ZyXEL GS1910 24 port Gigabit MANAGED switch from Ebuyer - £89.99
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ZyXEL GS1910 24 port Gigabit MANAGED switch from Ebuyer - £89.99

54
Found 25th Apr 2013
Good price for a MANAGED 24 port Gigabit switch
Fanless - so silent running
Supports IPv6
3 year, next business day, replacement warranty

54 Comments

Thanks for this. This will supply all 23 of my computers with internet in my mansion while going on HUKD looking for BOGOF on toilet roll

Fine for a small business, good price.

We paid like £2500 for some dell ones at our place and the only difference is probably the 10Gbit links between the 2

HERE'S an alternative with a few less ports which receives favourable reviews.

Just about pro-rata cost per port (actually the 16 port is cheaper) if you're into all that. And if you are, you'll probably suss that it's not really pro-rata because you need to consider the link ports so that throws the ratios. Or maybe you'll just sup a beer and not worry too much about that, who knows ?
Edited by: "bbbazman" 25th Apr 2013

Original Poster

bbbazman

HERE'S an alternative with a few less ports which receives favourable … HERE'S an alternative with a few less ports which receives favourable reviews.Just about pro-rata cost per port (actually the 16 port is cheaper) if you're into all that. And if you are, you'll probably suss that it's not really pro-rata because you need to consider the link ports so that throws the ratios. Or maybe you'll just sup a beer and not worry too much about that, who knows ?



But that appears to be an unmanaged switch. There's a world of difference between the two.

VLANS hullo

weirdly the image is a 48 port model.

Original Poster

pgregg

weirdly the image is a 48 port model.


I copied it straight from the Ebuyer site; I wondered if anyone else would notice

Lol £2.5k dell switch going to do alot more than this. It's on ad a budget switch I would go for the tp link green switches cheaper and more functional

bbbazman

HERE'S an alternative with a few less ports which receives favourable … HERE'S an alternative with a few less ports which receives favourable reviews.Just about pro-rata cost per port (actually the 16 port is cheaper) if you're into all that. And if you are, you'll probably suss that it's not really pro-rata because you need to consider the link ports so that throws the ratios. Or maybe you'll just sup a beer and not worry too much about that, who knows ?



Problem is, thats TPlink, I point blank refuse to install this for any Small Business. They are horrible pieces of kit, constantly failing, and the company has a terrible security issue with their routers (allowing anyone access to your network fairly easily)

Zyxel are far better than TPlink, and i'd pay the extra every day of the week. (I work for a company that actually supplies TPlink & Zyxel so I have tested both them extensively and will not allow any TPLink stuff to be install in a company environment.)

KSauce

Fine for a small business, good price.We paid like £2500 for some dell … Fine for a small business, good price.We paid like £2500 for some dell ones at our place and the only difference is probably the 10Gbit links between the 2



Not really, this port will be over subscribed, probably 6 or even 8 to 1.

You get what you pay for and buying a zyxel switch for business use will not be a shrewd investment.

hot!

Seems really cheap for a 24 port managed gigabit switch

Not really heard much of these zyxel switches before tho, mostly see HP or CISCO which are a lot more expensive.
Does anyone have any experience with these zyxel managed switches? (have seen a few zyxel routers)

I would never, ever install one of these for a client I wanted to keep. I do have some sound reasons though; no doubt someone will say I am demanding too much, but this IS designed for SMB installation and I think an SMB needs to steer well clear.

Firstly, a true fanless 24-port gigabit switch is a thermodynamic fantasy; I can pretty much guarantee thermal issues heading your way fast if you rackmount this and start trying to get the most out of it. I know it says 'desktop' form factor but can you really imagine 24 cables hanging off a desktop? We're talking a theoretical 48Gbit switching fabric inside this thing; even if it wasn't doing any processing that should throw off a lot of raw heat and since it's managed it should theoretically run stuff like access control, port security and VLANs at wire speed, not to mention harder core stuff like virtual reassembly and virtual interfaces. All of that packet overhead will do one of two things as traffic builds, either slow the embedded CPU (and thence, your network) to more realistic speeds or burn the chips, a max 50C operating temperature isn't that great for a fanless device.

Secondly, as mentioned Zyxel have one of the least predictable security pedigrees in the business, they have no formal vulnerability announcement and patching service as it is done on a product-by-product ad-hoc basis by god knows who. Switches are your first target to lock down when looking at internal threats, and I will be surprised if these can resist all but the most basic scripted attacks. The thermal issues mentioned preclude its use in the core layer so it is tempting you to employ it as an access-layer switch, meaning a successful attack compromises basically every host in a small branch or network.

Thirdly, this has no high-speed uplink ports. Sure, you can bundle links together into aggregated links but that rarely flies properly when you go cross-platform. No fast uplinks means oversubscription on your backbone links, meaning unless your computers do a lot of talking to each other rather than the internet, you will clog your link to the core very, very quickly. This will necessitate a strict QoS policy on every single host port to stop them chomping your bandwidth which again, I am entirely unconvinced will work reliably on this 'silent' unit. Web pages will be alright, but if you have multiple people trying to run VoIP or Skype you will run into jitter issues that will be a git to diagnose.

Fourth, this is blatant price-dumping. Good for the H and the D, not so much for the U and the K.

Fifth, second-hand Cisco and HP Procurve absolutely smoke this on value; a quick tour of IT refurb companies will get you a pair of Layer-3 Cisco 3550s for this price. Not fanless I grant you and not all Gigabit, but you do NOT need Gigabit at the access layer and running a Zyxel in your core is like using old pencils to moderate a nuclear reactor.

