Gigabit PoE Switch vs Normal Switch

The telecommunication industry has always been developing with leaps and bounds and technology changes with each passing day. For common people with few network knowledge, the evolving optional network devices like PoE switch can be a big puzzle. What is PoE? What is the distinction of gigabit PoE switch vs normal switch? Read this article for reference.

What Are PoE and PoE Switch?

PoE, abbreviation of Power over Ethernet, is a technology that enables Ethernet cable to supply power. Thus power sourcing equipment (PSE) can transmit both data and power to powered devices (PD) simultaneously via one single cable. PoE has two standards available on network switch: IEEE 802.3af/at. The former orginal PoE standard is defined in 2003, which provides 15.4 W power budget to PDs (12.95 W available for accessing). The latter PoE+/PoE Plus standard defined in 2009 provides up to 30 W (25.5 W) power.

PoE switch is one of the two types of PSE for PoE implement: endspan switch and midspan PoE injector. To enhance network resiliency, gigabit PoE switches provided by FS.COM are highly compatible IEEE 802.3af/at managed PoE+ switches. For example, S1130-8T2F managed gigabit 8 port PoE switch with 2 SFP ports can connect to gigabit Ethernet network while S1600-48T4S 48 port PoE switch can use the SFP+ ports to connect with 10gbe switch for higher performance data transfer.

S1130-8T2F 8 port PoE switch

Figure 1: FS S1130-8T2F 8 port PoE managed switch can be flexibly placed in a rack, on a wall or on desktop.

PoE Switch vs Normal Switch: What’s the Difference?

In a word, PoE switch and normal switch differ from PoE accessibility. A regular Ethernet switch is not PoE enabled to supply power for end users over Ethernet. Therefore the user requires one extra cable to connect power outlets. However a normal switch can also become PoE ready by employing a midspan injector between the switch and PDs. The injector will add electrical power while receiving data signal from Ethernet switch end cable, and then deliver both data and power to PDs. But in this circumstance the injector also needs a wire for power. When using gigabit PoE switch, only one power cable is required. Then the PDs can be directly plugged into the PoE gigabit switch port for both data transmission and power supply. The illustration and table below list the differences of employing PoE switch vs normal switch while adding PoE to network.

gigabit PoE switch vs normal switch

Figure 2: An illustration of deploying PoE gigabit switch vs normal switch when adding PoE to network.

PoE Switch Normal Switch
Required Accessories Easy for management (power and transmission) Require separate two wires for powering on normal switch and PoE injector
PoE Access Method Upgrade to PoE network by replacing the normal Ethernet switch with PoE Ethernet switch Install PoE injector between switch and PDs to add PoE capability to the existing non-PoE switch
Emergency Reaction Potential chance of the whole system’s outage Only one device be affected
What Are the Advantages of PoE Switch?

As mentioned above, PoE switch differs from normal switch for supplying power to PDs in the meantime of data delivery. Though the normal switch system can also acquire PoE by installing injector, PoE endspan has the superiority of direct Power over Ethernet ability. Counting to this, gigabit PoE switch owns edges over normal switch as follows. First, it enables PDs like IP surveillance cameras to be placed almost anywhere: on the ceiling, concealed in a wall, or even underwater while only one cable is needed to run to them. Second, it saves extra expanse and time for power cabling and injector installation. Third, with simplified cabling of all PDs directly connected to gigabit PoE switch, the data center is easy for management and control. Besides, PoE gigabit switch itself is designed with advanced features like high-performance hardware with software, auto-sensing PoE compatibility, strong network security and environmental adaptability.

Conclusion

Gigabit PoE switch can supply power to PDs in the meantime of data transmission via one single Ethernet cable while normal switch can only send data to them. For PoE implement, normal switch requires a power-on auxiliary injector as midspan between switch and powered devices. Thus PoE switch owns advantages of direct PoE connection, easy and flexible placement, cost-efficiency, simplified management and etc. For any applications of IP surveillance cameras, VoIP phones and wireless APs, PoE switch over normal switch is a good solution to go.

How to Add PoE to Your Network?

In data centers, there are a lot of electrical devices and each one requires a power supply cable and at least one connection wire for transmission. It’s a disaster to see all those wires scattering all over the floor and tangling together. To introduce Power over Ethernet technology, we can cut down the number of wire drops and simplify the management control. So what’s the practical methods for adding PoE to your network? Read the following passage, to learn about the two solutions: adopting PoE switch or PoE injector.

Overview of PoE Implement Method

PoE requires PoE-enabled networking devices for power supply on the Ethernet cable. To realize this technology, there are two types of power sourcing equipment (PSE) for adopting: endspan (IEEE 802.3af refers to it as “endpoint”) and midspan. Endspan is an Ethernet switch that has built-in PoE data transmission circuitry. A midspan is an intermediary device between a non-PoE switch and powered devices (PD). Thereinto PoE injector is a frequently used available external midspan device.

