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Types of Switches - Cisco Switches
Aug 17 , 2022 844

There are so many types of switches on the market, but do you know how they are divided into different types? Broadly speaking, there are two types of switches: WAN switches and LAN switches

WAN switches are mainly used in the telecommunications field to provide a communication infrastructure platform. LAN switches are used in local area networks to connect terminal devices such as PCs and network printers.


However, according to the detailed division, there are still many different types of switches. Let's see the details of Cisco Switches:

1. Classified by network composition

Switches can be divided into access layer switches, aggregation layer switches, and core layer switches. The access layer and the aggregation layer switch together form a complete small and medium-sized LAN solution.

2.Transmission medium and transmission speed classification

Switches can be divided into Ethernet switches, Fast Ethernet switches, Gigabit Ethernet switches, FDDI switches, ATM switches, and Token Ring switches.

These switches are suitable for Ethernet, Fast Ethernet, FDDI, ATM, and Environment such as the ring network.


3.Scale application classification

From the scale application, there are enterprise switches, departmental switches and workgroup switches.

Generally speaking, enterprise-class switches are rack-mounted, department-level switches can be rack-mounted or fixed-configuration, while work-group switches are generally fixed-configuration and simple.

In terms of the scale of the application, when it is a backbone switch, the switch supporting large enterprise applications with more than 500 information points is an enterprise-class switch, and the switch supporting medium-sized enterprises with 300 information points or less is a department-level switch, and supports 100 information points. The switch is a workgroup level switch.

4.Architectural feature classification

According to the characteristics of the architecture, people also divide the LAN switch into three types: rack-mounted, fixed-distribution configuration with expansion slot and fixed configuration without expansion slot.

A rack switch is a slot-type switch that is more scalable and supports different network types, but it is more expensive.

A fixed-configuration switch with an expansion slot is a switch with a fixed port and a small number of expansion slots. This switch can support other types of networks by extending other network type modules based on a fixed-port type network. The price of the switch is centered.

A fixed-profile switch without an expansion slot supports only one type of network (typically Ethernet) and can be used in local area networks in small businesses or office environments, at a lower price and with the widest range of applications.

5.Classified according to a seven-layer network model

According to OSI's seven-layer network model, switches can be divided into Layer 2 switches, Layer 3 switches, Layer 4 switches, etc., up to Layer 7 switches
Layer 2 switches based on MAC address work are most common and are used in the network access layer and aggregation layer. 
Layer 3 switches based on IP addresses and protocols are commonly used in the core layer of the network, and are also used in small amounts in the aggregation layer.  Some Layer 3 switches also have a Layer 4 switching function, which can perform target port judgment based on the protocol port information of the data frame.  The switches above the fourth layer are called content switches, and are mainly used in Internet data centers.

6.According to whether the switch is manageable

Switches can be divided into managed switches and unmanaged switches.  The difference is that they support SNMP, RMON and other network management protocols.  Managed switches facilitate network monitoring and traffic analysis, but at a relatively high cost.  Large and medium-sized networks should choose a manageable switch at the aggregation layer. Depending on the application needs at the access layer, the core layer switches are all manageable switches.


7.Wide range of general classification methods

According to the most common general classification method, LAN switches can be classified into three types: desktop switches, workgroup switches, and campus network switches.

8.Classified according to exchange technology

According to different switching technologies, some people divide switches into port switches, frame switches, and cell switches. The port switch has a small forwarding delay, and the operation is close to the performance of a single LAN, far exceeding the forwarding performance between the ordinary bridged Internet.  Frame switching is currently the most widely used LAN switching technology.  It provides a parallel transmission mechanism by micro-segmenting the traditional transmission medium to reduce the collision domain and obtain high bandwidth.

9.Divided from the perspective of application

From an application perspective, switches can be divided into telephone switches (PBXs) and data switches (Switches).  Of course, the current very fashionable voice over the data transmission VoIP is also known as the "soft switch." If you want cheap new Cisco / Huawei, second-hand network equipment devices Or other network equipment accessories,  feel free to contact us or email to luke@linknewnet.com

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