View Full Version : Switch, router, hub?
08-31-02, 01:53 PM
What is the difference between a Router, a Switch, and a Hub?
08-31-02, 02:33 PM
hub I port thing that will split a cable line into X ammount of ports but normally runs at 10Mbp/s and can not split the IP address up...so with one you can only have 1 computer on at a time or if you have more only 1 computer will have internet...and it does not support LAN games since it does not create a LAN
Router A router will split up a cable line into X ammount fo ports....but it will also split the IP address up so you can have as many computers on as you want and they will all have internet access and not fight over the IP address....it runs 10Mbp/s and 100Mbp/s and will normally auto adjust to what your network card supports (10 or 100)....Also it sets up a LAN...
Switch A switch is a combination of a hub and a router....it can NOT split the IP address so you can only have one computer on the internet....but supports speeds of 10/100Mbp/s....but if you have a router plugged into a switch then the router will split the IP address for the switch....also with a switch you can limit bandwith to each of the ports on it....it also sets up a LAN...
hope this helps
08-31-02, 03:28 PM
Thanks a lot!
I would like to expand on this a bit. First of all hubs can be used for a lan. A hub allows you to connect multiple computers together to form a lan. A hub however is a "dumb" device. Every message that comes into it gets sent out every port. It can certainly be used for lan gaming, but because it is a "dumb" device (meaning it does no routing of any kind) your lan will not be able to run at full duplex, and you will have collisions which can affect performance if you have dozens of computers. A switch is an intelligent hub. It examines the hardware address (MAC) of messages coming in. It then knows the hardware address of the device connected to each port. When a message comes in to a switch it will only send that message to the correct destination port. This prevents collisions and allows a full duplex network. A router is a device that connects different networks together. It routes based on the logical (IP) address. It knows nothing about hardware addresses or individual machines - only networks. A broadband router at home is connecting your internal network to another network - the ISP's network which is called the WAN, for wide area network. The router itself is not what allows you to share multiple computers on your cable or dsl line. NAT, for network address translation is what does this. NAT takes the private IP's of your lan and passes information out on to the WAN using the public IP assigned by your ISP. When information comes back addressed to your public IP, the NAT feature determines which internal IP the information is bound for and repackages the information with the appropriate internal IP. I believe a lot of confusion is coming about lately due to the increase in broadband subscribers that buy these little NAT devices with switch ports included. Hope this makes things a little bit easier to understand.
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