Adding PoE by PoE Switch (Endspan)

When you need to set up a new Ethernet network with power over Ethernet technology or you want to upgrade system and replace older non- PoE switches, employing endspan is a good choice. How to add PoE to your network by PoE switch? Just connect it to other network devices, and the switch itself will figure whether they are PoE supportable devices and control power automatically. There are various types of PoE switch available, ranging from “dumb” unmanaged one, smart partly managed one and fully managed one with advanced management. It is also various from port quantity, such as 8, 16, 24 and 48 port.

It is noted that the PoE+ switch is a PoE plus switch for providing up to 30W power consumption. For example, FS S1130-8T2F 8 port PoE switch is a managed PoE+ switch with 2 SFP port, IEEE 802.3at complied and IEEE 802.3af backward compatible. It has maximum power supply of 130W and switching capacity of 20Gbps. FS S1130-8T2F supports various PoE devices and is best fit for network equipment such as wireless APs, IP phones and weather-proof IP cameras.

Adding PoE by PoE Injector (Midspan)

If you don’t want to discard your already used network switch and only PoE capability is needed to be added, you can simply adopt midspans. PoE injector is a device that can add electrical power while receiving signal from one end of the cable, and then deliver both the data signal and the power via the other end of the cable. Instead of PoE switch, midspan can also be used as an economical and functional solution where only a few PoE ports are in demand. How to add PoE to your existing LAN by PoE injector? First, power on PoE injector and non-PoE Ethernet switch respectively, next connect them via an Ethernet cable. Then connect PDs such as IP phones with PoE injector and finally the system can run as a whole.

In the case of older end devices are not PoE-ready, a splitter can be helpful for adding PoE to your network. To apply a splitter onto the end of the Ethernet cable will enable signal and power to be split into two different lines.

PoE switch vs PoE injector installation

This figure shows the installation of PoE switch vs PoE injector for adding PoE to network.

PoE Switch or PoE Injector: Which to Employ?

After diving into each respectively, we made a comparison of PoE switch vs PoE injector for concerning about adding PoE to network.

PoE Switch PoE Injector
Price Higher Cost Economical
Management and Control Easy for management (power and transmission) Requiring separate two wires for powering on switch and PoE injector
Implement Method Upgrade to PoE network by replacing the old Ethernet switch with PoE switch Install PoE injector to add PoE capability to the existing non-PoE switch
Emergency Reaction Potential chance of the whole system’s outage Only one device be affected

For most concerns about cost-efficiency and PoE capability required, you can go for PoE injector. However, for upgrading system and future-proof superior functionality concern, PoE switch is obviously a better choice.

Conclusion

Both PoE switch and PoE injector are power sourcing equipment for adding PoE to a network. PoE switch is an endspan, naturally fitting for new set-up or upgrade-needed network. PoE injector is a midspan, better fitting for existing non-PoE network without switch replacement requirement. For PoE switch purchase, FS.COM is a reliable vendor providing a wide rage of types for different demands. Any other information to know, just visit our official website and blog.

Understanding PoE & PoE Switch

Enterprises are quickly evolving with new network devices to improve communication and security. Power over Ethernet (PoE), a way to deliver electrical power over LAN cables to network devices, has been widely deployed to provide power to various endpoints in the enterprise environments. If you want to upgrade you network to PoE, one way is to deploy a PoE switch. This paper will provide an overview of the PoE technology and PoE switches.

What Is a PoE in Networking?

Power over Ethernet, also known as PoE, is a networking feature defined by the IEEE 802.3af and 802.3at standards. PoE is able to combine the two connections into one Ethernet cable so that single network cable will transmit both data and 25W of electricity. By this way, it can minimize the number of wires when installing the network, which realize the lower cost, less downtime, easier maintenance, and greater installation flexibility in networking.

POE-working-principle

Why Use PoE?

Because PoE is allowed to use one cable for both power and data transmission, PoE can save money on purchasing and running cable for networking equipment. It can brings many advantages to the network as follows.

  • Time and cost savings

Network cables do not require a qualified electrician to install them, and can be located anywhere, so PoE eliminates the time and cost of hiring professional electrical installers.

  • Flexibility

Network administrators can deploy devices (eg: IP cameras and wireless access points) at wherever they are needed most, and redeploy easily if required.

  • Safety

Because PoE utilizes a relatively low voltage, it presents low risks of electrical hazards.

  • Scalability

PoE makes it simple to add new equipment to a network.

What is a PoE Switch Used for?

