which increases the installation cost. Besides, in many scenarios, users need distributed cabinets for copper network while fibres don’t require this due to the longer distances. There are duplicated costs of building comms rooms, air con, ventilation, UPS (Uninterruptible Power Source) that people should not ignore in copper cabling. All these installation costs will exceed the extra cost of fibre equipment in a centralized fibre architecture. Therefore, if people decide to build a new data center, choosing fibre-based LAN is a much more economical solution than a copper networking environment.

Support Cost

Fibre optic cables are not fire hazard since light can not catch on fire. This means fibre cabling can save the cost of fire prevention. And fibre cables don’t break as easily, that customers will not worry about replacing them frequently. Thus, the support cost of fibre is less than the copper cable.
On the other hand, the increasing demand for fibre cables results in dropping prices. For example, at FS.COM, a Cat6 UTP cable with 3ft length needs 2.2 dollars, while LC to LC UPC duplex single mode fibre patch cable with 3ft length just costs 3 dollars. The price difference is narrow. Therefore, when copper cable vs fibre optic cable price, the cost of copper cabling is not much cheaper than fibres.

Conclusion

In conclusion, copper cable vs fibre optic cable price, the copper one is not always the cheapest choice. When building a new network, people should not ignore the installation and support costs of these different cabling solutions. It’s wise to choose one according to the actual installation environments. If you have any further questions about fibre or copper cabling, you can always get in touch with FS.COM staff via sales@fs.com.

Understanding Fibre Patch Leads Types

Fibre patch leads offer a highly reliable way to transmit signals, which is widely used in telecom industry. When selecting the correct fibre patch lead for a data center or network, it may be a challenging task since there are various types on the market. Understanding fibre patch leads types would be greatly helpful.

What Is Fibre Patch Lead?

Fibre patch lead is a fibre optic cable with connectors like LC, SC on both ends. Sometimes it’s referred to as a fibre jumper. Fibre patch leads play important roles for indoor uses like server rooms. Usually, they are used to connect fibre optical transmitter, receiver such as fibre transceiver.

fibre patch leads types

Figure 1: Fibre patch leads.

Understanding Fibre Patch Leads Types

Fibre patch leads are divided into different types according to fibre cable modes, transmission modes and connector types.

Fibre Cable Modes: Single Mode vs Multimode

The mode of fibre cables indicates that how light beams travel within the fibre cables. Single mode fibre patch lead only allows one mode of light to pass along its length with a very thin diametre of 8-10 microns. Thus, it can carry signals at much higher speeds with lower attenuation, which is suitable for long distance transmission. Single mode fibre patch lead (OS1, OS2) is coloured yellow.

Multimode fibre patch lead is more complicated. It’s usually coloured orange (OM1, OM2), aqua (OM3, OM4) or green (OM5). Multimode fibre has a larger core, typically 50 or 62.5 microns, which enables multiple light modes to be transmitted. Multimode fibre patch lead is mostly used in short distance like the transmission within a building or campus. Note that, the two modes are not compatible with each other, that people can not substitute one for the other.

Transmission Modes: Simplex vs Duplex

Simplex fibre patch lead has one fibre and one connector on each end. It’s usually used when a data transmission needs to travel in only one direction. In contrast, duplex fibre patch lead has two fibres and two connectors on each end. The signal in duplex fibre needs to go both ways, which is also called bi-directional communication.

Connector Types: LC/SC/FC/ST/LSH/MU/MTRJ

There are many connector types for fibre patch leads, like LC, SC, FC, ST, LSH, MU and MTRJ.

connector types

Figure 2: Different connectors types.

  • LC fibre patch lead. Its LC connector is a small, squarish one which is the most popular connector at present.
  • SC fibre patch lead. Connector of this fibre patch lead type is square, like an LC connector, but is about twice the size.
  • FC fibre patch lead. This patch lead connector uses round and threaded design.
  • ST fibre patch lead. Its connector is a round one that uses a bayonet mount design.
  • LSH fibre patch lead. This patch lead connector has a dust-proof cover, which can be automatically closed after the fibre is removed.
  • MU fibre patch lead. The MU connector looks like SC connector but with a ferrule about half the size.
  • MTRJ fibre patch lead. MTRJ stands for mechanical transfer registered. MTRJ utilizes two fibres and integrates them into a single design that looks similar to an RJ45 connector.

