Newbie Question: Buy managed switch or not?

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We currently use two out-of-warranty 3-COM 48-port switches (image: http://images.google.com/images?q=3C16476&biw=992&bih=393) with model number 3C16476. One is slowly dying--meaning that every week, one of the ports stops working, requiring me to disconnect that cable to that failed switch port and reconnect it to the other (working) 3C16476. These are unmanaged switches. Our budget is (probably) less than $1500 USD total. Should we purchase managed or unmanaged switches for our roughly 100 LAN-connected devices? Also, should we consider 1000 Mbps for scalability?
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Commented:
You can get two 1000 Mbps Managed switches for under 1500.

I would get managed because you get a lot more functionality, such as VLAN capabilities, monitoring, and depending on the switch, routing capabilites.


We use HP Procurve switches, but there are several vendors that offer lower cost models that would be a nice upgrade to what you've got.  Here's just one example.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16833316105&cm_re=procurve_48_port-_-33-316-105-_-Product

Chef de cuisine
Commented:
as long as you have no need fpr setting up secial routing or prioity rules (e.g. bandwith management...)  there is no need to buy managed switches. And as long as you haven't the knowledge to set up a managed switch in an appropriate way there's no need to buy one either.

There's no choice but 1000Mbit!

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Commented:
Thanks to you both! I'm looking for hardware suggestions at this point, especially for POE devices, which, after speaking with our telephony team, I realized that I had forgot to mention in this question. I'll open a separate question if you prefer.
With a managed switch you also get the ability to viewand clear arp data.  Sometimes this can be very helpful.

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Commented:
Thank you to everyone!

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