Does anyone have any experience with these zyxel managed switches? (have … Does anyone have any experience with these zyxel managed switches? (have seen a few zyxel routers)


Yes, I've been on-site with these although not installed them myself. The casings are scorching to the touch in a common deployment, most people rackmount or surface-mount under a desk and the heat buildup can be felt on the other side of the wood. They do a decent job if they are the ONLY switch on the network or they connect to a VPN/WAN link. The interface is quite nice, certainly a refreshing change from the stark Cisco IOS, but the nicer an interface is the more I worry about HTML-based attacks.
Edited by: "Shrugg" 25th Apr 2013

Banned

Shrugg

I would never, ever install one of these for a client I wanted to keep. I … I would never, ever install one of these for a client I wanted to keep. I do have some sound reasons though; no doubt someone will say I am demanding too much, but this IS designed for SMB installation and I think an SMB needs to steer well clear.Firstly, a true fanless 24-port gigabit switch is a thermodynamic fantasy; I can pretty much guarantee thermal issues heading your way fast if you rackmount this and start trying to get the most out of it. I know it says 'desktop' form factor but can you really imagine 24 cables hanging off a desktop? We're talking a theoretical 48Gbit switching fabric inside this thing; even if it wasn't doing any processing that should throw off a lot of raw heat and since it's managed it should theoretically run stuff like access control, port security and VLANs at wire speed, not to mention harder core stuff like virtual reassembly and virtual interfaces. All of that packet overhead will do one of two things as traffic builds, either slow the embedded CPU (and thence, your network) to more realistic speeds or burn the chips, a max 50C operating temperature isn't that great for a fanless device.Secondly, as mentioned Zyxel have one of the least predictable security pedigrees in the business, they have no formal vulnerability announcement and patching service as it is done on a product-by-product ad-hoc basis by god knows who. Switches are your first target to lock down when looking at internal threats, and I will be surprised if these can resist all but the most basic scripted attacks. The thermal issues mentioned preclude its use in the core layer so it is tempting you to employ it as an access-layer switch, meaning a successful attack compromises basically every host in a small branch or network.Thirdly, this has no high-speed uplink ports. Sure, you can bundle links together into aggregated links but that rarely flies properly when you go cross-platform. No fast uplinks means oversubscription on your backbone links, meaning unless your computers do a lot of talking to each other rather than the internet, you will clog your link to the core very, very quickly. This will necessitate a strict QoS policy on every single host port to stop them chomping your bandwidth which again, I am entirely unconvinced will work reliably on this 'silent' unit. Web pages will be alright, but if you have multiple people trying to run VoIP or Skype you will run into jitter issues that will be a git to diagnose.Fourth, this is blatant price-dumping. Good for the H and the D, not so much for the U and the K.Fifth, second-hand Cisco and HP Procurve absolutely smoke this on value; a quick tour of IT refurb companies will get you a pair of Layer-3 Cisco 3550s for this price. Not fanless I grant you and not all Gigabit, but you do NOT need Gigabit at the access layer and running a Zyxel in your core is like using old pencils to moderate a nuclear reactor.Yes, I've been on-site with these although not installed them myself. The casings are scorching to the touch in a common deployment, most people rackmount or surface-mount under a desk and the heat buildup can be felt on the other side of the wood. They do a decent job if they are the ONLY switch on the network or they connect to a VPN/WAN link. The interface is quite nice, certainly a refreshing change from the stark Cisco IOS, but the nicer an interface is the more I worry about HTML-based attacks.



I can't believe you spent so long typing that post.

It is a very good post though, but I was just going to post "if you want managed on a budget, go for refurb Cisco or *spit* procurve. They wont be much more than this but will be pretty much bomb proof. If you don't want managed then don't get managed. These are poo and serve no real purpose".

Anarchist

I can't believe you spent so long typing that post.It is a very good post … I can't believe you spent so long typing that post.It is a very good post though, but I was just going to post "if you want managed on a budget, go for refurb Cisco or *spit* procurve. They wont be much more than this but will be pretty much bomb proof. If you don't want managed then don't get managed. These are poo and serve no real purpose".


Yeah, I know what you mean, but I feel like if I shoot down a device like this I need to show my working rather than just sling mud at the lesser-known name and walk off. Plus there seems to be a decent contingent of semi-literate tech-trolls on HUKD these days, so hopefully this will forestall any "LLOL CIsco isnt GIGABIT at this price!" type comments.

I'm still installing refurb Cisco 2950Ts as my standard units unless the client has specific needs, the damn things never break down and come with gigabit uplinks. The only thing that can truly saturate a Fast Ethernet access layer is a productivity server for video or photo editing, in which case you are probably using a SAN anyway and have sunk £10k into it.

I'm a networking student, just finishing my first year of (hopefully) a degree, with a fair amount of experience of home networking and a little bit of industry. Anyways, I understood about 3/4 of Shruggs post, the other quarter i am currently working on. Nice post mate, very well put and highly informative. It highlights what looks good on paper and what actually works in reality.

thankyou.

not voting on this as its arguably a nice price for a home setup with a lot of devices (i currently have 19 devices that connect wirelessly or wired) that someone wants a degree of access control over, but as its clearly aimed at small businesses its more risk than reward.

Lols get a Cicso 10/100 instead of this gota love it
Thats so 1990's
HTML attacks this this should be inside you lan not exposed to the internet in 99.99% of installs

This router is a bargain for the price for a home user and have ordered one to replace my 24 port tenda
as the fan drives me mad

These devices are fanless due to die shrinks and such
this switch uses a max of 15 watts with all 24 ports in full use

a very old 24 port can use 100-150 watts hence the need for a fan

if you are getting jitter clearly the wan link is saturated and has nothing to do with the internal switching
its doing its job just fine but you are out of bandwidth on the wan link
fitting some donky's years old 10/100 switch in to slow people down is just funny

Supprised you arnt recomending installing token ring


Shrugg

Yeah, I know what you mean, but I feel like if I shoot down a device like … Yeah, I know what you mean, but I feel like if I shoot down a device like this I need to show my working rather than just sling mud at the lesser-known name and walk off. Plus there seems to be a decent contingent of semi-literate tech-trolls on HUKD these days, so hopefully this will forestall any "LLOL CIsco isnt GIGABIT at this price!" type comments.I'm still installing refurb Cisco 2950Ts as my standard units unless the client has specific needs, the damn things never break down and come with gigabit uplinks. The only thing that can truly saturate a Fast Ethernet access layer is a productivity server for video or photo editing, in which case you are probably using a SAN anyway and have sunk £10k into it.