Note that, fibre patch leads can be terminated with the same connector type or hybrid connector types. The same connector type means that both ends of fibre patch leads must be one connector type. For the hybrid type, one end can be SC and the other end can be LC, FC, etc. And users also must pay attention to different polishing types. There are three types that can be applied to a fibre connector, PC, UPC and APC. Each polishing type represents a different level of back reflection. Users can choose one based on the actual demand.

Conclusion

These are the most common fibre patch leads types. If you know clearly different fibre patch leads types, you are able to determine which type characteristic you need, then you will make the right choice when selecting one. Here at FS.COM, we stock a full line of fibre patch leads, and we also offer the customised service. Welcome to pick and buy.

Will Different Ethernet Cable Speed Affect My Network?

Ethernet cables are the default physical connection for today’s home or business networks. People always want to buy a high speed Ethernet cable to enjoy a high speed network transmission. However, will different Ethernet cable speed actually affect your networks? Here, we’ll discuss the speeds of the most popular Ethernet cables categories (Cat5, Cat5e, Cat6, Cat6a, Cat7 and the newest Cat8), to help you make a wise choice.

Ethernet Cable Speed of Different Categories

The following is the overview of Ethernet cable speed of Cat5, Cat5e, Cat6, Cat6a, Cat7 and Cat8.

Cat5 Ethernet Cable Speed: 10/100Mbps for 100m

Cat5 Ethernet cable is the oldest type of these cables. It can support either 10Mbps or 100Mbps speed with a bandwidth of up to 100MHz, which was the first Fast Ethernet-capable to be introduced. However, with technology develops, this old-fashioned cable is no longer a recognized standard, that it’s hard to find it in today’s stores.

Cat5e Ethernet Cable Speed: 1000Mbps for 100m

Cat5e is an enhanced version of Cat5 cable. This Ethernet cable speed is up to 1000Mbps or “Gigabit” speed. In theory, it could be ten times faster than Cat5. Besides, it decreases crosstalk that happens between two wires inside a cable. Cat5e Ethernet cable is the most widely used category on the market.

Cat6 Ethernet Cable Speed: 1000Mbps for 100m and 10Gbps for 55m

Cat6 is certified to handle Gigabit speed with a bandwidth of up 250MHz. And it can be capable of 10Gbps speed under ideal circumstances. Cat6 Ethernet cable has some improvements like the better insulation and thinner wires, providing a higher signal-to-noise ratio. Thus, it’s quite suited for environments with higher electromagnetic interference. Note that, Cat6 Ethernet cable is provided with two forms, shielded twisted pair (STP) and unshielded twisted pair (UTP).

Cat6a Ethernet Cable Speed: 10Gbps for 100m

Cat6a Ethernet cable allows 10Gbps data transmission rate with the bandwidth of up to 500MHz. Its transmission can achieve to 100 metres, which is longer than the 37-55 metres of Cat6 cable. Cat6a is usually available in STP form. This cable is ideal for industrial situation, but lack flexibility that is often needed for a residential deployment.

Cat7 Ethernet Cable Speed: 10Gbps for 100m

Ethernet cable speed of Cat7 can reach to 10Gbps with a bandwidth of up to 600MHz. It consists of a screened, shield twisted pair of wires, which completely eliminates alien crosstalk. It’s more suited to data centres than home use.

Cat8 Ethernet Cable Speed: 40Gbps for 20m

Cat8 is capable of supporting bandwidth of up to 2000MHz. This Ethernet cable speed can be up to 25/40Gbps. It’s the fastest Ethernet cable, which is not intended for office environments, but suitable for connecting equipment in data centres such as connecting server to switch.
For better reference, the following table lists the Ethernet cable speed and bandwidth of these cables.

Category
Speed
Bandwidth
Cat5
10/100Mbps
100MHz
Cat5e
1000Mbps
100MHz
Cat6
1000Mbps
250MHz
Cat6a
10Gbps
500MHz
Cat7
10Gbps
600MHz
Cat8
25/40Gbps
2000MHz

Technical and Physical Differences

The typical technical differences are clear to see. As the category number increases, so does the Ethernet cable speed and bandwidth. This is not a coincidence, because each category brings more rigorous testing to eliminate crosstalk and add isolation between the wires. Thus, Cat8 supports the highest transmission speed.
As for the physical differences, Ethernet cables use different construction and isolation to eliminate interference and allow for faster speeds. Take the cables from FS.COM as an example. Its Cat6a, Cat7 and Cat8 use screen shield and aluminum foil shielding for reducing crosstalk, while Cat5e and Cat6 don’t. So Cat6a, Cat7 and Cat8 have better performance.

