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CISCO SWITCHES FOR SMALL and MEDIUM BUSINESS

Introducing the next generation of Cisco Small and Medium Business Switches. Cisco is refreshing its SMB Switch portfolio. Click here  to learn more.


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Beginner

Using SG300 directly as a router?

Hello, I am building a new home with several Cat6 ethernet ports wired throughout (at least one to each room) and I want to connect them all through a rock-solid reliable gigabit switch like the SG300 or SG200.  I am also going to use wireless N (something like the E4200) but I would prefer not to use the wireless device as the router since I want a solid, reliable connection from my ethernet-connected devices and the Internet and I honestly don't trust consumer-level devices like the E4200 to be reliable without dropping my connection.  I have computers that need a constant VPN connection and I have other computers that do bittor...umm, network intensive activity that usually bring wireless routers to their knees  

So what I would really like is to connect the internet cable modem (Ubee) directly to the business-class switch (SG300 or SG200), and have that business-class switch do the routing and NAT to my entire network, and I'd just use the E4200 as a wireless access point.  I'm not a network admin and the idea of the CLI scares me, but I can probably use it to at least switch the SG300 to Layer 3 mode...that looks simple enough.  I'd definitely want to use a web GUI for everything else.  From what I've read, the SG200 is a Layer 2 device so it couldn't be used as a router, but can the SG300 in Layer 3 be used as a router connected directly to the cable modem?  Will it support NAT and UPnP and all of the other features that the E4200 would (minus the wireless of course)?  For example one thing I will want is to be able to have multiple XBoxes connected to the switch all with an "Open NAT".

If the SG300 can't do this, what's the best rock-solid business class device that I can connect directly to the cable modem that will support things like UPnP and NAT?

Thanks everyone in advance for their advice!

8 REPLIES 8
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Beginner

Hi Kael,

The Sx300 won't suffice as it is at best a good switch with limited IPv4 routing features. A router ... routes traffic, a NAT gateway translates IP traffic from local addressing to public addressing. Even if most consumer grade appliances bundles the two functions, NAT and (IP) routing are still quite different.

In this case, you can use a layer3 switch to route traffic between several local networks but you'll need a default router + a NAT gateway. I assume you designed a unique LAN network, without VLANs or anything that complex, so this gear is clearly overkill and if you don't plan to build complex networks, even a manageable switch is a little overkill.

Get a solid gateway device (router + NAT + DHCP + Misc. services) and simply buy a unmanageable gigabit switch

Regards,

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Thanks for your response Romain!  Can you (or anyone else) recommend a solid gateway device (router + NAT + DHCP + Misc. services) that is strong enough to handle heavy torrent traffic while keeping my VPN connections alive for weeks at a time?  What do small businesses use when they don't need wireless?

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Kael: I can't tell actually, I run a homemade GNU/Linux router based on standard computer hardware. But you can read a lot of reviews on http://www.smallnetbuilder.com/

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Frequent Contributor

Kael,

I would look into the Enterprise Small Business product line as i use at home (ASA5505) this will give you stability and reliable you are looking for. Configuration of this device is Intermediate so you'll most likely need a contract with it.

I usually go to SecureItstore.com to get an idea on SKU and pricing and then search for best possible price.

Hope this helps,

Jasbryan

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Thanks Jasbryan, but that looks like it's only 10/100 and not gigabit.  It seems silly to go with anything less than gigabit these days.  Also is there anything like this but with a web GUI like the SG300?

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Frequent Contributor

Kael,

Most Internet speeds haven't reach 100Mbps so this will be the most reliable solution other than spending couple thousand dollars that will give you Gigabit speeds for WAN that you'll never use. Like Romain said i would connect a unmanaged switch or managed for all your local connected devices, this will be where Gigabits speed count. Again your Gateway device don't have to support 1000Mbps since very few Internet speeds reach 100Mbps.  This device will be strictly used for routing/Natting your public ip address to internal lan hosts. 100Mbps will be more than enough to accomplish what you are asking for on your Internet.

**Knownledge is power**

Jasbryan

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I'll probably be moderated for this but there's a german product called fritzbox which might do what you want.

Alternatively you can follow the "roll your own" path fairly easily.

On the subject of "Most domestic circuits don't reach 100Mb/s" : at least one ISP in the UK has been supplying 100Mb/s over cable for a couple of years and is rolling out speed upgrades on top of this.

ISPs worldwide using VDSL2 40/10 (8MHz profile) are upgrading to 80/20(17MHz profile) and there's every indication that they'll go at least double this speed (30MHz profile) in 2-3 years (US and SE Asian ISPs are currently using 30MHz profile with wider channel spacing than Europe. Doubling speed for them is a matter of  using closer channel spacing.)

Then of course there's the South Koreans. Gb to the home has been a reality there for a long time...

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Hi Alan,

Interesting comment "'ll probably be moderated for this"

When this community was setup years ago, I recall that the moderators for this segments said they wouldn't censor.

There were a few exceptions, unless you were rude and used foul language or were obviously demented.

So you can have your say.

Plenty of contributors , probably including myself may be moving towards demented in our thoughts. But until we all get really loony Alan,  your free to say what you want. II's all healthy discussion.

I have seen many "interesting' posts but I suspect  your post will remain for years to come.  Once on the Internet, our comments and discussions are  left to embarrass us for years to come.

regards Dave.