TP-LINK Smart Switches anyone?



  • Anyone has experience with TP-Link's new Smart, and Easy Smart switch series?
    See: http://www.tp-link.com/en/products/?categoryid=223

    I'm definitely considering the TL-SG2216 model, which has 16 Gigabit ports, and 2 SFP slots. At $140 USD price with all the advanced features like dot1q VLAN according to the specs, seems very attractive.

    What I'd like to do is connect two of these with a trunk cable and share VLANs between them, apparently that's possible with the "Smart" series but not with the "Easy Smart" series (that's why TL-SG2216 and not TL-SG1016DE, although I'm only using copper at the moment).
    But what I'd really want to do also is to connect to pfSense via a dot1q trunk port and access VLANs directly from pfSense - do you think it would work?
    Found a review (http://www.smallnetbuilder.com/lanwan/lanwan-reviews/31941-tp-link-tl-sg2216-gigabit-smart-switch-reviewed) where the author says he could do successful dot1q trunking between this and a Netgear GS108T. I could think based on this, that it should work with pfSense too…

    What do you think?



  • Had the SG2216 here in my home lab for some time. It's chinese craftmanship I think but works according to specs, and is rather easy to configure (the gui is acceptable & intinuitive).
    Hard to beat for the price if you need more than 8 ports…



  • @bennyc:

    the gui is acceptable & intinuitive

    Yes and I see in the manual that there's also a CLI interface via Telnet and SSH.

    Did you try it with pfSense as VLAN trunk?

    Actually I already own a pair of TP-Link TL-SG1016 unmanaged ("dumb") switches. I am very satisfied with them, build quality is good, entirely passive construction (no fans at all - thus perfectly silent). They don't heat almost at all, and also noticed that indeed they work at theirs specs.

    That's why I'm inclined to give a chane to the Smart version of the same…



  • No, didn't make a trunk. (Vlans yes, but there were ports enough so had at that time only 1 switch here…  ;) )
    Confident enough though that it would work.


  • Rebel Alliance

    Using an "TL-SL3428" here, since a couple of years, and is OK (almost 2 years Uptime)


  • Netgate Administrator

    What makes you think the Easy Smart switches can't do a VLAN trunk? In fact I would argue there's almost no point having VLAN capability in a switch if it can't do a trunk connection. Note that 'VLAN trunk' is a Cisco term and others use differing terminology. TP-Link seem to be using uplink port.
    Of course I've not use done so I could be reading the manual wrong.  ;)

    Steve



  • @stephenw10:

    What makes you think the Easy Smart switches can't do a VLAN trunk?

    I went through the manual of one of the Easy Smart models, and at the VLAN chapter there was no mention about how to pass multiple VLANs through a port. As far as I understood, on the Easy Smart models, a port can either pass traffic untagged, or tagged with a single VLAN number, that's all. But I could be wrong, of course.
    As opposed to the Smart models manual, where that possibility is written down.

    Noticed that TP-Link uses "Trunk" term for connecting switches with ports aggregated so that they have duble bandwidth/redundancy (similar to Cisco's EtherChannel).


  • Rebel Alliance

    ^
      Exactly, on most of those "cheap" Switches "Trunk" is intended for LAG…

    You can check this Topic (Spanish Forum section) showing "how to" configure a "Web Smart" TP-Link Switch with VLANs & pfSense ;)

    https://forum.pfsense.org/index.php/topic,47388.0.html



  • @robi:

    @stephenw10:

    What makes you think the Easy Smart switches can't do a VLAN trunk?

    I went through the manual of one of the Easy Smart models, and at the VLAN chapter there was no mention about how to pass multiple VLANs through a port. As far as I understood, on the Easy Smart models, a port can either pass traffic untagged, or tagged with a single VLAN number, that's all. But I could be wrong, of course.
    As opposed to the Smart models manual, where that possibility is written down.

    Noticed that TP-Link uses "Trunk" term for connecting switches with ports aggregated so that they have duble bandwidth/redundancy (similar to Cisco's EtherChannel).