Ethernet cable speed factor

Is It Worth to Upgrade?

Actually, for home connections, a Cat5e or Cat6 cable with 1Gbps Ethernet cable speed is fast enough. People should note that upgrade cables will not make a difference in how fast you load websites, because the Internet speed depends on many factors but not just the Ethernet cable speed. But for places like data centres, of course, the faster the better. Because these places have high requirements for transmission speed. If you decide to buy Ethernet cables, welcome to order at FS.COM that provides comprehensive products of Ethernet cables.

Comparison of FS.COM S3900 Series Gigabit Ethernet Switch

Gigabit Ethernet switch is an essential part of communication systems. It is widely used as the access layer switch, which facilitates the connection of end node devices to the network. The Gigabit Ethernet switches on the market mainly differ in port and function. Then which to choose from so many options of Gigabit switches on the market? FS newly launched the S3900 series Gigabit Ethernet switch. It is designed with an advanced feature set that brings high availability, comprehensive security, robust multicast control, and advance QoS to the network edge, while maintaining simple management. Let’s know more about the S3900 series Gigabit Ethernet switch.

FS.COM S3900 Series Gigabit Ethernet Switch Introduction

FS.COM S3900 series Gigabit Ethernet switch is advanced layer 2 plus (layer 3 Lite) Gigabit managed stackable switch with 10G uplinks, which can satisfy the demand for the future network upgrade. The S3900 series switches are the ideal Gigabit access and aggregation switch for SMB, enterprise, and campus networks. The S3900 series of switches are equipped with 24/48 ports, copper/SFP ports. All of S3900 series switches are managed stackable switches. The most distinctive characters of the S3900 series switch are listed below.

Performance and Scalability

FS.COM S3900 series Gigabit Ethernet switch has the switching capacity up to 128Gbps/176Gbps. It delivers wire-speed switching performance on all Gigabit ports and takes full advantage of existing high-performance Gigabit CPEs, PCs, 11n/ac Wi-Fi applications, etc. Besides, it significantly improves the responsiveness of applications and shortens file transfer time. Moreover, the 4 built-in 10G SFP+ ports provide uplink flexibility, and create 10 Gbps high-speed uplinks to 10 GbE switch or device through the connection of 10G SFP+ transceivers or 10G SFP+ DACs, thus reduce bottlenecks and increase the performance of the access network. Except for the 10G uplinks, S3900 stackable switches also have the potentiality of adding extra available ports in the future. Besides, the stackable switches which are stacked together can be managed as an entity, thus save the time and energy when you manage the stackable switches.

Reliability and Energy Efficiency

The design of the S3900 series incorporates high energy efficiency which can greatly expand your network capacity with much less power. The fanless design of S3900-24T4S ensures noiseless operation without disturbing your family or your staff and increases the reliability of the system. The S3900 series switch is an eco-friendly solution for your family and business network.

Robust Multicast Control

The S3900 switch is equipped with IGMP snooping technique which prevents the flooding of multicast traffic. The multicast traffic is forwarded to only those ports associated with an IP multicast receiver. Thus the technique reduces unnecessary load on host devices.

Superior Management

With industry-standard command-line interface (CLI) program, which is accessed through the console port or telnet, the S3900 series Gigabit switch provides superior management user experience. Besides, user-friendly web interface helps users to quickly and simply configure switches.

Continuous Availability

FS.COM S3900 series switch contains STP protocols. IEEE 802.1w rapid spanning tree protocol provides a loop-free network and redundant links. IEEE 802.1s multiple spanning tree protocol runs STP per VLAN base, providing layer 2 load sharing on redundant links up to 64 instances. The STP protocols prevent bridge loops and the broadcast radiation and also allow a network design to include backup links to provide fault tolerance if an active link fails.

Comparison of FS.COM S3900 Series Gigabit Ethernet Switch

The following chart shows the details of the three types S3900 Gigabit Ethernet switch. You can choose from them according to your actual needs.

