: Too many devices for one router


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homer71
2009-12-07, 10:31 AM
I think this fourm is just a wealth of information, Im trying not to ask too many questions without leafing around a bit.
Anyway I have been messing with a home network for about a year now
I have one router and several devices hooking up wirelessly. Until I started streaming video this was fine now I need to hard wire as much as posible or go with powerline addapters which still involves another ethernet jack.
I dont have enough jacks for what I want to do.
Ive heard of people having two routers. I have another one and if I could configure it that would give me 7 inputs but from what I heard its very tricky.
I also saw a 10/100 8 port fast ethernet lanhub switch that would give me 12
inputs.
Has anyone else come to this fork in the road?? If so, what did you do?

avengingangel
2009-12-07, 10:44 AM
More than likely, the router isn't the problem. I have 15 devices (5 wireless devices and 10 wired with the use of 3 4-port switches) connected to a 4 port netgear router without any difficulties from the router.

It's probably a combination of :
a.) Your wireless connection speed (B / G or N) and
b.) The type of video you are trying to stream (quality and resolution.. IE: HD)

For Example: I don't think you'll be successful at streaming HD video with anything less than a Wireless N connection.

Providing more details may help at providing a better answer.

hugh
2009-12-07, 10:51 AM
homer71, you need a switch NOT another router. Spend the extra and get a Dlink Green Gigabyte switch with 5 or 8 ports (depending on how many you need)

Setup instructions in the box

ctown6412
2009-12-07, 10:53 AM
If you have just run out or ethernet ports then you can just add a network SWITCH. You should really consider migrating to a gigabit switch as the price difference is not huge.

What are you streaming and how many streams at the same time? Perhaps you have an older wireless router and it can not handle the bandwith?

If you go the switch route you should consider a gigabit one too

homer71
2009-12-07, 11:05 AM
I have a D-link 628N router and one of the main bottle necks on my computer and my sons is that we both have G wirless adapters. Right now if I stream from my Quad to my P4 or his Dual Core the stream is jumpy and laggy even the mpegs are jumpy and bliry. So instead of getting N adapters I just want to go powerline adapters for both of us. So the problem is going to become Cat5 inputs unless I use a switch as you do. Do you experiance any loss with these switches?
The most streams at once would be 3. One for each person in the house and the resolution would be mostly SD but some HD.

avengingangel
2009-12-07, 11:14 AM
You should be fine with switches and CAT 5e.

With wired connections your bottleneck shouldn't be your network any longer.

If you have issues running 3 concurrent streams then I would look at the source of the stream. If it's local to your network then it could be the PC it's coming from, if from the internet then it would most likely be your internet speed.

Alan Toronto
2009-12-07, 11:19 AM
I'm not sure what you mean by "loss". There is no signal loss with a switch, or with a hub.

You could use a hub rather than a switch, but if you do a lot of streaming then a switch would be better. A hub repeats all traffic to all ports, which can be an issue if doing a lot of high-volume transfers such as streaming. A switch is essentially a smarter hub, as a switch knows which port each chunk of traffic is intended for, so it sends that traffic to only the necessary port. It used to be that switches were much more expensive than hubs, but these days there's not a huge difference so I would get a switch for your situation.

A Gigabit switch won't make any difference if the traffic is coming from the router (such as from other devices connected to the router or from Internet) as the router would be the speed limiter. If you might have traffic directly between two devices downstream of the new switch, then a Gigabit switch could offer greater potential speed if both client devices also have Gigabit capability. Otherwise, a regular 10/100 switch would work equally well.

PPL4GOLF
2009-12-07, 12:02 PM
Hugh gave you the answer - Gigabit switches
Put one in for each room that has a CAT5E+ feed.

He mentioned setup instructions and there is exactly NO setup needed. Just plug whatever devices you need to link together for speed, including the existing wireless router though it is not for speed but rather sharing internet over the entire network.

The improvement over the wireless G 10/100 router is huge. I am talking about copying 10-15GB reliably in a few minutes.

