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LAN & WAN Reviews

Netgear GS716T - more

The port configuration screen shows you the status for each port. For each port, you can configure the speed and duplex settings or leave them at the default "auto". You can also enable/disable flow control on a per port basis. Back pressure is a global setting. Port based statistics, including distribution of traffic by packet size is also available.

Of the three smart switches reviewed, the GS716T had the most complete set of configuration options for QoS. In addition to port-based QoS and 802.1p QoS, you could also select ToS or DSCP. As with the Linksys managed switch, you could map DSCP values to any of the four QoS queues, but by default, all values were set to lowest. Unfortunately, neither the user guide nor the browser-based help provided any information on ToS or DSCP.

Like the D-Link switch, the GS716T supports mirroring of data from multiple ports to a target port. However, the data type mirrored (TX, RX or Both) is a global setting that applies to all source ports. The GS716T also supports broadcast storm control. You can select broadcast only or broadcast/multicast and set a threshold. (3000 pps is the default). Both the broadcast type and the threshold settings are global, but for each port you can enable or disable storm control.

While the Netgear lacks the robust security offered by the 802.1x capabilities of the D-Link, it does have a trusted MAC feature. You can limit access to ports by MAC address, but the bridge forwarding table isn't available, so you really don't know the MAC address of any attached device.

Construction details

GS716T Interior
Click to enlarge image

Figure 10: GS716T Interior

The interior of the GS716T is quite similar to the D-Link. It's powered by the same Marvell 98DX series gigabit Ethernet controller, but we couldn't determine the other chipsets used. Note that the GS716T has two fans that resulted in the highest noise level readings of any of the switches. The noise level isn't a problem if you're going to use this switch in a wiring closet, but it's probably too loud to reside in an office where someone is seated nearby.

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