Switch Type
S3900-24T4S
S3900-24F4S
S3900-48T4S
Ports
24 10/100/1000BASE-T, 4 SFP+ uplinks
24 SFP with 4 combo SFP, 4 SFP+ uplinks
48 10/100/1000BASE-T, 4 SFP+ uplinks
Switch Class
Layer 2+ (Layer 3 Lite)
Layer 2+ (Layer 3 Lite)
Layer 2+ (Layer 3 Lite)
MAC Address Table
16K
16K
16K
Jumbo Frames
9KB
9KB
9KB
Flash Memory
64MB
64MB
64MB
Stacking
Yes
Yes
Yes
Switch Chip
BCM56150
BCM56151
BCM56150
Switching Capacity
128Gbps
128Gbps
176Gbps
Forwarding Rate
95Mpps
95Mpps
130Mpps
Input Power
100-240V AC, 50/60 Hz
100-240V AC, 50/60 Hz
100-240V AC, 50/60 Hz
Max Power Consumption
21W
43W
45W
With Fan or Fanless
Fanless
With Fan
With Fan
Price
US$ 279
US$ 399
US$ 409

Which to Choose Among S3900 Series Gigabit Ethernet Switch?

When it comes to choosing from FS.COM S3900 Gigabit Ethernet switch, you need to consider the number and type of ports you need and whether the switch is fanless or with fans.

What are the Port Type and Port Number You Need?

FS.COM S3900 series Gigabit Ethernet switches offer three different port combination options. You can choose from them according to your network demands.

If you need 24 port Gigabit switch, both S3900-24T4S switch with 24 10/100/1000BASE-T ports and S3900-24F4S switch with 24 SFP ports are within the scope of consideration. Then which to choose between S3900-24T4S switch and S3900-24F4S switch? It depends on your need. If cost, backward compatibility with legacy copper cabling networks, power consumption are important for you, S3900-24T4S switch with 24 10/100/1000BASE-T ports is the better choice. If you prefer lower latency and switches with combo SFP ports then you could consider S3900-24F4S switch with 24 SFP ports which contain 4 combo ports. To make it clear, a combo port is both a copper port and an SFP port sharing the same switching fabric and ID but connect to different transmission media. The two ports can’t be at the same time. When either of the two ports is enabled, the other port is automatically disabled. It gives users the options and flexibility to configure their switch for their unique application requirements.

Besides, the S3900-24T4S switch with copper ports is connected with Ethernet cables with the transmission distance of no more than 100m. While the S3900-24F4S switch with SFP ports is connected with SFP fiber optic transceiver modules & fiber patch cables with the transmission distance of 550m to 150km. So, S3900-24F4S switch is more suitable for long distance transmission, while S3900-24T4S switch is more suitable for short distance transmission.

If the network devices you are going to connect are of large amount, and you have a relatively big network, then you need to choose a switch with more than 24 ports. The S3900-48T4S switch with 48 10/100/1000BASE-T ports can satisfy your demand. It has the switching capacity of 176Gbps, which is the largest among the S3900 series switches.

Fanless Switch or Switch With Fan?

If you are planning to use the switch in quiet space, like offices, home, shops, libraries, hospitals or clinics where noise can be an issue, FS.COM S3900-24T4S fanless switch is recommended. Fanless switches are equipped with a passive cooling system, which has the advantage of energy efficiency and lower financial cost. The switches with fans are mostly deployed in data centers which have separate data center rooms. While fanless switches are more suitable for small business, people working at home, and places where silence is needed.

FS.COM S3900-24T4S fanless Gigabit Ethernet switch

Figure 1: FS.COM S3900-24T4S fanless Gigabit Ethernet switch

Summary

FS.COM S3900 Series Gigabit Ethernet switch has high availability, comprehensive security, robust multicast control, and advanced QoS. The article extensively discussed why you choose the S3900 series and how to choose the most suited switch for your network among the S3900 series. If you want to purchase FS.COM S3900 series Gigabit Ethernet switches or other network switch such as 10GbE switch, 40GbE switch and 100GbE switch, please contact us at sales@fs.com.

SFP vs RJ45 vs GBIC: When to Choose Which?

