Gigabit Networking

Bobobie

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Oct 1, 2005
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#1
I noticed that my new PC has two onboard Gigabit ethernet connectors. I have two computers and an XBOX360 networked together. Is it worth it to Update the other computer and my old Linksys router to Gigabit? I do move a lot of media files to the other computer.
 

Davel23

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Feb 26, 2005
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#2
Gigabit components are cheap nowadays. I'm all gigabit and I can definitely see a difference.
 

MrAbovePar

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Mar 14, 2005
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#3
The Xbox 360 will only do 100Mb/s.

I have a gigabit switch and it's great for streaming.
 

zagman76

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#4
I noticed that my new PC has two onboard Gigabit ethernet connectors. I have two computers and an XBOX360 networked together. Is it worth it to Update the other computer and my old Linksys router to Gigabit? I do move a lot of media files to the other computer.
Is it worth it? That depends on who you ask. If you find that media/data takes a long time to move between machines, or your media is rather large (100MB+ per file), then yes.

It's a hardware "upgrade" only, so it is possible. All you have to do is buy a NIC that supports gigabit, a router that supports it as well.

[geeky version]
Or, you could get a gigabit switch, and use that instead of the built-in switch in the router. You'd just need a wire connecting the LAN on the existing router to the new, gigabit switch, and then all the wires would have to move to the new switch. You'd also have to set your machines with a static IPs, so the data they wouldn't need to go back to the router each time it wants to send something somewhere.[/geeky version]
 

Picklestyle

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Jun 21, 2007
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#6
Bufallo Tech Makes a gigabit ethernet converter. You can use it on the xbox360 to stream it over gigabit. They sell the converter at Best Buy.


Set it up with your PC and plug it into the xbox.
 

Bobobie

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#7
Bufallo Tech Makes a gigabit ethernet converter. You can use it on the xbox360 to stream it over gigabit. They sell the converter at Best Buy.


Set it up with your PC and plug it into the xbox.

You understand that the Xbox is still not going to transpher data any faster than 10/100 T ethernet? I think you're confused and are talking about a regular router.
 

Picklestyle

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Jun 21, 2007
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#8
You understand that the Xbox is still not going to transpher data any faster than 10/100 T ethernet? I think you're confused and are talking about a regular router.


i never said the xbox would do gigabit. He asked if he could connect it to other gigabit devices. the device just allows for better compatability and less dropped packets and errors in transfer.

some gigabit devices have shitty firmware and when plugged into 10/100 devices causes a bottle neck. Most end users never know this and worsen the connection. The bufallo will auto update the firmware when you set it up.

Just offering a suggestion to him.
 

zagman76

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#9
Zag, please fill me in on why you'd have to use static IP's. I'm curious.

you wouldn't *have* to per-say ... but the less broadcast traffic on the network (from the DHCP server (the router in this case)), the more throughput you'd have.

Also, if it's a smart-switch, it can do basic arp/mac routing without having to go back to the router.

And now that I think about it - if the IP was dynamically assigned, it would do the same thing with the switch... except there would be broadcast traffic as well.
 

Sinn Fein

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#10
Ok.. The reason I asked is work-related. I spend alot of time re-imaging client workstations from the server. It's a PXE bootloader setup, where the client boots from the LAN, and then switches over to the hard drive. Whem doing a reload, the O/S and related files are pulled from the server by the client. Many times, it doesn't work due to network traffic. It times out, no matter what.

The router and switch at our client sites are adminstered by someone else (another company - not us) and in my opinion, they have things configured incorrectly. They've got a router, which connects to the WAN, and a managed switch (generally a Cisco 2960) cascaded off the router. Two different servers, and all the client workstations are pluged into this switch. They've also got a WAP plugged into the switch, but that really doesn't matter. Everything is DHCP on this network.

I see no reason I should run into this kind of issue as often as I do, other than the fact the switch is configured incorrectly. Decreasing network traffic by shutting down other workstations does not resolve the problem.

In the past, the solution was to just use a crossover LAN cable and go direct from the server to the client that needs to be reloaded, totally bypassing the switch. This is a major pain in the nuts, as it pisses off the customer because it results in their server off the network. Often, I'd have to come back during off-hours and do it.

I now carry a little Netgear FS105 5-port ethernet switch. I cascade this switch off the main switch and it resolves my issue:

1) I connect the Netgear to the main switch and power it up.
2) I unplug the server from the main switch and plug it into my Netgear.
3) I unplug the client I need to reload from the main switch and plug it into my Netgear.
4) Everything then works as it should. My reload works like a charm because I am completely bypassing their screwed-up switch, but maintaining network connectivity. When I'm finished, I put everything back the way it was.

