What Is Ethernet Leaf Switch

At present, with the massive increase in data transmitting and the need for real time data travel within the network, Ethernet switching technology has evolved greatly over the last decade. As a result, the existing aging three-tier design has been replaced by the new leaf and spine architecture in data centers. This new network architecture requires specially designed leaf switch in order to work. So how much do you know about leaf switch? Here we’ll explain this data switch in this article.

Leaf Switch Introduction

As the figure1 shows, a leaf-spine architecture is usually composed of spine switches and leaf switches. Leaf switch is used to gather the traffic from the server nodes, then link to the network core that consists of spine switches. In this case, every leaf switch connects to every spine, which contributes to minimizing the network latency and bottlenecks. Therefore, the leaf and spine architecture allows for huge amounts of bandwidth and provides a high level of redundancy.

leaf switch in Leaf_Spine architecture

Figure 1: Leaf-Spine Architecture

Traditional Three-Tier VS Leaf-Spine Architecture

Commonly, a traditional model includes three layers, core, aggregation and access. And most data center services and functions run on physical hardware that drives “north-south” traffic. If there are some east-west traffic that needed to be transferred across the traditional model, devices connected on the same access layer contend for bandwidth. Therefore, congestion will be created between the access and aggregation layer.

traditional Three_Tier

Figure 2: Traditional Three-Tier Topology

Unlike the traditional three-tier, the access layer of leaf-spine structure is formed by each leaf switch that is directly connected to each spine switch. And this direct connection helps to minimize the traffic bottlenecks and latency, and utilize the networking protocols and methodologies to create a dynamic network.

Leaf-Spine Architecture Advantages

As described above, we know the advantage of leaf-spine model is the improved latency and reduced bottlenecks. With this new approach, only a few data switches are needed to create a large and non-blocking fabric. This is the main advantage that makes it popular in networking system.

In addition, leaf-spine uses all interconnection links. This means an additional spine switch could be added and the uplinks can be extended to each leaf switch, which can increase the interlayer bandwidth. Therefore, it allows the network to scale without managing or disrupting the Layer 2 switching protocols as the traffic grows.

Leaf Switch Recommendation

To keep pace with the market needs, FS.COM has produced S5850 series 10GbE switches for using as leaf switches, including three products. We’re going to see these three leaf switches.

FS P/N
S5850-32S2Q
S5850-48T4Q
S5850-48S6Q
Ports
32-port 10GbE SFP+ and 2-port 40GbE QSFP+
48-port 10GBase-T and 4-port 40GbE
48-port 10GbE SFP+ and 6-port 40GbE QSFP+
Throughput
595.24Mpps
952.32Mpps
1071.43Mpps
Switching Capacity
800Gbps
1.28Tbps
1.44Tbps
Latency
612ns
low
612ns
Max Power Draw
120W/150W
350W
150W/190W
Price (US dollars)
$3199.00
$3800.00
$3699.00

These three leaf switches are made of the same robust materials. All of their airflow directions are front-back. From the table, we can see that all S5850 series products support MLAG, SNMP, SFLOW and son on. So you can choose one according to your demands.

Conclusion

Leaf switch and leaf-spine architecture make the network more flexible. And FS S5850 series data switches are the quite cost-efficient selections. FS provides a full line of network switches including 24 port switch, 48 port switch and 1G switch, 10GbE switch and 40GbE switch. Come and choose the suitable switch.

SFP Fiber Switch Introduction and Cabling Solutions

With the growth of today’s network, the amount of hardware involved has become a barrier to efficient and optimized network operations. In some cases, a fiber switch is the answer. These fiber switches with management functions can reduce the burden on the network backbone, by connecting different edge-level devices and combining them into a single data stream. Today, we’ll focus on SFP fiber switch and its cabling solutions.

SFP Fiber Switch Introduction

As the name implies, an SFP fiber switch is a communication control device with SFP ports. And like a common networking switch, SFP fiber switch is also used to send and receive data transmission, but in fiber channel. These SFP ports are small form-factor hot pluggable interfaces, so the SFP optical transceiver modules can be inserted into the SFP ports. Then the fiber cables can be used to connect the fiber switch to other networking equipment.