Edited by: "Shonk" 26th Apr 2013

Shrugg, don't really know how you can bash a 24 gigabit due to missing uplinks, then recommend a 10/100mbps (which will have 1GB uplinks if your lucky)!! Each port on this switch matches that. Oh, that's on top of the fact this DOES have 4x SPF uplinks.

The bit about no fans is also just wrong. Most modern gigabit switches under 48 port don't have fans, and don't need them due to their low power design. How can you possibly say they will overheat!

Sounds like you are a Cisco fan stuck in the 90's and think you really missed the point about this being a low cost ( and fast) switch for a small office / large home environment.

Buyers also beware this is a SMART managed switch not FULLY managed. Most 24-port gigabit a around this price are smart managed. Much of a muchness but still this is a good price.

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-2WV_vtboMnk/UDuuBt6TvSI/AAAAAAAAOYs/5I8dczTicdA/s1600/GS1910-24_all%28hi%29.jpg

shrugg, don't hold back. Tell us what you really think

agreed. HP/cisco second is the way to go. The reliability and security, let alone support and community help is worth the investment. If you are SMB where you have minimal IT investment and little dependence I could understand but if you are any bigger, invest once and invest well.

Is there a big difference between smart managed and fully managed?

Will this support Jumbo frames?

I have two HP procurve 1800's serving my home office and they do the job perfectly. I would prefer to consolidate into one bigger switch but i wouldnt choose this.

Rambot

shrugg, don't hold back. Tell us what you really think ;)agreed. … shrugg, don't hold back. Tell us what you really think ;)agreed. HP/cisco second is the way to go. The reliability and security, let alone support and community help is worth the investment. If you are SMB where you have minimal IT investment and little dependence I could understand but if you are any bigger, invest once and invest well.



strongly suggest if you're used to hp or cisco, to have a good look at huawei - quality and support far superior (imo) and much cheaper.

KSauce

Fine for a small business, good price.We paid like £2500 for some dell … Fine for a small business, good price.We paid like £2500 for some dell ones at our place and the only difference is probably the 10Gbit links between the 2



Um, what would possess anyone to buy Dell switches? They are rebranded Force10 - and who ever heard of them? Stick with HP (3com), Cisco or Juniper and you'll be fine. Zyxel or Netgear is fine for the small office environment.

mbond65

Thanks for this. This will supply all 23 of my computers with internet in … Thanks for this. This will supply all 23 of my computers with internet in my mansion while going on HUKD looking for BOGOF on toilet roll



You know, some "normal" people might need this. e.g. I have 4 kids, each with their own computer, TVs, Sky, couple of NAS boxes, Kid's minecraft server all wired with Cat5e back to a shelf in the utility room. I have the 4 ports from the BT broadband & a 8 port Gbit Netgear switch - and zero ports available. I could really do with a nice (managed, but low powered) 16 port Gbit switch, hence my interest in this.

/me retires to the library with a single malt.

Shrugg

Plus there seems to be a decent contingent of semi-literate tech-trolls … Plus there seems to be a decent contingent of semi-literate tech-trolls on HUKD these days, so hopefully this will forestall any "LLOL CIsco isnt GIGABIT at this price!" type comments.


*sigh*. Youth.

coalfield

Shrugg, don't really know how you can bash a 24 gigabit due to missing … Shrugg, don't really know how you can bash a 24 gigabit due to missing uplinks, then recommend a 10/100mbps (which will have 1GB uplinks if your lucky)!! Each port on this switch matches that. Oh, that's on top of the fact this DOES have 4x SPF uplinks.


I was rather clear, but let's try again; production networks are not about line speed except in specific applications. Gigabit to desktop is barely deployed in the SMB sphere because no network admin really wants desktops spiking that much bandwidth unless your Core layer is running at 10GE or faster. The 4 SFPs run at 1000M too, that's just so you can use fiber if you want, it doesn't resolve the core issue that this switch will almost always have saturated 1Gb uplinks in a typical (ie, professional) SMB setting. A proper access switch for business use (not "I want to bung it under my desk at home") should have uplinks significantly better provisioned than host ports; that isn't me making it up or some outdated 90s mentality, that is just good network design. Since you can't go 10GE with this, it has little place in a well-engineered network. It's catch-22; if you need gigabit to desktop then you need 10GE to core, and you don't have it here. If you don't need gigabit to desktop, then why buy this when more reliable alternatives are on offer. The only way you can stop desktops saturating the uplink is with aggressive QoS and throttling, which again asks the question, why bother with Gigabit?

The bit about no fans is also just wrong. Most modern gigabit switches … The bit about no fans is also just wrong. Most modern gigabit switches under 48 port don't have fans, and don't need them due to their low power design. How can you possibly say they will overheat!


Most modern what now? Notice this 'modern' switch has a removable fan tray and 10GE uplinks. I guess Cisco are just putting that stuff in to milk cash from businesses though right? I bet they're furiously pacing around their Doom Fortress now Zyxel have let the cat out of the bag that switches don't need much power or cooling after all.

In any case I have USED Zyxel GE switches and they become uncomfortably hot with loaded ports. This device will not be the only one emitting heat in the typical network cabinet, there will be CSU/DSUs, routers, firewalls, servers and god knows what else and at 50C max temperature with no way to maintain airflow is just too close to the margin. I did also say "This will be fine if it's the only switch in the network" but you've missed that one too.

