I know this question will be rather broad.. but let's say its concerning Cisco, and/or Dell gigabit ethernet switches.
My goal is to squeeze as much throughput put out of the switch as humanly possible for my backup server. Which consists of 1 backup media server and 12 hosts all connected via a Dell 2816 (currently). I have been given the thumbs up to upgrade to a Cisco switch if it'd make things any better. Also this "backup lan" is utilizing secondary gigabit nics on all servers involved physically separate from the production lan.
Are there any vendor-neutral settings such as STP, CoS, Link Aggregation, etc that improve overall performance? Any vendor-specific settings on either of these?
Other than using all Cat6 copper, gig switches and nics, and making sure that all devices are running at 1gig/Full, what else can I do?
And as a secondary question of MUCH less importance.. could these same principles be directed towards a home setup to improve throughput for Gaming?