    I was looking at this today.

    It appears to me that in section 6.1.1, you can tag multiple ports to various VLANs. I think in Figure 6-3, you'd just be adding lines to the VLAN table.

    Of course, I have no real idea what I am doing because I am just getting into all this kind of stuff so grains of salt and all that.



  • @ptt:

    You can check this Topic (Spanish Forum section) showing "how to" configure a "Web Smart" TP-Link Switch with VLANs & pfSense ;)

    https://forum.pfsense.org/index.php/topic,47388.0.html

    Thank you! It seems it's fesible with pfSense then. Cool.

    "Web Smart" brand name no longer exists now, they just simply call them "Smart", and the TL-SL2218 in the link is indeed not an "Easy Smart" one.



  • @aficionad0:

    I was looking at this today.

    It appears to me that in section 6.1.1, you can tag multiple ports to various VLANs. I think in Figure 6-3, you'd just be adding lines to the VLAN table.

    Yes indeed, that's what I was also hoping that I understood right.

    My doubt was regarding to the "Easy Smart" models here: http://www.tp-link.com/en/products/?categoryid=2878 - these are the ones I guess don't support multiple VLANs on one port (aka Cisco "trunk").


  • Netgate Administrator

    Hmm, well I could be reading it wrong and I certainly agree it's not clear but:

    @http://www.tp-link.com/resources/document/TL-SG1016DE_V1_User_Guide_Easy_Smart_Configuration_Utility.pdf:

    MTU VLAN (Multi-Tenant Unit VLAN) defines an uplink port which will build up several VLANs with each of the other ports

    What's the point of having three types of VLAN config if none of them can uplink tagged packets from multiple VLANs?

    Steve



  • @stephenw10:

    Hmm, well I could be reading it wrong and I certainly agree it's not clear but:

    @http://www.tp-link.com/resources/document/TL-SG1016DE_V1_User_Guide_Easy_Smart_Configuration_Utility.pdf:

    MTU VLAN (Multi-Tenant Unit VLAN) defines an uplink port which will build up several VLANs with each of the other ports

    What's the point of having three types of VLAN config if none of them can uplink tagged packets from multiple VLANs?

    Steve

    Ah, different models.

    What is the difference between what you are calling an uplink and just assigning the port for the pfSense machine to all the VLANS?



  • I got an HP Procuve 1810v2-24g(J9803A) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16833316731 for $210. All ports can be a trunk. While it does have 2 "uplink" ports, they're just normal ports, just with the option to use a fiber adapter as uplinks tend to need more range. I assume the TP-Link is the same.

    Technically, you could just tag a port to have all VLANs and manually make sure all switches have the same VLAN ids. Still best to create a proper trunk.



  • This HP model costs twice than the TP-Link, in my area. Also, is the HP fanless?

    Guys, an "uplink" port on these cheap switches means only that it can be connected to another switch using straight cables, meaning the port is autosensing. These days, all the ports can be "uplinks"… Tagging of the traffic has nothing to do with this feature.


  • Netgate Administrator

    I disagree for a couple of reasons.

    There is no need for an uplink port such as you describe on a Gigabit switch since all ports are auto-MDX. Unless the switch has a single fibre or 10Gig port for that purpose, these dont.

    I have never seen a switch that had VLAN capability that couldn't do a VLAN 'trunk'. Even those really cheap Netgear switchs that require a Windows utility to control them. (Edit: These are quite a bit cheaper though)

    What would be the purpose of a switch that recognised VLAN tags but was unable use a trunk port?
    1. You could divide the switch in to separate groups of ports that formed, in effect, separate switches.
    2. You could possibly pass VLAN tagged traffic without stripping the tags.
    Neither of those seem particularly useful in common applications.

    The 'uplink' port referred to in the instructions is specifically for VLANs.

    Just to define it by 'VLAN trunk' I mean a connection carrying traffic with multiple different VLAN tags such that when connected to a pfSense box each of those VLANs can appear as a separate interface.