SFP, RJ45, and GBIC transceiver modules are three main kinds of 1GbE transceiver modules on the market. You may be puzzled by so many choices of transceiver modules. Don’t worry about it. This article will help you clarify the differences among SFP vs RJ45 vs GBIC transceivers and give you some suggestions about how to choose from them.

What Is an SFP Transceiver?

Short for small form-factor pluggable, an SFP module is a kind of fiber optic transceiver module with LC duplex interface. It supports the transmission data rate of 1GbE. SFP optical transceivers can operate on single mode or multimode fiber patch cables. The transmission distance of SFP modules ranges from 550m to 150km.

Figure1: SFP transceiver module

What Is an RJ45 Transceiver?

SFP copper RJ45 transceiver is a kind of transceiver with copper RJ45 interface. SFP copper RJ45 transceiver modules can support the transmission data rate of 1GbE. They are often used with Cat5 cables. SFP copper RJ45 transceivers are popular to be used for short distance transmission, because the overall cost of the copper network is lower compared with the optical network.

RJ45 sfp vs rj45 vs gbic

Figure2: SFP copper RJ45 transceiver module

What Is a GBIC Transceiver?

Gigabit interface converter (GBIC), is a kind of hot pluggable fiber optic transceiver module. With the data rate of 1GbE, GBIC transceiver modules can transmit data through the distance of 550m to 80km. A GBIC module supports the same data rate with an SFP module, but a GBIC transceiver module has twice the size of an SFP transceiver module.

GBIC sfp vs rj45 vs gbic

Figure3: GBIC transceiver module

SFP vs RJ45 vs GBIC: What’s the Difference?

After getting a general idea about what are SFP, RJ45, and GBIC transceivers, we will talk about the differences among them. The following chart shows the differences among SFP vs RJ45 vs GBIC transceiver modules from 4 aspects.

Transceiver module
SFP
SFP copper RJ45
GBIC
Interface
LC duplex
RJ45
SC duplex
Transmission distance
550m~150km
100m
550m~80km
Cable type
SMF/MMF
Cat 5
SMF/MMF
Data rate
1000Mbps
1000Mbps
1000Mbps

SFP vs RJ45 vs GBIC: When to Choose Which?

As is shown in the chart, SFP, SFP copper RJ45, and GBIC transceiver modules are all used in 1Gbit data transmission. Then when to choose which for the 1GbE network?

When to Choose SFP Transceivers?

Compared with GBIC transceiver modules, SFP modules have a smaller size. So SFP modules allow having more interfaces on a line card or a switch. Besides, SFP transceivers can support the transmission distance much longer than SFP copper RJ45 transceivers and GBIC transceivers. So if you require long transmission distance,  SFP transceivers can meet your need. Last but not least, If you already have a line card or a switch with empty SFP slots, then you need to adapt to that.

When to Choose SFP Copper RJ45 Transceivers?

When your budget is not enough to use SFP transceivers, you can choose SFP copper RJ45 transceivers for short-distance transmission. If you have the requirement of long-distance transmission afterward, you can use SFP to RJ45 slot media converters. For they can provide an economical path to extend the distance of an existing network with fiber cabling.

When to Choose GBIC Transceivers?

If you already have a line card or a switch with unoccupied GBIC slots, then you need to choose GBIC transceivers to make full use of the empty slots on your switch. In fact, GBIC transceiver modules are gradually replaced by SFP modules on the market. For SFP transceivers are regarded as the upgraded version of GBIC modules.

Summary

The differences among SFP vs RJ45 vs GBIC transceiver modules include the interface type, transmission distance, and cable type. Your choice among them depends on different situations. If you want to buy Cisco SFP modules or other transceiver modules with high quality and low cost, please contact us at sales@fs.com.

Switch Definition In Networking Explained

When it comes to networking technology, we won’t miss Ethernet switches. Because it is an essential part of networking communication. Connecting devices, such as computers, routers, and servers, together on a network, it enables current to be turned on and off and selects a channel for data transmission. Then you may ask, what is the switch definition in networking? What are the types of switches in networking? How to choose a switch for my network? Now, this passage will give you the answers and suggestions.

What Is the Switch Definition In Networking

There is one question that confuses many people: what is a switch in networking? A switch, in the switch definition of networking, is a high-speed network equipment used to connect devices together on a network and enable the data transmission between different devices. It receives incoming data packets and redirects them to their destination on a local area network (LAN).

