Network Switches

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Explore our extensive range of network switches, including standard switches, PoE network switches and specialised devices like TP-Link switches, alone with essential data supplies and network cabling products. Our selection of network switches caters to various requirements, offering models with varying port counts, including 16 port switches, 24 port network switches and 8 port network switches, alongside larger options with up to 52 ports.  As a 100% Australian-owned company, Dataworld takes pride in delivering exceptional networking products and services. When you shop with us, you can trust that your order will be dispatched within 24 hours, ensuring a swift and efficient delivery process. Our products adhere to rigorous Australian regulations and undergo thorough testing and evaluation, guaranteeing reliability and compliance. If you need assistance in choosing the right networking solution for you, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Dataworld. We’re here to help you make the best choice for your network infrastructure.

What is a network switch?

A network switch is a crucial component in computer networking that facilitates the efficient distribution of data between devices within a local area network (LAN). Unlike basic hubs that broadcast data to all connected devices, a network switch intelligently forwards data only to the specific device that needs it, which helps to improve network performance, minimise data collisions and enhance security.

Network switches come in various sizes, with different numbers of ports to accommodate various network sizes and configurations. They play a fundamental role in directing data traffic, ensuring smooth and reliable communication between devices, making them an essential part of any modern network infrastructure.

Is a network switch better than a router?

Network switches and routers serve different functions in a network, so it's not accurate to say that one is inherently better than the other. They are often used together to create a functional network infrastructure. Here are their key differences:

  • Network Switch: A network switch is primarily responsible for efficiently distributing data within a local area network (LAN). It operates at Layer 2 (Data Link Layer) of the OSI model and uses MAC addresses to determine where to forward data packets within the LAN. Network switches are excellent for local network traffic management and are ideal for connecting multiple devices within a LAN.
  • Router: A router, on the other hand, operates at Layer 3 (Network Layer) of the OSI model and is responsible for connecting different networks together, such as your local network to the internet. Routers make decisions about how to route data between different networks based on IP addresses. They also provide features like Network Address Translation (NAT) and firewall capabilities, which are essential for internet connectivity and network security.

Can you connect a network switch to another network switch?

Yes, you can connect one network switch to another network switch, whether it's a standard switch or a specialised device like a PoE network switch or a TP-Link switch. This type of connection is often referred to as "daisy-chaining" or "cascading" switches. It allows you to expand the number of available ports and devices that can be connected to your network.

To establish this connection, you would typically use an Ethernet cable to connect one of the ports on the first switch to one of the ports on the second switch. This effectively extends the network and provides additional ports for connecting devices. Such a setup is especially useful when you have more devices than the ports available on a single switch or when you want to segment your network into different sections.

It's important to choose the right type of network switches for your specific needs, such as managed switches for greater control and flexibility in network management. Proper network design and management practices should always be followed to ensure optimal performance and avoid potential issues like network loops or congestion.

What are the differences between managed and unmanaged switches?

Managed and unmanaged switches differ in their capabilities and functionality, which can significantly impact your network management and performance. Here are the key differences between them:

Control and Configuration:

  • Managed Switch: This networking switch offers extensive control and configuration options. They can be accessed and configured remotely through a web interface, command-line interface (CLI) or dedicated management software. This allows for fine-grained control over network settings, VLANs (Virtual LANs), Quality of Service (QoS), security features and more. Managed switches are ideal for complex networks that require customisation and optimisation.
  • Unmanaged Switch: Unmanaged switches, on the other hand, are "plug-and-play" devices with no user-configurable options. They operate at a basic level, automatically forwarding traffic without any configuration. These switches are easy to set up and are suitable for simple, small-scale networks where minimal control is needed.

Monitoring and Troubleshooting:

  • Managed Switch: Managed switches provide tools for monitoring network traffic, diagnosing issues, and optimising performance. They often include features like SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) for network monitoring and event logging, making it easier to troubleshoot problems and ensure network reliability.
  • Unmanaged Switch: Unmanaged networking switches lack monitoring and diagnostic capabilities. If a problem arises in the network, they provide little visibility into the issue and offer limited options for resolving it.


  • Managed Switch: Managed switches offer advanced security features such as Access Control Lists (ACLs), port security and authentication protocols. These features enhance network security by controlling access and preventing unauthorised devices from connecting to the network.
  • Unmanaged Switch: Unmanaged switches have minimal security features, making them less suitable for securing sensitive networks. They typically lack the ability to implement security policies or control network access.


  • Managed Switch: Managed switches are typically more expensive than unmanaged switches due to their advanced features and capabilities. The cost can vary significantly depending on the networking switch's specifications and brand.
  • Unmanaged Switch: Unmanaged switches are more cost-effective, making them a budget-friendly option for smaller networks with basic connectivity needs.

How do I secure a network switch?

Securing a network switch is essential to protect your network from unauthorised access, potential threats, and security breaches. Whether you have a 16 port switch, a 24 port network or even an 8 port network switch, the principles of securing your networking switch apply. Don’t forget to consider specific features like a PoE network switch or a TP-Link switch when implementing security measures.

Here are some steps to help you secure a network switch:

  1. Change Default Credentials: The first and most crucial step is to change the default login credentials (username and password) for your switch. Using default credentials makes it easier for unauthorised users to gain access to your networking switch.
  2. Enable Strong Authentication: Use strong authentication methods like multi-factor authentication (MFA) if your switch supports it as this adds an extra layer of security.
  3. Implement Access Control: Configure access control lists (ACLs) to control which devices or IP addresses are allowed to connect to the switch, which limits access to authorised devices only.
  4. Disable Unused Ports: Disable any unused ports on the switch to prevent unauthorised devices from being connected. This reduces the attack surface and potential points of entry.
  5. VLAN Segmentation: Implement VLANs to segment your network into separate virtual networks, which helps isolate traffic and restricts access between different parts of your network.
  6. Enable Port Security: Port security features allow you to control which devices can connect to specific switch ports. You can configure the network switch to only accept connections from known MAC addresses.
  7. Regular Firmware Updates: Keep your networking switch's firmware up to date with the latest security patches and updates. Manufacturers often release firmware updates to address known vulnerabilities.
  8. Logging and Monitoring: Enable logging and monitoring features on your networking switch to track and analyse network activity. Logging and monitoring can help detect and respond to suspicious or unauthorised access attempts.
  9. Physical Security: Ensure physical security for your network switch by placing it in a locked cabinet or secure room to prevent unauthorised physical access.
  10. Backup Configuration: Regularly back up the configuration of your network switch. In case of a security incident or a hardware failure, having a backup configuration can expedite recovery.
  11. Educate Users: Train network administrators and users about network security best practices. Encourage them to use strong passwords, avoid sharing login credentials and be cautious about phishing attempts.
  12. Implement Network Monitoring and Intrusion Detection Systems: Deploy network monitoring tools and intrusion detection systems to actively monitor network traffic and detect unusual or malicious activities.
  13. Regular Security Audits: Conduct regular security audits and vulnerability assessments to identify and address potential security weaknesses.

Where can I find more help around network switches?

For additional assistance with any type of network switch, whether it’s a 16 port switch, a 24 port network switch or an 8 port network switch, feel free to reach out to our dedicated support team. We're here to provide you with the expertise and information you need to make informed decisions and optimise your network infrastructure, including any 48-port options you may be considering. Don't hesitate to contact us for all your network switch inquiries.

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