    Of course I still haven't used one so I stand to be corrected. ;)

    Steve



  • @robi:

    This HP model costs twice than the TP-Link, in my area. Also, is the HP fanless?

    Guys, an "uplink" port on these cheap switches means only that it can be connected to another switch using straight cables, meaning the port is autosensing. These days, all the ports can be "uplinks"… Tagging of the traffic has nothing to do with this feature.

    It is fanless. The TP-Link looks fine, feature wise. I only went with HP because my last job used HP and I had nothing but good experiences, plus I've read nothing but good reviews with customer support and warranty support.



  • Stephen, we're in the same boat. What I just wrote is that there's no "dedicated" uplink port these days anymore. Back in the old times (15 years ago) some switches and hubs had an additional dedicated uplink port (regardless of tagging features) where port connection was crossed internally, so that people could use straight cables to connect switches to each other or to routers. That port was nothing more than just the first or the last port on the switch duplicated to a cross-connected RJ-45 socket on the board, nothing more, and it was literally printed below it, the word "uplink". Pretty much like the SFP ports double ports 15 and 16 on the TL-SG2216. Maybe we could call these as uplinks dedicated - but only when using fibre optics.

    Apart from that, you can use any port as "uplink" today, on these cheaper switces. Not on Ciscos, the Ciscos still require cross-cables to connect to each-other.

    There are two types of TP-Links we're discussing in this topic:
    Easy Smart Switches: http://www.tp-link.com/en/products/?categoryid=2878
    Smart Switches: http://www.tp-link.com/en/products/?categoryid=223

    I've looked into the manual of the TL-SG1016DE Easy Smart Switch, and the manual of the TL-SG2216 Smart Switch, and noticed quite a lot of differences. Perhaps I misunderstood, but it seemed to me that the Easy Smart model is not capable of transferring multiple VLANs through a port. What's the point of having such a switch I don't know, and I don't really care.
    What I opened this topic for is to be sure which one to buy, to be as sure as possible that it will work with pfSense and tagged VLANs.

    I ordered a TL-SG2216 yesterday btw. I'll test, and if it's OK, I'll order a second one later. And of course will post back here my experiences. This will not answer wether the TL-SG1016DE Easy model can or can't do this, however.



  • Yes, a lot of the HP switches are fanless.  I have one.  :-)

    I saw one of the TP-Link switches at the local Fry's.  Seemed interesting.


  • Netgate Administrator

    I'm sure the TL-SG2216 will be fine for what you need.
    I think I'll probably get a TL-SG108E when they become generally available in the UK. They're so cheap that they are comparable to an unmanaged switch from other manufacturers. Looking at the manuals for the TL-SG108E and the TL-SG1016DE (both Easy Smart type) the 16 port appears to have some sort of web interface but I fear the 8 port may be Windows utility only. With the demise of XP I no longer have a Windows box readily available.  :-
    Anyway if get one I'll let you know for sure what it can and can't do.  ;)

    Steve



  • @robi:

    Apart from that, you can use any port as "uplink" today, on these cheaper switces. Not on Ciscos, the Ciscos still require cross-cables to connect to each-other.

    I'm not sure which Cisco switches you're using but every one I've used that was made in the last decade has worked just fine using straight-through cables on "trunk" links.

    Let me know how you like the TP-Link - I've been eyeing the TL-SG3216.



  • OK trying to figure it out, seems to be able to do what I need but it's a bit cumbersome:
    TP-LINK: How to configure 802.1q VLAN on Smart Switches?



  • @verigoth:

    @robi:

    Apart from that, you can use any port as "uplink" today, on these cheaper switces. Not on Ciscos, the Ciscos still require cross-cables to connect to each-other.

    I'm not sure which Cisco switches you're using but every one I've used that was made in the last decade has worked just fine using straight-through cables on "trunk" links.

    Let me know how you like the TP-Link - I've been eyeing the TL-SG3216.

    I agree. I cannot remember the last time I saw a non-auto MDI-X port on a 1gb switch. Even the cheapest of the cheap can detect. My integrated NIC even supports detecting and adjusting for wrong polarities. You can actually mix up the solid and striped wires on the crimp and it'll still work, just get the colors correct.



