NETGEAR Switches Valuable Features

Josh Duguid
Systems Consultant at DBI Systems
We did a deployment where we were running about a 10Gb video endpoint sources, so we were utilizing a much larger amount of backplane bandwidth than we were used to using. We used the 96X as the core switch, then stacked it with the other single gigabit switches. So, knowing that the 96X had more than enough of backplane bandwidth than anything we could throw at it now or in the future, makes us confident that we were going in the right direction. Not to mention, the 96X was one of the only switches that I could find that would do 10Gb with POE over copper, which was a hard fast requirement for our job. Honestly, getting the 10Gb to work was simple. Just follow good termination practices in terms of your fiber and your copper, then it worked flawlessly. For us to have a system where we can run a 4K video source virtually anywhere in a building without having to worry about really expensive matrix switchers, etc., this is the way AV is going in the next little while. In this project, we knew that we were ahead of the curve, and there was no chance of running into bandwidth limitations, or anything like that. It wasn't a feature that I knew I would need, but once we deployed it, it came in very handy. You can stack different models of switches. The fact that we can stack the 96X, which is the modeler switch for 10Gb cards or 40Gb. We can stack that with the 1Gb PoE 48 port switch. The ability to mix and match is invaluable. So, we didn't have to run massive super extensive switches in the data closets where it wasn't necessary. Being able to manage it all from one place, as all your network configuration settings went live across your entire building from one management console was really handy. View full review »
Jaret Carlson
Owner at Alpha Tech
The remote management has been awesome. With the old-school style of switches, you actually had to be on the LAN, plug into it - you could get in remotely but you had to go through a computer and have other trickery to get in. With this, you literally just log in to a website, see all your clients, all your NETGEAR switches, and you can manage them all right there: the VLANs, powering on and off individual ports, rebooting the whole device, the firmware updates. Everything can be done remotely, so it's pretty awesome for an IT company. It saves time which means more profitability. It's super-easy to use and deploy, probably one of the easiest managed switches I've ever used. I can have it pre-programmed and configured right through the web interface before I even plug it into the customer's site. By linking it to the account and doing the configuration, when I plug it in and turn it on at the client's site it gets the configuration automatically. The web portal is really awesome. I've had to troubleshoot one out of eight, so that's a pretty good ratio. It's a brand new product, so we haven't really sold tons of them yet. The troubleshooting has been pretty easy because we do it remotely and we can reboot the whole device remotely. The only time it has become a problem is when there were multiple failures. We did have one case where the internet had gone out and it was just that the router needed to get rebooted, but we couldn't do anything to the switch because their internet was down. I had to go out there. View full review »
UC Deployment Engineer at a tech services company with 501-1,000 employees
I find the flexibility they offer to be the most valuable feature along with the wide range of features that they have for its price. Out-of-the-box, it works for our main use case. When passing multicast video across the network, our technicians don't have make any changes. Then, if we do need to make configuration changes for a custom scenario, the web interface is user intuitive so it's easy to use and change. My experience with the High-Bandwith AV over IP functionality so far has been very positive. I haven't run into many issues with their switches passing a lot of high bandwidth communication across the switch. We have had projects that are pretty small and others with 80-plus devices. Regardless of the size, it works once setup and is stable too. Expandability is an easy feature for these switches that works fairly well. View full review »
Learn what your peers think about NETGEAR Switches. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: January 2021.
456,249 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Kevin Westcott
Network Delivery Architect at a tech services company with 501-1,000 employees
NETGEAR solutions are very easy to use. The command line language and structure are very similar to what Cisco has. They have a fairly intuitive GUI for their system. Also, their command line structure is very similar and straightforward in its programmability. The big winner for NETGEAR is their modular switch: the 96X version. That is something that you don't see in the market anywhere else, except for Cisco who has it at a high level for a high expense. The ability to customize your own switch with their modules is a big plus for what we do in the market right now. Instead of having to piece together standardized switches, trying to make something work, or fitting the design into the mold, the modular switches are aware that you can make a mark in the industry because you purchased one switch and design with different modules added and removed later on for functionality. View full review »
Chris Stowe
System Engineer at Diversified
* The new IGMP Plus is a handy feature. There is no configuration out-of-the-box to be able to pass a multicast video. This is probably the most beneficial feature of it. * The web interface is nice. * The overall usability of the switch seems to be going well. * One of the things I like most is the different variations in models. We have 24 SFPs and 24 copper ports (24 by 24). The flexibility of that switch is really good for our medical systems use case. The ease of use of these switches is very good because of the Cisco CLI. If you are familiar with CLI, then you can configure the switch that way. It also has a relatively straightforward web interface. Using the web interface is good for beginners or people who aren't familiar with Cisco CLI. However, having a common command line interface method is great for some of our more advanced guys who are familiar with it. The cost and ease of being able to roll out similar implementations of specific use cases is very beneficial. Plus, the ease of setup with the IGMP Plus feature to naturally support what we do on a daily basis is a huge benefit. View full review »
Information Technology Manager at King + King Architects