Getting an expensive wireless router to do gigabit is the last thing you want to do unless you're extremely unhappy with the existing router and need to replace it anyways. I use MAC address filter and the last thing I want to do is to re-enter/setup all the MAC address even if there is an easy way.

JamesK
2009-12-07, 01:06 PM
As others have mentioned, a switch is the way to go. A router can likely handle more devices than you'll ever have. Adding an 8 port switch will only give you 11 available, as one on the router is used to connect the switch. One thing to consider is that all the traffic from the switch to the internet will be going through one port. If you want a device to have the best performance to the internet, plug it directly into the router, instead of the switch.

Also, someone else mentioned a hub. Hubs have been obsolete for years and I'd be very surprised if you can still find a new one. Most hubs were only 10 Ms/s.

ScaryBob
2009-12-07, 01:41 PM
I have an 8 port Trendnet Green gigabit switch that works very well. The newer brand name gigabit switches (Trendnet/Linksys/Dlink/Netgear/Cisco) all use the same basic design so just get the cheapest available. They usually retail for $65-$80 but rebates and sales are common. I wouldn't pay more than $60.

Do not use 2 switches. This causes a bottleneck in the cable between the switches. If required, 12 and 16 port gigabit switches are available but the 8 port are the best deal right now. If you need to put an extra switch in a remote, difficult to wire location (to serve extra devices there), that's OK but be aware of the cable bandwidth limitation. You might want to consider using CAT6 for long cable runs. I would use CAT6 for everything now.

Another consideration is upgrading the ethernet port on server and high bandwidth systems. For example, installing Intel Pro/1000 NICs doubled the maximum port speed between two systems here. It's also possible to bond two adapters for very high bandwidth systems. That, of course, creates the need for an extra port on the switch.

hugh
2009-12-07, 01:44 PM
He mentioned setup instructions and there is exactly NO setup needed.

Actually there is setup required. They don't just work out of the box.

JamesK
2009-12-07, 01:54 PM
This causes a bottleneck in the cable between the switches.

You'd have a tough time finding a switch with a port speed below that available via cable or ADSL. New gear these days can do either 100 Mb or 1 Gb. Also, any bottleneck will only occur when multiple devices are accessing the internet. Regardless, the bottleneck will likely be the internet connection, not the switch.

ScaryBob
2009-12-07, 02:22 PM
I'm talking about LAN speeds. The backplane bandwidth in a switch will be #ports*port speed. That's 8Gb for an 8 port gigabit switch. That's to allow multiple devices to communicate at maximum speed. For a single cable, it will be 1Gb max. When connecting multiple devices on a LAN, it can be an issue, though probably more of one at 100Mb than at 1Gb speeds.

JamesK
2009-12-07, 02:55 PM
Stacking switches is common in industry. It's all a matter of placing the devices on the appropriate switch. As I mentioned in another note, to get best internet performace, a device should be placed directly on the router. Other, lower priority, devices might be placed on the switch. In one job I did recently, at a senior's residence, they wanted voice over IP for the business side, computer network, including internet for both staff & residents and WiFi, spread over 3 sites, with the residents on a different VLAN from the staff. Internet connections to the residents suites were via ADSL on their analog phone lines. I installed a router, with built in 8 port 100 Mb switch, and a total of 5 24 port Gb switches. The cable modem connected directly to a dedicated port (separate from the switch) on the router. All five Gb switches were connected at 1 Gb, mosty via fibre. The main switch connected to the router via 100 Mb as did the ADSL shelf. 100 Mb was fine for these connections as everything over them was internet traffic and limited by the cable modem bandwidth. The full Gb connection was available between switches as well as the servers and PBX. The VoIP phones and computers plugged into them ran at 100 Mb, due to limitations of the phones. Phones and computers were on different VLANs, but same ethernet cables. If some user needed a Gb connection for their computer, it would require a separate feed. This configuration worked well as consideration was given to what bandwidth was required and available with that equipment.

