Network Upgrade (Part 3)

The last part of the network upgrade was to upgrade the Ethernet switch from an unmanaged (dumb) switch to a managed (smart) switch. For Christmas, I picked up a TP-Link TL-SG1024DE. It was okay… sort of. It has a GUI (plus an Windows application) to configure the switch. One strange thing was that it could not encrypt the link – no HTTPS (at least with V3 of the firmware).

TP-Link has a strange way of creating 802.1q VLANs. There was one page used to create the VLANs but another to create the native VLANs for each port – which TP-Link calls PVIDs. The GUI seemed to time out at times when I was doing a bunch of configurations. It worked fine but was not quite what I was looking for in a switch.

What to do? Hmm… Well, I do like the Ubiquiti controller software and the Ubiquiti Switch 24 seemed to fit the bill… 24 GigE ports, 26 Gbps nonā€blocking throughput, power to forward simultaneously traffic on all ports at line rate without any packet loss at 52 Gbps. And the link lights are on the ports, not off to the side so I can easily see what is happening on each port. Oh, and two GigE SPF ports (not SPF+ on the 24-port – too bad, 10 Gbps would have been nice). Not that I’m planning on using fibre any time soon. I did not get the PoE version since I only have one AP and only plan on have one (or two at the most) more APs.

The great thing is, again, the UniFi Contoller. I had the VLANs created previously and they were applied when I adopted the switch into the controller. I also cleaned up my network creating a “real” core just for the networking side of things. That way the pfSense router, the AP and the switch are on their own VLAN and subnet separate from the server VLAN and subnet.

In case anyone happens to be wondering you need to manually tell the switch where the UniFi controller is if it is not on the same subnet. This is done by (from https://itaudiotech.blogspot.com/2017/06/ubiquiti-what-to-do-when-switches-arent.html):

set-inform http://ip_of_UniFi_controller_here:8080/inform

Next item is that second AP. This time I think it will the the in-wall version, the UniFi In-Wall… I seem to have the empty network jack in the kitchen and I don’t have to worry about a power supply with PoE… Hmmm…

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