Managed vs unmanaged switch: What are the differences?

managed vs unmanaged network switch

Managed vs unmanaged switch: who can meet your real needs?

Network switches are like the “brain” of a home network or a corporate network. Therefore, selecting the appropriate and powerful network switches is an important task for network managers. Many users have long been confused about how to choose between a managed and an unmanaged switch. This post examines the issue users are facing: managed versus unmanaged switch. This is the real problem I need. The use of managed switches or non-managed switches for business or private purposes is discussed.

managed vs unmanaged network switch

What is a managed or unmanaged switch?


Managed switch


Managed switches generally provide the most complete functions for a network. Due to their diverse and comprehensive functions, such as VLAN, CLI, SNMP, IP routing, QoS, etc., managed switches are often used in the main layer of a network, especially in large and complex data centers. To meet the different network requirements, there are several easy-to-manage switches on the market, which are also known as smart switches. These switches have partial functions of the managed switches. If users have limited costs and do not need all the features of a fully managed switch, Smart Switch offers them an optimal alternative.

Unmanaged switch


Compared to managed switches, unmanaged switches appear to be “brainless”. This is a kind of Ethernet plug & play network switch. Users just have to connect and wait for them to work. Because unmanaged switches require no configuration at all. Therefore, if users need some ports at home or in a conference room, the unmanaged switch can be used as a simple desktop to meet their needs.


Managed and unmanaged switch: what’s the difference?


There are different types of managed and unmanaged switches on the market, e.g. For example, Cisco managed / unmanaged switches, Netgear managed / unmanaged switches, HP managed switches, etc. Opinions about the uses of these network switches vary from person to person. What is the difference between managed and unmanaged switches?

Managed vs unmanaged switch: who can meet your needs?


In many cases, network managers must choose the most appropriate network switches to ensure that the entire network system is functioning properly. Then, managed switches vs. unmanaged switches: how to choose the most appropriate for the practical requirements of the network? Here are two questions that many users can ask.


Managed or unmanaged switches for corporate networks?


In fact, this question cannot be answered with a simple yes or no. Whether managed or unmanaged switches are used depends on the size of the corporate network, the characteristics required, and the complexity of the network. Many small business networks do not have managed switches because they need the basic functionality of an Ethernet switch. While thousands of users use the Internet simultaneously for complex corporate networks or large data centers. Managed switches can isolate traffic based on different groups such as users, guests, backups, administration, and servers. This not only provides managers with a better way to control traffic but also provides strong protection for the entire network.

Managed or unmanaged switches for home use?


After browsing the forum, you will find that many users use 8 port managed switches or 24 port managed switches for their home. Does this mean that managed switches are more popular on the home network? Not. If the user has more control over the home network and wants to pay more attention to privacy, choosing a managed home switch is much better. However, if the user only wants the normal functioning of the home network and not too much time to manage, then unmanaged plug-and-play switches are best suited for him.

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