In a local area network (LAN) using Ethernet, a network switch determines where to send each incoming message frame according to the physical device address. This kind of address is also known as the Media Access Control address or MAC address. If a switch needs to forward a frame to a MAC address that is unknown by the switch, then the frame is flooded to all ports in the switching domain. Generally speaking, a data switch can create an electronic tunnel between the source and the destination ports that no other traffic can enter for a short time.

Switch Definition In Networking: Types of Switches In Networking

The Ethernet switch is an essential part of any network. Generally speaking, the Ethernet switch can be classified into two categories: the modular switch and the fixed switch.

Modular Switch

The modular switch has expansion ability and high flexibility. Modular switch makes it possible for you to add expansion modules as needed into the switches. It is much more complex than fixed switch, so it costs more than fixed switch.

Fixed Switch

The fixed switch isn’t expandable and has a fixed number of ports. Although it has less flexibility, it offers a lower entry cost. There are mainly three types of fixed switches in networking. They are the unmanaged switch, the smart switch, and the managed switch.

Unmanaged Switch

The unmanaged switch is often used in home networks, small business offices or shops. It can’t be managed, so we can’t enable or disable interfaces of it. Although it doesn’t provide security features, it can offer enough support if you use it in a small network of fewer than 5-10 computers.

Smart Switch

The smart switch is mainly used for business applications such as smaller networks and VoIP. It is suitable for small VLANs, VoIP phones, and labs. Smart switch can let you configure ports and set up virtual networks, but doesn’t have the ability to allow troubleshooting, monitoring, remote-accessing to manage network issues.

Managed Switch

The managed switch is widely used in data centers and enterprise networks. It provides control, high-levels of network security, and management. It’s ideal for remote-access control capabilities and off-site round-the-clock monitoring. The managed switches can improve a network’s resource utilization and speed. Although it costs the most, it worth the investment for a long run.

Switch Definition In Networking: types of fixed switches

How to Choose a Switch For Your Network?

When you choose a switch for your network, you need to consider several factors at the same time. These factors include the number of ports, transmission speed, and stackable vs standalone.

Number of Ports

Most of the switches on the market have 4 to 48ports. You need to consider the number of ports you’ll need according to the number of users and devices and devices your network supports. The larger your organization is, the more ports you’ll need. Considering the possible expansion of your network and the possible increase of your user amount, you need to prepare extra ports for a long term plan.

Speed

There are various switches with different speed, such as Gigabit Ethernet switch and 10GbE switch used at the edge of the network, as well as 40GbE switch and 100GbE switch used in the network core layers. When you determine the speed, the key factor to consider is the need of your network users and future growth. Such as how large are the volumes of the transferring data and whether do you require faster link.

Stackable vs Standalone

Will your network grow larger? If your answer is yes, then you may choose a stackable switch. Standalone switches need to be configured individually, and troubleshooting also needs to be handled on an individual basis. While stackable switches allow for multiple switches to be configured as one entity. With this advantage, you can save time and energy when you manage on the stackable switches. Here I want to recommend you FS.COM S3800 switches, which are stackable switches. The following video is a tutorial about how to stack switches using S3800 switches.

Summary

In the above passage, we’ve explained how people define switch in networking and analyze the types of switches. Besides, this article offers some suggestions about how to choose a switch for your network. I believe that you have got a general idea about switch definition in networking. If you need a little more help and advice with switch definition in networking, then please do not hesitate to let us know. For purchasing high-quality switch with low cost or for more products’ information, please contact us at sales@fs.com.

 

What Is a Computer Switch?

The computer switch though has long existed in the market, few people can speak on it with great familiarity. As the network expands, the computer switch grows more sophisticated and diversified. This post sheds light on the computer switch from its definition, working principle and types.

What Is a Computer Switch?

A computer switch is an Ethernet switch in nature. It is a small hardware device that links multiple PCs, printers, assess points, phones, lights and servers together within one local area network, wide area network and different network topology. Each device connected to the switch is automatically connected to and can communicate with other connected devices, as the switch is essentially designed for information exchange. So if you hook up your cable modem to a router, then connect the router to a switch, all devices plugged into the switch can access the Internet, send and receive information and approach shared resources in a smooth, highly secure, and transparent manner.

computer switch

How Does a Computer Switch Work?

