How to Install Netgear's Fast Ethernet Switch
By Jeff Grundy
Like a router, a network switch enables you to create small workgroups, or LANs, with multiple computers. A switch even looks like a router; however, unlike a router, it does not provide routing for broadband cable or DSL Internet connections. You add a switch to a router when you need to obtain more Ethernet ports to connect additional computers to a shared Internet connection. Whether you add a Netgear Fast Ethernet Switch to a router or set up the device as a standalone hub, installing it is relatively straightforward.
Place the switch on a flat surface in a well-ventilated area and out of direct sunlight.
Connect the first RJ-45 Ethernet cable to "Port 1" on the rear of the Netgear switch. Connect the other end of the Ethernet cable to LAN or Network port on the rear of the computer. Note that if using a laptop computer, the LAN or Network port may be on the side of the unit.
Connect other computers to the switch as needed using Ethernet cables.
Connect the AC power adapter to the switch, and then plug the other end into an available electrical outlet. Connect the AC power adapter; the Netgear switch powers on automatically and is ready for use.
- You can daisy-chain Netgear switches if one does not have an adequate number of ports to network all the computers in your LAN. Run an Ethernet cable from the last port on the switch with a full complement of connected computers to the first port on the next switch, then connect additional computers to the second switch.
- You can also use a Netgear router to add ports to a router for sharing an Internet connection. Run an Ethernet cable from the first port on the switch to an open network port on the router. After connecting the Netgear switch to the router, you can connect additional PCs to the network. Computers connected to the switch receive IP addresses and Internet connectivity just as they would if they were connected directly to the router.
- Unlike routers, switches cannot assign IP addresses to computers. To share files and folders between computers, the PCs must all be members of the same workgroup and use IP addresses in the same range. Consequently, to create a network that allows file and printer sharing with just a switch, you must assign IP addresses to each computer on the LAN manually.
Jeff Grundy has been writing computer-related articles and tutorials since 1995. Since that time, Grundy has written many guides to using various applications that are published on numerous how-to and tutorial sites. Born and raised in South Georgia, Grundy holds a Master of Science degree in mathematics from the Georgia Institute of Technology.