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New Contributor

How to test and compare L2 and L3 switches


Question 1:

I have to deploy 19 L2 switches and 2 L3 switch. Need help in picking the right switch. I am going to use SNMP and Sflow with network management software to manage these switches. So it comes down to the hardware performance of the switch.
I have the three switch models from the manufacturers on trial - need to figure out how to test them. Is there a step by step document to conduct this test ?


Question 2:

Switch model 1 - showing switching capacity, forwarding rate and stacking bandwidth in duplex where as other switch manufacturers does not mention duplex. Is switch manufacturer 1 inflating the forwarding rate and stack bandwidth?

See switch details here


In the datasheet the Specification part it's very helpful to choose a model that fulfill your setup requirements:

The values of the DS are tested values. If you still want to test, iperf is a nice tool to generate test traffic.

Switching capacity counts the traffic as duplex, for example in a 1Gbps port if you want to achieve wired-speed communication it will use 2Gbps switching throughput (1up and 1down).

- Emirjon
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New Contributor III

Look at the product code of the switch. If the switch ends with "EMI" then it's a Layer 3 switch. If it's "SMI" then it could be a layer 2 only switch. TO convert the appliance from Layer 2 to Layer 3, you need to have a hardware upgrade.