Difference between Managed and Unmanage Switches

5 pts.
Tags:
Managed Switches
Switches
Unmanaged Switches
Please explain the difference with applicable areas for both and implications including cost.

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A managed switch gives you the ability to log into the network switch and monitor and configure each port on the switch one by one. An unmanaged switch does not give you this ability.

A managed switch will be much more expensive than an unmanaged switch of the same size.

Moderator Note: You may wish to read about managed and unmanaged switches in this similar question.

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  • Bobkberg
    I beg to differ on the cost difference of managed vs. unmanaged switches. At one time, that difference was quite large, but it is coming down. What is likely to suffer though is the quality of the MIB support for SNMP. Lower cost manageable switches tend to lump errors together and such, or simply fail to provide the granularity that one might want. Additionally, there is a 3rd class of "manageable" switches which do not support SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol), but which DO have a web interface which can show you traffic and error statistics and allow port by port configuration. Their cost is perhaps 20% more than an unmanaged equivalent from the same manufacturer. If I've got a limited budget, then my approach would be to make the main switch nodes of as high a quality as I can afford, and then "star" outwards/downwards through the semi-managed switches. That way, I can use tools like PathSolutions switch monitor, or other snmp management tools. Then when a fault shows its head, you can almost immediately go to the segment in question. But, I was talking budget - Costwise, you're better off with MRTG, but it lacks flexibility. Bob
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