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Need to confirm that the way switches and routers are physically wired is efficient or a best practice.

Posted on 2007-11-15
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Last Modified: 2010-04-09
We have three internet lines from three separate ISP's.  One is a 3.0mbps T1, one is a 1.5mbps T1, and the other is a 5.0 DSL line.  For each of these, there's a jack on the wall, and from each of those jacks is an ethernet cable leading into one small 8 port switch.  From that switch is an ethernet cable which leads to three respective WAN interfaces of three firewalls, with the LAN port of those firewalls plugging into a main switch to which all of our workstations and servers are attached.  Is this ideal?  We've been having issues with latency and some lost packets (but these have only occurred recently, this setup has been fine for 2 years), and the ISP's have confirmed that the lines are ok.

A tech at cisco recommended dividing the network up into subnets or using VLAN's for each device/line.  Just wanted some feedback on how or whether different lines should be kept separate.
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Question by:QuiteSupersonic
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RPPreacher earned 800 total points
ID: 20289834
I would remove the 8 port switch and direct cable them.
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by:Don Johnston
Don Johnston earned 800 total points
ID: 20289949
Agreed. There's no need for the 8 port switch... Other than a single point of failure. ;-)
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by:QuiteSupersonic
ID: 20290323
But in terms of the flow of traffic does one setup trump the other?
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by:RPPreacher
RPPreacher earned 800 total points
ID: 20290843
Yes.  Traffic aggregated into the 8-port switch faces several limitations

1 - the slight delay entering an exiting the switch
2 - the backplane of the switch

Direct cabling eliminates these two problems.
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by:Don Johnston
Don Johnston earned 800 total points
ID: 20291504
I'm not sure I agree with RPPreacher on this point.  You're only seeing a maximum of 9mbps total going through the switch. Unless it's a really cheap 10mbps switch, it should be able to handle that.

That said, there's really no good reason to be running these connections through a switch like you are.
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by:kulvinder_10
kulvinder_10 earned 400 total points
ID: 20293140
Yeh try reoving the switch, May be the switch has got some Errors during 2 years of time period.

Adn it i dont see any benfit of swith as such at that point.
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