Need help with switching design; What switches do I require?


I am designing a new network for the small company I work for.  We have 34 computers/servers with different network requirement (below), and I am not sure how best to approach implementing switches into the network.
I basically have 4 groups; Servers, Production PCs, Management PCs, and Internet PCs.  The attached jpg displays this.

I require the following configuration;
- Production PCs can communicate with Servers but are shielded from the inernet, no access in or out (but I may want to change this in the future)
- Management PCs can talk to everything (servers, PCs and internet)
- Internet PCs can only connect to the internet, nothing else.
- Servers (2 Domain Controllers and 2 file servers) can connect to the internet for downloading hot fixes etc, but nothing else).

I am looking at getting a Cisco 1803 router for the internet connection as we are interested in opening another office and I would like to setup an tunnel between the two offices.  This wont be immediately but I want a solution that allows it to happen.

Where I am stuck is knowing what switching to put between the router and the devices on the network; do I go for managed?, unmanaged?
Also how many switches?  I could get one big 48 port switch but if it breaks; I'm stuffed.  So should I get a number of switches?  Would performance be affected?

Thanks for your advice

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managed?  YES
unmanaged? NO
Also how many switches?  I could get one big 48 port switch but if it breaks; I'm stuffed.  So should I get a number of switches? TWO
Would performance be affected?  NO

I would look at a pair of 24 port switches.  If you lose a switch, you can cover 24 of the 34 computers until you get a replacement.

If you are not married to Cisco, 3COM (and others) have a nice 36 port switch.  2 of those would give you 100% redundancy.
ITPOLAuthor Commented:
Excellent, thanks for your advise, I will take a look at the 3Com offerings...
Aaron StreetTechnical Infrastructure Architecture and Global Network ManagerCommented:
3com might soon be owned by HP... HP also do a nice range of switchs them selves but they aretrying to by 3com at the moment

and yes you deffenetly want two managed switch!
I would recommend you get a layer 3 switch so you can simplify your VLAN and routing configuration.

I agree with going with a couple of switches vs one for some redundancy in case of a switch failure.
Using three 24 port or two 48 port switches would give you more than enough ports for growth as well as full backup. Depends on how much back up you want to bulid in and how much you want to spend.

I have had great success with Enterasys and Nortel switches. Any of the major enterprise vendors will do.

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