  • Tested TL-SG2216 with a pfSense box, it works handling multple VLANs on a port.

    Tp-Link has a substantially different approach to implementation of the 802.1Q VLAN standard seen from the user's perspective, but the results seem to be the same as the other swithces.

    The main idea is (as can be probably seen in the article I linked in the post above) that you have to consider the VLANs as the "owners" of the ports, and not the other way around, as Cisco thinks of it. Because of this, you can't simply define a port as a "trunk" (cisco-like, containing all VLANs) or an access port. You have to add the ports to the various VLANs, and the way you add it to them causes traffic to pass through accordingly.

    You can add a port to a VLAN in three ways, from the outgoing (egress) perspective of the port:

    • "Untagged": traffic coming in, which has no VLAN tag, will go into VLAN specified at PVID option. Traffic going out will have no VLAN tag
    • "Tagged": traffic coming in, which has the VLAN tag set, will go into that VLAN. Traffic going out will have the VLAN tag set accordingly.
    • "Not member": port does not handle traffic with tag number of the selected VLAN.

    It's like multidimensional matrix where you have to tick the corresponding rows and columns between the VLAN and the ports.

    As you see this approach makes it a bit more difficult to have an overview of how to set it up but it's possible.

    Here's an example where you'd set up port 16 as a Cisco-like trunk (port containing multiple VLANs, 10 and 20) and ports 2 and 3 as access ports for VLANs 10 and 20 respectively.

    1. First you define all your existing VLANs in the network. In the web interface go to menu VLAN→802.1Q VLAN→VLAN Config and create VLAN 10 and VLAN 20.

    2. Select in the list VLAN 10. In the table below (VLAN Membership) select "Untagged" for port 2 and set PVID to 10. This will make port 2 catch all the traffic and push it into VLAN 10. Also select "Tagged" for port 16. This will make port 16 push out VLAN 10's traffic with vlan tag set in the headers.

    3. Select in the list VLAN 20. In the table select "Untagged" for port 3 and set PVID to 20. This will make port 3 catch all the traffic and push it into VLAN 20. Also select "Tagged" for port 16. This will make port 16 push out also VLAN 20's traffic with vlan tag set in the headers.

    That's it! You have now both VLANs tagged traffic present on port 16.
    I tested this by creating these VLANs on a pfSense box's nic, added some static IP addresses to these new interfaces in pfSense, connected that nic to port 16, and I was able to ping them separately from PCs connected to ports 2 and 3.

    One thing to consider though.

    Port 16 is also a member of VLAN 1, which is the default VLAN of the switch, factory preset. It passes the traffic of VLAN 1 untagged, together with the tagged VLANs 10 and 20. This allowed me to ping pfSense's box nic directly from any other port than 2 or 3 (because these all belong to VLAN 1 by default). I tried to avoid that by removing port 16 from VLAN 1 (setting it to "NotMember"), but it wouldn't let me do that, because port 16's PVID is set to VLAN 1. Changing the PVID first to any other VLAN allowed me to remove it from VLAN 1, but unfortunately broke the functionality, as it only forwarded traffic belonging to that other VLAN.
    So it seems that you have to keep a dummy VLAN (can remain VLAN 1) where your cisco-like "trunk" ports have to be untagged - in this case it's probably advisable to remember not to put any sensitive traffic on that VLAN which can be accessed on the port untagged.