Sounds like you are a Cisco fan stuck in the 90's and think you really … Sounds like you are a Cisco fan stuck in the 90's and think you really missed the point about this being a low cost ( and fast) switch for a small office / large home environment.


Cisco fan, yes I will admit to being a fan of Cisco in the same way that you'll admit to being a fan of oxygen. The internet would be a much bumpier place without solid Cisco backbones (or Cisco-derived design philosophies, I think someone mentioned Huawei) and if you ask most installers what they'd install given the choice, they'd choose Cisco too. There are endless good reasons for choosing Cisco, it isn't some case of starry-eyed brand worship, it's a switch for God's sake, but I also did mention HP Procurves which are a close second in terms of set-and-forget reliability.

If I was stuck in the 90s I'd be saying 10M to desktop is all anyone really needs since home broadband rarely gets above 8Mbit anyway and T1 lines cost a fortune, and you should get yourself down to Dixons and get a nice Belkin ethernet hub so you and your three housemates can all use Napster at the same time.

Buyers also beware this is a SMART managed switch not FULLY managed. Most … Buyers also beware this is a SMART managed switch not FULLY managed. Most 24-port gigabit a around this price are smart managed. Much of a muchness but still this is a good price.


This is actually part of my issue with the feature list on this switch. If you actually try to apply the technologies they claim to support I can only see troubles on the horizon. It is a bare Gigabit switch with an admittedly pleasant number of ports masquerading as an SMB unit and that is why I'm advising SMBs away from it.

Shonk

HTML attacks this this should be inside you lan not exposed to the … HTML attacks this this should be inside you lan not exposed to the internet in 99.99% of installs


You're thinking like a home user with nothing to lose but his porn collection and nobody on your network except the dozens of appliances you burn your disposable income on. This switch is fine for home use, by all means get it for that if you like watching das blinkenflaschen. If a brand claims to be delivering a production network device there are standards to adhere to, and a switch that can only be managed via a Web interface means there is no way to shut that interface down or stop the process from running in memory; that leaves the whole thing un-lock-downable. Again, you're assuming that nobody can penetrate your external security and that is pretty much the worst assumption you can make while installing; you want the switch fabric to stay rock-solid and secure even IF someone can walk straight through the firewall.


Edited by: "Shrugg" 26th Apr 2013

Shrugg - thanks for the effort and time spent putting your reasons out there - learnt some useful stuff there.

I very much doubt you are older and more experienced than i am
and dont appreciate the slurs

I suspect I have been running gigabit ethernet for longer that you have been
installing your overpriced switches (13 years) for your employer pc world business / scc
to unsuspecting and computer illiterate 5 man businesses

I concede that my pen skills ant the best im certainly not going to spend all day considering what to reply and how to format it

How many 50+ employee businesses do you think are on here on hukd looking at this switch considering it for the workplace

that need a core network seperate to the userspace network with 10GbE server farms and such with all shared appliances with 10GbE to ensure that there is sufficient bandwidth to supply the minions, and need to worry about internal attacks behind the main firewall to the internet zero thats how many

99.9% of people on this site considering buying this it will be the main switch on the network
and will have no 10GbE devices and no need to uplink to a core 10GbE switch

and are just looking to run a fast and efficient LAN to ensure maximum throughput to other lan devices
which this certainly is going to do just fine

now if you want me to go into a 5000 user call center and setup a network thats a different matter and i clearly wouldnt install this
due to the need for 10GbE uplinks to the main 10GbE core switch

And i dont want to upset you but the internet doesnt run on Cisco / HP / Dell anymore all the big boys moved
away from them quite some time ago all of the actual chipsets in 1GbE / 10GbE / 100GbE
switches are made by the same few asian manufacturers
broadcom realtek etc and the name outside is just some pretty box to soothe middle class tofu eating plums like yourself

wired.com/wir…ar/

You stick to recomending using a dinosaur 10/100 Cisco switch and ie6
and i will buy this and live in 2013 and not 1990

do you even realise how many die shrinks and efficiency measures have been done at the chipset level since them relics came out
not to forget hardware security floors that have been fixed at the chipset level
that are hard or cant be patched at a firmware level
your ancient switches need a fan due to the process they where made on

example the first desktop gigabit network cards i had in 2000 used 40w per card
modern gigabit network cards use hardly anything

your the type of tech that will go into a workplace and pull 500 high quality solid copper cat5 cables that are over spec for gigabit ethernet and replace them with inferior cca cat5e just as they have cat5e printed on the plastic
and charge them a fortune for it








Shrugg

*sigh*. Youth.














Edited by: "Shonk" 27th Apr 2013

Shonk

I very much doubt you are older and more experienced than i amand dont … I very much doubt you are older and more experienced than i amand dont appreciate the slurs


Oh for goodness sake. I guess you didn't notice I was quoting.... myself. Referring to... myself. Insulting.... myself. But by all means, get a good old grip on the wrong end of a very short stick, it's all downhill from here.

I suspect I have been running gigabit ethernet for longer that you have … I suspect I have been running gigabit ethernet for longer that you have beeninstalling your overpriced switches (13 years) for your employer pc world business / sccto unsuspecting and computer illiterate 5 man businesses


You were talking about slurs. I see you misunderstand a single quote that wasn't even aimed at you, and proceed directly to attack my entire professional portfolio and moral integrity without having actually addressed any single engineering point I've raised.