Advantages of SFP Fiber Switch

SFP fiber switch can provide a higher reliability and security than the RJ45 port switch. As we know, fiber cables transfer data in light, which is faster than the copper cables’ electronic transmission speed. And due to the special design of fibers, the SFP fiber switch generates less data loss and electromagnetic interference. Therefore, using an SFP fiber switch is better than the RJ45 port copper switch. For example, if the transmitting distance is more than 100 meters, copper cables like Cat5e or Cat6a is unable to reach. So you need the fiber cables which are often used to interconnect switches in multi-building deployments.

FS SFP Fiber Switch Cabling Solution

To meet the market demands, FS.COM has published a set of fiber switches and the corresponding cabling solutions. Here we take S5800-48F4S SFP fiber switch as an example. Before we learn its cabling solutions, let’s have a look at the fiber switch first.

This SFP network switch is a 10GbE switch. It’ s designed with 48 1GbE SFP ports and 4 10GbE SFP+ ports, which allows high performance routing, host and access protocol emulation. With the latency of 2.3us and switching capacity of 176Gbps, this Layer 3 switch is a great option for data centers. Its body is compact and made of sturdy material that complies with ISO9001, ETL, CE, FCC standards. The following video shows the cabling solutions between S5800-48F4S switch and other switches.

As the video shows, a completed cabling solution of a fiber switch includes transceiver and fiber cables. Here S5800-48F4S switch can support 1G SFP, 1GBASE-T and 10G SFP+ transceivers. So we list some supported transceivers as shown in table 1 for your reference.

Transceiver ID
Description
Price (US dollars)
1000BASE-T SFP Copper RJ-45 100m Transceiver Module
$21
1000BASE-SX SFP 850nm 550m DOM Transceiver Module
$6
1000BASE-EX SFP 1310nm 40km DOM Transceiver Module
$14
1000BASE-EX SFP 1550nm 40km DOM Transceiver Module
$24
1000BASE-ZX SFP 1550nm 80km DOM Transceiver Module
$24
10GBASE-SR SFP+ 850nm 300m DOM Transceiver Module
$16
10GBASE-LR SFP+ 1310nm 10km DOM Transceiver Module
$34

Table 1

The following table 2 are the supported cables that can be used for connecting S5800-48F4S switch to other networking equipment.

Fiber ID
Fiber Connector
Fiber Mode
1M Price (US dollars)
Unshielded
Cat6
$1.7
Unshielded
Cat6
$1.7
LC UPC to LC UPC
OM4 50/125μm
$6.6
LC UPC to LC UPC
OM4 50/125μm
$4.5
LC-LC
OS2 SMF
$11
LC-LC
SMF 9/125μm
$8.4

Table 2

Conclusion

SFP fiber switch can actually improve overall speeds and responsiveness of one’s network. FS carries a full line of Gigabit Ethernet switch, including 8 port SFP fiber switch, 24 or 48 port fiber switch. Contact us via sales@fs.com for a free consultation on your networking needs and choose the suitable fiber switch based on your specific requirement.

Home Network Switch Buying Guide

Today, almost every home has built a home network which requires some basic hardware. The first important hardware for your home network is a data switch. It allows you to connect several computers and some other networking devices like printers, IP cameras together. Since there are so many data switches like 12 or 24 port switch on the market, which one is the right for your actual needs? Here focus on home network switch buying guide to help you find the best home network switch.

Benefits of Using Home Network Switch

For home use, one of the main advantages of using a data switch is that Ethernet connections will become much faster and more reliable, due to the higher bandwidth it can provide. As such, it’s perfect for things like gaming or transferring network files, and other real time application will perform better through the home network switch. For example, if there are several users in your home, then you can use the switch to share an Internet connection to all the users and all the connected devices at the same time. Also, you can use the network switch to build a home LAN. Then you can share any type of files maybe a music folder across your home network. Instead of transferring files on the Internet, other members of your home network can access the songs in the folder through the home network switch. This helps to simplify the transmission flow. In addition, you can add a guest VLAN to manage the guest’s access permission and ensure the Internet security.

Specifications Should be Considered Before Buying

Before you decide to buy a network switch for your network, here are some specifications you should pay attention to.

    • Speed

Network speed is always the most important performance that people concern most. Currently, the network switches are capable of handling 10,100 even 1000 Mbps transfer data, which is sufficient for home use. Therefore, choose the switch that can provide appropriate speed that you need.