    The TL-SG2216/TL-SG2424/TL-SG2424P/TL-SG2452 switches also have a CLI interface (both Telnet and SSH). I looked into the CLI Reference Guide and quickly noticed that the majority of the commands are similar to Cisco's! Moreover, the security approach is very similar, it's got User EXEC Mode, Privileged EXEC Mode, Configuration Modes just like the Cisco Catalyst series. Very funny, here's how I re-created the above example from CLI interface:

    login as: admin
    Further authentication required
    admin@x.x.x.x's password:

    TL-SG2216>

    TL-SG2216>enable

    TL-SG2216#

    TL-SG2216#conf

    TL-SG2216(config)#

    TL-SG2216(config)#vlan 10

    TL-SG2216(config-vlan)#exit

    TL-SG2216(config)#interface gigabitEthernet 1/0/2

    TL-SG2216(config-if)#switchport general allowed vlan 10 untagged

    TL-SG2216(config-if)#switchport pvid 10

    TL-SG2216(config-if)#exit

    TL-SG2216(config)#vlan 20

    TL-SG2216(config-vlan)#exit

    TL-SG2216(config)#interface gigabitEthernet 1/0/3

    TL-SG2216(config-if)#switchport general allowed vlan 20 untagged

    TL-SG2216(config-if)#switchport pvid 20

    TL-SG2216(config-if)#exit

    TL-SG2216(config)#interface gigabitEthernet 1/0/16

    TL-SG2216(config-if)#switchport general allowed vlan 10 tagged

    TL-SG2216(config-if)#switchport general allowed vlan 20 tagged

    TL-SG2216(config-if)#exit

    TL-SG2216(config)#exit

    TL-SG2216#copy running-config startup-config
    Start to save user config…...

    Saving user config OK!

    TL-SG2216#

    I was looking at the web interface too after entering the commands, refreshing the page in the browser showed all the steps just like I would have done them there. Very nice.

    I think this switch suits my needs so I'm definitely considering purchasing a second one.
    Further investigations I need to do are related to multicasting, I have high hopes there related to multimedia content, because I see there's quite a lot configuration possibilities.

    Another very positive aspect of TL-SG2216 is that it runs really cool. At living room temperature you can hardly notice any heating on the top/surface with your hand.

    Edit: my switch shipped with the very first firmware version, v1.0_20120528. The first thing I did was to upgrade to versions v1_130925 and v1_131031. Reason was that config file of the first version is not compatible with further versions (as stated on the manufacturer's website and read in a review too), + a good couple of new features are present in the updates.


  • Netgate Administrator

    Thanks for the write up.  :)
    The VLAN config looks almost identical to that of most other small managed switches (in my very limited experience). All except Cisco perhaps.  ::)

    Steve



  • Looks pretty good to me. Has most of the features that you would want and the back plane is fast enough to support all the ports transmitting a full bandwidth. Has support of VLAN tagging and LAG as well as rapid spanning tree. I think you will be good. The only thing I didn't see which is a shop stopper is radius support. If I could offer some suggestions.

    When you connect to switches together via a tagged port (Cisco call it trunk port, but more proper to call it a tagged port) you should not put untagged traffic on the same port. If you have untagged traffic on a tagged port then make sure that both switches have the same pvid on both sides otherwise you will have traffic from one vlan getting onto another.

    P.S.

    Modern Cisco switches will automatically cross over the connection just make sure  you have the command: mdix auto under the interface



  • I agree that my view may be distorted, as my (not so wide) experience on VLANs was almost exclusively based on Cisco Catalyst series. That's still what they teach nowdays on CCNA training… And, to be honest, Cisco's implementation is indeed very confortable and easy to maintain.

    What I'm missing from this TP-Link VLAN implementation, is something like Cisco's VTP (VLAN Trunking Protocol), where you can set master/slave relationship between switches, and if you add a VLAN to the master switches, it will automatically created on the slaves too. This makes it easy and fast to maintain if you have dozens of switches connected to each other, plus minimizes mistakes.

    I can of course live without VTP in my lab, but I think it's trivial to have it in a corporate environment.



  • @mikeisfly:

    When you connect to switches together via a tagged port (Cisco call it trunk port, but more proper to call it a tagged port) you should not put untagged traffic on the same port. If you have untagged traffic on a tagged port then make sure that both switches have the same pvid on both sides otherwise you will have traffic from one vlan getting onto another.

    I didn't find a way to avoid that. As I wrote, it seems you can't have a port with tagged-only traffic, a PVID must be set. That means you'd have to sacrifice a (dummy) VLAN number to catch the untagged traffic. Not a big problem as you can have up to 512 VLANs simultaneously (on the Smart series).