NeilN
2009-12-07, 05:55 PM
Actually there is setup required. They don't just work out of the box.

You sure? I got a 5 port D-Link green about a month ago and all I had to do is switch the appropriate cables from my router to the switch.

homer71
2009-12-07, 06:29 PM
Thanks for your replies, Im going to go the D-link green route for all my TV streaming and this can kind of bypass my routers limitations without having to get another. Then the router will just be my WAN port
THanks again very good answers.

ScaryBob
2009-12-07, 07:04 PM
Actually there is setup required. They don't just work out of the box.
We are talking about unmanaged switches. Unmanaged switches for SOHO use have no configuration options. Just plug in the cables and they work. Managed switches and routers do have configuration options. Internet routers usually require configuration before use on the internet.

PPL4GOLF
2009-12-07, 10:46 PM
Stacking switches is common in industry. It's all a matter of placing the devices on the appropriate switch. As I mentioned in another note, to get best internet performace, a device should be placed directly on the router. Other, lower priority, devices might be placed on the switch. In one job I did recently, at a senior's residence, they wanted voice over IP for the business side, computer network, including internet for both staff & residents and WiFi, spread over 3 sites, with the residents on a different VLAN from the staff. Internet connections to the residents suites were via ADSL on their analog phone lines. I installed a router, with built in 8 port 100 Mb switch, and a total of 5 24 port Gb switches. The cable modem connected directly to a dedicated port (separate from the switch) on the router. All five Gb switches were connected at 1 Gb, mosty via fibre. The main switch connected to the router via 100 Mb as did the ADSL shelf. 100 Mb was fine for these connections as everything over them was internet traffic and limited by the cable modem bandwidth. The full Gb connection was available between switches as well as the servers and PBX. The VoIP phones and computers plugged into them ran at 100 Mb, due to limitations of the phones. Phones and computers were on different VLANs, but same ethernet cables. If some user needed a Gb connection for their computer, it would require a separate feed. This configuration worked well as consideration was given to what bandwidth was required and available with that equipment.
That's sort of what I do also...

Plug the network printer to the 10/100 jack on the router. I would have plugged the BD player and HDDVD player to a slower jack but they are in the basement (not where the router is). A 5-port D-Link green is almost filled right up there (BD, HDDVD, HTPC, +/- WDTV Live)

joudbren
2009-12-08, 08:27 AM
There are also solutions if you want to stay wireless. I was having similar issues with my wireless as I had a variety of different devices connecting to my Dlink DIR-655 router. Imac, AppleTV, 2 x iPhone, Netbook, etc and a variety of wired PC and NAS connections. The slower G devices would slow down the overall wireless connection and the routing engine itself was also being swamped between the wired and wireless sides.

Solution for me was the new Netgear WNDR3700 which is getting rave reviews across the web. This unit is dual radio so it has N band on both 2.4ghz and 5.0ghz. Now I'm able to set all my 5.0ghz N capable devices to ONLY talk to that connection and then everything else can connect at G or N on the 2.4ghz radio. In addition the WNDR3700 has a smokin' fast routing engine and you can prioritize QOS (Quality Of Service) for whatever application you need on wireless. I haven't seen a faster home router yet that can deal with the traffic between wireless and wired as effortlessly as this one does it.

So far it's been amazing and gives you total control of all your wired and wireless connections. Check out the review at:

http://www.smallnetbuilder.com/wireless/wireless-reviews/30925-start-your-buying-netgear-wndr3700-reviewed

It's not cheap relative to other routers, I paid $160 in Canada but it's doing the job and nobody in our house is complaining any more which was easily worth the $160! ;)

Cheers!

James

rvp819
2009-12-09, 10:48 PM
What are you guys running that requires a gigabit switch?

I have three 10/100 switches (<$15 each) in different areas of the house going to a single router, and I'm streaming 1080p HDTV between devices no problem. I've yet to see a need for 1000.