How many 50+ employee businesses do you think are on here on hukd looking … How many 50+ employee businesses do you think are on here on hukd looking at this switch considering it for the workplace


I wouldn't care to guess quite frankly, but wouldn't it be a shame if one of them read a torrent of uninformed "HOT HOT HOT!" comments and went and bought one and installed it? Wouldn't it be a shame if someone less experienced got burned on something like this and it damaged their career because I was too worried about upsetting someone? Younger admins and technicians get sacked for making this sort of mistake.

that need a core network seperate to the userspace network with 10GbE … that need a core network seperate to the userspace network with 10GbE server farms and such with all shared appliances with 10GbE to ensure that there is sufficient bandwidth to supply the minions, and need to worry about internal attacks behind the main firewall to the internet zero thats how many


Everyone needs to worry about internal attacks behind the main firewall. Any penetration tester will tell you this. Installing barely-managed switches like this leaves you open to, at the very least, MAC flood and smurf attacks. A minor increase in complexity and you have script kiddies using simple off-the-shelf CGI tools like Low-Orbit Ion Cannon to completely disable your switch while they harvest every frame that passes through it, and you (the admin) left unable to stop them remotely. Or rather, the poor sap who you convince to buy this switch.

and are just looking to run a fast and efficient LAN to ensure maximum … and are just looking to run a fast and efficient LAN to ensure maximum throughput to other lan devices which this certainly is going to do just fine


Fast and efficient is a function of the switch OS more than the ports it controls. 100M didn't suddenly become inefficient the day GigE came out, nor will a 10GE switch render GigE any less valuable. Demand for LAN bandwidth (device to device) hasn't increased to the level where 100M is even close to saturated for most devices; the need for stability and security however increases every day. It's clear this unit lacks the processing grunt to properly protect all the data it can forward.

now if you want me to go into a 5000 user call center and setup a network … now if you want me to go into a 5000 user call center and setup a network thats a different matter and i clearly wouldnt install thisdue to the need for 10GE uplinks to the main 10GE core switch


The requirement is that the uplink and core be faster than the host ports to cut down on link saturation. We know that 5000 user call centres run on 100M because basically all of them do at the moment, we are still not seeing a mass transition to GigE despite tumbling prices because aside from the burning desire of some people to have "the fastest" there is no definable benefit to the customer at the access layer. The only places that need this sort of grunt are definitely not looking on HUKD.

And i dont want to upset you but the internet doesnt run on Cisco / HP / … And i dont want to upset you but the internet doesnt run on Cisco / HP / Dell anymore all the big boys moved away from them quite some time ago all of the actual chipsets in 1GbE / 10GbE / 100GbE switches are made by the same few asian manufacturers


The NICs are not the point, sir. A NIC can be made by anyone as long as it meets specifications; I care less about who manufactures my line cards than I do about the chassis, routing protocols and software that tie them together. Cisco, HP and even Juniper still get the big installations because of their sound technological infrastructure; pointing out who manufactures the actual layer-1 chipset is borderline trolling. You may notice that the guys moving away from Cisco and Juniper are the guys who own enormous datacentres and have to replace units regularly.

broadcom realtek etc and the name outside is just some pretty box to … broadcom realtek etc and the name outside is just some pretty box to soothe middle class tofu eating plums like yourself


Needlessly abusive so thank you for making this classist as well. I notice your pen skills suddenly improve when slinging mud at people you feel have wronged you. Also, are you claiming Realtek and Broadcom are also responsible for all the coding and stress-testing that goes with something like IOS or NX-OS? Are they responsible for the code behind all the technologies this switch says it will run? All the NICs in the world won't work without something to tie them together, that is the product we speak of when we discuss "networking".

http://www.wired.com/wiredenterprise/2012/03/google-microsoft-network-gear/


Right.... so datacentre companies are buying 'cheap' Chinese networking gear (still thousands of quid per device though) so.... this particular switch suddenly becomes a good SMB investment? I never had a go at 'Chinese' companies and I never stated Cisco are the only company who can make a good switch in the whole wide world. I said that for SMB deployment, recycled Cisco still beats this jumped-up desktop switch and I don't see how Facebook's purchasing policy nor your vague abuse changes that. I am criticising THIS DEVICE, not the entire industry that produces it. Apart from line speed, can you give me one single advantage this has over a true professional switch of any brand?

You stick to recomending using a dinosaur 10/100 Cisco switch and ie6and … You stick to recomending using a dinosaur 10/100 Cisco switch and ie6and i will buy this and live in 2013 and not 1990


Nobody is stopping you, although as you've already bought it though I feel you are less than neutral at the moment. You already said you have bought it for home use, and I've already said twice now that for home use it's not a bad choice. Zyxel on the other hand are trying to convince us that this is a production device, and it simply isn't.

You are trying to tell us that because it's got Gigabit ports it automatically becomes a better choice, when there are barely any applications that can use that much bandwidth. You resort to childish name-calling because I don't automatically go goggle-eyed when I see the word "Giga". Hardware vendors love people who go goggle-eyed over high-speed ports, it makes it easier to ship kit; it's much more awkward when I ask "Ok, so how many RADIUS auth requests per second can it handle? How does that scale with MD5 hashing? Is the auth fail-open or fail-closed?" and those answers have nothing to do with wire speed. As you so correctly say, the Gigabit NICs are nothing special, all made by the same companies anyway; but the CPU and ASICs that tie it all together are an absolute mystery with this device.

You simply cannot accept (nor do you successfully address) that this might not be a good business deployment, and seem to feel personally begrudged that I would dare to criticise a box of wires you've personally dropped a few quid on, and go on to call me a middle-class, tofu-eating, lying, scheming, grasping charlatan based on that alone. Advising a business to rely on this device is advising them to trade stability, security and longevity for.... gigabit ports. And the privilege of living in '2013', as you personally define it.

Sorry mate, but if you tried to install this professionally you'd be laughed at. Stick it in your house and throw a tablecloth over it when your chums come round.

It'll be alright, it's fanless.