  • Netgate Administrator

    They can't use VTP since that's a proprietary Cisco protocol. Wikipedia suggests the standards based equivalent is GVRP or MVRP. Neither appear to be supported.  :(

    Steve



  • @stephenw10:

    They can't use VTP since that's a proprietary Cisco protocol. Wikipedia suggests the standards based equivalent is GVRP or MVRP. Neither appear to be supported.  :(

    Steve

    Then next model up, ie, full layer 2 managed switch like TL-3216, do appear to support GVRP.  Haven't read deep enough to see what else you get with those over their 'smart switch' line.  Seems like the TL-SG2216 is pretty capable.



  • Just my experience with GVRP and MVRP, they don't compare to VTP. With that being said VTP can get you in big trouble so it might be a good thing not to have it. Sounds a little crazy that you can't have a port without a pvid but a way to get around that would be not to assign that vlan to that port. On most every switch except Cisco there are a couple of things that you need to know about vlans.

    1. When you add a vlan to a port it can be tagged or untagged.
        a. Tagged is like a trunk port in cisco using the command switchport trunk allowed vlan x only the vlans specified by x will be on the trunk
        b. untagged is like a access port in cisco
    2. You then need to assign a pvid to a port which tells the switch what vlan to put the traffic on when untagged traffic enter that port. The similar command in Cisco would be switchport trunk native vlan x

    Hope this helps :)



  • @robi:

    I didn't find a way to avoid that. As I wrote, it seems you can't have a port with tagged-only traffic, a PVID must be set. That means you'd have to sacrifice a (dummy) VLAN number to catch the untagged traffic. Not a big problem as you can have up to 512 VLANs simultaneously (on the Smart series).

    Can't you just set the PVID to 4095 (the "discard" VLAN)?



  • No because the PVID appears as a dropdown box in the GUI, and it contains only the defined VLANs. Could work in CLI though, but I guess that may cause unpredictable results when looking at the GUI…



  • Here purchased two of the TP-Link Easy switches (24 ports each).

    That said one is mounted inside of a Leviton can which replaced a small 24 port generic switch.

    I haven't had much time to play other than I am over port capacity on the two switches and had to add my old non managed Gb switches back into play (also 24 port).



  • I was looking for a 16port smart switch aswell and ended up getting a Cisco SG300 20 port and have not looked back, I was initially looking at the 200 series but then decided to get the best i could afford. most cisco equipment costs an arm and a leg but surprisingly the SG-200 18 port was cheaper here than most of the 16port competitors(TPlink did not have a gigabit smart switch with the same features available here at the time). Now with the 300 series i got 2 more ports (having 4 uplink ports ontop of the 16 ports i was looking for has been very helpful and gives me more room to grow) and more features than i needed at the time and firmware upgrades keep adding more. The one feature the hp pro-curve had cisco did not was that you could turn off the link LEDs to save power, upgraded the firmware on my cisco before i started using it and the feature was now added.

    Ive had mixed experences with TP-Link equipment, i find that in basic operation it works well but start doing anything complex and performance goes down. You will not get full gigabit thoughput on every port at once but then in a home enviroment do you really need to. if it works for you then great but price up all the options, you might be surprised as i was.



  • @aus_guy:

    I was looking for a 16port smart switch aswell and ended up getting a Cisco SG300 20 port and have not looked back

    I've been looking at it too, but unfortunately the price for it in my area is almost 4x the price of the TL-SG2216. And I needed 2 of them.



  • @robi:

    @aus_guy:

    I was looking for a 16port smart switch aswell and ended up getting a Cisco SG300 20 port and have not looked back

    I've been looking at it too, but unfortunately the price for it in my area is almost 4x the price of the TL-SG2216. And I needed 2 of them.