A POE switch is a network switch that has a built-in PoE injection. It can connect other network devices as normal, and the switch will detect whether they are PoE-compatible and enable power automatically. PoE switches are available to suit all applications, ranging from low-cost unmanaged edge switches with a few ports, to complex multi-port rack-mounted units with sophisticated management. They can run PoE up to 100 meters from the switch or hub to the NIC, regardless of where the power is injected. The limitation is not the power, it’s the Ethernet cabling standards that limit the total length of cabling to 100 meters.

POE Switch

FS PoE Switch Solution?

FS.COM provides fully managed PoE switch, which are available with 8, 24 or 48 PoE Gigabit Ethernet ports of auto-sensing IEEE 802.3af/at. The PoE Switches are ideal for small business networks that need to inexpensively use PoE to deploy wireless access points and IP-based network surveillance cameras. They deliver robust performance and intelligent switching for growing networks, so PoE switches will be a best choice to install and manage your devices. The model details of FS’s PoE switches are listed below.

fs-poe-switches

How to Ensure Successful PoE Deployments?
1. Provide Sufficient Power to the Remote Powered Device

According to the IEEE 802.3af standard, the powered remote device can draw up to 12.95 watts of power. Considering the loss of the cable length, the power sourcing equipment (PSE) must have the ability to provide 15.4 watts of power to each port. For example, a 24-port Ethernet switch needs approximately 370 watts of power to supply the necessary power to each port. The PoE switches should have in excess of 370 watts available in view of the size of the power supply used in each device. It depends on how much power their switching functions require.

2. Connect the Power Source to Uninterruptible and Redundant Power

Connect the critical power-sourcing devices to an uninterruptible power supply, and use devices with dual redundant power supplies to ensure that your critical devices never lose power.

3. Deploy Only IEEE 802.3af-compliant Devices

Carefully read the technical documentation and contact the technical-support number to determine compatibility. Failure to do so will leave you frustrated and will cost you time and money.

4. Pay Attention to Cabling-performance Specifications

Pay close attention to the manufacturer’s specifications and look for Cat5e and Cat6a compliance. Also, you should remember per TIA standards, only four connectors can exist between the switch or hub and the network interface card (NIC). A midspan device should be counted and treated as one of these connection points.

5. Use the Most Cost-effective PoE Method for Your Network

The business motivation behind deploying IP-based technologies like WiFi and VoIP is to decrease networking costs. A significant benefit of PoE is that it runs on your existing infrastructure.

Conclusion

PoE is a recently-developed technology, and it simplifies the enterprise deployment with lower operating expense, higher availability, and faster deployment. FS has provided PoE switches in a variety of specifications, such as 8 port poe switch, 24 port poe switch and 48 port poe switch, which may make your trip as comfortable as possible. For more information, please welcome to www.fs.com.

Related Article: Power over Ethernet Analysis

Why Is Managed Switch Good for Business Networks?

A network is the foundation to connect storage, servers, printers, PCs, and wireless clients with business-critical applications to enhance productivity and customer satisfaction. And network switches are like the tires of a car. Without them, the “car” cannot work normally. No matter the large enterprises, or small and midsize business, their systems and applications are interconnected and rely on the network. Today’s post is to introduce the managed switch and why it is important for business networks.

Managed Switches Basics

Managed switch is a type of Ethernet switch that has a fixed number of ports. It is designed to deliver the most precise control and management of networks. And they are usually deployed in large networks or as core switches in relatively smaller networks. In order to introduce the basics of a managed switch in detail, here take the 24 port PoE switch as an example (as shown in the below picture).

24 ports managed business PoE switch

As shown in the picture, there are three types of ports on this switch: PoE port, SFP port and console port. The number of PoE ports is 24, and they can provide both power and data transmission. There are four SFP ports which include two Gigibit combo port. These ports can connect with SFP fiber transceivers to uplink to the backbone switch at a long distance location. The last kind of port is the console port which is for effective management. With a total power budget of up to 220 watts, this managed business Gigabit PoE switch provides a quick, safe and cost-effective Power over Ethernet network solution for small businesses and enterprises.

Benefits of Managed Switches

People who have work experience with switches know that unmanaged switches and managed switches are two common Ethernet switches in networking. And unmanaged switches seem to be a better choice in terms of cost. Therefore, maybe many business owners would ask, compared with managed switches, unmanaged switches are more cost-effective. Why I need to choose a more expensive switches? Well, managed switches have other features which are more beneficial for your networks.

managed switch in network

Using SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) for Better Network Monitor

SNMP is a protocol that facilitates the exchange of management information between network devices. SNMP quires also can help check the health and status of devices in a network. And data displayed in an easily understood format is good for IT managers to monitor the performance of the network from a remote location. And it also helps to repair the problems without inspecting the switches or devices personally.

