networking 2 switches

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Aug 5th, 2007
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Can anyone help me with this dilemma? First off, I'm not IT or networking or anything like that. I'm a soldier in the US Army that has been tasked with setting up and maintaining our detachment's network. What I'm trying to do is this: Network 15 towers together with one switch using windows workgroup (that's done, no problem) The problem I'm experiencing is using a second switch to connect 6 HP plotters together, then connect the two switches together. This is the was my superiors want it to work, so this is the way I have to do it. Unless anyone can give me a stellar reason why it shouldn't be done that way, that is. Do I need to use a crossover cable to connect the two switches together? Any help or links to a webpage that has these answers would be GREATLY appreciated.


Thanks,

Jason

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royalblues Sun, 08/05/2007 - 13:39
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Yes traditionally speaking you require a cross over cable when interconnecting switches but new switches have a feature called auto MDIX which takes care of this automatically and hence it is not mandatory to use cross cables


Narayan

Pavel Bykov Mon, 08/06/2007 - 06:08
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Also, sometimes switches have what is called an "uplink" port, that is used to connect it to other switches without the need for a crossover cable.


If switch has MDIX, sometimes you need to switch MDIX functionality manually. It's done by connecting console cable to the switch, then typing:

enable

config t

interface fast X/X or interface gigabit X/X (issue a "show interface status" to see what interfaces are on the switch)

mdix auto


I'm assuming you have Cisco switches, if not, the configuration will definitely be different.


But you should be fine with default configuration and crossover cables.

Here is crossover manual: http://www.littlewhitedog.com/content-8.html


jwdoherty Mon, 08/06/2007 - 07:22
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In addition to the prior posts, some (older) switches have a port that can be a normal or uplink port. Usually there's some way to change that port's configuration, usually a button or some such.


If you do have a switch with an uplink port, using a normal patch cable, you connect it to a normal port. (Effectively the uplink port is crossing the pins - what a crossover cable does for you between normal ports.)

pkaretnikov Wed, 08/29/2007 - 11:52
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I know it's not what yo may want to hear but if you are in a normal CONUS base you ought to have a DOIM taking care of the networking or if you are deployed, the unit you are attached to should have people who would be in a better position to network you. Also you can run into a lot of problems when you start reading up requirements based on AR25-2.


As for the crossover, yes it would be best to connect switches together via a crossover. Don't string the cat 5 cable too far(over 100meters) or you will run into issues with that link.


Paul

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