As an important part of the whole data link, switch has been a hot spot. According to Ethernet standard, it can be divided into 1G switch, 10G switch, 40G switch and 100G switch; according to port configuration, it can be classified as 8 port switch, 16 port switch, 24 port switch and 48 port switch; according to PoE technology, there are PoE switch and non-PoE switch. But, do you know there are managed switch and unmanaged switch? This article will make a comparison between them.
In a networking, a switch receives a message from any device connected to it and then transmits the message to the target device. Within a LAN, the switch can handle and transmit data among multiple devices via a intelligent and efficient way. As for managed switch and unmanaged switch, the key difference between them is that managed switch can be configured and it can prioritize LAN traffic to make the most important data get through; while unmanaged switch is a “plug and play” device. It can’t be configured or analyze the data traffic.
- Managed switch gives you better control over your LAN traffic and offers advanced features to control the traffic.
- Managed switch has all the features of unmanaged switch and additionally has the ability to configure, manage, and monitor your LAN. So this helps you to monitor and decide who should have access to your network and gives you greater control over data flow through your network.
- Unmanaged switch does not support any configuration interface and options. It is like plug and play device and you need to connect your computer or other network devices directly to the unmanaged switch. If there are no advanced applications needed, then unmanaged switches should be the best choice.
- Managed switch uses protocols such as SNMP or Simple Network Management Protocol for monitoring the devices on the network, which helps in the exchange of management information between network devices.
- Managed switch with Quality of Service (QoS) feature allows you to prioritize your network traffic by assigning a higher priority to the critical traffic. This helps to improve network performance and helps in better transmission of delay-sensitive data such as real-time voice.
- Managed switch can be used to isolate traffic between different user groups. This segmentation and isolation of network traffic help to reduce unnecessary traffic. For instance, you can segregate traffic between your finance and marketing groups, so that critical finance information can flow without delay to the finance users and not get bogged down by marketing traffic. This allows better network performance and additional level of security.
When it comes to which one to choose, it is mostly about two things: budget and application. Managed switches are costlier than unmanaged switches. But managed switches definitely have more benefits and ensure improved, consistent network performance. Weighing the pros and cons of both the types of switches, each business needs to evaluate its network needs. If you just want to setup a network, unmanaged switches are good enough. If you need configuration options like like VLAN, QoS you will have to use a managed switch. FS.COM can provide quality managed switch, such as 8 port managed PoE/PoE+ switch, 24 port managed PoE/PoE+ switch.