Hope everyone had a good weekend and enjoyed the holiday as well.

Now down to business...

The network I am in charge of has been growing a lot over the past year. We have 55 employees...where just a year ago it was around 30. We have over 200 nodes that are all connected into unmanaged/webmanaged switches which are all 100Mb or 1Gb. We have 75+ computers, 60+ Xbox 360s, 25+ PS3s, and 60+ VOIP Phones.

Recently as we have been getting our newest game title ready we have increased the amount of traffic and amount of data going over our network considerably. In doing this the performance over the past month has been dropping off and now I am trying to figure out the best course of action so as we grow further this won't happen in the future.

I wanted to get a good poll going of ideas to see what would really help out in making our network performance shine. Would Layer 3 switches help out? Or would a better topology be the better/cheaper answer? What other things can really cause bottlenecks on a network? Are there good tools that will help me discover what areas really need improvement?

As always thanks in advance for taking the time to respond to me and my dilemma, if you need more information just ask and I will do my best to provide it.