NETGEAR Employee Retired

Best Way to Manage and Configure Your Switch

Hi all,



In our NETGEAR Trainings one of the most frequently asked questions is what is the best way to manage my switch ?


In my opinion that depends mainly on three factors:


  1. Network size
  2. Learning Time
  3. Network Configuration Adjustments


To have a better understanding about this, first we need to know what are the different management capabilities in our switches:


  • Unmanaged : Plug and Play - No management
  • Plus switches : Web based GUI
  • Smart Switches : Web based GUI and SNMP
  • Managed Switches : Web based GUI, Command Line Interface CLI, SNMP


Unmanaged switches are ideal when the network size is small and there is no need to configure any feature like VLAN,QoS,LAG...

In these cases the Learning Time required is almost 0 and the network will be set up and running really quickly.


However, if we need to implement VLANs, LAGS, or other protocols to secure the network and increase the performance we can choose between GUI and CLI. 


In my opinion GUI is the best way when there isn't enough time to learn specific commands and when there won't be many readjustments needed on the network settings. Therefore it should be our first-choice for most of our network deployments.


Nevertheless if the network settings need to be readjusted frequently like ( bandwith profiles, Port-based VLANs,etc..) the CLI will be our best option as the  time spent learning the commands (once at the beginning) will reduce the time required to reconfigure the settings in our switches ( daily/weekly activities). Moreover with the CLI interface text-based editors can be used to copy/paste/modify configurations.


SNMP it's our latest option and it's really benefitial when a large number of switches need to be mantained and configured. The main advantage of the SNMP is to automate the network deployments and to monitor in an easy way our network status (ports up/down, bandwith, cpu, memory). However in order to implement it an NMS server will need to be installed as the SNMP protocol is based in a client-server architecture.

To help you on this you can use our NETGEAR NMS300. 


Hope that helps you to decide the best way to manage your switch!


Xavier Lleixa



Model: GS108|Gigabit Switches
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