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NetGear Smart vs. Managed vs. Cisco Small Business vs. ?

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The main reason I posted them together is I would like to use same/similar hardware in both locations so that what I learn at home I can apply to the parish network as well.



I would think that the router and switch still need to be aware of the VLAN so that the connections can be routed correctly.  The Open-Mesh hardware may be able to separate out the wireless networks, but how does that isolate the guest wireless from the parish LAN unless the router is also aware.  I suppose the switch could maybe be dumb since it'll just forward the packets along anyways, but I think then I'd basically have every endpoint on the network connected to a trunk port which I assume is not a good thing.  Even if that works and the access point does some filtering, I'd still be worried that without the router tagging incoming packets for the guest VLAN, I wouldn't have proper segregation between the guest and parish networks.

You don't need to do any setup on your router at all if using Open-Mesh because Open-Mesh AP's are the gateway for the system so no configuration your your part with extra equipment. The Open-Mesh guest network uses an IP of 10.255.251.x with a gateway of its all self handled within Mesh, No special switches needed. It works great.

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I'm using both a Netgear GS110TP and a Cisco SG300-10MPP, part of their small business line.


The GS110TP actually is a managed switch.  Maybe not in the same category as some, but it is managed.  You can set up VLANs, link aggregation, etc.  The price is good, and it has PoE.  My two gripes are that there is no commandline, and that the GUI is slow, something I have found common to Netgear switches.


The SG300 switches are in a completely different league.  They have both a reasonably responsive GUI, and commandline operation using the VxWorks operating system (Dell also uses this in their Powerconnect switches).  It is iOS-like, but not iOS, so not exactly the same, but the commandline is great for learning how to work with switches.  The SG300 line can switch between Layer 2 and Layer 3, which, for the price, is a pretty incredible feature.  Name a feature; the SG300 line supports it, in switches that range between 10 and 52 ports, some with PoE and some not.  Unlike Cisco enterprise switches, no support contract is required for firmware upgrades or technical support.  Performance wins too.  Finally, the SG300 switches are more secure, or at least, can be customized to be so (via SSH or HTTPS access).


Both Netgear and Cisco Small Business have lifetime warranties.  Nothing against HP's ProCurve line or Dell's PowerConnect either, but the ten-port SG300 is probably one of the more amazing values I've seen if you go by features-per-dollar, and even the PoE versions are fanless.  It's also got GBIC ports for fiber like the GS110TP if you want to play with that.

Edited by LoneWolf

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