The computer switch doesn’t exchange information randomly but follow the specific instructions—the MAC addresses of every device. The IP packet arrives at the correct destination with the aid of the frame using MAC addresses of destination and source. It is the computer switch that shoulders the responsibility to complete process as follows.

  • Learning – The switch learns the MAC address of the device on the switch port on which it receives the frame.
  • Forwarding – The switch forwards message in either unicast or broadcast way. That depends on whether the destination MAC is known for sure or unknown.
  • Filtering – The frame will be forwarded through that switch port only for which the switch has already learned the MAC address in its MAC table.

Common Types of Computer Switch

There are different types of computer switches available in the market. Each has different features and functions. Here introduces four common computer switches: unmanaged switch, managed switch, PoE switch and stackable switch.

UNMANAGED COMPUTER SWITCH

Unmanaged switches are typically for basic connectivity. The unmanaged network switch is common to see in our home networks or wherever a few more ports are needed, such as at your desk, in a lab, or in a conference room. It is simply a plug-and-play device that requires no configuration. The gigabit Ethernet switch in your families are mostly the unmanaged switch.

MANAGED COMPUTER SWITCH

Managed switches are more advanced as they give you greater security and more features and flexibility. With this greater control, you can better protect your network and improve the quality of service for those who access the network. These can be achieved by setting a simple network management protocol or SNMP. Faster switches like 10 gigabit switch, 40 gigabit switch, 100 gigabit switch, etc are commonly working as managed switch.

PoE COMPUTER SWITCH

Power over Ethernet (PoE) switch is a network switch that has utilizes Power over Ethernet technology. When connected with other devices, it can support power and data transmission over one network cable at the same time, which greatly simplifies the cabling process. FS offers PoE switches with different port numbers, ranging from 8-port, 24-port to 48-port.

STACKABLE COMPUTER SWITCH

In the large data center, there may be many network applications and also many network switches. It poses great difficulty and triviality to the user to set and maintain each switch. Given this, stackable computer switch rises above the crowd. It enables multiple switches (usually four switches) to work as an individual unit in order to simplify the management, troubleshoot and configuration. This kind of switch can also work standalone switch.

computer switch type: stackable switch

Conclusion

The computer switch is indeed one of the important components of your networking infrastructure. FS offers plenty of fiber switches, PoE switches, or Ethernet-based switches with different port speeds. These switches are great in terms of sales, performance, and quality. To find the right computer switch, turn to our website www.fs.com and consult our expert staff if you have any questions.

What Is an Internet Switch and How Does It Work?

The Internet switch, since its birth, has been growing rapidly not only in function but also in performance. Experts have researched and developed generations of Internet switches, while the majority of people may be new to the devices, not taking fully advantage of them. This paper aims to help you get further understanding of Internet switch definition, benefits and working principle.

What Is an Internet Switch?

An Internet switch is another name of network switch. It is a critical component in many business networks, for the fact that they connect various PCs, printers, assess points, phones, lights, servers and other hardware. With an Internet switch, users can send and receive information and approach shared resources in a smooth, highly secure, and transparent manner. It addresses the low speed which was previously the shortcoming of hub, to sustain an efficient and high-speed information exchanging among hosts.

Internet switch

Why Use an Internet Switch?

  • Add More Ports to Your Router

In household use, many families view router as a must and Internet switch as an alternative. The fact is that the ports left for use is few when the router is connected and working. Given this, some will turn to an entry-level switch to add more Ethernet ports to the network. This kind of switch is usually the unmanaged switch that has no settings or special features itself. Your router continues to handle your Internet connection, letting your devices talk to one another and restricting what certain devices can do through parental controls or other settings—the switch is effectively invisible.

  • Add Ethernet All over Your House

Though the Wi-Fi is prevalent and convenient, you still need wired Ethernet if you want to play online games, stream 4K video or transfer large files over your network frequently. That can be guaranteed by a gigabit Ethernet switch to give you high speed and smooth network accessing.

  • Use Wires to Improve Wi-Fi

It is known to all that Wi-Fi can be freely accessed by anyone who has the password. However, as the users increase, the network may lag and be congested. Here you can install an Internet switch to improve your Wi-Fi performance by reducing the number of devices competing for wireless bandwidth. Faster switches like 10gbe switch, 40gbe switch and 100gbe switch will be recommended here.