    • Ports

The port number means how many networking devices can be connected to the switch. Network switches with 8 ports, 12 ports, 24 ports and 48 ports are available on the market. So select a switch with enough ports for your devices. If you’ll add more devices in the future, then choose a switch which will offer you extra room to grow.

    • Price

Price is always an important factor when buying anything. There are different types of switches on the market, such as the managed switch, unmanaged switch and Gigabit PoE switch, and their prices vary greatly. So you can establish a budget for your switch, thus you can narrow the buying scope and make a final decision.

Recommendations for Home Network Switch

Network switches with 24 ports are excellent for home use. Considering future upgrade, speed and ease of use, we choose FS S2800-24T4F as the best Ethernet switch for home networking. And we also recommend FS S1600-24T4F switch as an excellent budget option.

FS S2800-24T4F Switch

S2800-24T4F switch is a great option for home use and small business. It includes 24 10/100/1000BASE-T RJ45 copper ports and 4 1G SFP/RJ45 combo ports. The switch provides high performance with a packet forwarding rate up to 42Mpps. It supports multiple functions like VLAN, flash memory, etc. to make it easy for your network management. Besides, it adopts the fanless design and therefore it will not generate any noise, which is welcome in both homes and offices.

FS S1600-24T4F Switch

This is a Gigabit PoE+ switch features 24 10/100/1000BASE-T RJ45 Ethernet ports, 1 console port, 2 combo ports and 2 Gigabit SFP ports. The max power consumption of this switch is 600W. And another highlight of this switch is that it’s designed with green energy saving technology. Therefore it can save energy without sacrificing performance by sensing whether the ports are idle or not, and then power down the idle ports. It’s a great, standard switch with the plug-and-play design.

home network switch-PoE type

Figure 1: 24 Port Gigabit PoE+ Managed Switch

Conclusion

As described above, we know how to buy a home network switch. We can select one based on the speed, ports and budget. Using a network switch can help us optimize our home network. FS.COM is ready to help you purchase your new data switch. Feel like you need a direction, don’t hesitate to contact us via sales@fs.com.

Unicast vs Multicast vs Broadcast: What Are the Differences?

Unicast, multicast and broadcast are the three simple methods used to transmit packets over a network. However, do you really have a good understanding of these networking terms? Here focus on unicast vs multicast vs broadcast to tell you their differences.

What Is Unicast?

Unicast is defined as the connection that only between a server and a client, which means it’s a one to one transmission. In computing world, it’s the most common kind of traffic in TCP/IP networks. For example, when you send or receive the email, you have to connect to the email server. And here you use the unicast transmission. In this case, a unicast frame contains the unique unicast MAC address of the destination receiver. Therefore, only the specified destination can receive the unicast traffic, and all other destinations will ignore or can’t receive unicast traffic. Using this transfer method, the server can send personalized and accurate information to each client with different requests. However, when the same information needs to be sent to a large audience, multicast and broadcast methods will be more efficient.

unicast of unicast vs multicast vs broadcast

Figure 1: Example of Unicast One to One transmission

What Is Multicast?

Multicast is a one to many technology that efficiently sends data from one source to many destinations simultaneously, generally within a Local Area Network. A multicast frame contains the unique multicast MAC address of an application, protocol or data stream. To implement IP multicast communication, equipment like data switch, router between the source and receivers is required to support IP multicast function. In multicast model, the network traffic will not increase since the data packet can be sent to different destinations of one multicast group by sending one copy of the data, which means the overall network load can be reduced. However, as we mentioned above, the operation of multicast requires the assistance of switches with IP multicast function, so no matter you choose a 10gb ethernet switch or Gigabit PoE switch, please make sure the switch has that function.

multicast

Figure 2: Example of Multicast One to Many Transmission

What Is Broadcast?

Broadcast is a one to all technology. When a device sends a packet to the broadcast MAC address (FF:FF:FF:FF:FF:FF), it will be delivered to all receivers that connected on the LAN no matter the receiver needs it or not. Cable television network is the typical broadcast network example. However, broadcast is not the suitable choice for the public Internet, because it will generate unnecessary interference and tons of unwanted data.

broadcast

Figure 3: Example of Broadcast One to All Transmission

Unicast vs Multicast vs Broadcast: What Are the Differences?

After knowing the definitions of unicast, multicast and broadcast, we’ll make a comparison of unicast vs multicast vs broadcast.