Port Monitoring for Troubleshooting

The function of the port monitoring feature of managed switches is to diagnose problems effectively. It copies the switch network traffic and forwards it to a single port on the same switch for analysis by a network analyzer. And problems can be found by using the analyzer on the monitor port without switching off the network.

Quality of Service (QoS) to Prioritize Your Network Traffic

This feature of managed switches allows you to prioritize your network traffic by assigning a higher priority to the critical traffic, which is beneficial to improve network performance and transmit delay-sensitive data such as real-time voice.

Apart from the features mentioned above, managed switches also have another two features that cannot be ignored. One is that switches can be used in VLAN (Virtual Local Area Network) configuration to logically group devices as per the working departments, and managed switches can be used to isolate traffic between these groups, which allows better network performance and additional level of security. Another one is redundancy that can protect the network when connection failures occur.

Conclusion

Managed switch, especially managed PoE switches, offer great expandability for growing business networks. With business network growth on the horizon, having a clear evaluation of the network requirements is important. If you want to have some input and control over the behavior of traffic on their LAN, or if you plan to deploy advanced services such as wireless LANs or IP telephony, managed switches are a good choice to realize them. More information about managed switches, please contact us via sale@fs.com.

Fundamentals of Power over Ethernet (PoE)

With the introduction of new Ethernet-enabled devices expanding geometrically, the need to power these devices from standard AC power outlets has become a limiting factor. IP telephones, wireless access points, IP cameras and device servers are examples of devices limited by the need to have an AC power outlet nearby to plug in a DC power adapter. At best, power supply installation and wiring adds labor and results in the mess of extra wiring; worst case, the lack of nearby AC power means devices cannot be installed where they are needed.

In response to this need, IEEE developed IEEE802.3af to standardize a system of supplying low voltage power to networked devices via the communications line. It is more commonly referred to as Power over Ethernet (POE). This article focus on introducing some fundamental elements about PoE.

Basic Concepts of PoE

PoE is defined across a single network link that includes three basic components. The first one is an equipment delivering power to the cable (often referred to as a PSE, which stands for power sourcing equipment). The second component is a device receiving power from the cable (also known as a powered device, or PD). The third is the cable itself.

Typical PDs include IP cameras, wireless access points, and the PSE would normally be a PoE switch or a midspan power injector, patched in to add PoE capability to a non-PoE network switch channel or similar. These two configurations are shown in the following picture.

PoE

Advantages of PoE

The most prominent advantages of PoE are time saving and cost effective. By reducing the time and expense of having electrical power cabling installed, network cables do not require a qualified electrician to fit them, thus it can be located anywhere. Besides, it has great flexibility. Without being tethered to an electrical outlet, the PDs (IP cameras, wireless access points) could be located wherever they are needed most. Safety is the third advantage. PoE delivery is intelligent and it is designed to protect network equipment from overload, or incorrect installation. Also it has reliability and scalability. PoE power comes from a central and universally compatible source, rather than a collection of distributed wall adapters. It can be backed-up by an uninterruptible power supply, or controlled to easily disable or reset devices.

Applications of PoE

The original PoE application is VoIP phones, which have a single connection to a wall socket, and can be remotely powered down, just like with the older analog systems. PoE could also be used in IP cameras. It is ubiquitous on networked surveillance cameras where it enables fast deployment and easy repositioning. Wifi and bluetooth APs and RFID (radio frequency identification devices) readers are commonly PoE-compatible, to allow remote location away from AC outlets, and relocation following site surveys.

How PoE Works

PoE is designed to operate over standard network cable: Cat 3, Cat 5, Cat 5e or Cat 6 (often collectively referred to as Cat 5), using conventional RJ45 connectors. The principles of carrying electrical power over Cat5 are of no difference to those of other power distribution systems, but as the power is being transferred over light-duty cable for long distances, the effects of the power loss and voltage drop become significant.

The arrangement and connection to the cabling used for PoE also differ slightly from conventional power wiring, in order to work around the existing standard for Ethernet data. Cat 5 network cables contain a bundle of eight wires, arranged as four twisted pairs shown in the following picture. In the most common type of Ethernet, 100BASE-T or Fast Ethernet, only two of the four pairs are used to carry data; each pair carrying a signal in one direction. These are known as the data pairs, and the remaining two are unused and are referred to as the spare pairs.

PoE working

Although each data signal can be carried within a single pair, PoE treats each pair of wires as a single conductor (a reason for this is that using both wires halves the overall resistance). As electrical current must flow in a loop, two pairs are required to allow power to be carried by the cable, and either the data or spare pairs can be used for this. The PD must be able to accept power from whichever pairs the PSE delivers it to.

Conclusion

PoE is a convenient and now ubiquitous method for delivering power to a wide variety of loads on standard Cat 5 Ethernet cables. It is no doubt that Power over Ethernet will become increasingly important in the near future.