    The price is way more because the SG300 series is L3. The best comparable would be the SG200 series, which is the L2 series. I guess the one that comes closest is the SG200-18; It will be still more expensive than a TP-Link, but that is what I would consider normal.
    As most of the time; you get what you pay for, and there's rarely such a thing as free lunch.
    FWIW: I'm using a couple SG200 series @home instead of the TL-SG2216 I had previously, and am also very satisfied. But that's not because the TP-link had issues, I just needed other kind of setup over time.

    my €0.02 -> YMMV.  ;)



  • @bennyc:

    @robi:

    @aus_guy:

    I was looking for a 16port smart switch aswell and ended up getting a Cisco SG300 20 port and have not looked back

    I've been looking at it too, but unfortunately the price for it in my area is almost 4x the price of the TL-SG2216. And I needed 2 of them.

    The price is way more because the SG300 series is L3. The best comparable would be the SG200 series, which is the L2 series. I guess the one that comes closest is the SG200-18; It will be still more expensive than a TP-Link, but that is what I would consider normal.
    As most of the time; you get what you pay for, and there's rarely such a thing as free lunch.
    FWIW: I'm using a couple SG200 series @home instead of the TL-SG2216 I had previously, and am also very satisfied. But that's not because the TP-link had issues, I just needed other kind of setup over time.

    my €0.02 -> YMMV.  ;)

    layer 2/3 modes are actually switchable to get MAC based vlans I run mine in layer 2 mode and do the routing in pfsense. However I agree that the 200 series is more comparable to the tl-SG2216. I had budgeted for the SG200-18 but after selling my netgear 8 port for about the difference i could afford the SG300-20, I didn't really need the extra features at the end of the day i like having things to be able to play with but my going upto the best i could afford it also provided a future proof solution. While no one has a crystal ball i advise you to look beyond what you need right now and try and look into what you may need in the future or else the cheaper solution may end up being more expensive when you have to augment it or replace it. Im going through this with my TPlink access point at the moment, i thought it would be ok for what i needed at home but now im finding I just have to bite the bullet and spend the money, doing this twice has costed me more in the long run.

    I certainly know that in the right situation tplink gear can be dead on for price/performance/features, however that use case is small so know what your getting into. same thing goes for any brad/manufacturer.



  • Cisco SG200-18 also costs more than twice of the price of TL-SG2216.

    I've done some further testing with my TL-SG2216 pair, and I must say I'm perfectly satisfied of the results. Soon they will be installed to their final location. I admit that Cisco as a brand is much more respected one than the others - but for my needs, I'll be perfectly fine with my TP-Links. I really don't see the reason to just pay for the brand name, while in my setup they would perform equally well.



  • Yup here I come from using Cisco in a "work" environment; work was an airline for many many years.

    Cisco is embedded/ingrained in my head; it is a good product.

    My PFSense firewall is at home.

    I did initially use Cisco stuff at home; then went to downsizing the stuff to smaller footprint non managed switches, then to unmanaged "el cheapo" Gb switches; then to the TP-Link Managed switches which have worked fine for me.

    I was just looking for a reasonably priced product for my home and that would work with my automation stuff.

    I push the two 24 port switches and they are at port capacity such that I have more switches in place today (well and POE stuff).  I have little Aopen DE's connected to the GB network running XBMC. (well in every room that has an LCD TV).  I have tested all of the streaming HD stuff and they do fine.  I also have some 20 touchscreens connected via Gb connectivity; they have multiple CCTV streaming video streams plus TV streaming and an assortment of other stuff to manage my automation.  I have not broken the two switches yet.  My home is sort of a sandbox and I have filled up about 1/2 of a class c subnet with a variety of connected do whats; well need to go to a full class c as I am running of of IPs.

    I do side stuff stuff related to my hobbies. Helping (well forum moderation) a new company in Taiwan called Securifi which has a neato product that I am playing with called the Almond +.

    This is a plug for the Almond plus as it is a combo router, firewall, Wireless Gb (well AC) and automation touch screen about 4" square and maybe 1.5" thick that talks Zigbee and Z-Wave and wireless automation protocols.

    That said Securifi just installed a few of the TP-Link managed switches in their offices in Taiwan and they are really happy with them.