Network hub or switch

  pinfog 04:57 11 Feb 2003

Is there any diference between a network hub and a network switch?
I want to link 3 pc's on a LAN network and then add a wireless access point to the network to link to 2 laptops with wireless cards.
Can I use either a network hub or a network switch? Which is better and why?

  Forum Editor 08:04 11 Feb 2003

network hub.

The laptops will be entirely separate - linked via wireless network adapters. They won't be able to access the PC network, unless you equip it (the network) with a wireless access point. Why don't you operate the whole lot as one wireless network, using a wireless access point and wireless network adapters?

Network switches are more expensive than hubs, and although they can bring substantial benefits in a large network situation you wouldn't notice the difference on a small home network. Switches are 'self-learning', and generally work by reducing collisions on the network, relieving congestion. They also break very large networks into smaller sections.

To be honest, network switch deployment is a pretty big and complex subject (get it wrong and you can actually slow a network down), and isn't one that I can go into fully here - suffice it to say that I would recommend a hub in your situation.

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