Edited by: "Shrugg" 27th Apr 2013

The binary blobs to run and access the chipet at the hardware level are provided by the chipset manufacturers so yes

Switches arnt like a pc you know all the code is self contained in the chipset and will fully run without any software or os
The binary blobs are supplied to access the hardware and pass on commands to the hardware to change settings and such

Thats where a switch turns from being unmanaged to managed / smart managed
they add a small amount of ram and a cpu to run the manufacturers interface
and depending on how much you pay for the device they allow you to send a certain level of commands to the chipset to change things

the cpu and ram does none of the routing and as i said if the cpu/ram/flash failed it would just start up in default mode
being an unmanaged switch

the rest is just a pretty interface for you to play with and change settings

It'll be alright, it's a Cisco


Edited by: "Shonk" 27th Apr 2013

Jupiter Obscure

But that appears to be an unmanaged switch. There's a world of difference … But that appears to be an unmanaged switch. There's a world of difference between the two.



True.

I ( probably wrongly) assumed that most people considering this would be thinking about home use. I had understood that unmanaged switch would be fine for home use, most people would simply want data to move about in a home network and wouldn't have a requirement for controlling specific traffic.

However, having read some of the posts here, I have realised just how little I know about networking so the likelihood of me being wrong at the moment seems pretty high.

I have a cheapo tplink 8 port Gigabit switch that all my 'stuff' ( desktops, laptops, Wireless access point, printers & NAS's ) are plugged into. It has a link to my old but faithful vigour 2600 router, it is only a '100' link.

My understanding was that the machines linked directly to the switch will communicate at the higher speed ( pending various factors I know ) so for example if I am transferring date from my macbook to the NAS, I benefit from the 1 Gigabit technology. I wouldn't if connected through the router.

Now, I need more ports thank to some additional NAS requirements. I have thought about either upgrading the router, because I only use 1 port on my router to connect to the switch, primarily because the router is close to the main BT entry point and my switch is in the office/studio a wee bit away.

I could move some NAS devices to the router if it was upgraded, but would prefer to keep everything close together in the office.

So, upgrade router or bigger switch ? I'm open to comment from you learned folks here. I thought the LINK in my earlier post would be a fine, inexpensive solution for my needs. Or should I pay a few quid more for the OP's solution ?

Best Regards

bbbazman

Edited by: "bbbazman" 27th Apr 2013

bbbazman

My understanding was that the machines linked directly to the switch will … My understanding was that the machines linked directly to the switch will communicate at the higher speed ( pending various factors I know ) so for example if I am transferring date from my macbook to the NAS, I benefit from the 1 Gigabit technology. I wouldn't if connected through the router.



Yes, all gigabit devices plugged into it will benefit.

bbbazman

So, upgrade router or bigger switch ?



Both solutions are fine, but a switch connected to your current router is by far the cheaper option.

The guys above are arguing about circumstances other than home use. I think this is a great deal for a switch if you want a gigabit switch with a few more options for home use. You'll be fine putting this behind a firewall/router for your home network.
Edited by: "n00b" 27th Apr 2013

Original Poster

bbbazman

So, upgrade router or bigger switch ? I'm open to comment



There's also a third, cheaper option, just buy another small gigabit switch and connect it through a port of your existing switch.

As I understand your requirements, your best bet is to buy either a larger switch or another small one (both unmanaged). There's a number of reasons to consider a managed switch, the two that I think might be applicable to your scenario are QoS and monitoring.
1. You may want to implement QoS (Quality of Service) if you have a requirement to either throttle certain traffic or prioritise it (eg VOIP).
2. Monitoring will allow you to check that traffic is behaving as it should be. I'm not sure what monitoring services are built into the switch but it will definitely allow you to setup a mirror port so that you can analyse the traffic on a separate PC/VM/Raspberry Pi etc using IDS (Intrusion Detection Software). As an example, a few weeks ago, I noticed a huge spike in my home internet bandwidth usage, going from about 1GB a day to about 25GB for a period of 4 days. As I've got quite a large number of connected devices (both physical and virtual), there was no way of establishing retrospectively what had caused the spike. That prompted me to buy this hotukdeals.com/dea…752 so that I'll be able to locate the culprit in the future.

I've bought the Zyxel for a small office environment, where I am very confident that it will be suitable (I subscribe to Shonk's point of view here). It seems that Shonk and Shrugg are the networking experts on this thread, and they've both been making some valid points (although they're obviously not seeing eye-to-eye at the moment). I suspect that the sort of office environment I will be using it for probably falls below Shrugg's radar, although I think he did mention somewhere that this switch might be suitable for single switch environments.

I hope this helps a bit, sorry it was writtten in a bit of a rush.

Shonk

The binary blobs to run and access the chipet at the hardware level are … The binary blobs to run and access the chipet at the hardware level are provided by the chipset manufacturers so yes


...the binary blobs as you call them are Layer-1 software blown into hardware; all the chipset manufacturer does is take properly formatted ethernet frames from layer-2 and drop them onto the wire as voltage. That is all that binary blob can do, it cannot make switching, filtering or forwarding decisions, it relies on a completely separate mechanism to accomplish those tasks.

Switches arnt like a pc you know all the code is self contained in the … Switches arnt like a pc you know all the code is self contained in the chipset and will fully run without any software or osThe binary blobs are supplied to access the hardware and pass on commands to the hardware to change settings and such


So completely wrong. A switch is composed of a data plane and a control plane that run an honest-to-god operating system just like a PC does. The settings are stored in NVRAM then loaded into main memory by a bootloader just like a PC; they initiate POST and integrity checking just like a PC; the operating system is then decompressed by a processor and that OS then starts thinking about VLANs, ACLs and port security settings; port security is a completely unknown concept to the little Realtek NIC, the NIC (and the embedded CPU in fact) are slaves to the code Cisco and HP run, Realtek haven't got a clue about what goes on inside IOS.

