10GbT Switch Recommendations

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Oct 23, 2018
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I’m looking for a switch with 10-24 10GbT ports on it. Rack mount would be ideal. I want to expend as little effort as possible on setup and maintenance, so I’m guessing that means I want an unmanaged one.

Does such a thing exist below $300? If not, what about $500?

Triple extra bonus points if it’s auto switching 110/220, but I realize that one might be a bridge too far.
 

Eulogy

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I'm assuming you mean BASE-T, aka copper?
I don't know copper 10G switches that well, but if you find any ol 10Gb switch with SFP+ cages, you can just use a copper SFP+ transceiver and call it good. But I don't know of any 10Gb switches at all that are unmanaged... kind of odd requirement. Did a quick search and it looks like there's several, none at 24 ports, and even the ones with 8-10 ports I'd be kind of surprised if they could sustain line rate on all ports if maxed (or, truthfully, even half). Could very well be wrong and would be happily surprised if so.

Home or office/work use? What's the actual expected use here? What devices hung off of it?
 
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Yes, BASE-T is what I meant. Shows you how little I know about the topic :)

This is primarily for a small office although I'd also like to have something similar in my home office. We have some imaging equipment and a couple of NASes with 10G BASE-T NICs in them. It's becoming common for users to be moving 0.5-1TB of images around the network, and the current 1Gbps infrastructure is holding everyone back. The NASes aren't super quick, but each one pretty easily saturates a 1Gbps network (Synology DS1821+ filled with WD Red Pros). The users mostly have desktops with 10Gbps NICs in them as well (almost all are built into the mobos, a couple are on PCI cards).

It's an uphill battle (read: like trying to walk from New Jersey to the Moon) to convince the powers-that-be to spend appropriately on our critical infrastructure, hence the low price cutoff. I had been thinking about using SFP+ transceivers, but they seem to add about $60 per port and I'm not sure I can get that approved. Then again, this approach would allow me to sneak in small costs as each additional port gets utilized, so maybe that would work.

The switch doesn't have to be unmanaged, but I figured that would make it easier for someone like me to have to deal with. I'm looking for something that's as close to plug & play as possible.
 

Eulogy

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SFP+ cages also buy you the benefit of being able to flip between fiber, DACs, and copper as needed, too. I sadly don't know gear that'll help you out in this case... my default recommendation is telling folks to take a good look at Brocade ICXes, which are stellar switches, but, I wouldn't risk a business on one (since largely, the super cheap ones are no longer able to get support or updates on). If you're of the kind to roll the dice like that though, those can be found for $150-200, and some even have 40Gbps ports, which would be great for backhauls or spine-leaf connections.
 

SamirD

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I think a good place to start with 10GB would be this MikroTik desktop SFP+ 10Gb switch: https://mikrotik.com/product/crs305_1g_4s_in

You can sometimes find it for $100 and then even if you need to get some of their SFPs to convert to copper, it's not that bad of a hit. The other thing as mentioned above, you can use dac cable and fibre so if the workstations or other equipment is close by, you can just put this near them and use DACs and save on SFPs or other cabling.

And I believe when running in switchos mode, it is unmanaged so none of that complexity either.

But if you wanted true 'plug and play' and 'just works', I would go with the TP-Link unmanged 10Gb line:
https://www.tp-link.com/us/business-networking/unmanaged-switch/?filterby=5987
 

zandor

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And I believe when running in switchos mode, it is unmanaged so none of that complexity either.

But if you wanted true 'plug and play' and 'just works', I would go with the TP-Link unmanged 10Gb line:
https://www.tp-link.com/us/business-networking/unmanaged-switch/?filterby=5987
MikroTik SwitchOS is managed. I have a MikroTik CRS326-24S+2Q+RM running SwitchOS. MikroTik basically doesn't do unmanaged at all. Also their stuff typically boots up to RouterOS by default, so if you want to run SwOS you have to set it and reboot the switch. That said dealing with a managed switch isn't hard. They generally act like unmanaged switches in their default configuration except that you'll want to change the default password and IP address. With a MikroTik all you really have to do is install WinBox on a Windows PC, set the password & management IP (can use DHCP if you like) using WinBox, and you might want to update the software and firmware.

I don't think I'd go with an SFP+ switch if you're planning on using all Cat6/6a/8 cabling unless maybe you're looking at a really cheap used one on eBay and don't mind the noise and power draw of used datacenter equipment. Sure you can get RJ45 SFP+ modules, but they are not cheap. fs.com wants $69 each, and that's one of the cheaper places to buy stuff like this. Fiber modules are actually quite a bit less expensive than 10Gb RJ45s. fs.com only wants $20 a pop for 10G MMF transceivers. Also a lot of switches have restrictions on how many 10Gb RJ45 modules you can use. They draw a lot more power than fiber modules.

If you're sure you just want a single subnet I'd just go with something like that TP-Link SamirD suggested. I have my network split up into multiple VLANs (computers, gizmos, guest, etc.) and multiple WiFi SSIDs (using commercial access points), so I need managed switches for that. Of course to do that you also need a commercial router, DIY router, or a consumer model flashed with appropriate 3rd party firmware/software. If you change your mind and decide to go managed MikroTik has a switch (CRS312-4C+8XG-RM) with 8 RJ45 1/2.5/5/10 ports and 4 combo ports on it. The combo ports have two ports each but you can only use one at a time, either an RJ45 or an SFP+, so you get a total of 12 usable out of 16 physical plugs (12 RJ45 + 4 SFP+) It's $660 MSRP, so more than that TP-Link, but also has more ports and can support a mix of SFP+ and RJ45.
 
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The TP-Link unit got delivered on Fri. Performance for my relatively modest needs appears excellent so far.

It also turns out that the power on the TL-SX1008 is autoswitching, so I can run it off of the same 220V circuit as the rest of the rack. This is looking like a win in every intended way. Thanks for pointing me to it SamirD !
 
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