How Does an Internet Switch Work?

As the name suggests, an Internet switch is a device to switch information in the local area network. But how? It is the intriguing part of the Internet switch. Well, a network switch determines where to send each incoming message by looking at the physical device address (also known as the Media Access Control address or MAC address). Inside the switch there is a table that match each MAC address to the port from which the MAC address has been received. If a frame is to be forwarded to a MAC address that is unknown to the switch infrastructure, it is flooded to all ports in the switching domain. Broadcast and multicast frames are also flooded. Otherwise, it goes to the specific port.

Conclusion

Having read this article, you are expected to have a generally understanding of the Internet switch. Internet switch steps into people’s life, bringing great benefits and convenience. Undoubtedly, it is a breakthrough in network technology. If you determines to get it, give full play to its role to better serve you applications.

Related article: Core Switch Vs Distribution Switch Vs Access Switch

How to Configure Inter VLAN Routing on Layer 3 Switches?

With the development of technology, no matter how far you are away from families, you can communicate with them at any time in any places. The same is true to the optic communication, regardless of the physical locations of two hosts or the different VLANs they belong to, they can exchange with each other by inter VLAN routing. Then what is inter VLAN routing and how to configure inter VLAN routing on layer 3 switches?

What Is Inter VLAN Routing?

In figure 1, three computers connected to a gigabit Ethernet switch form a LAN (local area network) within a limited area. However, they cannot communicate with hosts in another LAN, because there is no connection between these Ethernet switches. Then there comes the VLAN which provides us with logical separation or segmentation of our networks to facilitate communication among hosts in different LANs. However, each VLAN is a unique broadcast domain, so computers on separate VLANs are unable to communicate with each other by default. There is a way to solve the problem, and that’s what we are going to shed light on—inter VLAN routing.

LAN and VLAN in NetworkingFig. 1 LAN and VLAN in Networking

The process of forwarding network traffic from one VLAN to another VLAN using routing is known as inter-VLAN routing. One of the ways to carry out inter-VLAN routing is by connecting a router to the switch infrastructure. When using a router to facilitate inter-VLAN routing, the router interfaces can be connected to separate VLANs. Devices on those VLANs communicate with each other via the router. Apart from that, a more convenient way is introduced—configure inter VLAN routing on layer 3 switches. Layer 3 switching is more scalable than a router which only provides a limited number of available ports.

How to Configure Inter VLAN Routing on Layer 3 Switches?

To enable a layer 3 switch to perform routing functions, the switch must have IP routing enabled. 10gb Ethernet switch and 40gb Ethernet switch are recommended for working as layer 3 switch.

Inter VLAN Routing

Fig.2 Inter VLAN Routing on Layer 3 Switches

In figure 2, layer 3 switch is configured with IP address 10.0.0.1. VLAN10 and VLAN20, with IP address 10.10.10.10 and IP address 10.20.20.20 respectively are configured on layer 2 switches. These two IP addresses will be the default gateway addresses for hosts belonging to VLAN10 and VLAN20 on the layer 2 switches respectively. Also, all interfaces connecting the three switches must be configured as trunk ports to allow VLAN10 and VLAN20 tagged frames to pass between switches. Traffic between VLAN10 and VLAN20 will be routed by the layer 3 switch after configuring inter VLAN routing. These steps can be achieved by VLAN configuration command below.

Create VLANs 10 and 20 in the switch database

inter VLAN routing configuration 1
Assign port Fe0/1 in VLAN 10 and port Fe0/2 in VLAN 20

inter VLAN routing configuration 2

Create trunk port Fe0/24

inter VLAN routing configuration 3

Enable layer 3 routing and create VLANs 10 and 20 in the switch database

inter VLAN routing configuration 4

Create trunk ports Fe0/47 Fe0/46

inter VLAN routing configuration 5

Configure Switch VLAN Interfaces (SVI) to acts as a virtual layer 3 interface on the layer 3 switch

inter VLAN routing configuration 6

Conclusion

VLAN is created to enable the communication among hosts in different LANs. Inter VLAN routing is developed to realize the exchange among hosts in different VLANs. Inter VLAN routing on layer 3 switch without a router is also approachable with the development of technology. For more configuration about network switches, please refer to our website www.fs.com.