That being said, I know that data isn't bouncing all the way back to the router, because if that were the case my solution wouldn't work because the problem is clearly in the managed switch.
 

cknight725

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Sep 9, 2005
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#11
Ok ... Many times, it doesn't work due to network traffic. It times out, no matter what ... They've got a router, which connects to the WAN, and a managed switch (generally a Cisco 2960) cascaded off the router ... other than the fact the switch is configured incorrectly.
I'd betcha a gazillion dollars that managed switch is basically a waste of hard earned money in their implementation. Its probably a "managed" switch that someone has deployed just like they would the $150 48-port switch you buy from D-Link. Cisco switches are NOT designed for plug and play -- they must be configured to get them to perform as well as a dumb switch. The nice thing is that once you config them right, they're about 25 times FASTER than dumb switches.

Sinn Fein said:
Everything is DHCP on this network.
DHCP from what? Your switch, router, or a server? I've never had a bit of trouble with DHCP architecture and excess traffic on networks of even huge sizes. Besides, if you suspect your problem is DHCP traffic, just increase the lease timeout. I have however seen Win2k3 DHCP take its sweet time handing out DHCP addresses.

Something else to look out for - if your network uses a lot of Broadcom (or 3com) 10/100 NICs on windows boxes, I'd bet they have the default config of "Auto Sensing" the line speed and duplex settings. To vastly improve performance, hard set those to 100 Mbit and full duplex. If a PC doesn't work with full duplex settings you've got a cabling problem with that run that needs to be sorted out ...

OH, and Gigabit Ethernet rocks! Costco has a deal right now on a pretty nice D-Link Gig Router for about $120 ... thats about 40-50 bucks discounted.
 

umo

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Jan 27, 2005
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#12
Just remember that your actual LAN speed will not be anything remotely close to 1000Mbs. Your data transfer rate is severely limited by TCP/IP overhead and the read/write speed of your hard drives. If you get 300Mbs throughput...consider yourself lucky.

Iperf is the best utility to measure your LAN speed.
 

Bobobie

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#13
Would a switch or between the two computers be faster, isolated from the internet traffic and XBOX? After getting the new Nic and router, both computers would have two Network connections.
 

Sinn Fein

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#14
I'd betcha a gazillion dollars that managed switch is basically a waste of hard earned money in their implementation. Its probably a "managed" switch that someone has deployed just like they would the $150 48-port switch you buy from D-Link. Cisco switches are NOT designed for plug and play -- they must be configured to get them to perform as well as a dumb switch. The nice thing is that once you config them right, they're about 25 times FASTER than dumb switches.
I agree completely. For their application, they do NOT need a managed switch.

DHCP from what? Your switch, router, or a server? I've never had a bit of trouble with DHCP architecture and excess traffic on networks of even huge sizes. Besides, if you suspect your problem is DHCP traffic, just increase the lease timeout. I have however seen Win2k3 DHCP take its sweet time handing out DHCP addresses.
The only reason I mentioned this was due to Zag's statement about having to use static IP addresses. I wasn't indicaticating the presense of a problem.

Something else to look out for - if your network uses a lot of Broadcom (or 3com) 10/100 NICs on windows boxes, I'd bet they have the default config of "Auto Sensing" the line speed and duplex settings. To vastly improve performance, hard set those to 100 Mbit and full duplex. If a PC doesn't work with full duplex settings you've got a cabling problem with that run that needs to be sorted out ...
Yep. I've seen this before.
 

Bobobie

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#15
Just remember that your actual LAN speed will not be anything remotely close to 1000Mbs. Your data transfer rate is severely limited by TCP/IP overhead and the read/write speed of your hard drives. If you get 300Mbs throughput...consider yourself lucky.

Iperf is the best utility to measure your LAN speed.
I'm horrible at bits and bytes conversion. I'm getting 14 MB/s in the file transpher window, 352 meg file copies in 20 seconds. What does that equal in megabits?
 

Bobobie

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#16
I got it up to 24MB/S About 5 minutes to copy a 8 gig DVDR image file to the other computer.
 

roche

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#17
I got it up to 24MB/S About 5 minutes to copy a 8 gig DVDR image file to the other computer.
That is 192 megabits per second. A lot of the PCs I work with have gigabit cards in them but none of them hook up to a gigabit switches so my experience with gigabit networks is minimal to say the least, but I never would have expected it to be that bad.