Core Network Switch Discussion
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Thread: Core Network Switch Discussion

  1. #1
    Senior Member Blunted One's Avatar
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    Question Core Network Switch Discussion

    So...let me tell you why I am here today... I have been slowly coming to grips that my companies small business ways of doing things is no longer going to work for our network. We do a lot of PS3 and XBOX 360 game development and it is a network hog to say the least. Especially when 60 people are using the network shoving tons of data back and forth from users to servers to consoles. Luckily everything is within range for copper so that helps. We have roughly 200 network devices (nearly all Gb capable, except for the 360s) + 50 or so phones.

    Since I am asking the experts or so I believe, what is everyone's opinion of a solid core switch personal or what you have heard. I really can't afford Cisco, but have been looking at HP's Procurve line and it seems to be the right fit especially the 5400 series, specifically the 5412zl. However this is only my more or less amature opinion as I am not an expert or certified by any means. I really want our network to fly, any ideas how to get it off the ground?

    The NETWORK BASICs: 4 * 48 port network switches (mixed 10/100 and Gb, all copper cat 5e) and 4 * 24 port POE phone switches. One WAP. Some printers,Plotters, etc. A bunch of servers and a whole lotta game build servers and 50+ users on high end machines. Switches are mostly daisy chained because only a couple connections run from the main and secondary wiring closet (1 line for phones and 2 lines for everything else), but I am having 3 more runs installed (cat 5e).
    It's not a war on drugs it's a war against personal freedoms!

  2. #2
    Just Another Geek
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blunted One
    I really want our network to fly, any ideas how to get it off the ground?
    Find out what's hogging it now. How's the network being used? How's it setup now? Were are the bottlenecks?

    Measure twice, cut once
    Oliver's Law:
    Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

  3. #3
    Some Assembly Required ShagDevil's Avatar
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    Based on the very limited amount of information you provided, the 5412zl model seems a plausible solution for your LAN. But, I'd make sure that throughput is the culprit before you fork out that kind of cash.
    The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his - George Patton

  4. #4
    Senior Member Blunted One's Avatar
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    Very true, I should go back and do some good analyzing of our network to see what hot spots and traffic jams I can find. Still pretty sure we are just pushing bargin bin switches too far things can get really sticky and slow once we go into full production for a game and everyone is beating on the network.

    So I guess my next question is what would be the best software (hopefully low cost or free) that can help me identify where in our network the issues may be coming from or what systems are causing any major lockups and slowdowns.

    Any suggestions? Or experience with one over another?
    It's not a war on drugs it's a war against personal freedoms!

  5. #5
    Just Another Geek
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    Few things pop to mind.. All free

    http://www.ntop.org/

    If you have managed switches it's likely they support SNMP.
    http://oss.oetiker.ch/mrtg/
    http://www.cacti.net/

    Do note that even with expensive equipment your network can still perform like a snail on Valium if it isn't set up properly.
    So your current equipment might be good, once sorted out. Hence the need to measure
    Last edited by SirDice; July 31st, 2008 at 07:42 AM.
    Oliver's Law:
    Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

  6. #6
    Some Assembly Required ShagDevil's Avatar
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    My favorite tool to test throughput is called Jperf 2.0 from here:
    http://sourceforge.net/projects/iperf (the program is called Jperf)

    It's simple. Unzip it, you'll see a folder called Jperf 2.0
    Copy the entire folder to the two machines to be tested
    Run Jperf.bat (located in folder)
    Setup one machine as the client (and point to the other machine's IP)
    Setup one machine as the server (make sure it's listening) and enjoy
    Last edited by ShagDevil; July 31st, 2008 at 04:17 PM.
    The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his - George Patton

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