Thats where a switch turns from being unmanaged to managed / smart … Thats where a switch turns from being unmanaged to managed / smart managedthey add a small amount of ram and a cpu to run the manufacturers interface and depending on how much you pay for the device they allow you to send a certain level of commands to the chipset to change things


You have this entirely backwards. The 'chipset', if you are referring to a NIC, is a dumb electrical device and depends on higher functions to tell it what to do; Realtek make that part. If you are referring to the ASIC which makes forwarding decision based on binary mathematics, it is also a completely dumb device without the control plane; it's just an electrical repeater and could be made by anyone. Network operating systems take these dumb devices and try to imbue them with some form of intelligent decision-making; when the OS is in control of the ASIC/NIC, it is the code written by Cisco, HP, 3COM or whoever that is decided how and how efficiently the switch operates, not the bare code inside the electrical devices they are orchestrating. You can take the same NIC/ASIC and throw it into five switches all by different makes, and you will get wildly different performance envelopes due to the switch OS design, nothing more.

You may as well say "All car tires are made by the same small number of factories so all car brands are just shiny badges". The tires just define how the machine interacts with the road, they don't know or care where Tesco is.

the cpu and ram does none of the routing and as i said if the … the cpu and ram does none of the routing and as i said if the cpu/ram/flash failed it would just start up in default mode being an unmanaged switch


Erm. No. Just.... no. You are now just making things up. If flash fails then yes a default config will be loaded from ROM, but that is STILL a managed switch, just one that you need to configure every time you boot it; I am at a loss to explain why you'd believe that critical CPU and RAM damage will result in the ASIC just doing whatever it likes independent of the control plane.

If there is a hardware failure that actually burns the CPU or RAM, the switch doesn't just shrug its shoulders and become unmanaged; it just won't boot. Go take a screwdriver to the inside of your new switch if you don't believe me, see if it runs after you maul the chips. The CPU and RAM are integral to decompressing and running the operating system, the switch will fail its POST and sit there consuming power, certainly not forwarding any frames. That's like saying that cars will drive in circles if there is no human driver; the human driver is what makes the car go in the first place. Unless we are discussing the absolute lowest form of pond-life here (NetGear ProSafe...), no managed switch can survive without a CPU any more than a PC without RAM defaults to being a calculator.

the rest is just a pretty interface for you to play with and change … the rest is just a pretty interface for you to play with and change settings


The interface is at layer-7 and irrelevant to this discussion; the interface is a wholly separate software component that doesn't even know how to interface with the NIC/ASIC. The interface sends commands to the OS, which interprets them into binary settings and applies them to the running configuration, which then applies to the hardware component.

It'll be alright, it's a Cisco


Facetious too. "It'll be alright, it's a Cisco" is actually a pretty good mantra to live by if you don't want phonecalls at five in the morning. You never hear anyone say "It'll be alright, it's a ZYXEL!" do you.

Jupiter Obscure

I've bought the Zyxel for a small office environment, where I am very … I've bought the Zyxel for a small office environment, where I am very confident that it will be suitable (I subscribe to Shonk's point of view here). It seems that Shonk and Shrugg are the networking experts on this thread, and they've both been making some valid points (although they're obviously not seeing eye-to-eye at the moment). I suspect that the sort of office environment I will be using it for probably falls below Shrugg's radar, although I think he did mention somewhere that this switch might be suitable for single switch environments.


Don't worry about it, I don't intend to derail the thread, my apologies

I did say this will work fine in a single-switch environment and it will, especially if you have a mostly modern set of hosts with all Gigabit NICs then it might even be desirable to see them all running at max speed. The only thing you'd need to thoroughly investigate is internal security because this switch won't be your ally there; you may consider something like a Snort IDS or pfSense firewall (both free software) to look out for people hopping onto your network and causing trouble. An example would be someone plugging into a spare network port and trying to brute-force the admin password to the switch over several months, as I have seen happen before; this Zyxel may or may not protect itself against brute forcing so do look into it.

All in all it's not a bad switch if you really, really need that line speed, but I'm forced to consider these things with a different eye I suppose . If you expand to more switches or someone says "Let's make a Layer-2 VPN!", I would recommend pairing the Zyxel with a Layer-3 that can make some more complex routing decisions.

bbazman

My understanding was that the machines linked directly to the switch will … My understanding was that the machines linked directly to the switch will communicate at the higher speed ( pending various factors I know ) so for example if I am transferring date from my macbook to the NAS, I benefit from the 1 Gigabit technology. I wouldn't if connected through the router.


This is one application where the Gigabit ports are useful, transferring stuff to and from NAS, but that is something people generally do in a home environment and usually only from one machine to another, not between 24 machines. For low-contention home use, this switch is fine and will give you slightly smoother transfers (up to the limits of your Macbook/NAS hard drives, something to think about). If you truly need that many Gigabit ports because all those machines are going to be slamming your NAS at full speed then by all means pull the trigger, but most NAS systems that you find in homes operate WAY below Gigabit speeds. If I were in your boat I'd find the cheapest 8-port unmanaged GigE switch I could and just daisy-chain it to the router; plug everything that needs easy NAS access into the 8-port. Managed switches are entirely useless in a home environment unless you're a network engineer, and even then it's an expensive toy.
Edited by: "Shrugg" 27th Apr 2013

Jupiter Obscure

There's also a third, cheaper option......I hope this helps a bit, sorry … There's also a third, cheaper option......I hope this helps a bit, sorry it was writtten in a bit of a rush.



Now I liked that idea, I wondered if there would be a throttle....

n00b

Yes, all gigabit devices plugged into it will benefit....... You'll be … Yes, all gigabit devices plugged into it will benefit....... You'll be fine putting this behind a firewall/router for your home network.


Excellent, thanks.