SFP, speed, and 10-Gigabit are the most valuable aspects of this solution. We're an architecture firm and we sometimes deal with large files. Anything we can do to eke out even a fraction of a second less time to get something done over the course of a year adds up. If I can get 10-Gigabit running in my server room, which I am right now, even though we're only gigabit to the desktop, due to the client computers we have, I can get more performance from everybody. I'm ready to start bringing in 10-Gigabit Ethernet to the desktop once I get the hardware to do that. It's easy to use once you actually read the instructions. There is some searching you have to do on the documentation to find exactly what you're looking to get done but it's all there. NETGEAR's forums were very helpful because people actually pointed me in the right direction when I had problems setting it up. We use it for IT switching. It is the distribution switch for our network and then I have access switches that feed into this switch that are also 10-Gigabit. IT switching is very nice. I run my backups much more quickly. It works out to about as fast as I thought it would be. I'm quite pleased. It's definitely worth it for what you're getting; a lot of switches, a lot of networks. I looked at a lot of different possible models and products before I bought these and I settled on NETGEAR because I thought there was a good balance of price, performance, and features. And so far, it has worked out. I have POE switches going into this switch, but I don't use this switch particularly to distribute power. The model I have is not a POE switch. It's just the data switch. We have server aggregation. Our main file server is aggregated through two SRP interfaces on the switch. We also have wireless access in our network, but it doesn't talk to this switch directly. It goes through one of our access switches. View full review »
Mike Assel
Solutions Architect of Digital Media at a tech services company with 201-500 employees
The most valuable feature is definitely the fully functional IGMP snooping and querier, out-of-the-box, that the switch provides. With most if not all switches that we've worked with previously, at a minimum you have to enable a couple of different options. With some switches there are several things that you have to enable. It can be cumbersome for AV techs who don't have much experience working with switches to configure those things, and difficult for them to troubleshoot. It's really a good feature to have that stuff enabled and fully functional out-of-the-box so that they don't have to worry about configuring any of that stuff. Overall, the switch is very easy to use. Because they have the IGMP fully enabled out-of-the-box, in most cases an AV technician won't even need to configure anything on the switch. But in the event that they do need to configure it, their switches have a really nicely laid out, consistent web user interface that I think is pretty intuitive and easy to use. The AV over IP works great as long, as the network is configured correctly. If you don't have the IGMP querier and snooping set up correctly, you can very easily flood the network to the point where it becomes unusable. Also, especially when you use multiple switches, you have to be very aware of how much bandwidth you need to connect the switches together. The SDVoE also works great. It's just another type of AV over IP, so again, as long as you have all of the multicast stuff set up correctly, and the appropriate bandwidth between switches if you're using multiple switches, it works great. SDVoE is very easy to use. You get all of the value of being able to put AV on the network and all of the flexibility of it. So far it's been pretty easy for us. And the warranty is one of the most compelling aspects of the NETGEAR switches. Other manufacturers would charge a lot of money for the exact same warranty that is included in the price of the switch with NETGEAR. View full review »
Keith Hanna
Independent Consultant at a tech company with 1-10 employees
The most valuable feature is the Insight application itself, with its ease of management. Also, the remote management tools are fantastic. The combination of the webpage as well as the app makes life so much easier. I don't need to go and visit sites to do upgrades or any sorts of changes. The firmware can all be deployed remotely. I can see the traffic on each of the switch ports remotely as well, so I can see if we've got problems, down to an individual port. It's very granular. It's easy to use and deploy. It's just a simple case of assigning a switch to one of the already-configured network offices. Then, as soon as the device pairs up, it downloads the configuration and it's good to go. It's very simple. The management tools are very straightforward. They're well laid out in terms of the concepts, and configuration and adding new devices are very easy. It's very straightforward. View full review »
Boas Hochstrasser
Chief Technology Officer at Genesis Technologies
* The stacking feature * The web interface, which makes it easy to use and set up. * The support for SDVoE * The 10GbE port speed It provides the ability to stack switches together, and this is a huge time saver! Having one interface to configure the complete system, especially when it comes to VLANs, helps a lot. This administration is something that is time consuming when all switches need to be configured individually. Thanks to stacking, you have VLANs available on all switches, and you can just select what you want. Since it has a web interface, it is easy to set up. You don't have to take three years of training somewhere for a lot of money. View full review »
Chief Technology Officer at a tech services company with 201-500 employees
The High Bandwidth AV-over-IP functionality of these switches has been fantastic, especially in leaf-and-spine. We've been able to build redundancy and they seem to outperform even the Cisco Catalyst, which is about twice as expensive as the M-series switches are. The price-to-performance for the M4300s is phenomenal. It's the best-on-market. We also like the ease of set up. The setup on them takes less than 15 minutes. They're fantastic. On a scale of one to five, the ease of use is a five. The warranty rates a four or five out of five. It's a good warranty. We don't have any problems with the product, so we don't think about it. View full review »
Greg Corlett
System Administrator at Brigham Young University
* The price, and for the most part it has been reliable. * Their enterprise-class switches have a way to go with their CLI as compared to for instance Cisco, etc. This is I think due to a lack of maturity in this market. View full review »
Learn what your peers think about NETGEAR Switches. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: January 2021.
456,249 professionals have used our research since 2012.