Multicast vs Unicast

The basic difference is that, in unicast, there is only one sender and one receiver, while there is a single sender but multiple receivers in multicast. When we want to send the message to a number of people, we’d better choose multicast transmission since it can utilize the bandwidth more efficiently.

Multicast vs Broadcast

In broadcast, the packet transmission is one to all, but in multicast the transmission is one to many. Besides, multicast requires group management, in order to ensure the message can be sent to those hosts which are interested in receiving the message. And the traffic on the multicast network is under control.

Unicast vs Broadcast

The process of data transmission is different. Unicast only sends the data to one receiver, but broadcast sends the same data to all receivers connected in one LAN. Moreover, if you want to share some private or unique information with another person, you must use unicast network but not the broadcast.

Here is a table to give you a clear comparison of unicast vs multicast vs broadcast.

 Unicast Multicast  Broadcast
 Transmission
One to one
One to many
One to all
Bandwidth
Wasted
Utilized efficiently
Wasted
Group management
No
Yes
No
Security
Safest
Safe
Not safe

From the table, we can see that multicast is the most efficient method for data transmitting. To meet the market demand, almost all FS network switches have multicast function.

Conclusion

As regard with unicast vs multicast vs broadcast, we know the key difference between them is the different transmission paths. So when you need to transmit some information, choose the suitable transmission method based on your actual needs.

What Is a Mesh Network?

This is sometimes annoying that the video stops when we are catching up on the most recent You Tube video, or there’s no signal in the kitchen when we want to watch the cooking video. The poor wireless signal is really a headache since people’s life has relied heavily on WiFi today. How will you fix this? Welcome to the new network solution—mesh router systems. Simply put, it consists of several small routers that communicate with each other to provide a seamless wireless network in your house. This is the reason that encourages you switch from a wireless router to a mesh network. So what is a mesh network?

What Is a Mesh Network

Wiki says a mesh network is a local network topology in which the infrastructure nodes (like data switch or bridges ) connect directly and non-hierarchically, in order to efficiently route data to the end users via the nodes. This network enables the network devices that can provide connectivity capabilities like bluetooth or wifi to form a node one after another. Then a dynamic route is formed between each device and the others, and as a result the data can be delivered within the mesh network. When a node in the network topology fails, other nodes that connect with this one will also fail. But luckily, the whole network will still work, because only one connection point is broken which will not affect the other connections. Thus, we often regard the wireless mesh network as a decentralized information network.

example of what is a mesh network

Figure: Example of Mesh Network

Benefits of Using a Mesh Network

What is a mesh network, after figuring out this question, let’s turn to the benefits of a mesh network. Compared with the ordinary Internet which is built on a few centralized access points or Internet Service Providers, mesh network enjoys many benefits.

  • Extremely Reliable and Expandable

The most striking feature of a mesh network is the construction. This means users can add the wireless router in the specified places, thus they can build a new broadband access network just by the existing facilities. It’s convenient to add or remove the wifi mesh nodes. In addition to expand the wifi range, the wifi mesh network can help one’s electronic devices connect the strongest wifi signal automatically when you walk around the room.

  • Support High Demand

In the above part what is a mesh network, we know each additional device in a mesh network is regarded as a node, the mesh topology can support high amount of network traffic. Thus, interconnected devices can send data smoothly.

  • Less Expensive

Traditional networks rely on multiple equipment such as Gigabit Ethernet switch or transceivers to connect users, while mesh network uses the wireless mesh nodes to spread data. Using fewer equipment means it costs less to build a network. A general 10 Gigabit switch will cost you about 2000 dollars, not mention the high-end switches or other network equipment. Also, using a mesh network will help to eliminate the complexity of cables installations.

How to Create a Mesh Network

It’s not enough to learn what is a mesh network and its benefits, we also need to know how to create a mesh network. At present, the main method of wireless access is to set up wifi in the hotspots places. In order to enable wireless access throughout the whole city, technicians have to create network access points as many as possible by numbers of cables or fiber optic cables. Unlike the normal wireless Internet, to form a mesh network, technicians only need to connect one node to a network such as Internet modem or router. Then the connected node will share its Internet connection with the other nodes within its range. Then one after another, more nodes are connected and a bigger mesh network is created.

Conclusion

As for the question what is a mesh network, I believe now you have a clear understanding. A mesh network has a greater range and is much faster and stronger than the normal wifi network. Any question about mesh network, please contact us via our website FS.COM.