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new router or switch advice needed

dgk
Grafter
Posts: 58
Registered: 16-02-2009

new router or switch advice needed

I currently have a 2 port router, 1 USB  1 Ethernet. With computers attached.
1 is my wife’s work laptop, that is on a domain at work so I could not include it in my home network  and it plugs into the Ethernet port.
The other 2 pc’s are connected together with a crossover cable and one is plugged into the USB port.
The USB printer is plugged into a pc and shared on the network.
I am expanding, my son is having his first pc what are my options?
Buy a 4 or more port ADSL Modem Firewall Router
Buy a 4 or more port switch and keep existing router.
Am I right in thinking that whichever option I choose my wife’s laptop can be plugged to any free port to access the internet but not be included in my network of 3 pc’s
If I kept my existing router could I plug the printer into its USB port and then access it from any of my 3 networked pc’s and then attach the switch to the routers ethernet port.
Can I think of a router and switch combination as 1 big router?
14 REPLIES
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 26,936
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Registered: 14-04-2007

Re: new router or switch advice needed

A switch would be the cheaper option but not necessarily the best.

Customer and Forum Moderator.

dgk
Grafter
Posts: 58
Registered: 16-02-2009

Re: new router or switch advice needed

what are the disadvantages to the swich option?
Do you think if I used a switch I could plug my USB printer into my existing router
As 4 port routers seem to be about £45 cost is not to much of an issue
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 26,936
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Registered: 14-04-2007

Re: new router or switch advice needed

What make and model of modem/router are you currently using?

Customer and Forum Moderator.

dgk
Grafter
Posts: 58
Registered: 16-02-2009

Re: new router or switch advice needed

BT Voyager 205 ADSL Router
VileReynard
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 10,980
Thanks: 265
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Registered: 01-09-2007

Re: new router or switch advice needed

If you get a modem/router you will end up with a pair of them.
So if something isn't working, you can do a swap to check things out.

Denzil
Grafter
Posts: 1,733
Registered: 31-07-2007

Re: new router or switch advice needed

Mr Evil's point is good - routers can fail, so it might be worth having a spare one. There is nothing wrong with a switch, though. Switches these days are auto sensing and don't need any setting up. Just connect the switch to the router, then connect all the PCs to the switch.
Plugging your printer into the router's USB port won't work. You can either leave it plugged it into one of the PCs and share it, but that PC would need to be on all the time, or you can buy a network print server thingy - plug your printer into that, and the thingy into the switch.
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,382
Thanks: 713
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Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: new router or switch advice needed

Personally I'd go for a switch. As Denzil says they're all auto sensing these days so you can even use crossover cables with them.
However my view on this does change drastically if you can find a router thats cheap. Obviously if you can find a good cheap 4 port router and a very good price then I would go for this instead. Doesn't mean you must use it as a router because they also work well as standalone switches however the above points are correct about being handy having 2 for diagnostic purposes.
I've personally got one router, spare ADSL modem, one network switch plus 4 more zoom routers - 1 used as a switch only and 3 kept as spares for future network expansion, hardware failure etc.
If you're only intending to buy one device and cash is a bit short I'd highly recommend you play it safe and go with the router option. Nothing worse than your connection dropping dead and having no back up. Then you gotta go to town, haggle over prices etc etc.
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,469
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: new router or switch advice needed

If you are on one of the recent broadband products (PlusNet Value, Pro, Unlimited) you could ask for the free* 4 port wireless router that PN can supply. Or upgrade/change** to one of the new products and get the router that way. This also means you could use wireless if you have any laptops (or your Son has one) which can also save with long trailing network cables by fitting a wireless network card in a PC. Also a new router may get you a faster connection.

* Although the router is free you do have to pay P&P and pay for it if you leave within 12 months.
** Switching to one of the new packages means starting a new 12 month contract. If you leave within 12 months you have to pay for the remaining months on the contract.
The other option is to get a cheap 10/100 switch - about £12 from Amazon. The Laptop can use any free network connection on the router or switch.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: new router or switch advice needed

it does not mean a new 12 month contract, no equipment and its only 10 days from next thursday, even if you start now Cool
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: new router or switch advice needed

the postage for a new thompson 4 port router is less than £7 and the purchase price is nil if you stay for 12 month
dgk
Grafter
Posts: 58
Registered: 16-02-2009

Re: new router or switch advice needed

I see the Thomson 585 v7 is both wireless and Ethernet. Does that mean both at the same time, could I have 2 laptops connected wirelessly and at the same time have 2 pc’s connected using the Ethernet.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: new router or switch advice needed

even four on each that makes 8
dgk
Grafter
Posts: 58
Registered: 16-02-2009

Re: new router or switch advice needed

I am on PlusNet Broadband Your Way Option 2  (Monthly Contract) I think I was offered the wireless modem when I started on Option 2, I didn’t need it then so declined.
I assume I could claim it now.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: new router or switch advice needed

I think you can, as it now weekend, best bet is to give JameseH a PM, he normally organises it