I thank you both.

If I bought another cheapo 1 gigabit switch such as the TPlink that I have, is there a preferred configuration, ie should I drop the router, printers and wireless access ports on one switch and keep the NAS's and desktop machines on the other. My thinking being that most 'heavy' traffic would be between the desktop machines and the NAS's. Not that I do much in the way of large file tranfers simultaneously or even strem much off the NAS, uhmm, but I might..

Actually, I have an some redundant netgear 8 & 5 port switches, ( only 100 Mbps ) that might suit my old XP desktop machine & the printers.. I was worried that I might compromise the set up by integrating one of these but it mioght be OK it seems.

I have some serious reading to do, it's true a little knowledge is dangerous.

cheers

Original Poster

Hi bbbazman

It sounds like you have a good understanding on your different options, so I won't comment any further on those.

I'll just add that one further issue for consideration could be the location of all the devices. Rather than have all the cables trailing over the room to one switch, if you have 2 then you can locate them in different places if that makes the wiring less obtrusive.

Garbage


You lack alot of knowledge on how things work at the hardware level
and I can see you will just keep spouting rubbish on everything I say


but most NAS systems that you find in homes operate WAY below Gigabit … but most NAS systems that you find in homes operate WAY below Gigabit speeds


really?

My Nas's
1.6ghz Arm 5TE Single Issue 102 MB SMB Read
1.2ghz Arm 5TE Single Issue 92 MB SMB Read
600mhz Arm 5TE Single Issue 47 MB SMB Read

You can help me out coding the firmware
with your bs if you like!!

forum.buffalo.nas-central.org/vie…603





Edited by: "Shonk" 27th Apr 2013

Garbage

My Nas's 1.6ghz Arm 5TE Single Issue 102 MB SMB Read1.2ghz Arm 5TE Single … My Nas's 1.6ghz Arm 5TE Single Issue 102 MB SMB Read1.2ghz Arm 5TE Single Issue 92 MB SMB Read600mhz Arm 5TE Single Issue 47 MB SMB Read

You can help me out coding the firmware with your bs if you like!!


You have some deep misunderstandings of the way networking gear operates internally, and also some deep personal issues that lead you to become crude and abusive, and stray further and further from the points in question the more you feel you are being denied the level of technical deference you feel you deserve. I have challenged you on a number of points and you've yet to provide a single meaningful example beyond the one below which I shall come to shortly, and have instead relied on barely anecdotal unsupported statements and semi-literate insults that would be more at home in a grotty pub with a history of racial violence.

I unfortunately know precisely whereof I speak, it is my job to know, if I didn't know the correct answers to these questions in exacting detail I would be relieved of my responsibilities in short order. I am not sure where you've pulled some of your 'facts' from, but unless you can link some documentation to support some of your wilder claims (seriously? A managed switch with hardware damage turns into an unmanaged one?? Which company produces such a device? Do you really believe that's normal functionality?) I'll have to maintain you're operating on faulty assumptions and are confusing the length of time you've held them with their reliability.


So, you code firmware for NAS systems and are running two NAS at the upper end of the domestic speed range, you DO surprise me. I design and install cross-continent VPN/MPLS networks and my home network is also somewhat better than average, but I understand that I am in the minority and do not hold my own throughput ratings as representative.

Even your own NAS only average out to 642Mbit/s under ideal conditions, half a gigabit link, and you have two that occupy the upper range and have significantly stronger processors than are generally found in a home environment. This link demonstrates the spread of performance generally deployed, and even including some seriously high-speed devices only comes out to a 380Mbit/s average and a 330Mbit/s median range. Look at somewhere like TomsHardware which includes more common devices and less multibay monsters and you are down around 220Mbit/s average.

Now granted, this is certainly faster than a 100M link can sustain but it is still quite a long way below Gigabit as I said; again, if you're only thinking as a home user and you'll be the only one accessing your NAS, this setup is fine. Since the discussion relates to this switch, if there is any contention for the NAS port then the speeds received by the hosts will be significantly reduced. If just four machines try to access the NAS in the same timeframe, you're back down to 100M speeds with a bump. Yet again I point out, that if you have more than 20 individual hosts which require gigabit-speed access to a resource like a NAS, you need something a bit more impressive than a single gigabit port to meet that provision requirement. It's simple asymmetry.


I am glad you've chosen to invest your time in producing firmwares for a community of users, I use an HP Microserver but I'm sure your work benefits someone. I am not so glad you've chosen to tarnish your own name with yet more baseless insults and by succumbing to the childish urge to boast about it. Whatever your accomplishments in compiling ARM code, your statements do not become magically less misleading nor your manner more civilised. I've contributed cryptographic code to the Freenet, Invisible IRC and Tor projects but that has absolutely nothing to do with this discussion either.

Even your own NAS only average out to 642Mbit/s under ideal conditions, … Even your own NAS only average out to 642Mbit/s under ideal conditions, half a gigabit link



102 Megbytes = 816 Megabit
92 Megabytes = 736 Megabit

A far cry from the half a gigabit you state
the firmware has gone through several optimizations from buffalo and myself
since any review you have read


and are running two NAS at the upper end of the domestic speed range, you … and are running two NAS at the upper end of the domestic speed range, you DO surprise me



I actually run 7 nas's
5 of them in the over 1.2ghz range but thats besides the point

with yet more baseless insults


Im not trying to upset you or insult you but alot of your statments where well laid out posts with splatters of technical terms formed in a nonsensical manner designed for the layman to be wowed nothing more

I may be blunt at times, its the way i am and one of my nuances
It doesnt bother me being blunt to family members and close friends
nevermind some bod on the internet

by succumbing to the childish urge to boast about it


Im not trying to boast in any way
Granted it may come across that way but that was not my intention



Edited by: "Shonk" 28th Apr 2013
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